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Careers - Further Study PDF Print E-mail

Further Study

Before you decide on a further course of study you need to find out what the options are. There has never been such a range of short, undergradute and postgraduate courses many of which are available from IBAT College, but it is advisable to do plenty of research and choose carefully.

Enthusiasm and interest in a subject

Students who really enjoy studying and wish to continue the experience and develop the skills they have acquired during their primary degree often opt to continue further in the same discipline. This can be a worthwhile experience though it is worth ensuring that benefits justify the expense and time spent achieving the qualification.

Further study may entail:

  • A Diploma - This may be a course of several weeks or a year. It can strengthen your applications for a particular career by demonstrating your interest and some specialist knowledge in the area studied
  • A Bachelor's degree - This is a three or four year course which is the basic requirement for graduate jobs and post graduate study
  • A Higher Diploma - This is a postgraduate course and so a bachelor's degree is required. This course may be vocational training, such as a Higher Diploma in Education for teacher training or Higher Diploma in Sports Coaching. It is generally one or two years in duration. It can sometimes be converted to a Masters degree by further study
  • A Master's degree - A taught or research masters usually takes one or two years. A good bachelor's degree is usually required, a 1:1 or 2:1, sometimes a 2:2 is sufficient
  • A PhD – The highest academic award. Involves at least 3 years of original postgraduate research culminating in an approved dissertation. A 1:1 or 2:1 result in a bachelor’s degree is usually required.

Further Study Selection Process:

For most postgraduate courses the selection is based on academic performance of the applicant. However for some individuals, experience or professional qualifications may be considered.

For taught masters a student should have at least a second class honours degree and for a research masters a second class honours degree class one would be expected.

For vocational courses and professional training courses, relevant experience and a commitment to the work which the course trains you for can often be as important as the academic qualification.

Remember to assess all requirements for entry before applying to a course. It is also worth talking to students who have completed the postgraduate course which you are applying to and to talk to the course co-ordinator. The postgraduate admissions office of the relevant college should send you a prospectus of the course and an application form, and they may also be able to inform you of the selection procedure.

Postgraduate study

There are many good reasons to choose postgraduate study. A bad one is just because you can't think what else to do next or assume that it will automatically enhance your job prospects. If you do choose research you'll probably be, for a few years at least, relatively poor (financially!) compared with your peers who enter the world of work.

Postgraduate courses are a product for sale and it is worth shopping around. Don't be afraid to ask questions - you are the customer!. If at all possible, visit the institutions and talk to staff, students and recent graduates. It is worth your time to ask questions and you should consult an appropriate member of academic staff to ascertain what field of study would be best suited to your abilities and ambitions, and where this could be best pursued. The reputation of the institution and the degree is important in terms of whether this course will enhance your employment prospects.


  • Do not feel restricted by your undergraduate degree: you can explore different areas and develop new skills on a postgraduate course
  • Research all options fully before you make a definite choice
  • Don't forget the opportunities for courses and further study outside the college/university environment



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