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Is Post Graduate Study for you?

Is Post Graduate Study for you?


Can’t decide whether or not to continue with your studies? Complete our quiz to reveal what advice we have for students in your position.

What is your motive for pursuing postgraduate study?
A –     A passion for a particular subject
B –     To improve my chances of securing a job
C –     I need more time to decide on my career

What did you enjoy the most about your first degree?
A –     The research/learning element
B –     Assignments and project work
C –     Both learning and assignments

What influenced your decision to go to university after school?
A –     To further my knowledge in an area of interest
B –     To make myself more employable
C –     I wasn’t ready to go straight into employment

How did you decide on what course to study?
A –     I chose a course based on subject I enjoyed at school
B –     I chose one specific to my ideal profession
C –     I chose a course I thought I’d be good at

When selecting a university/college for your postgraduate study, what is your most important criteria?
A –     A reputation for academic excellence in my chosen field
B –     It should be rated highly among employers
C –     It should be rated highly by students

What kind of postgrad course are you looking for?
A –     One that will allow me to research my chosen topic with more depth
B –     One that will prepare me with the skills & knowledge required in work-life
C –     One that explores a wide variety of topics within my chosen subject

What element of your university/college life did you enjoy the most?
A –     The learning aspect and being in an academic environment
B –     Joining and getting involved in university clubs and societies
C –     I enjoyed the whole experience



Mostly As
You are certainly on the right path in your decision to go into further study. Your desire to learn more and venture further into your chosen subject will allow you to apply yourself and really make the most of a postgraduate course. Do bear in mind that future employers will expect you to demonstrate what skills you have gained that are transferable to the workplace. When choosing a course, ask yourself: ‘Does this course prepare me with the skills I need for my ideal job?’

Mostly Bs
You are a career-driven individual with an end goal on your horizon. A vocation-specific course is the best way forward. If, like most undergraduates, your degree is not designed to lead to a particular profession, our advice to you would be to look into taking a conversion course. Make sure you do your research before committing to a course, by finding out which courses are rated highly by potential employers. You can find employer ratings listed against each postgrad department in our course search.

Mostly Cs
There is a good chance you are undecided about your next move; but there’s no need to panic. You’ll be relieved to know that you are in the same boat as most of your peers, and there is still time to plan ahead. In light of the current slump in the job market, you may feel that a postgraduate qualification could give you an advantage over other jobseekers, or perhaps you are just not ready to enter employment. Whatever your reasons, be aware that further study is very hard work; it demands a lot of time and effort, as well as being a huge financial commitment. If you want to go down this route, you need to be sure you are going to follow it through.

If you are just finishing your undergraduate degree and are itching to get out into the workforce, further study may be the last thing you feel like contemplating. Or, if you’ve already entered the workforce, you may feel deterred from undertaking postgraduate study because of the sacrifices of time, income and lifestyle involved. But the costs and sacrifices are temporary and can be well worth it. Think of it as an investment in your future that could open up a whole new world of opportunities – and possibly more lucrative ones.

There is a clear association between level of education and employment, as well as salary. With job roles becoming increasingly complex, higher levels of skills and qualifications are needed, especially if job candidates are seeking a competitive edge over those with undergraduate qualifications

As the proportion of the workforce with bachelor degree qualifications continues to grow, candidates are increasingly undertaking postgraduate study to add a vocational emphasis to their initial qualifications or upgrading their qualifications to establish a competitive edge in the labour market.’

Postgraduate qualifications in the corporate world
Postgraduate qualifications are becomingly increasingly sought-after in the corporate world, especially for senior executive positions.

Other benefits
Improving employment and salary prospects is not the only reason to pursue further study. People also undertake postgraduate study to specialise after doing a more generalist undergraduate degree, to gain professional registration, and to increase their depth of knowledge and expertise in their chosen field – so they can go on to do high-level work that is stimulating, challenging, and ultimately more rewarding.

Networking opportunities
While doing your postgrad studies, you will probably also make some great professional and personal contacts along the way, with like-minded people who are all equally ambitious and passionate about what they do.

Work experience is just as important
Keep in mind that it’s important to maintain a balance between study and practical work experience to maximise your opportunities.

Most recruiters warn that those who complete their postgraduate studies assuming they’ll be able to easily walk into better and higher paying jobs can be in for a surprise if they have no practical work experience. ‘You risk becoming too academically qualified without the relevant commercial acumen and experience to make your classroom study pay off in practice.’

‘Qualifications aren’t enough, the world’s full of unemployed people with university degrees – that’s not what gets you a job. What gets you a job is standing out and looking good.’

Even while conducting postgrad studies, you can gain valuable work experience by working part-time while you are studying, applying for an internship or work placement, or even doing unpaid work experience. On-the-job training, mentoring and volunteering for additional duties can also be beneficial. Hands-on experience gained from being involved with a specific project or team work can be invaluable.’

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