Postgraduate Award Programs

Postgraduate Award Programs » Master of Tertiary Education Management

Master of Tertiary Education Management

Mid-year intake application deadline is 1 July 2016.

Course Overview

The Master of Tertiary Education Management (subject code MC-TEM in the University of Melbourne handbook) is a two-year, part time course designed for middle to senior level educators, administrators and scholars seeking to extend their knowledge and skills in tertiary sector leadership and management.

The course aims to provide concepts, insights and practical skills for leading and managing successfully in tertiary sector institutions. It offers expert perspectives on higher education and vocational education and training systems, policy settings, institutional strategies and tertiary sector work cultures in a national and international context. Course materials are drawn from the best and latest research and resources on tertiary sector leadership. It also provides participants with exposure to high profile national and international sector leaders and experts and access to a network of peers facing similar management challenges.

Participants can expect a mix of residential, online, syndicate group and action learning modes of study with a strong cohort experience. This course utilises an integrated learning approach which includes theory, case studies, simulation exercises and work-based projects. Participants will also have scope to choose electives aligned with personal development and career aspirations.

Participants who successfully complete the course (earn 100 credit points) will be awarded the Masters degree by the University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Education.

Read on or jump to other sections via the following links.

Suitable for

Academic leaders and senior administrative or professional managers in universities and vocational education and training institutions or similar. They include, but are not limited to, those in roles such as:

  • Head of School/Department/Discipline
  • Senior Educator or Program Director
  • Other academic roles on levels C, D and E (in Australia)
  • General Manager of a faculty, school, department or unit
  • Director within a faculty, school, department or unit
  • Other professional roles on HEW levels 8, 9 and 10 (in Australia).

Learning outcomes

Upon completion, participants will gain:

  • Well-informed perspectives on the issues and challenges faced by tertiary education systems and institutions around the world
  • An ability to more confidently and effectively lead people, influence policy, plan strategy and manage change projects in the tertiary education context.

Benefits for Individuals

  • Flexibility to schedule course requirements around work/life commitments, through blended and online delivery study options
  • Expert perspectives on the main trends, issues and challenges faced by tertiary education institutions around the world
  • New frameworks, cases and exercises for leading and managing in tertiary education settings
  • Greater capacity to improve institutional policies and processes
  • Opportunities to share insights and experiences through active learning with peers from different parts of the sector
  • The opportunity to address a real life policy or management issue and develop an actionable report for presentation to institutional policy makers or leaders.

Benefits for Institutions

Institutions considering the course as a professional development strategy for staff can expect the following transformative benefits for their organisations:

  • Strategic and considered contributions through individual final capstone projects negotiated around an institutional issue
  • Staff with a more thorough understanding of the tertiary education sector and its specific needs, issues and challenges in a global context
  • An increase in staff confidence and capability to lead teams and to plan and implement strategic change initiatives
  • More seamless and effective transitions of staff into promotional positions, due to their enhanced capacity and shared language and understandings of institutional challenges, policies and processes
  • Increased level of professional collaborations due to an expansion of internal and external staff networks.

Course structure

To gain the Masters, participants must complete two compulsory subjects and four elective subjects (totalling 100 Credit Points).

Compulsory subjects

Tertiary Education Policy and Management (MGMT90113)

Subject  taken in semester one via a blended mode (more on delivery modes below). Successful completion of this subject equates to 25 credit points.

Final Capstone Project (EDUC90604)

Subject taken in semester four via a blended mode. Successful completion of this subject equates to 25 credit points.

Elective subjects

Four to be chosen from the list below, each worth 12.5 credit points. All electives are taught online. Please refer to the links provided for University of Melbourne Handbook information on each subject. This list is current as at August 2015.

External Quality Assurance (MGMT90117)

Institutional Governance in Tertiary Education (MGMT90169)

Institutional Research in Tertiary Education (MGMT90170)

Leading and Managing Research (MGMT90166)

Maintaining Quality within Institutions (EDUC90602)

Managing International Tertiary Education (MGMT90168)

Managing Teaching and Learning in Tertiary Education (MGMT90167)

Operating an External Quality Agency (EDUC90605)

Research Evaluation (MGMT90183)

Risk Management (MGMT90220)

Sustainable Tertiary Education Leadership and Governance (MGMT 90221) 

Science, Technology & Innovation Policy (MGMT90184)

Electives can also be taken as a single subject for continuing professional development. Please refer to our Single Subject site for more information.

