Why you should get an advanced degree even if you’re not in the academe

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College graduation can mean a lot of things to different people; it can mark a student’s entry into the workforce rat race, or the beginning of a quest for higher learning and knowledge. It’s not uncommon for college students to feel at a loss as to what to do next after graduation; this is why most graduates take some time off to travel or think, before they go into their next venture – whether it be scouring the job market, or applying for graduate school.

There are various reasons people go into graduate school; some do it because they’re not sure what their next move is, but they have to keep moving, while some enroll under graduate programs with the aim of getting higher salaries when the time comes for them to enter the globally competitive job market. Here are more of the common reasons a lot of people pursue an advanced degree.

An MA or PhD further hones your research skills

Research is a fundamental aspect of study regardless of which industry you belong to. In college, you were probably taught all the theories that you need to arm yourself with when conducting research. There were, however, not many opportunities for you to apply the “book knowledge” you gained.

In graduate school, you will be able to further enhance your research skills by providing opportunities for you to apply your theoretical knowledge. A lot of graduate schools employ the experiential learning method, which combines classroom lectures and a significant amount of field work. Through experiential learning, students are taught how to respond and deal with real-world situations in their respective fields.

A graduate degree adds depth and breadth to the knowledge you gained in college

A lot of college graduates sometimes feel like their knowledge is much too broad and needs focus for them to zero in on the specific field they wish to excel in. Graduate school can provide you with this focus and specialization. Unlike college, graduate school programs don’t require its students to sit through “general education” classes. Grad school students are allowed to choose their classes and tailor their curriculum according to their needs.

An advanced degree provides more employment opportunities and options

Having an advanced degree in your resume can also open up myriad employment opportunities for you; opportunities that would’ve been inaccessible if you didn’t have that MA or PhD. There are employers who favor applicants who invested in educating themselves over applicants whose resumes boast of relevant work experience. This may be true especially in specialized work industries like computer and technology, psychology, and even in the academe.

With all these benefits of having an advanced degree, you will have to prepare certain documents such as your records in college and letters of recommendations from your former professors. You will also have to study for the Graduate Record Examination or other standardized tests, as these are also required. One requirement that many people take for granted is the graduate admission essay. Often, the quality of the graduate admission essay spells the difference between getting accepted or not into your chosen graduate school. A well-written graduate admission essay creates a significant impact especially if you have less-than-stellar grades in college.

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