Postgraduate Certificates and Postgraduate Diplomas are available to those with a Bachelor's degree to provide them with specialised, but less extensive, knowledge that is equivalent to a Master's level. They can involve vocational or academic learning, and are offered in a wide variety of subjects. The PGCert is equivalent to a third of a Master's (60 credits) and a PGDip is equivalent to two-thirds of a Master's (120 credits), and both take up to a year to complete (depending on whether you study full-time or part-time).

They are often studied if you are looking to enter a particular profession, for example the PGCert in education (PGCE) is a requirement for teachers in state schools in the UK.

You can apply to the university or insitution you wish to study at, and different universities will have different admissions processes (e.g. interview, test or portfolio) and they will also ask for a Bachelor's degree as a minimum requirements. The current approximate cost for a PGDip is £10,000, while PGCerts will cost slightly less - and as it's a postgraduate qualification there's no maintenance loans available. However, some courses, such as the PGCE are paid for by the government.

With the emphasis on teaching and lectures, on completion of either a PGCert or PGDip you can go into the workplace or you can 'top-up' your degree and progress onto a Master's which will involve a dissertation and individual research.