Delivery modes

Blended mode

Blended mode subjects involve:

  • A compulsory residential school* featuring lecturer presentations, group exercises and group presentations by participants

  • Two-hour interactive webinars

  • Online discussion board tasks during set periods where participants engage in peer-to-peer interaction.

* Residential schools in Australia are held on the University of Melbourne Parkville campus.
Online mode

Online subjects typically include:

  • Two-hour webinars featuring lecturer presentations

  • Online discussion board tasks during set periods where participants engage in peer-to-peer  interaction.

Teaching dates

2016 teaching period is March to November. Dates are subject to confirmation. Please contact us for details on teaching dates and contact hours.

Teaching faculty

(In alphabetical order)

Dr Jeanette Baird, Adviser to the Office of Higher Education, Papua New Guinea and former Executive Director, Regulation and Review, Australian Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency (TEQSA). Jeanette teaches the Operating an External Quality Agency subject.

Professor Vic Borden, Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University Bloomington. Vic teaches the Institutional Research in Tertiary Education subject with Hamish Coates and Marian Mahat.

Professor Hamish Coates, Professor, Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education, University of Melbourne. Hamish teaches the Institutional Research in Tertiary Education subject with Vic Borden and Marian Mahat.

Dr Vernon Crew, Fellow, LH Martin Institute. Vernon teaches the Maintaining Quality Within Institutions subject.

Dr Heather Davis, Program Director – Awards, LH Martin Institute. Heather is the coordinator of this course and teaches in a number of its subjects. Including both compulsory subjects and its governance subjects.

Mr Jon File, Director, Development and Consultancy, Centre for Higher Education Policy Studies, University of Twente, Netherlands. Jon teaches in the Tertiary Education Policy and Management subject.

Professor Leo Goedegebuure, Director, LH Martin Institute. Leo teaches the Institutional Governance in Tertiary Education and Risk Management subjects.

Professor Tomas Hellström, Professor, Department of Business Administration, Lund University, Sweden. Tomas teaches the Research Evaluation subject with Merle Jacob.

Professor Merle Jacob, Director, Research Policy Institute, Lund University, Sweden. Merle teaches the Research Evaluation subject with Tomas Hellström.

Ms Marian Mahat, Research Fellow, Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education and PhD Candidate, LH Martin Institute. Marian teaches the Institutional Research in Tertiary Education subject with Vic Borden and Hamish Coates.

Professor Lynn Meek, Foundation Director, LH Martin Institute. Lynn teaches the Leading and Managing Research subject with Alan Pettigrew.

Mr Dennis Murray, Director, Murray-Goold International and former Executive Director of the International Education Association of Australia. Dennis teaches the Managing International Tertiary Education subject.

Professor Alan Pettigrew, Honorary Professorial Fellow, LH Martin Institute and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of New England. Alan teaches the Leading and Managing Research subject with Lynn Meek.

Mr Tom Phillips, Director, Soutenir Ltd and former accreditation consultant to the Dutch Ministry of Education and the Roosevelt Academy, Utrecht University, Netherlands. Tom teaches the External Quality Assurance subject.

Dr Stefan Popenici, Senior Lecturer, Melbourne Centre for the Study of Higher Education. Stefan teaches the Managing Tertiary Education Teaching and Learning subject.

Dr Geoff Sharrock, Program Director, LH Martin Institute. Geoff teaches and coordinates the compulsory Tertiary Education Policy and Management subject.

Course fees

2016 fee for the full Masters program (100 credit points) is A$31,816.

This fee is correct as at August 2015 and may be subject to change. Please refer to the University of Melbourne fees website  for a guide on fees.

Our course fee applies to both domestic and international applicants. It includes course notes, reading packs and catering during residential schools. It does NOT include text books, travel or accommodation-related expenses.

Successful applicants will be offered full fee-paying places in the course.

Australian citizens and permanent visa holders may be eligible for FEE-HELP, a loan scheme to assist eligible students with their tuition fees. Please refer to the Australian government's Study Assist website for more information on eligibility.

