Master of Science In Project Management

7th August 2018
1.5 Years on PT/DE


The Master of Science in Project Management (MPM) programme is designed to meet the growing demand for qualified Programme and Project Managers, not only in Zambia, but globally as well. Over the years, many projects have been undertaken in various fields cutting across various sectors of the economy. Notable examples include those in Construction, Information Technology, Capacity Building, among many others.


The Zambian government has also embarked on unprecedented infrastructure development across the country. However, the success rate of these projects varies to a great extent and this could be attributed to a number of factors. Similarly, a number of projects have failed along the way due to, among other factors, inexperienced project managers; lack of support from Senior Management; unrealistic time/resource estimate; objectives not clearly defined or measurable; unclear roles and responsibilities and partly due to lack of or little knowledge about project management.


This programme is intended to provide essential knowledge and skills to would be project managers. The programme is thus targeted at people who already possess a first degree and would like to venture into project management or those who have studied project management at a low level and wish to specialise in project management. Those with hands on project management experience but have no formal qualification are also encouraged to study this programme.


The Master of Science in Project Management programme is a University of Zambia (UNZA) programme, offered and administered by ZCAS University (ZCAS-U). This entails that students will register at ZCAS-U and the lecturing and examination of the programme will also take place at ZCAS-U. In administering the MPM programme, ZCAS-U will observe UNZA quality assurance standards, including the appointment of qualified lecturers to teach on the programme.


1.1       AIM


To equip students with knowledge and skills in the field of Project Management and pedagogy, and further develop their competences in order to prepare them to handle projects of various magnitude and complexity in any career field such as construction, information technology, livelihood, and capacity building, among others.








1.2       OBJECTIVES


By the end of the programme, candidates should be able to:


  • Demonstrate a thorough grounding in the fundamental theories, concepts, principles and practices of Project Management.
  • Demonstrate critical abilities of analysis, interpretation, evaluation and judgement in the field of project management.
  • Apply the knowledge and key skills acquired to successfully manage projects and portfolios of projects.
  • Challenge and extend their knowledge and practice in this business–critical profession.
  • Demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to effectively manage project resources, anticipate and mitigate risks, monitor, evaluate and report on project performance.
  • Recognise the diversity and complexity of projects, programmes and portfolios in organisations outside the traditional “project management” sectors.


1.3       RATIONALE


In the recent past, Zambia, like many other developing countries, has experienced a growth in developmental projects across the country, including the road construction sector, building, information technology, NGOs’ project delivery in the communities, and many others. The Government’s intention of opening up the country through road accessibility, building of provincial and district headquarters, hospitals and clinics and the opening of new universities has turned the country into a hub of construction. Most of the projects are undertaken by foreign companies with little participation by local ones. The lack of participation in these and other projects has largely been blamed on the lack of skills by indigenous Zambians to ably undertake and manage projects of this nature. The Master of Science in Project Management (MPM) programme has been mooted with this in mind and is meant to produce qualified project and programme managers who can effectively participate in various developmental projects.


The demand for qualified project managers is also noted to have been accelerated by the number of donor projects that Zambia and Africa at large are receiving. The critical shortage of skilled Project and Programme Managers has meant that many projects have ended up being mismanaged, thus leading to huge resources being lost and some projects being abandoned. The proposed MPM Programme to be offered by ZCAS-U in association with UNZA presents an opportunity to produce Project and Programme Managers who will manage projects being undertaken countrywide as well as across the continent in an effective, efficient and economic manner.








The following shall be eligible to apply for admission to the Master of Science degree in Project Management:


  • Graduates of UNZA degree programmes who have been admitted to the appropriate degree of Bachelor with at least a credit.


  • Graduates of other recognised universities who have been admitted to the appropriate degree of Bachelor with at least Second Class (Upper Division) Honours.


  • Graduates of a sufficiently adequate standard who shall have demonstrated competence to undertake this postgraduate programme.


  • Applicants with sufficient requisite working experience and in exceptional circumstances, are holders of a pass degree or its equivalent will be considered for admission on the MSM programme.




