8 Master’s degrees (apart from a MBA) in Singapore that preps you for a management role

With so many bright talents in the job space, a bachelor’s degree has become the bare minimum for getting your foot in the door. These days, however, it’s seldom enough to propel you up the career ladder into coveted leadership positions.

bachelor’s degree

Students worldwide are increasingly turning to postgraduate studies in order to stand out. Postgrad student numbers soared by 59% within the last decade alone, reported the Guardian UK.

Fiona Major, postgraduate programme director of pharmaceutical giant GSK, noted how postgrads tended to have “values-based leadership” and “strategic thinking”, making them more attractive candidates. If your career plan includes rising into management positions, it’s worth investing in a postgrad program to equip yourself with management know-how.

This doesn’t necessarily mean an MBA, which unfortunately no longer commands the prestige it once did. With more and more jobseekers boasting those three letters on their resume, other Master’s-level qualifications are actually more likely to get you an executive position, headhunter Debbie Goodman-Bhyat tells The Economist.

Here, we’ve narrowed down eight of the best alternative options for postgrad study in management:

1) Master of Science in Engineering Business Management, from Coventry University, at PSB Academy

Established since 1964, “Asia’s Future Academy” has won numerous awards for their standards in education in recent years. Developed in collaboration with the UK’s Coventry University, their prestigious program balances rigorous technical training with a strong focus on management skills.

Coventry University is a rising force to be reckoned with. Lauded as one of the World’s top 200 Young Universities (Times Higher Education Young University Rankings 2017) , and more recently, UK’s Top Modern University (Complete University Guide 2018), the school has also been awarded Gold for Outstanding Teaching and Learning (Teaching Excellence Framework, 2017)

If you aspire to leadership within the engineering sector, this course will arm you with a deep understanding of the necessary competencies – global engineering strategy, people management, and project management, just to name a few.

These areas are taught through case studies and applied work, enabling a smooth translation of theory to the workplace. You can also choose to specialise in a particular management area via an individual project, allowing you to align your learning even more closely with your career interests.

Duration: 12 months (full-time), 15 months (part-time)

Tuition Fees:

Local Student: S$19,452.60
International Student: S$20,415.60

Prerequisites (at least one of the following):

  • A minimum of a second class honours degree in any engineering related subject or Management studies.
  • A relevant professional qualification of an equivalent level.
  • A lower qualification plus appropriate and relevant experience at a professional level.
  • Satisfactory, independent evidence of working for several years in a relevant area (non hons grads).
  • Students whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

Find out more here.

2) Master of Science in CFO Leadership, Singapore Management University

Offered by SMU’s School of Accountancy, this distinctive degree aims to transform you into a finance and business leader. The program trains finance professionals in specialised hard skills such as making financial decisions, while giving them the right tools to lead their organisations and shape business outcomes.

Specialising in business and management studies, SMU has received recognition from AACSB International and was a finalist in “preparing students for the workforce” (Wharton-QS Stars Reimagine Education Awards), so rest assured that you are in good hands.

Duration: 1 year

Tuition Fees: S$55,000

Prerequisites: GMAT / SMU AT TOEFL / IELTS

Find out more here.

3) Master of Technology in Software Engineering, National University of Singapore

Consistently achieving high rankings in global university rankings, Singapore’s oldest university brings together the best of IT and management know-how to bring you a program suitable for aspiring project managers in the software industry. The comprehensive curriculum includes technical knowledge like building software solutions and IT infrastructure. This is integrated with training on soft skills, project management, and innovation.

Duration: 1.5 years (full-time), 2.5 years (part-time)

Tuition Fees:

Full Time: S$4,976.50 per semester
Part Time: S$2,514.25 per semester


  • Bachelor’s degree (preferably in Sci. or Eng.) with a GPA of at least B
  • Proficiency in the English Language (written and spoken)*
  • Preferably two years of relevant working experience as an IT professional in software development or maintenance (eg: programmer, designer, software project manager)
  • Applicants who graduated from universities where English is not the medium of instruction require a TOEFL or IELTS score.

Find out more here.

4) Master of Science in International Healthcare Leadership, SIM GE

Developed and awarded by the UK’s University of Manchester, which holds triple accreditation (AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS) and is rated 2nd in the UK for research power, this unique degree from one of Singapore’s leading private institution focuses on bringing value to healthcare services through good leadership.


Healthcare practitioners will be able to develop practical leadership skills through blended learning approaches. What’s more, the course adopts a broad focus on international healthcare systems, vastly expanding your range of career prospects.

