21/09/2016 9:47 AM AEST | Updated 21/09/2016 2:17 PM AEST

MicroMasters Are New, Fast University Qualifications

For people who want to do further study but don't want to dedicate an entire year.

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Aussie universities are offering online qualifications that are worth about one quarter of a masters degree.

If you want a taste of a masters degree, or to further your education without committing to a year of full-time study, three Australian universities are offering new qualifications called EdX MicroMasters.

The online Harvard University-backed qualifications are worth about one quarter of a masters and are in rapidly growing fields like artificial intelligence and global trade.

They're being rolled out at 13 universities around the world, including Australian National University, Curtin University and Queensland University.

Overarching company EdX chief executive Anant Agarwal said the qualifications filled a gap.

"MicroMasters provides the next level of innovation in learning and meets the needs of learners, universities and employers in today's on-demand, tech-driven world," Agarwal said.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge launched their MicroMasters in 2015 and are partnering with Curtin University and the University of Queensland so Australian MicroMasters can count towards an MIT accelerated masters.

What's on offer?

Curtin University's MicroMasters on offer is in human rights and they're working with MIT on supply chain management.

ANU will deliver MicroMasters in evidence-based management, business communications, stakeholder marketing, management foundations, global management, technology management and project management.

UQ will provide a MicroMasters in partnership with MIT, and another course with the Institute for Social Science Research.

Curtin University vice-chancellor Deborah Terry said MicroMasters were a way of staying current in a changing world.

"The concept of MicroMasters is a significant step forward given that the program reflects the type of option that will increasingly attract students keen to upgrade their skills and qualifications in a rapidly changing labour market," Terry said in a statement.