Easy Step Guide To Get A Post Graduate Diploma In The USA 

Just finished your Bachelor’s degree and want to attain specialist knowledge and skills that can quickly launch you into a successful career? Or maybe you need certified credentials to practice professions like teaching, designing, or paralegal activities? Then you might be able to achieve your goals if you get a post-graduate diploma in the USA.

Pursuing a post-graduate diploma in the USA is a dream of several students worldwide. The USA has been an ideal destination for higher studies with renowned faculty, exceptional learning atmosphere, world-class amenities, and facilities.

The course structure and the degree after completion give the students an added advantage to get through their dream careers.

Before we define what a postgraduate diploma is, look at our table of content for a summary of this piece.

What Is A Post Graduate Diploma?

According to Wikipedia, a postgraduate diploma is a postgraduate qualification awarded after a university degree, which supplements the original degree and awards them with a graduate diploma. 

Whereas, a postgraduate diploma student is a student who has completed an undergraduate degree level course at a college or university and is continuing their education at a higher level.

A postgraduate course usually lasts one year full-time, but it can take two years to complete part-time. A postgraduate diploma, postgraduate degree, or Master’s degree provides the student with advanced education in their field of study.

The course content is intended to supplement knowledge gained at the undergraduate degree level. The course content is frequently more practical in nature in order to better prepare students for the skills they will need in the workplace. Completing postgraduate studies helps students further their career prospects and deepen their understanding of their area of study.

Is A Post Graduate Diploma Equivalent To A Degree?

Although at the same academic level, a postgraduate diploma is a shorter qualification than a master’s degree. A master’s degree consists of 180 credits (taken from exams, assignments, and so on), whereas a postgraduate diploma consists of 120 credits.

There is also a shorter version of this – a postgraduate certificate with 60 credits. A postgraduate diploma can refer to a variety of courses – it can be a vocational course, such as a legal practice course, or an academic course.

Types of Postgraduate Degrees


A certificate is the quickest and narrowest type of post-graduate qualification you can earn. It’s usually completed in a year or less of part-time study.

Certificate programs are highly specialized and intended to help you delve deeply into one specific area of study. Some of these programs can also prepare you to gain official certification.

These courses can be a quick way to gain experience to supplement your work or college qualifications.  


A postgraduate diploma can be particularly useful to those looking to embark on a new direction in their career. Diploma courses usually take one or two years; they often consist of the same coursework as a Master’s degree, only lacking the research or dissertation element.

Many Postgraduate Diploma courses, though, allow students the opportunity to progress on to a related Master’s degree, such as the PGDip in International Business and Law.

Master’s Degrees

A Master’s degree is the most common type of postgraduate course. The MA and MSc offer students an unrivaled opportunity to spend one or two years studying both deeply and widely in their field.

These degrees are often capped off with a research project in the form of a dissertation, which contributes original research to the subject.

There are also more specialized Master’s degrees, like the MBA and LL.M., which are suitable for professionals looking to gain expertise to help advance in their careers. These often require an undergraduate degree in a related field as well as work experience. 

Why Earn A Post Graduate Diploma In The USA?

1.  Employability

Today, degrees are becoming ever more commonplace so it is important to make your CV stand out from the rest. Studying for a Postgraduate Diploma will not only help you acquire new skills that will assist you in your working life, but will allow you to have that competitive edge over other candidates potentially applying for the same roles.

2. Time Constraints

While the Postgraduate Diploma requires students to complete 120 credits worth of work, a Master’s qualification will expect students to have completed 180 credits worth of learning and is much more time heavy.

3. Career Change/Learn New Skills

Many students opt to study something new at the postgraduate level but don’t want to commit to a content-heavy course before finding out whether it is something they will truly enjoy.

As such, studying a Postgraduate Diploma allows the potential applicant to dip their toes in the water without committing to a year of highly intensive study.

4. Finance

In general, the average Postgraduate Diploma course will cost less than its MA equivalent, although this isn’t always the case.

With postgraduate courses at all levels becoming more and more expensive, many graduates prefer to study on courses with lower tuition fees costs. Such courses include a PGDip, and then potentially save up over a longer period of time if they’re interested in pursuing an even further course of study.

5. Networking Opportunities

Most courses will have industry experts in to give talks and seminars about working life, and may even offer prestigious work placements to their students. Many graduates use the contacts made while studying in order to find postgraduate employment

What Can You Do With A Post Graduate Diploma In The USA?

There are a couple of things you can do with a diploma and they include;

  • Change your career (or start your career) as a professional in a certain field
  • You can increase your practical knowledge in a field you are interested in
  • You can improve your career prospects and potential income

How much can you earn with a post graduate diploma in the USA?

According to Payscale, the Average Salary for those having a Post Graduate Diploma Degree in the USA is $71,639

How Much Does It Cost To Get a Post Graduate Diploma In The USA?

A typical PGDip course will cost between £5,000 and £7000; however, as with undergraduate degree programs, this can vary depending on what and where you study. Vocational courses with a higher level of contact time, as well as programs run by prestigious academic institutions, are likely to have higher costs.

