The GSA Diploma programme is designed for experienced sourcing professionals and is the GSA’s most advanced professional development programme. It uses a work based learning format, which means that learners can structure their learning around work activities and projects. It builds on the principle that much of what professionals learn is in fact ‘on the job’ and that this learning needs to be captured so that it more effectively improves the future practice of the individual and others. The value for many professionals is that it is focused on the work they are doing day to day so their limited time is being used very efficiently to both deliver to projects demands whilst also developing their professionals skills. As much of it is self managed it also provides a considerable degree of flexibility to allow for the programme requirements to be more easily fitted around work demands.

Learners submit three written papers over a period of a year – each paper being around 4,000 words. The first paper reviews and explores the GSA Global Sourcing Standard and how it applies to the learners work challenges. Papers 2 and 3 are written on subjects of the learners own choosing, in consultation with their sponsors. The papers must demonstrate their knowledge of sourcing practice, an insight into sourcing challenges and how they have added value to an organisation and to their own professional development.

Successful learners will be awarded the GSA Diploma in Strategic Sourcing and be able to add Dip GSA after their names.

Organisations that have been represented on the programme include CGI, Capital One, Deloitte, Teleperformance, National Grid, The Phoenix Group, Aviva, Citibank, Telegraph Media, Guardian Media, UCAS, Societe Generale, Unilever along with many others. 


Learners will be supported throughout the programme by a GSA tutor. They will be invited to attend three workshops throughout the course of the programme. These workshops whilst providing briefings on what is required, will focus on participants collaborating, supporting and sharing learning around the work based projects the participants are tackling.


Assessment and Post Diploma

The Diploma is assessed by the GSA using master degree level criteria. This requires learners to demonstrate their ability to clearly define problems, use sources to develop options to address problems and to propose clear and logical solutions. They will be expected to demonstrate a range of competencies which will include influencing, communication and problems solving.

Those who are awarded the GSA Diploma will have the opportunity to then go on to register with Portsmouth University to complete a Masters in Business Management (MA). The Diploma will be accepted by the university for a third of the credits required for the degree. Learners will be able to undertake an exercise to potentially be awarded a further third of the required credits by mapping their prior experience against current university modules. This will mean that most learners will only then need to complete one further major project to complete the final third of the credits required. Again, the approach taken will be the same work based learning approach used for the Diploma programme.


Currently the GSA Diploma fee is £3,400 (+VAT) per learner.

Portsmouth University fees may vary but currently around £450 for the exercise to map prior experience and then around £3,000 to complete the final major project element of the masters degree.

In-house or Open programme

The GSA has run an open programme for the last 8 years and is also able to arrange in-house programme for organisations that have a number of people who want to participate in the programme. The cost of in-house programmes are available on application. 

More information

If you wish to discuss the Diploma programme in more depth or sign up do please contact the GSA by email at or by call the GSA office on +44 0207 292 8686.

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