distance learning online education dx logo
online education line home 
about us 
contact us 
online degree granting university by distance learning

 About the OU

 Course fees

 Course handbook

 Subject outlines

 University website

Enquire into this online degree now   Enquire Now 

Postgraduate Diploma in Computing for Commerce and Industry

Information technology is the key source of competitiveness for all sectors: it can open new markets, increase performance and drive productivity. Increasingly, professionals in industry are expected to have a broad range of information technology and business skills. They are also expected to cope with the challenges posed by the latest trends in the software industry, such as remote and collaborative working, standardisation of technologies, and outsourcing.

We offer a range of postgraduate and post-experience modules with case-study-driven learning, which provide extensible knowledge that can be applied to lead technological and organisational change in the business environment. The modules can be studied on their own as part of a personal programme of professional updating, or as building blocks towards a postgraduate diploma course and then an MSc degree.

This diploma course is the broadest in our programme, you can choose modules from across the range of computing topics and may also include a module (or modules) from The Open University Business School or from our information systems or technology management postgraduate programmes. This is a qualification for the generalist or non-standard specialist, where specific job functions demand a range of skills and knowledge, and where our modules can extend and deepen your knowledge.

If you would like more information about the postgraduate ICT and computing programme, you can visit our website. This site includes additional information about the modules and qualifications, recommended routes through the programme and sample study materials.

Study Mode

Online Education, Distance Learning & External study modes available

Career relevance and employability

Nearly 20,000 students from over 7000 organisations have experienced for themselves how modules from our programme can improve their personal effectiveness and increase the performance and competitiveness of their employers.

The modules are designed for practising professionals and managers in the fields of computing, manufacturing engineering and related services, who need to update or extend their skills and knowledge in specific areas, allowing them to gain recognised qualifications to develop their careers.

BCS - The Chartered Institute for IT offers exemption from some of its membership requirements for holders of an appropriate MSc in computing from The Open University. For more details view or download our Recognition leaflet 3.7 Computing. BCS regulations are on their website.

There is more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU's Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.


For this 120-credit postgraduate diploma, you require:

90 credits from the following optional modules:

Postgraduate optional modules Credits Next start
Analysis and design of enterprise systems: an object-oriented approach (M885)

This introduction to the object-oriented approach to software, its principles, benefits, techniques and practical applications, gives you practical skills in applying object-oriented analysis and design.

See full description.

15 Nov
Computer forensics and investigations (M889)

If a criminal stole your organisation's data, could you detect it? This course gives you the grounding you need to investigate forensic computing incidents.

See full description.

15 May
Databases in enterprise systems (M888)

Describes how relational databases can be used to maintain persistent data in software systems.

See full description.

15 May
Information security management (M886)

Gain knowledge and skills to plan the implementation of an information security management system that provides efficient, effective safeguards fit for your organisation's needs.

See full description.

15 May
Managing the software enterprise (M882)

Explore the acquisition, management and development of complex software systems for organisations, from procurement and maintenance to managing resources, change, quality and risk.

See full description.

15 May
Project management (M865)

This project management course is particularly applicable to technological fields, exploring project initiation, risk, estimating and contracts, planning, human factors, project execution and standard methods.

See full description.

15 May
Relational database systems (M876)

Get to grips with database technology: principles, benefits, techniques and practical applications. Learn about relational concepts and SQL - and produce your own simple relational database.

See full description.

15 Nov
Software requirements for business systems (M883)

Investigate requirements engineering - a disciplined approach to eliciting, analysing, communicating and agreeing requirements as the essential first step in the development of software.

See full description.

15 Nov
Web systems integration (M887)

Explore technologies vital for the development of internet-based applications in the context of systems integration - a new development paradigm revolutionising software production.

See full description.

15 May

Subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules DMZX871, M867, M873, M874, M877, M878, M879, M880, M881, M891, T821, T822, T823

AND another 30 credits chosen either from the above list or from these modules:

Postgraduate optional modules Credits Next start
Advanced routing - CCNP 1 (T824)

This course provides the knowledge, understanding and skills to deploy and manage internal and external routing protocols for large scale inter-networks using Cisco equipment.

See full description.

30 May
Business operations: delivering value (T883)

The course aims to equip managers with the skills to make the business processes in their organisation more effective in meeting the needs of stakeholders.

See full description.

