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  • Blend academic theory with business and management practice
  • Emphasis on one-to-one coaching and small group learning
  • Knowledgeable, experienced and supportive academic staff
  • Small-group seminar sessions

The Senior Leaders Master’s Degree Apprenticeship at Winchester is ideal for managers who want to develop the strategic knowledge and skills essential for successful careers in organisations with a sustainable outlook. The course aims to address responsible management in a complex and dynamic global market, through the application of theoretical models, research and critical analysis to real-life business issues. 

The course balances theoretical knowledge with grounded discussions of key themes including Strategy, Leadership, Marketing, Innovation, Change Management, Stakeholder Management, Entrepreneurship, Business Sustainability, Financial/Risk Management and Digital Insight Management. This approach provides you with valuable personal and professional frameworks, which can be readily applied to your working environment.

You will increase your ability to creatively and systematically apply knowledge from multiple data sources and develop your capability to communicate ideas, tactics and strategies in order to influence a wide variety of stakeholder audiences.

You will engage with a wide range of academic literature, the latest business case materials and live business cases, reflecting on your managerial experiences before applying theories and ideas to your own working environment. Our highly interactive, small-group seminar sessions encourage you to explore and build upon the diversity of working backgrounds for the benefit of the whole group.


The Senior Leaders Master’s Degree Apprenticeship at Winchester is designed to enhance the skills and careers of practising managers and professionals.


On completion of the Master of Business Administration, SLMDA students will also be awarded the ILM Diploma. Students will be subject to an externally managed and delivered, post-MBA assessment by the ILM for the separate Senior Leaders Master’s Degree Apprenticeship award. 


Suitable for applicants from:

UK, EU, World

Learning and Teaching

We pride ourselves on our small-group teaching led by our knowledgeable, experienced and supportive academic staff.

Classroom sessions are highly interactive and build on the diversity of students' work experience for the benefit of the whole cohort. Small groups provide opportunities for a person-centred approach to teaching, frequent small group discussions and the application of knowledge to students' own working environments.

Start date: January, July or September

Teaching takes place: Weekends (all day Friday and Saturday). Each module comprises three calendar months; students attend two weekends of teaching (one weekend in consecutive months) followed by a further calendar month to complete the module assignment. The 6 mandatory modules are delivered in a linear rolling sequence over the initial 18 months of the Programme and once complete, students can progress to the Supported Independent Study module for the final 7 months. 


Taught elements of the course take place on campus in Winchester.


Each core module requires one piece of coursework, and a written summative report based on a practical business issue. The final module Supported Independent Study comprises Research & Analysis Methods, with a taught component, and a Business Reseach Project. All Business Research Projects are work/industry based, relevant to each individual student, and are supported in accordance with the University Assessment Regulations. All assignments for the SLMDA must be based on the students place of work.

Our validated courses may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances.

We ensure all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used on the course you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day or Open Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.


We are committed to providing timely and appropriate feedback to you on your academic progress and achievement in order to enable you to reflect on your progress and plan your academic and skills development effectively. You are also encouraged to seek additional feedback from your course tutors.

Further information

For more information about our regulations for this course, please see our Academic Regulations, Policies and Procedures.




Students are expected to have a minimum of two years' work experience, usually in a middle-management role, and a first or second-class Honours degree or equivalent. Senior managers with substantial experience, but without a first degree, are also welcome to apply.

Students must be employed by a sponsoring business. Programme-specific entry requirements may apply, as agreed with the sponsoring organisation (different employers will identify their specific entry requirements).

To secure an apprenticeship you will need to apply for a full-time position with one of our partner employers.  To gain a place on this programme you will have been successful on application and interview as conducted by the sponsoring business in conjunction with the University of Winchester.

Alternatively, you may be seeking career enhancement within your current role. In this case you will need your employer to support you by offering a Degree Apprenticeship with the University of Winchester.

In the absence of formal learning qualifications applications are welcomed from persons who can demonstrate relevant work experience, including work in a voluntary capacity. The course structure actively supports claims for Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) and Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

Selection Process

Candidates are invited to attend an interview or assessment centre organised by the business in conjunction with the University of Winchester.

If English is not your first language: Year 1/Level 4: IELTS 6.0 (including 6.0 in writing) or equivalent

Course Enquiries and Applications

Please contact Stella McKnight:

Telephone: +44 (0) 1962 826478
Or Send us a message

International Students

If you are living outside of the UK or Europe, you can find out more about how to join this course by emailing our International Recruitment Team at or calling +44 (0)1962 827023

Visit us

Explore our campus and find out more about studying at Winchester by coming to one of our Open Evenings.

Year 1 (Level 7)

Modules Credits

Leadership, Sustainability & Ethics 20

This module is aimed at developing in students, a critical understanding of the key issues and concepts in the responsible leadership, management and influence of people in an era of globalisation and rapid change. You will develop your capacity to build trust and lead others in a responsible manner across organisational boundaries, building an in-depth awareness of your own preferences, values and behaviours while critically evaluating yourself as an effective leader and influencer in a range of situations.

This module also evaluates the principles of responsible management as presented in the United Nations PRME framework. The module draws on and engages with on-going debate concerning the social, economic, environmental, moral and ethical dimensions of business in a global world. You will critically examine the policy and application of responsible management in your own organisation and industry sector, as you reflect on your personal and professional role in creating sustainable business value.

Markets, Stakeholders & Consumers 20

The Markets, Stakeholders and Consumers module exposes students to the social, economic, and environmental issues relevant to the study of commercial activities and markets.  It examines the business world as a complex, socially-constructed arena where commercial and social exchanges occur and where marketing externalities, such as consumerism and marketing’s impact on more vulnerable segments, are critically examined. Throughout the module, you will be encouraged to examine these issues within an international/global context with a focus on practical business applications. Emphasis is placed on analysing issues at the nexus of macro environmental forces, strategy, business relationships, Brand management, marketing and societal welfare.  Internal and external Stakeholder management is a key aspect of the module, and you will analyse the complex and dynamic collaborative relationships that influence the effectiveness and impact of business strategy.

