There are many reasons to pursue postgraduate study, whether you’re looking for work, preparing to finish an undergraduate degree or already in the workforce. Postgraduate study options include everything from graduate certificates and diplomas to research masters and doctoral degrees. Below are some common reasons for pursuing a postgraduate program in Australia.
You want to take the next step in your career
Postgraduate study can help you advance up the career ladder — in fact, some positions are only open to those with certain postgraduate qualifications. Management specialisations are a common choice for those in this category. For example, you may choose to study a master of business administration (MBA) if you’re looking to move into a management role within your industry. See MBA and management education for more information.
You want to improve your job prospects
Some students choose to pursue postgraduate study as a way to increase the likelihood of getting a job in their desired field. Although it may not be an official requirement, the competitive nature of some fields can make it difficult to find work without a postgraduate qualification. As an added incentive, those with postgraduate qualifications can usually expect higher salaries than entrants with an undergraduate degree.
You want to explore a specialisation of interest
Postgraduate study offers students the opportunity to pursue a specific area of interest at a more in-depth level. This may mean completing a research masters or PhD on a topic of interest, or simply looking to build on knowledge and skills gained through prior study or in the workforce.
You want to change direction
For those looking for a change of direction in their career, postgraduate study is a great way to gain new skills and knowledge. For example, someone with a background in science may choose to gain a teaching qualification and become a science teacher. Others pursue postgraduate study as a way to change direction altogether, by moving to a completely different field. It’s important to keep in mind that some postgraduate courses may require a bachelor degree in a related field; however, some programs (known as ‘conversion courses’) are open to those without a background in the field.
You are still unsure of what you want to do
If you’re nearing the end of your undergraduate degree, but are still unsure of the path you want to pursue after university, postgraduate study may provide an opportunity to narrow down your area of interest. Completing further study provides the opportunity to try out new specialisations that weren’t really explored at undergraduate level, or pursue those that were in greater depth. It can also give you a more in-depth look at your chosen industry and where it is headed in the future.