30 May
Creativity, innovation and change (B822) or version BZX822

This interdisciplinary course is about managing innovation and change, sustaining a creative climate in your organisation, and promoting imaginative, flexible and practical thought and action.

See full description.

30 May FINAL
Information systems legacy and evolution (T853)

IS evolution can be seen in two ways, planned and unplanned. This course discusses both, helping you understand their nature and giving you workplace techniques.

See full description.

15 May FINAL
Learning from IS failures (T852)

Information systems are particularly prone to failure. This course looks at how to prevent it, in the design, implementation and operation of information systems.

See full description.

15 May FINAL
Managing for sustainability (T867) NEW

This course will increase your understanding of delivering and supporting sustainability management in your workplace or support your personal interest in this subject.

See full description.

30 May
Manufacture materials design (T881)

This course approaches manufacturing processes, selection of materials and design of components as facets of the same task: making something that serves its purpose efficiently.

See full description.

30 Nov
MBA stage 1: management: perspectives and practice (B716) *

This MBA course will enable you make a real difference within your management practice and provide a good grounding in the core disciplines of management.

See full description.

60 May
Network security (T828)

This course will give youthe knowledge,understanding and practical experience of managing a secure communication across a large-scale inter-network using Cisco equipment.

See full description.

30 Nov
Problem solving and improvement: quality and other approaches (T889)

This course focuses on the practical application and deeper understanding of many of the methods and techniques associated with modern quality management and systems thinking.

See full description.

30 May
Supply chain innovation, strategy and management (T882)

Supply chains are reshaping contemporary business and affect everyone. This course looks at the complex challenge of managing them, including their effects, using interdisciplinary approaches.

See full description.

30 May FINAL

Subject to rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules B700*, B713*, B730 (45-credit module but counts as only 30 credits towards this diploma), B751, B752, B800 (60-credit modules but count as only 30 credits towards this diploma), B823, BZX700*, BZX713*, BZX823, T830, T833, T834, T835, T836, T837, T850, T851, T862

* 60-credit module but counts as only 30 credits towards this diploma

Educational aims

The Computing for Commerce and Industry (CCI) programme is aimed at computer professionals, technical managers and other professionals in IT-related jobs and aims to update, broaden and provide a coherent overview of the field to serve as a firm foundation for their career developments.

The programme allows you to select modules within the broad area of computing and aims to develop:

  • multiple competencies in computing and relevant application areas at graduate level
  • an ability to analyse and evaluate problems and draw on the theoretical and technical knowledge to develop solutions
  • the required skills to further a career in computing
  • an awareness of current research in software development, the analytical skills and research techniques for their critical and independent evaluation and their application to new problems.

Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes are described in four areas:

Knowledge and understanding

When you have completed this qualification, you will have knowledge and understanding of:

Fundamental and advanced concepts, principles and techniques from among the following topic areas. No individual contributing module is compulsory.

  • software engineering and software management
  • project management
  • requirements engineering
  • user interface design
  • object-oriented software development
  • database systems and technology
  • distributed applications and ecommerce
  • computing infrastructures
  • multiservice networks.

In each case the module addresses the principles underpinning the particular topic area, relates these to practical applications and allows you to apply the principles in your workplace.

Cognitive skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • analyse new problems, sifting the irrelevant from the relevant and expressing the results using standard formalisms and notations
  • integrate knowledge and skills from various sources into a coherent whole, making the appropriate abstractions
  • critically evaluate, using proven methods, the strengths and weaknesses of a particular technology within a computing system application
  • synthesise arguments from underlying premises to produce overarching conclusions
  • deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, making informed judgements in the absence of complete data.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • prepare cases advocating the appropriate use of computing systems technologies
  • appraise new developments in computing systems technology and assess applicability to a particular workplace scenario or area of academic or professional interest
  • demonstrate an understanding of the roles in software development and the responsibilities of those roles
  • be aware of issues relating to participation in development teams.

Depending on the modules you have chosen, you may be also be able to demonstrate an awareness of the legal and ethical issues associated with implementation of computing in the workplace.

Key skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • advance your own knowledge and understanding through independent learning
  • communicate clearly knowledge, ideas, and conclusions about computing systems using appropriate media, for specialist and non-specialist audiences
  • develop your problem-solving skills and apply them independently to professional or equivalent level tasks/projects/functions
  • work with others to refine your ideas, leading to an improved understanding of key concepts within the computing systems context.

Copyright Open University UK

 Search for a course
 Related courses