Postgraduate Certificate Academic Practice (PGCAP)

  • Programme duration: approximately 10 months (part-time and online)
  • Programme start: 26 January, 6 April, 8 June, 10 August, 12 October
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Develop your academic practice in a global context and gain automatic professional recognition (FHEA) with our wholly online PGCAP qualification designed specifically for higher education professionals.

The programme is a unique collaboration between the University of Liverpool, a prestigious UK Russell Group university and one of the original red brick universities, and Advance HE, the UK’s foremost agency for driving excellence and developing leadership in education. It is the first programme of its kind to be delivered solely online, with graduates automatically receiving professional recognition as a Fellow of Higher Education (FHEA), awarded by Advance HE, upon successful completion.

As a higher education professional, you will be supported in developing your academic practice in an international context. This is aligned with UK Professional Standards Framework for Teaching and Supporting Learning in Higher Education (UKPSF). You will have the opportunity to evaluate class presentations from your international peers and receive similar feedback on your own teaching style. You will discuss and critically evaluate inclusive teaching practices and the barriers to learning from a global perspective.

Active learning plays a fundamental part within the programme structure, as a way of demonstrating your understanding of educational concepts and your ability to apply pedagogical theory from varied global perspectives to the classroom. You will be encouraged to utilise international educational frameworks in order to design lessons, set assignments and decide on learning outcomes which can be applied in your own content or in an international global teaching space.

Your studies will also provide you with the opportunity to critically reflect on your current position and prepare you for a changing higher education context. There will be opportunities to creatively plan and develop global networks to support you with your continued career development beyond this programme.

Download a brochure for more details on this programme including module information.

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Course structure

This programme consists of the following modules. Participants are required to complete 60 credits to achieve the full award.

  • Contemporary Approaches to Learning and Teaching (15 credits)
  • Alternative Approaches to Supporting Learning (15 credits)
  • Enhancing Teaching and Learning (15 credits)
  • Extending your Higher Education Career in a Global Context (15 credits)

Participants will be encouraged to contribute to learning, providing case studies and perspectives from their local contexts. This will create a strong global and active learning experience and a global network of contacts.

For more information on the modules, including syllabus and learning outcomes, please download our programme booklet.


Entry requirements

Applicants should possess:

  • A degree equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree; and
  • A teaching position in a higher education institution at descriptor level 2.

All applicants must have reached a minimum required standard of English language and are required to provide evidence of this.


Fees and funding

The full tuition fee for the Postgraduate Certificate Academic Practice is £6,000* (2020/2021 academic year). This fee is fully inclusive of all costs, including all teaching materials, core textbooks, assessments and resits.

We offer a simple monthly payment plan to spread the cost of your tuition over the duration of your studies. If you choose to pay the full tuition fee upfront, you will receive a 5% discount.

*All tuition fees shown are net of any applicable sales tax payable by you in your country of residence. Where we are required to add sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the tuition fees shown and confirmed during the payment process.



Apply for this course by completing a simple online form.

In order to apply, you will need to provide copies of the following supporting documentation:

  • School or college transcripts/certificates
  • University transcripts and certified translations if applicable
  • Degree certificates
  • Evidence of English Language proficiency (EU and international applicants only)
  • Personal statement*
  • Two references (on letter headed paper, signed and dated).

* Applicants will be required to respond to a Fellowship Category Tool survey during their induction to the programme to confirm their eligibility for the programme.

Acknowledgement of your application

The admissions team will acknowledge receipt of your application and will pass it to the Department Head and/or appropriate academic department(s) for consideration.

Students with disabilities

We welcome applications from students with disabilities and consider them on the same academic grounds as those of other students. If you have a disability, medical condition and/or support needs it is important that you inform the University so that you receive appropriate support.


We have regular start dates throughout the year with regular application deadlines. Applicants are encouraged to apply in good time, particularly if they have special requirements.


Career prospects

The award of both academic qualification (Postgraduate Certificate) and automatic professional recognition (FHEA) to successful participants offers an accelerated and significant career benefit for individuals seeking to develop their practice in Higher Education.

The global emphasis of this programme will be particularly helpful for those with an interest in transnational education and in developing skills to work with international students and faculty. A Fellowship of Higher Education Academy (FHEA) is aligned to Descriptor 2 of the UKPSF and is part of Advance HE’s professional recognition scheme for learning and teaching in higher education.

Participants will be encouraged to contribute to learning, providing case studies and perspectives from their local contexts. This will create a strong global active learning experience and a global network of contacts for participants.

Alongside the subject-specific knowledge you will gain during the programme, you will also develop professional skills such as communication, teamwork, critical thinking, digital literacy, teaching and research. These will enhance your CV, allowing you to improve your career prospects and access more senior roles.