When calculating the cost of your PGDip course, you must also consider your living expenses. Will you be able to study at home, or will you have to pay rent?. How much will your textbooks and materials set you back?.

Students in courses such as literature, humanities, and travel tourism are typically expected to cover the costs of materials that may be essential to the completion of the course.

Similarly, some PGDip programs will require you to travel as part of your course or to complete unpaid placements in order to gain hands-on experience in a working or industry setting.

While most placements will pay for your expenses (such as travel and lunch), you will not be able to earn money to help fund your studies while interning. This is something you should keep in mind.

If you are unable to cover the costs of postgraduate study, you can apply for a Professional Careers Development Loan, which will cover a portion of your tuition fees while also contributing to your living expenses.

Step-by-Step Guide On How To Apply For A Post Graduate Diploma In The USA.

STEP 1: Complete Online Application

STEP 2: Identify and Contact References for Letters of Recommendation

3: Submit Transcripts

STEP 4: Submit Test Scores

STEP 5: Pay Application Fee

Application Requirements for Post graduation in USA:

Most of the universities have a similar format for Post Graduation applications, which include: 

  • Application form with basic information like contact details, schools, marks, work experience, community, or school-related activities.
  • Standardized test scores
  • Personal statement describing academic interests, professional and personal goals, and relevant experience
  • Research statement describing research interests & plans
  • Transcript, or listing of academic results
  • 2-3 Recommendation Letters
  • A CV listing your professional and extracurricular accomplishments
  • Application fee of approximately $50-100 per application

Which Schools Offer The 20 Best Post Graduate Diplomas In The USA In 2023

With over 1700 universities offering varied post-graduation programs, selecting one is not an easy task. There is no limit to the number of universities that a candidate can apply for.

Therefore, they have to do thorough research on the university, institution, location, faculty, and culture of the place, while setting preferences. Ideally, a candidate should finalize 5-6 universities for initiating the application process.

Below are some schools that offer diploma programs:

Artist Diploma in Music

Longy School of Music of Bard College

Cambridge, USA

The Artist Diploma in Music is Longy’s highest performance credential. Offering full-tuition remission, admission is offered only to exceptionally gifted performers who show outstanding promise for a professional career in music. –

Administrative Office Associate Diploma

North Iowa Area Community College

Mason City, USA

The Administrative Office Associate Diploma program is designed to prepare students for employment with financial institutions, retail establishments, manufacturers, private organizations, and Civil Service. –

Post Doctor in Business Administration

Florida Christian University

Orlando, USA

This program involves advanced research activity in preparation for a career in academia, industry, or the nonprofit sector. The uniqueness of this program replaces the regular classes and involves knowledge research by the student who participates in quarterly meetings on campus or on the web and accompanying instruction. –

Diploma in Digital Marketing

American European Education

New York, USA

Earn While You Learn! You can study, work & live in one of the biggest cities on Earth – New York City.

The program is a transformative 12-month experience during which you will train in a paid Digital Marketing internship within an innovative company in New York City, while simultaneously receiving in-class instruction, career coaching, and mentoring. –

Personal Training Diploma

National Personal Training Institute

Philadelphia, USA +40 More

The National Personal Training Institute is unlike other self-study personal training certifications. With this 500 Hour Personal Training Diploma, the gym is your classroom – whether physically or interactively through our live virtual classes. –

Columbia Artificial Intelligence (AI) program

Columbia University – Columbia Engineering

New York, USA

The online Artificial Intelligence (AI) program from Columbia, No. 1 Engineering School in the Ivy League for 2023, is designed for professionals and leaders who are seeking a deeper understanding of AI. You can complete the program in 9 to 18 months while continuing to work. A bachelor’s degree, experience with Python, and experience with either Java, C, or C++ are required. Learn more about this non-credit executive education program. .

Diploma in Criminal Justice

Abraham Lincoln University

Los Angeles, USA

The field of Criminal Justice centers on the control of criminal behavior in the maintenance of public order. It includes the primary functions of law enforcement, handling evidence, crime scene investigation and associated responsibilities. –

Diploma in Action for Resilience

Gaia University

Minneapolis, USA

This Diploma program in Action for Resilience provides peer and professional support, and qualification credits to people engaging in constructive action towards the goals of personal, community, and global resilience.

It commences with a comprehensive program of two Certificates after which you move into a design process in which you thoroughly survey your intended community of action to establish who else is engaged in action for resilience.

These people will likely include local permaculture designers, Transition Town activists, Food Sovereignty advocates, and more. While you may be able to augment the efforts of these people, you may also need to start your own, fresh projects.

If you are already engaged in a project, taking a Diploma program will significantly raise its strategic value and give you access to mentors who will support you to strengthen your project and time management skills, entrepreneurial acumen, organizational design, and more.

Using a Transformative Action Learning methodology, the learning design follows the generic pattern of all Diploma and Degree pathways at Gaia University. –

Diploma in Cosmetology

Bluegrass Community & Technical College

Lexington, USA

Knowledge of the theories of hair, skin, and nail care is coupled with the practice of the various techniques used in salons. Included in this 1500 clock-hour program are hair, skin, and nails, practical applications, and professionalism.