Course prerequisites

Professional and academic requirements

The Selection Committee will evaluate the applicant’s ability to pursue the program successfully using the following criteria:

  • An appropriate four-year degree, or equivalent


  • An appropriate three-year undergraduate degree or equivalent together with at least five years of documented relevant professional experience in tertiary education management, or equivalent


  • Current employment in the tertiary education sector and employer support to participate.

English language requirements

All applicants must meet the English language requirements of the University of Melbourne to be eligible for a place in this course. These can be met in a number of ways depending on personal circumstances. You can use IELTS, TOEFL, Pearson Test of English and Cambridge English: Advanced/Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) and satisfy the requirements in one sitting within the 24 months preceding your application.

The minimum scores required for this course are:

  • IELTS (Academic English only): overall 7.0 (with written 7.0 and no band less than 6.0)
  • TOEFL (Paper-based test): 600 + TWE 5.0 TOEFL (Internet-based test): 94 + Writing 27, Speaking 18, Reading 13, Listening 13
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 65 and written communicative skill of 65 with no other communicative skill below 50
  • CAE: 67 + no less than ‘Good’ in Writing and ‘Borderline’ in each other skill.

For more details and other ways to satisfy the English language requirements, please refer to the University of Melbourne website on language requirements. Please note: language requirements are also subject to change. Please ensure you check with us prior to applying.

Alternative entry options

If you are interested in this course and would like to explore alternative entry options, e.g. you do not currently meet the minimum professional and academic requirements, please contact the course coordinator to discuss your options.

Course applications and contacts

We are now accepting applications for 2016.

Please apply online (link takes you to the University's Research, Innovation and Commercialisation's online application system).

The documents you will require to provide include:

  • Certified copies of testamurs and transcripts of all degrees listed in the application
  • Certified copies of proof of identity, e.g. passport or birth certificate
  • A letter of support from your employer
  • A personal statement as to why you are applying and what you wish to get out of the program
  • Your CV.

(Note: limit of 1.5 MB per document)

Please direct enquiries regarding applications to Sharnee Chislett at University of Melbourne Research, Innovation and Commercialisation or call +61 3 9810 3179.

If you would like to discuss the course further, please contact our course coordinator Dr Heather Davis or call +61 3 9035 8648.


Featured in the video: Professor Sibusiso Moyo, Director for Research and Postgraduate Support, Durban University of Technology, South Africa; Dr Iain Hay, Assistant Professor in Education Studies, Faculty of Education, Science, Technology and Mathematics , University of Canberra; Mr Stephen McVey, University Librarian, University of Notre Dame Australia;  Professor Jairos Kangira , Head of Department and Chief Editor, Journal for Studies in Humanities Language and Literature Studies University of Namibia.

“The MTEM program provided me with a wealth of knowledge and practical skills that have made a transformative difference in my work practice. The residentials were rich, stimulating and immersive learning experiences and the elective subjects provided breadth and depth of material to build a solid knowledge of the complexity of the national and global higher education sector. The MTEM program should be compulsory for anyone aspiring to work in tertiary education management and leadership.” Stephen Gray, Centre Manager, Climate Change Research Centre, University of New South Wales

“The Master of Tertiary Education Management (MTEM) provided me with the ability to reflect on the role of contemporary education leadership within a international context. Having the ability to investigate and review my own education leadership practice provided me with the catalyst to undertake a new education journey. MTEM provides a flexible, diverse exploration into tertiary education management through facilitated sessions, discussions and exposureto some brilliant minds. The program encourages divergent thought, reflection and applied practice. The flexible delivery model of the program enabled me to continue to work in a senior education role while studying and the residential based sessions connected me with a wonderful network of education managers and leaders who were also on the program.” Frances Valintine, Founder, The Mind Lab by Unitec, New Zealand.

The Master of Tertiary Education Management (MTEM) program offered by the University of Melbourne was in line with my career objectives. I always dreamt of attaining an academic program with a research component that can broaden my knowledge, increase my analytical and academic skills and support in my career growth, and the MTEM helped me achieve all. It has added valuable knowledge and helped me understand various perspectives of tertiary education, its contemporary issues and challenges. It motivated me to look for solutions that could best fit in my local context. These all together have groomed my personality as a proficient academician and tertiary education analyst.” Mansoor Ahmed Junejo, Assistant Professor,
Sukkur Institute of Business Administration, Pakistan.

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Awarded by the Melbourne Graduate School of Education.
Awarded by the Melbourne Graduate School of Education.