An online project management course may be a good choice if you (i) are experienced at working on projects and (ii) want to upgrade skills and qualifications.
- You can study project management online while holding a full-time job.
- Any current work projects may be useful for learning and assessment.
As outlined below, your course options depend on whether you have a degree, how much project experience you have, and how much time you have to invest.
- Degrees and accredited diplomas are valuable if you want to pursue a career as a project manager.
- You can study project management less formally for professional development or out of personal interest.
- As well, short training courses can be used to help pass professional accreditation tests.
Why Study Project Management?
An education in project management helps ensure career success by complementing on-the-job experience.
- To get your first job managing a project, you need experience in the sector.
- Most project managers start with industry experience but without project management training.
- A formal education becomes vital for continued career progression.
Professional certification and a diploma or university degree help you to
- learn to manage projects in a structured way
- be trusted to take on more senior roles
- gain applied skills (such as using PM software)
- better communicate with colleagues
- land jobs by demonstrating professional development
- branch out into different industries and roles.
Diploma and Degree Courses
Academic qualifications (degrees and diplomas) carry value in project management. You can distinguish yourself as a top project manager by earning all of the following credentials:
- a diploma or bachelor degree in your industry (e.g. Bachelor of Engineering)
- an academic qualification in project management (e.g. Graduate Certificate of Project Management) and
- professional accreditation (e.g. AIPM, PMP or PRINCE2).
Diploma-level courses may be a good choice if you don't have a bachelor degree of some kind. Accredited online courses include Certificate IV, Diploma and Advanced Diploma in Project Management... READ MORE
If you have extensive project management experience, you may also be eligible to start a Graduate Certificate (which is the first part of a masters).
Project management degrees consist of:
- bachelor degrees (such as a 3-year Bachelor of Business with a major in Project Management)
- Graduate Certificate in Project Management (0.5 years)
- Graduate Diploma in Project Management (1 year)
- Master of Project Management (MPM) (1.5 years typically)
- MBA or other masters with a Project Management major (1.5 years).
Most online PM students are enrolled in postgraduate courses.
A popular option is to do a Graduate Certificate, which gives you credit towards a masters. It can also be used as a pathway program for students who don't meet masters eligibility criteria... READ MORE
Project Management Certification Courses
For Australian project managers, the most popular general certification courses are PMP, PRINCE2 and AIPM.
For each course, you need to meet eligibility criteria, pay fees and pass a test. The result: you earn a well recognised professional credential.
To do well on the tests, it helps if you are an experienced, educated professional. But you can also do intensive training courses as preparation.
Project Management Professional (PMP)
PMP is an internationally recognized certification for project managers offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). PMP Certification Courses are used globally, across fields and within most industries.
To be eligible, you need
- a bachelor or higher degree, 4,500 hours leading and directing projects, and 35 hours of project management education; OR
- if you have no degree, 7,500 hours leading and directing projects, and 35 hours of project management education.
The exam is closed book and consists of
- 200 multiple choice questions, 25 of which are sample questions and don't count for the score
- questions based on the PMI Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK).
Projects In Controlled Environments, Version 2 (PRINCE2)
PRINCE2 is a certification program offered by AXELOS. Different levels of certification are available.
- PRINCE2 Foundation is a beginner’s certification, used as a prerequisite for all other PRINCE2 certifications. It consists of a 70-question, multiple-choice, closed-book exam, and there are no prerequisites for taking it.
- PRINCE2 Practitioner is a certification that you’ll be able to apply to real projects. To be eligible, you need either the PRINCE2 Foundation or another PMI or IPMA certification (such as the PMP). The exam consists of 8 questions, each with 10 items. It is open book and the official PRINCE2 manual can be used.
- PRINCE2 Professional is a certification for more complex projects. It requires the PRINCE2 Practitioner certification and is based on group activities and a case study of a fictional project with no written examinations.
- PRINCE2 Agile Practitioner for project management combined with agile methodology. It requires the PRINCE2 Practitioner certification and consists of a 50-question open-book exam.
Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM)
AIPM offers a national project management certification called the RegPM (Registered Project Manager).
Candidates are required to collect and submit evidence that showcases their competence and requires the completion of an Assessment Record Book (ARB).
AIPM Certification Courses comes in several levels, and they all require you to be a member of the AIPM at an Associate, Member or Fellow level.
- CPPP – Certified Practising Project Practitioner – suitable for a team member who works on projects.
- CPPM – Certified Practising Project Manager – for those who lead teams and manage projects.
- CPSPM – Certified Practising Senior Project Manager – the CPPM is required for this certification who is meant for senior managers who manage difficult and high risk projects.
- CPPD – Certified Practising Project Director – for those who direct projects.
- CPPE – Certified Practising Portfolio Executive – for those who monitor projects.