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But I’ve already got a degree: the value of postgraduate education

Friday, February 13, 2015 - 09:18

By Hamish Williams

We all remember the excitement of turning in that last assignment, walking out of the exam room with half an hour to spare, knowing you just absolutely crushed every question. The results came in while you enjoyed a summer holiday and discussed with your friends and family where you’d like to be in your career in five years.

So now it’s five years later and that corner office is evading you despite the amazing marks you got for that last assignment and exam. You divide your time between watching your colleagues earn promotions and endlessly scrolling through job advertisements in a higher salary bracket. Is it something you’re doing wrong? What have you missed?

Maybe you aren’t completely embroiled in an existential career crisis but simply looking for the key to open that next door. Postgraduate education has always been there but is it for you? It was a worthwhile decision for your friend the archaeologist as she embarked on her career as an academic but you’ve always seen your industry as more of a practical, experience-based job market.

The truth is, there are merits for and against postgraduate education. Obviously it is a huge investment in time and money but it is also a sure-fire way to differentiate yourself in a crowded job market. With seismic shifts underway in the tertiary education sector there are now more options than ever for choosing a postgraduate course - but which one is right for you?

Some of the factors to consider when choosing a postgraduate program include:

  • Recognition of prior learning - For those that haven’t completed an undergrad, consider whether your experience will meet the entry requirements.
  • Alignment with your expertise - using a postgraduate degree to completely change industries can be risky but solidifying your existing skill set with greater knowledge increases your employability.
  • Compliment your current role - If the degree will have significant benefits for your organisation, your employer may offer to pay some or all of the fees while training costs can be tax deductible.

The Australian Institute of Management believes that those already in employment will get greater value from postgraduate education when they can immediately apply it to the workplace.

The AIM MBA program encourages students to draw on real scenarios and find practical solutions to the business challenges they’re facing.

The benefit of studying this way is that students can demonstrate immense value to their employers well before graduation. It’s also more satisfying knowing that what you are learning has real practical application.

If you've been considering taking on the exciting challenge of an MBA, the AIM MBA will allow you the chance to formally certify your management and leadership skills and get the qualification you need to help you progress through your career.

For more information please visit www.aim.com.au/business-school