Duration: 2 years

Tuition Fees: S$32,100.00


  • Bachelor’s degree (2nd Class Honours degree or its equivalent) with min. two years of management experience
  • Other qualifications will be assessed on individual merits
  • ≥ C6 pass in English as First Language at GCE O-Level/ 7.0 in IELTS

Find out more here.

5) Master of Supply Chain Management, Curtin Singapore

From operations management to global business, this course equips you with the necessary competencies to take the next step in your career in logistics and supply chain management.

Curtin’s program was ranked within the top 40 best Masters for Supply Chain and Logistics worldwide by the 2015/15 Eduniversal Masters Ranking. It is also globally accredited by the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply. Amongst the top 1% worldwide, Curtin is Australia’s second-most international university, with strong industry connections and research performance.

Duration: 1 year

Tuition Fees: S$32256

Prerequisites: IELTS band 6.5/TOEFL score of 79

The program is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply and graduates may be eligible for full membership status with 3 years working experience.

Graduates are eligible to apply for graduate membership of The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport Association of Australia (LAA).

Find out more here.

6) Master of Science International Business Management, from Edinburgh Napier University, at PSB Academy

For those looking for a more general understanding of business management, this MSc program offers solid coverage of competencies in the international business management arena.

Edinburgh Napier Uni

The strength of this course lies in the diversity of its approaches, spanning from economic insights to management essentials such as intercultural business communication. Regardless of your field of specialisation, this degree promises to open doors to a wide range of management-level prospects.

One of Scotland’s largest higher education institutions, Edinburgh Napier University has received accolades for their internationalism from university ranking systems such as Times Higher Education (Top 180 University for International Outlook) and QS (Rated 5 Stars for Teaching, Employability and Internationalisation, QS Stars 2017). Their strengths in teaching, employability, as well as research have also received recognition (92% Research Internationally Recognised, Research Excellence Framework 2014) .

Duration: 16 months (full-time), 20 months (part-time)

Tuition Fees: Local Student: $20,704.50*, International Student: $20,704.50*


  • Honours degree (Second class division 2 or above); or
  • Other qualifications and/or experience which demonstrate appropriate knowledge and skills at Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) Level 10
  • GCE O-level English (Grade 1 to 6) or equivalent/IELTS score of 6/PSB Academy’s Certificate in English Proficiency (Advanced)

All applications are subject to approval by Edinburgh Napier University.

Find out more here.

7) Master of Conflict Management and Resolution, James Cook University

Great leadership is essentially about people management – communicating, negotiating, and resolving the inevitable conflicts that crop up. This JCU degree is targeted at honing such invaluable soft skills, paving your way to become an effective leader in any professional sector.

Subjects studied include workplace conflict management and facilitative mediation practice. The course draws on real-life case studies and conflict situations, allowing you to apply new knowledge easily to the workplace.

Placing 38th in The Times’ Higher Education’s 150 under 50 rankings (2016), JCU consistently ranks amongst the top 2% of universities worldwide. Awarded both the EduTrust and Singapore Quality Class Star Awards, the Singapore branch promises you excellent education delivered in a sprawling 24,000 square m2 campus.

Duration: 2 years

Tuition Fees: $30,000/year

Prerequisites: AQF level 7 bachelor degree or equivalent as recognised by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Division of Tropical Environments & Societies

Find out more here.

8) CEMS Master’s in International Management, National University of Singapore

This double-master degree program is the product of collaboration with CEMS, a global alliance of renowned business schools, MNCs, and NGOs. Not only does it deliver rigorous training in areas such as global management practice, it includes unique opportunities for cross-cultural immersion and experiential learning.

The extraordinary program incorporates overseas exchange trips with two CEMS partner schools, plus an internship with either a CEMS Corporate Partner or an international company. In other words, you get to hone your management and business communication skills in a truly global context.

The CEMS MIM program has been ranked among the Financial Times’ top Master’s in Management programs in the world since 2005.

Duration: 1.5 years

Tuition Fees: S$15,000


  • A good undergrad degree from a four-year business-related degree programme. Three-year business-related degrees may be considered on case-by-case basis.
  • TOEFL score ≥ 260 for computer-based test, 620 for paper and 100 for internet / IELTS score ≥ 0.

Find out more here.

Whether you find specialised or general programs more suitable, postgrad studies can give your career just the push it needs. And with part-time programs becoming more common, you don’t even need to worry about stopping work for a year or two to go back to school. Time to hit the books!

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