The student in the cosmetology program also learns about the business operations in the salons. Once the student has successfully completed the 1500 clock-hour program, he/she is eligible to take the licensure exam to become a Cosmetologist.

See program checklists for more information. –

Massage Therapist Diploma

Great Lakes Institute Of Technology

Erie, USA

The massage Therapist program is designed to provide the student the knowledge and hands-on skills necessary to begin a successful career as a therapeutic massage therapist within the healthcare community. The program prepares the student to work in a variety of traditional and non-traditional medical facilities. 

Surgical Technology Diploma

Concorde Career Colleges

Mission, USA

The Surgical Technology Diploma program at Concorde Career College prepares students with the knowledge and skills to become Surgical Technologists. Surgical Techs work to assist doctors and other medical professionals before, during, and after operational procedures. –

Business Administration Diploma

American National University

Salem, USA

Our Business Administration program is designed to prepare you with the basic knowledge of business concepts required for today’s ever-changing business environment. It will also provide you with a broad understanding of business practices.

Through the knowledge, skills, and confidence gained, you will be ready for entry-level positions in a variety of business environments. –

Opticianry Diploma

Ogeechee Technical College

Statesboro, USA

The Opticianry program teaches students how to fabricate prescription lenses from semi-finished lens blanks inserted into fashionable eyewear worn by the patient. Adjusting and fitting eyewear and frame selection and dispensing are also part of the curriculum.

The Opticianry program provides learning opportunities that introduce, develop, and reinforce academic and occupational knowledge. It also helps students gain, skills, and attitudes required for job acquisition, retention, and advancement. –

Administration Assistant Diploma

Dakota County Technical College

Rosemount, USA

This program prepares students for employment in administrative support roles. Students use computer systems for document processing and file management tasks. This program teaches the expertise needed for creating and editing documents, spreadsheets, databases, electronic presentations, and Internet navigation research. –

Diploma (0656) in Architecture

Central Pennsylvania’s Community College – Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC)

Harrisburg, USA

Are you a professional who is looking for a career change? HACC’s online Architecture diploma can provide you with the foundational skills in the architecture or construction fields to get started in a rewarding career.

If you are an analytical person and a visual thinker interested in the technical aspects of buildings and enjoy working with computers and construction blueprints, read more to learn how we can help you meet your goals!

Diploma in Carpentry

St. Paul College

Saint Paul, USA

Carpentry is one of the time-tested and most fundamental of all building trades due to the knowledge, skills, and techniques carpenters use when working with wood. If you enjoy doing meaningful work with your hands and like the idea of building homes out of lumber, our Carpentry Diploma program is for you

Automotive Systems Technology Diploma

Beaufort County Community College

Washington, USA

A program that prepares individuals to apply technical knowledge and skills to repair, service, and maintain all types of automobiles. Includes instruction in brake systems, electrical systems, engine performance, engine repair, suspension and steering, automatic and manual transmissions, drive trains, and heating and air condition systems.

Master Robotic Automation Engineering Technician Diploma

Tennessee College Of Applied Technology

Nashville, USA

The mission of the Advanced Manufacturing Education Program is to increase the number of available skilled workers for existing and emerging manufacturing jobs. To enhance worker skills and knowledge in manufacturing technologies and processes.

The diploma will also help improve the productivity of the region’s manufacturing industry, increase the manufacturer’s global competitive advantage, and provide manufacturing-related technical assistance to local businesses and industries.

Diploma in Industrial Electrician

Tennessee College Of Applied Technology

Nashville, USA

The Industrial Electricity Technology Program’s mission is to prepare students to install and repair electrical systems, apparatus, and electrical and electronic components of industrial machinery and equipment.

They follow electrical code, manuals, schematic diagrams, blueprints, and other specifications and will use hand tools, power tools, and electrical and electronic test equipment.

Diploma in Business Administration Specialist

Ohio Business College

Sheffield, USA

Business and business administration are two of the most popular fields of study in higher education and for a good reason. Business is an aspect of everyone’s job, so it’s important to have skills in order to hold one’s own in today’s economy.

A business administration education teaches you practical skills that you can use in nearly any job, whether in a traditional business setting or elsewhere.

With a Business Administration Specialist diploma from Ohio Business College, you can start your professional business career immediately.

Agribusiness Technology

Bladen Community College Distance Learning

Dublin, USA

The Agribusiness Technology curriculum is designed to provide the entrepreneurial and technical skills necessary to manage a profitable, environmentally sound, community-based small farm or agricultural business.

The objective is the development of a workforce knowledgeable in sustainable agriculture practices.


The community or technical colleges typically award diplomas. Diploma programs are less time-consuming to complete than bachelor’s or associate degree programs, making them an excellent choice for those looking to advance their careers.

Students pursuing a Master’s degree typically spend one to two years enhancing their knowledge of their chosen field.

This program is pursued after obtaining a bachelor’s degree, and available fields of study include science, law, technology, finance, social sciences, and the arts. American colleges are funded by “tuition” fees paid by students, which are frequently quite high, often reaching into the tens of thousands of dollars per year.



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