Enrolling onto a postgraduate degree is not a small step. This would involve committing time, money, and yourself to a single discipline for at least a year. It goes without saying that it needs to be a considered choice, not only in terms of what subject you pick but also whether it is the right choice for you as an individual.Hence, before you decide to opt for further study, consider the points below to ensure you’re fully prepared for your postgraduate degree:
CHECK OUT UNIVERSITIES OF GOOD STANDARDS
University rankings are an invaluable source of information at your disposal when researching a prospective course : you can quickly and easily assess a location’s suitability in terms of teaching, facilities, and graduate employment success with a few Google searches.
If you can, get to know recent graduates or current students of the university in question. This will give you a hands-on understanding of what the environment is really like, alongside the facts and figures as captured in league-table rankings.There is nothing more valuable than a personal recommendation – so get talking. Ask people who are doing/ have done post graduate studies.
PLAN HOW YOU WILL SCHEDULE YOUR STUDIES
At this point you should also consider if you want to undertake a full-time or part-time degree. Are you wanting to continue or take up part-time employment alongside your study, or can you afford to apply yourself entirely to your course without an income? Iron out these variables now to ensure that your choice further down the line is an informed one. Nothing should surprise you once you have enrolled at university – so do the background work in advance to make sure you don’t uncover any red flags when it’s too late to make a change.
FIND OUT EXTRA BENEFITS OF DOING POSTGRADUATE STUDIES
You know you’ll come out with a postgraduate degree in your chosen field – but what else can the university offer you? Is there the option to study abroad or to be on placement during teaching? Research your prospective lecturers and professors – are they established in their field? What accolades do they have to their name? Can they connect you with valuable contacts in the industry? Discover what advice they can offer in addition to their teaching.
BE SURE OF WHY YOU WANT TO DO IT
It’s all too easy to get carried away with the application process and speed ahead without realizing, but you should take a step back and ask yourself one question before hitting submit: why do I really want to do a postgraduate degree?
The answer should be something along the lines of the fact you want to further yourself professionally in a field that you’re passionate about.
A postgraduate degree isn’t something to just want to do “because my friends are doing it” or “because I don’t know what I want to do yet, so I’m just continuing university”. As we’ve said before, you’ll be applying your time, money, and yourself to a discipline for a prolonged period of time, so you need to be fully invested in it, and ready for the hours of hard work, stress, and headaches it will bring.Preparation is the key to success – so before you undertake a postgraduate degree,ensure that you are fully prepared.