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Corporate Governance with Graduate ICSA MSc


The course is academically rigorous and meets the professional needs of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) qualification whereby students are given full exemption from ICSA's Professional Examinations. Successful students gain Grad ICSA status in addition to the Masters. Those with the relevant work experience can apply for chartered secretary status and use the post-nominal ACIS.

The programme is designed to provide a sound understanding of corporate governance and leadership from corporate, investor and stakeholder perspectives. This course will also equip you with a highly specialised set of skills that will develop the ability to appreciate and influence the factors governing corporate affairs.

The programme is benchmarked against ICSA’s own high level standards. On completion, graduates who go on to become chartered secretaries will be professionally qualified to undertake a variety of senior roles in governance, law, finance, strategy, leadership, and administration. Many will follow a highly successful and financially rewarding career in a number of sectors, including private, public and voluntary.

Upon completion of the course you will:

  • Gain Graduate ICSA status, with the opportunity to apply for full Chartered Membership
  • Gain in depth understanding of corporate governance, from corporate, investor and stakeholder perspectives
  • Have a better understanding of management theory, as well as a highly specialised set of board level leadership skills
  • Gain the skills to become a strategic thinker able to recognise, analyse and influence the factors governing corporate affairs

You'll benefit from a wide range of extra-curricular activities including academic skills for finance, accounting and governance, research techniques, a range of Bloomberg Aptitude Tests, specialist visitor speakers, and expert symposiums and conferences.


Key course information - ordered by mode
Mode Duration Start date Location
15 months
Start Date
January; September
Southwark Campus
30 months
Start Date
January; September
Southwark Campus


The PgDip comprises six taught modules (five full modules and two half modules) and the MSc comprises the same modules plus a dissertation (circa 16,000 words) in the subject area of corporate governance.

Indicative modules as listed below

Semester 1

  • Corporate governance - principles and practice

  • International financial reporting and analysis

  • International strategy

Semester 2

  • Business and corporate law
  • International finance and decision making
  • Corporate secretarial practice (1/2 module)
  • Research methods (1/2 module)
  • Dissertation (required for award of MSc)

An academic is appointed as your Dissertation Facilitator, to offer guidance and constructive advice on the preparation of your dissertation.

Modules are assessed in a variety of ways including written reports, presentations, coursework and exams.


The Masters in Corporate Governance combined with the internationally recognised ICSA qualification makes graduates highly employable in senior governance and administration positions. On this programme you will be encouraged to develop yourself in order to become a key player, with the skills, vision and ability to influence change.

Due to their varied knowledge and expertise, qualified chartered secretaries command highly-paid jobs in the private, public and voluntary sectors.

Employability skills events include the "My Employability" event comprising of the following:

  • My dream job
  • Preparing CVs and cover letters
  • Using databases to research the company
  • IT qualifications for your CV
  • Preparing for interviews
  • Managing expectations
  • Internships

Employability Service

We are University of the Year for Graduate Employment - The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018.

At LSBU, we want to set you up for a successful career. During your studies – and for two years after you graduate – you’ll have access to our Employability Service, which includes:

  • An online board where you can see a wide range of placements: part-time, full-time or voluntary. You can also drop in to see our Job Shop advisers, who are always available to help you take the next step in your search.
  • Our Careers Gym offering group workshops on CVs, interview techniques and finding work experience, as well as regular presentations from employers across a range of sectors.

Our Student Enterprise team can also help you start your own business and develop valuable entrepreneurial skills.


You'll benefit from the opportunity to take internships, be encouraged to get involved in initiatives that promote links with different firms and companies, and to participate in different programmes and schemes comprising voluntary work.


Cherry Cheung

School/Division: Business / Accounting, Finance and Economics
Job title: Senior Lecturer and Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility Research Group Lead

Cherry is Senior Lecturer and Business Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility Research Group Lead. Her research interests include business and law pedagogies.


Teaching and learning

Lectures cover concepts which underpin and facilitate informed participative approaches to learning. Workshops, seminars, case studies and student led discussions facilitate more active modes of learning..

Assessment is by a combination of examination and/or coursework. Lecturers offer a rich profile of academic and professional qualifications backed by professional, teaching and/or research experience.

An academic is appointed as your Dissertation Facilitator, to offer guidance and constructive advice on the preparation of your dissertation.

Entry requirements

  • Any Bachelor degree equivalent to UK Second Class Honours Lower Division; or*
  • Completion of all levels of the CCAB professional examinations; or*
  • Completion of all levels of CIMA examinations*; or
  • ICSA Diploma in Business and other (non-relevant) qualifications will be considered if students have relevant business experience.

* These students will be considered for exemptions from their equivalent papers.

  • Business experience is considered desirable.
  • Required English language skills to undertake this programme IELTS (International English Language Testing Service) 6.5 or equivalent.

