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What is a Masters degree – and why should I go to graduate school?

A masters degree is the next stage of academic study, after a bachelors degree. A masters builds upon the intellectual groundwork laid during an undergraduate course, increasing the skills and expertise of students in preparation for the next step in their career; be that a professional role or another postgraduate degree. As such, finding the right masters degree at the right graduate school is a career-defining decision. Some of the most popular masters degrees are geared towards those seeking to enter professional fields outside of academia. A Masters Degree in Law (LLM), for example, provides specialist training for lawyers, while the very popular Masters of Business Administration (MBA) is a highly respected qualification for the business leaders of tomorrow. There are many more Masters Degrees with the Master of Science (MSc) and Master of Arts (MA) being two of the most popular. But why should you do a masters and go to Graduate School? Here are a five reasons:

  • To qualify for a particular profession: Some professions – such as social work and nursing – explicitly require job candidates to hold an accredited postgraduate qualification. Gaining a masters in these fields is therefore a precondition for employment.
  • To get specialist training: Even if your chosen profession does not require a masters qualification, a relevant specialist masters – such as a Masters of Accounting (MAcc) or the LLM - can dramatically improve your career prospects.
  • To switch careers: These days, few of us remain in a single career for our entire lives. Although some masters do require a bachelor degree in that field, most do not. Therefore, a masters qualification can provide a means of transitioning from one professional field into another.
  • To train for a PhD: If you want to go on to do a PhD, completing a research-based masters – such as an MPhil or MRes – is an excellent idea. They provide much the same methodological training that first year PhD students receive, meaning that you effectively gain an extra year to write your thesis.
  • To boost your earnings and employability: The jobs market is intensely competitive; a masters degree can increase your chances of finding employment and increase your expected weekly salary – from $1,156 for a bachelors degree, to $1,380 for a masters degree, and $1,780 for a professional degree.

How to find the right Masters

You have a goal. A dream. An aspiration that is close to your heart. You might have decided upon it last week, or when you were still in primary school – but regardless of when you made the choice, you have set your sights on a specific career. Now you’re thinking about improving your employability and wage expectations by doing a postgraduate degree, but you’re unsure which one to choose. Many people have been in this situation and it is our job to help you. Depending on where you are with your journey you can start at different points: If you know what subject you would like to study click here and search for the perfect course. If you are unsure which degree to study one source you should definitely use is our study tips data base. We have analysed the career paths of more than 7.5 million professionals from around the world, all of which hold a degree from one of the world’s top 100 universities. Click here to get a fascinating snapshot of the global job market; a snapshot that can help guide you in deciding which subject to study for your chosen career. If you want to know more about how to apply for Graduate School, how to get into a top programme or how to pay for your degree, then check out our advice are, where you can find everything you want to know.

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