Skip to Content

Master of Business Administration
(MBA) Available online

2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

About this course

With a Southern Cross University online MBA, you'll develop both the business know-how and the practical skills to advance your career or build your own business. You'll examine contemporary management and develop solutions to complex commercial situations all through the prism of the fast-paced, ever-evolving global digital economy.

The course is designed to enable you to get the most out of the program while fitting study seamlessly around work, family, and other priorities. It is 100% online. You can begin at one of six times throughout the year, and adjust your workload to suit your schedule. Our personalised, one-on-one support keeps you motivated and ensures you're getting the education you need. You study broadly across a comprehensive suite of business disciplines, and take one of our seven specialisations to gain the deep knowledge you need to enhance your professional expertise.

You'll undertake a practical research project in your workplace to reinforce your learning and to apply that learning in a real business environment. Along with specialist industry capabilities, you'll develop the soft skills employers crave and businesses need; leadership, problem solving and communication.

Four foundation units give you a solid grounding in the basic principles of business and management. If you have a relevant undergraduate degree or work experience, you could receive these as advanced standing and complete the course in two-years while studying part-time. If you want to build the foundations of your business knowledge, take the full course (16 units). You can still graduate in under three years studying part-time.

Career opportunities

MBA graduates have more options. In 2014, the Corporate Recruiters Survey found that 80% of companies surveyed worldwide (83% in the Asia-Pacific) plan to hire MBAs this year - a number that's been steadily increasing since 2009. In 2013, the QS Intelligence Unit and also found that demand for MBA graduates is on the rise around the world, with Australians receiving the highest graduate salaries of all.

As an MBA graduate, your new leadership and management skills will equip you for executive roles across a broad spectrum of industries, like business, finance, accounting, marketing, operations, human resources, tourism and corporate sustainability. MBAs are also highly sought after in government, and in the not-for-profit sector. For an entrepreneur or small business owner, an MBA boosts and balances your business skills, builds your network, and shows you exactly how technology and innovative practices can help you succeed.

Major areas of study

All students study our eight core units, and all produce an industry research project, situated in their choice of industry. This enables you to apply your new skills to your existing workplace, or test the waters in an industry to which you aspire. You will learn to manage the variables inherent in the workplace, and convert your knowledge into experience. You will also select a specialisation, which helps you build substantial and specific expertise to complement the general management proficiencies you gain in the core units.

Choose from:

  • Accounting
  • Health Services Management
  • Information and Knowledge Management
  • Managing and Leading People

If you choose, you can replace the specialisation with two elective units to acquire a less specialised but more expansive understanding of leadership and management.

Our four foundation units provide the management basics. Whether you take these units depends on your prior education and experience.

Assessment methods

Units typically include written and/or oral assignments that match typical work tasks: business reports, case studies, presentations, research studies and plans. Practical assessments and examinations ensure you graduate with key industry skills and knowledge.

We support your performance via weekly activities that scaffold learning and act as a 'rehearsal space' for the assessments.

Teaching methods

Our flexible course fits around you. It’s designed to meet the demands of busy, mobile people - people who travel frequently, work abroad, or juggle multiple work, life and family commitments. You can enter at one of six points throughout the year, and organise your study program to take advantage of the peaks and troughs in your own life.

We employ clever, intuitive and interactive learning software that enables you to collaborate with peers and lecturers. Our multi-modal approach delivers content as video, audio, hands-on, practical exercises, and other media to suit all kinds of learners. Discuss and debate ideas with your peers and lecturer in dedicated forums and with other networking technology.

Each unit has its own website to keep you focused. Every week, you'll find activities, readings and case studies laid out with step-by-step instructions. As the weeks progress and your knowledge deepens, you'll tackle increasingly sophisticated concepts, and employ critical analysis.

Make no mistake, this is a rigorous degree. Each unit is presented in a seven-week block, and demands up to 150 hours of study - which translates into around 20 hours a week. The benefits, though, will last a lifetime.

Advanced standing

Your previous learning experiences relevant to one or more units in this course may help you reduce the duration of your degree.

  • Recognition of formal and non-formal learning
    Credit may be awarded to a student for formal learning (gained through full or partial achievement of an accredited qualification or course) or non-formal learning (that takes place through a non-accredited course or program of learning) completed at Southern Cross University or in other learning settings in Australia and/or overseas.
  • Recognition of informal learning
    Credit may be awarded on the basis of current informal learning (that takes place through work, social, family or leisure activities).