How to apply

International students

International (non Home/EU) applicants should follow our international how to apply guide.

Instructions for Home/EU applicants
Mode Duration Start date Application code Application method
15 months
Start date
January; September
Application code
Application method
See below
30 months
Start date
January; September
Application code
Application method
See below

Full-time/part-time postgraduate students and research students apply through the UCAS Postgraduate. Full details of how to do this are supplied on our How to apply section for postgraduate students and our How to apply section for research students.

Postgraduate applicants are required to provide up to two references as part of their application.


Students should apply for accommodation at London South Bank University (LSBU) as soon as possible, once we have made an offer of a place on one of our academic courses. Read more about applying for accommodation at LSBU.


It's a good idea to think about how you'll pay university tuition and maintenance costs while you're still applying for a place to study. Remember – you don't need to wait for a confirmed place on a course to start applying for student finance. Read how to pay your fees as a postgraduate student.

Postgraduate Application Service

Book a session with one of our specialist Postgraduate Advisors. Over a one on one Advice Session they'll advise you on postgraduate degrees at LSBU that match your interests and experience. Book an Advice Session.

Fees and funding

Fees are shown for new entrants to courses, for each individual year of a course, together with the total fee for all the years of a course. Continuing LSBU students should refer to the Finance section of our student portal, MyLSBU. Queries regarding fees should be directed to the Fees and Bursaries Team on: +44 (0)20 7815 6181.

The fee shown is for entry 2018/19.
UK/EU fee: £3866.67International fee: £5833.33
AOS/LSBU code: 1319Session code: 1PS01
Total course fee:
UK/EU £8700
International £13125
The fee shown is for entry 2018/19.
UK/EU fee: £3866.67International fee: £5833.33
AOS/LSBU code: 1319Session code: 1PS00
Total course fee:
UK/EU £8700
International £13125

For more information, including how and when to pay, see our fees and funding section for postgraduate students.

Possible fee changes

The University reserves the right to increase its fees in line with changes to legislation, regulation and any governmental guidance or decisions.

The fees for international students are reviewed annually and, additionally, the University reserves the right to increase tuition fees in line with the RPIX measure of inflation up to 4 per cent.

Postgraduate loan (PGL) for Masters study

If you are starting a Masters course, studying either full- or part-time, you may be entitled to apply for a postgraduate study loan. Find out more at our postgraduate fees and funding section.


We offer several types of fee reduction through our scholarships and bursaries. Find the full list and other useful information on funding your studies on the scholarships and fee discounts page.

Fee status

Please check your fee status and whether you are considered a home, EU or international student for fee-paying purposes by reading the UKCISA regulations.

Case studies

Select a case study and read about practical project work, students' placement experiences, research projects, alumni career achievements and what it’s really like to study here from the student perspective.

Prepare to start

We help our students prepare for university even before the semester starts. To find out when you should apply for your LSBU accommodation or student finance read How to apply tab for this course.

Enrolment and Induction

Enrolment takes place before you start your course. On completing the process, new students formally join the University. Enrolment consists of two stages: online, and your face-to-face enrolment meeting. The online process is an online data gathering exercise that you will complete yourself, then you will be invited to your face-to-face enrolment meeting.

In September, applicants who have accepted an unconditional offer to study at LSBU will be sent details of induction, which is when they are welcomed to the University and their School. Induction helps you get the best out of your university experience, and makes sure you have all the tools to succeed in your studies.

Read more about Enrolment and Induction.

Prepare for MSc Corporate Governance

When you are a student you'll be able to access key texts through the Perry Library or purchase. Because this is a fast moving subject area it is important that you are reading the most current editions. We would recommend that you do not buy textbooks until you are on the course. However, there is important reading you can do in preparation.

Your main source in advance will the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) where you should subscribe to email notifications. You should particularly look at the ICSA Guidance on Company Secretaries and Corporate Governance. If you are a member, Graduate or student you should also look online at the ICSA Chartered Secretary Journal.

  • 'Governance and Compliance' ICSA monthly magazine
  • 'One Stop Company Secretary' David Martin 
  • 'ICSA Company Secretary's Handbook' 10th Edition Doug Armour ISBN 
  • 'Corporate Secretarial Practice' 2nd Edition Luke Thomas.
  • 'A Practical Guide to the UK Listing Regime' Herbert Smith Freehills 3rd Edition.
  • Critical Thinking Skills: Developing Effective Analysis and Argument (Palgrave Study Skills) Dr Stella Cottrell:

Websites as follows:

Keep up to date with all events impacting companies generally and specific companies concerning corporate governance and board performance, including director and company secretary responsibilities. This means reading the business section of a serious daily newspaper or the Financial Times.

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Contact information

Course Enquiries - UK

Tel: 0800 923 8888

Get in touch

Course Enquiries - EU/International

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7815 6189

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