The programme of study for the award of the MPM qualification shall be completed in a period of:


  • Not less than 12 months and not more than one and half years in the case of full-time students who have satisfied the requirements of the regulations.


  • Not less than one and half years and not more than two academic years in all other cases (from the date of first registration)


For the purpose of computing the maximum period of study where a person undertakes the study for the Masters of Science in Project Management qualification, partly as a part-time and partly as a full-time student, four (4) courses successfully completed by the student shall count as one academic semester (one half year).




For all course assignments, the distribution of marks shall be in credit points for each assignment and the masters dissertation as shown in the following table:



1.      Dissertation





2.      Continuous Assessment


Course Assignment 1              15 credit points

Course Assignment 2              15 credit points

Course Assignment 3              15 credit points

Course Assignment 4              15 credit points

Course Assignment 5              15 credit points

Course Assignment 6              15 credit points

Course Assignment 7              15 credit points

Course Assignment 8              15 credit points


Subtotal                                             120 credit points















TOTAL: 180 credit points



In assessing the performance of a student in any course unit, lecturers at ZCAS-U will employ the following framework: 

Pass Grades

Range                    Grade

90 – 100                 A+ Upper Distinction

80 – 89                  A Lower Distinction

70 – 79                   B+ Meritorious

60 – 69                   B Very Satisfactory

50 – 59                   C+ Clear Pass

40 – 49                   C Bare Pass

S                            Satisfactory (for projects)


Fail Grades

35 – 39                   D+ Bare Fail

0 – 34                     D Clear Fail

U                           Unsatisfactory (for projects)

NE                         No Examination (for a student who has no complete CA)

LT                         Left during the year without permission (for student with incomplete CA)




  1. The classification of the Master of Science in Project Management qualification shall be based on all grades obtained in all courses in semester 1, 2, and 3 and the independent study of the programme.


  1. The pass mark for the degree of Master of Science in Project Management shall be at the C grade of marking. In accordance with the ZCAS-U guidelines, the letter grades shall have the following meanings attached to them:


Letter Grades Grade Point Percentage
A+ 6 86 – 100
A 5 75 – 85
B+ 4 70 – 74
B 3 65 – 69
C+ 2 55 – 64
C 1 50 – 54
F 0 0 – 49


  1. No points are awarded where a course has been repeated. Points will be calculated on the basis of all the eight courses completed.





  • A student who has, prior to admission to the Master of Science in Project Management programme attended, whether at ZCAS-U or elsewhere, courses of instruction and passed examinations equivalent in standard to the courses and examinations which form part of the programme of study may, subject to approval, be exempted from attendance of classes and assessment in those courses. Formal application for exemptions shall be made and the appropriate exemption fee paid.


  • No candidate shall be awarded exemptions in more than 50% of the courses required for the award of the Master of Science in Project Management.






The MSc in Project Management programme shall consist of a total of six core course units and these must be taken by all candidates.




Four electives shall be available from which a candidate will be required to choose any two course units. All candidates shall be required to undertake the research stage of the programme whose outcome shall be a dissertation or an academically acceptable report.





The Master of Science in Project Management programme is divided into three semesters and full-time students are expected to take three courses in each semester while part-time students will take up to two courses.  The courses are structured in such a way that semester one courses are not pre-requisite to semester two courses in each year. The MPM course structure is as shown in Table 1.



Course Code Course Title Course Code Course Title Course


Course Title
MPM 111 Project Design Strategy


MPM 112 Project Risk Management, Exit &  Sustainability Strategies  


Managing Livelihood Projects
MPM 121 Strategic Project Organisation MPM 122 Strategic Procurement


MPM223 Public Private Partnership and Project Management
MPM 131



Project Implementation, Monitoring Evaluation and Reporting

MPM 132


Strategic Leadership and Cultural Orientation





Project Quality Management



Managing projects using ICT tools and techniques.
MPM311 Consultancy Report/Dissertation (Independent Study) – Due for submission in Semester 3

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