To help you identify how much credit you may receive for your related prior learning visit SCU Pathways.

An application for advanced standing must be submitted so we can assess your prior learning. Please apply for advanced standing at the same time as you apply for admission into this course, because the amount of credit awarded will determine the sequence of units you will study.

 Go to course structure to see if specific advanced standing rules also apply to this course.

Learning support

Learning resources

You’ll find our learning resources technologically sophisticated, intuitive and very easy to use. The four virtual spaces you’ll use most frequently are MySCU, Blackboard Learn, the course and unit websites, and the library.

MySCU is your portal to a range of online services and resources that support study and student life. It will link off to your specific learning and information sites, where you can access resources, communication tools and useful links that are integral to your work.

The web-based study environment Blackboard Learn is where you, your peers and your lecturers communicate and collaborate through virtual meeting spaces, classrooms, and discussion boards. You can share files, presentations and applications. Unlike many online learning courses, there are no long, grainy recordings of students coughing in lecture theatres; all recorded material is produced specifically for the course and addresses key learning points.

The course website houses all your learning materials – study resources, assessment information, quizzes, readings and other information. You may need to buy or access textbooks, but for the most part everything you need will be online.

SCU library's wide range of services include face-to-face and online help, and access to print and electronic resources. As an online student, you have access to the same resources as an on campus student. You can even borrow library books – the library will express post them to you free of charge. For more about library resources, see the Library Toolbox.

Student support

As an online student, you receive individual support. We can help you with academic skills development, including the specific challenges attached to studying online. We provide one-on-one support via email or phone and can connect you with the learning resources you need.

You will also have a personal student services adviser. They are with you for the duration of your degree, and basically help with everything else – they can take you through the application process, help you organise your timetable, and find extra resources or assistance when you need them.

Both of these support services help you successfully complete your degree. We know many of our students are studying while working or raising a family or both, so our support is geared toward helping you enjoy the intellectual challenges of study while enabling you to have the time to enjoy the rest of your life as well.

Equipment and facilities

Because the MBA is 100% online, you’ll need the technology to ensure you have a seamless study experience. You’ll need:

  • a fast, reliable computer – either a PC or a Mac – with the latest operating system
  • a fast, reliable internet connection
  • the latest version of Internet Explorer, Chrome or Firefox
  • the Blackboard app, which is available as a free download. We can help you with that.

Occasionally, your lecturer may suggest specific software or textbooks for a specific unit. The library will usually have multiple copies of frequently used textbooks.

Visiting Southern Cross University

Southern Cross University has excellent equipment and facilities across all four campuses. As an online student, you have access to the library, sporting facilities, and other student resources - in fact, everything you would if you were an on-campus student. Feel free to explore our campuses online, and if you live or are travelling near Lismore, Coffs Harbour, the Gold Coast, or central Sydney, feel free to drop in, explore, and use the facilities. 

Course structure

See the University’s Rules Relating to Awards, in conjunction with the Specific Award Rules listed below.

Table of contents

Admission requirements

A 3 year Bachelor degree from any Australian university, or equivalent.

Course requirements

To be awarded the Master of Business Administration students must complete 16 units (192 credit points) comprising:

12 core units; and

1 specialisation or

2 elective units and MNG93217 Industry Research Project: Part A and MNG93218 Industry Research Project: Part B

Exit Awards

Students can choose to exit with the Graduate Diploma in Business Administration if 8 units have been completed.

Students can choose to exit with the Graduate Certificate in Business Administration if 4 units have been completed.


Schedule of units


How to apply

Domestic students

Our enrolment advisors can help you move easily through the application process, including advance standing. Please call us on 1300 854 556 or apply now.

International students

The following international applicants are welcome to apply:

  • Applicants residing overseas from Australia, or
  • holders of a visitor, work or bridging visa with study entitlements or no limitations of study, apply now.

This course is not CRICOS registered and therefore Education Services for Overseas Students Commonwealth legislation (ESOS) and National Code regulations preclude international applicants who are holders of a Student Visa.

Those who would prefer to study in Australia as an International student and holder of a student visa, please refer to SCU International Study Options for onshore students for further information.

The information on this page may be subject to change over time. Please check this page again before acting and see our disclaimer.

From the 1st of June, 2017, the term 'Distance Education' has been replaced with 'Online'