Finance & Risk Management 20

This module aims to provide a critical understanding of financial planning, control, decision making and risk management by exploring the relationship between the production of information and its subsequent use, communication and interpretation within the organisation. You will develop a level of confidence in your ability to use, communicate and question financial information, supporting the key tasks of planning, controlling and decision making to create sustainable value.

The module will evaluate the production and subsequent use and interpretation of quantitative and qualitative information that underpins business strategy. The module will assess the impact of corporate governance on the long-term business performance, including the implementation of an ethical and sustainable approach to business. Finally, the module will prepare you to analyse and communicate complex financial, risk management and regulatory information in a format that is suitable for a business audience.

Sustainable Innovation and Change 20

The module focusses on the challenges faced by organisations that demand significant change, in either their core purpose and operational structure or in the products and services that they offer. You will investigate the opportunities and threats provided by both external and internal forces as an organisation looks to adapt and prosper, with a critical focus on key areas such as Change Management, Innovation Management, Sustainability and Knowledge Management. You will evaluate the dynamic capabilities needed by Managers to sustain their organisations in an increasingly turbulent global business environment, employing models and theories that enable critical, creative and design thinking, resulting in innovative strategies and business evolution. 

The module has a highly practical focus, challenging you to apply the business tools, research and critical analysis to real business issues. Sustainable Innovation principles will form a core component, investigating the challenges, and opportunities, posed both by current environmental changes, and by future trends.

Digital Insight Management 20

This module will provide you with an understanding of the digital insight management function, enabling a business to gather and analyse the information and data that underpins their critical decision-making processes and long-term strategic development plans. The ability to access, manipulate and evaluate the ever-expanding amount of data is an essential function for any business trying to compete in dynamic markets conditions.

However, business leaders don’t just need to be familiar with the processes of data collection and analysis, they need to communicate the often complex and conflicting findings to a wide range of stakeholders. You will therefore explore the latest data visualisation and augmented reality technologies, as well as the ways in which we make sense of the information around us, examining the consumer as well as the business decision processes. Cybersecurity and data control will be reviewed alongside the ethical implications of data control and the use of insight management techniques.

Strategy & Entrepreneurship 20

Strategic management is the primary decision-making function of senior managers in public, private and third-sector organisations, regardless of scale, ownership or location. This module considers the process of strategic management from theoretical, analytical and practical perspectives and the points of view of a range of stakeholders. It aims to equip you with the ideas and conceptual tools you will need to understand organisational strategic practice and act in a wide range of conditions.

Entrepreneurship is recognised as being fundamental to global economic growth and development, thanks both to the importance of small firms as the mainstay of most economies and the vital role played by dynamic and innovative new ventures. In this module, you will learn to evaluate an organisation’s internal strategic competences and financial resources, and to respond to rapid environmental change. These concepts and practical approaches are firmly embedded within paradigms of sustainability and of ethical management practice.

Supported Independent Study 60

The Supported Independent Learning module is designed to enable students to complete their MBA journey with a significant independent research project, supported both by personal Supervision (Business Research Project – a Work Based Project or Dissertation approach) and significant workshop-based activity (Research and Analysis Methods).

You will evaluate and synthesise research philosophies, develop research strategies, conduct research using secondary and/or primary sources and analyse your findings in relation to the wider business, industry and sector issues. The process will support the development of key personal skills, from critical analysis and knowledge acquisition to the development of significant insight through robust inquiry. The skills developed during this process are of great value to employers, demonstrating the ability to critically and forensically investigate a significant business-related issue or opportunity. It can also prompt student interest in conducting further research, whether in a consultancy role or in continued academic research at DBA or PhD level.

Please note the modules listed are correct at the time of publishing, for full-time students entering the programme in Year 1. Optional modules are listed where applicable. Please note the University cannot guarantee the availability of all modules listed and modules may be subject to change. For further information please refer to the terms and conditions at
The University will notify applicants of any changes made to the core modules listed above.

Progression from one level of the programme to the next is subject to meeting the University’s academic regulations.

2021 Course Tuition Fees 

Costs to Student/Apprentice

  • Apprentices are full-time employees and will be entitled to a wage and paid time off to study
  • There are no tuition fees

Read What our Degree Apprenticeships? for more information.

Employer Information

How much will it cost an employing business per apprentice?

The apprentice will be an employee who will work for a business throughout the programme - a market-rate salary is anticipated. The funding you are eligible for is determined by the number of people you employ, the annual payroll of your company and the age of the learner.

Read Information for employers for the latest information.


As one of our students all of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees, including, lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of student support and IT services.

There might be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying. The following highlights the mandatory and optional costs for this course:


Core Text: Multiple copies of core text are held within the library and e-books are identified where possible, however due the popularity of some books, there will not be enough copies for every student. It is advised that students seek to purchase their own books - second hand copies are often available. Indicative cost: £350 


Printing and Binding: We are proud to offer free printing for all students to ensure that printing costs are not a potential financial barrier to student success. The University of Winchester and Winchester Student Union are champions of sustainability and therefore ask that all students consider the environment and print fairly. Students may be required to pay for the costs of dissertation binding. Indicative cost is £1.50-£3.


We have a variety of scholarship and bursaries available to support you financially with the cost of your course. To see if you’re eligible, please see our Scholarships and Awards.

Key course details

Part-time only: 24 months
Typical offer
First or second-class Honours degree with a minimum of two years' work experience.
On campus, Winchester