Taking up postgraduate study is another option you have. Below is some information for you to consider, so that your final decision turns out to be the right one for you.student

On this page:

1. Advantages of postgraduate study
2. Disadvantages of postgraduate study
3. Writing a personal statement
4. Double-loyalty scheme for KBS students
5. Studying for an MBA
6. Resources for taught postgraduate study and funding (at Kent, UK and abroad)
7. Thinking about a PhD?

1. Advantages of postgraduate study

Most master’s courses tend to last for the duration of 1 year. These are generally specialised and are often accredited by a relevant professional body. At KBS, for example, the MSc in Human Resource Management is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). Accreditation is not only a mark of high quality, but it can also provide some exemptions from professional exams as you progress through your career.

Whether you study at the University of Kent (see below for the double-loyalty scheme) or elsewhere, a postgraduate qualification can provide you with some advantages:

  • opportunity to study a topic you find really interesting in more depth
  • acquisition of deeper knowledge and expertise in your chosen field
  • able to compete well for jobs, as you have acquired added value and you can demonstrate commitment and a high level of motivation to a future employer
  • developing extensive research and project management skills
  • you can apply for many internships advertised for penultimate year students, if you’re a final year student applying for a postgraduate course (if you still need to get some relevant work experience)
  • you can enjoy student life for another year (but a master’s is demanding and requires good time management and organisation skills, as much of the work includes independent self-directed study)
  • the master’s is a prerequisite for many PhDs, if you wish to continue with research

postgraduate masters students x4

2. Disadvantages of postgraduate study

1) Cost can be a consideration, as master’s courses do not come cheap. There is much variation, so do check carefully. Current Kent students qualify for a reduction.

2) A typical master’s takes 1 year full-time and 2 years part-time. For most business roles, a master’s is not a requirement. However, some employers who have an entry level requirement of 2:1 for the first degree tend to accept a 2:2, if this is upgraded by a master’s.

3) There are no graduate schemes for master’s students, so you would be competing with final year students for graduate schemes. Importantly, the master’s will not replace the employers’ requirement for work experience, such as a placement or an internship. However, you would have additional deeper knowledge to offer in your specialism.

4) As there is no central body for applications, you would need to research each master’s carefully at each university’s website for comparison and content. Different universities have different entry requirements for master’s, so one personal statement may not serve all applications.

3. Writing a personal statement

Every university uses their own system, and there is no equivalent to UCAS for postgraduate applications (other than some specialisms like teaching, for example). Universities also have their own deadlines for applications, so start by finding out what you have to do to apply. It is likely that you will be asked to write a personal statement to support your application.

Many universities will let you know what they expect you to write about, but if you have no guidance provided, then consider the following structure. Overall, the statement is similar to a covering letter and typically is for one A4 page.

1) Start with your current study, your modules and projects, especially anything that links to the topic you wish to study at postgraduate level.

2) Next write about why you wish to study this topic. What are your long-term career aspirations? How does the proposed master’s fit in with this? Show your commitment and how the master’s presents a clear stepping stone towards your career aim. You will need to persuade the reader that you are well motivated to undertake independent work and complete your study at this higher level.

3) Next, write about your work experience and skills that you have acquired that are relevant to your career aim. Mention your extra-curricular activities and any achievements and interests.

4) Include a paragraph about why you wish to study at that institution especially.

5) Lastly, you could provide a short summary at the end, to re-affirm that you would be committed to studying for the higher degree and that you have the motivation to succeed.

There is more information and tips on the CES website – click here for help with applications for postgraduate studies.

4. Double loyalty scheme for KBS graduates

As a KBS student, you might be interested in the Double Loyalty Scheme:

The University of Kent will provide a £1,000 Graduate School scholarship (reduction in tuition fees) for those students who continue directly into Postgraduate studies at the University from their Undergraduate studies at Kent.

http://www.kent.ac.uk/finance-student/fees/loyaltydiscount.html

Students proceeding into Kent Business School, will receive a further £1,000 reduction in their tuition fees.

http://www.kent.ac.uk/kbs/pg-taught/pg-scholarships.html?tab=double-loyalty

5. Studying for an MBA

It is unlikely that you will be accepted onto a good quality MBA programme in the UK straight after your final year. The reason for this is that most MBA programmes build on professional experience and would be looking for substantial practical experience in management in an applicant. Typically, you would need at least 3 years’ experience. This is also the case at KBS, which has Association of MBAs accreditation. Many MBA students in the UK receive full or part-sponsorship from their employer.

6. Where to find taught postgraduate courses & funding

Graduate School website

– At the University of Kent

  • Postgraduate courses at KBS – for information about postgraduate taught programme click here.
  • KBS funding opportunities (including scholarships); see also information about the double-loyalty scheme for KBS students above
  • The Kent Graduate School at the university of Kent enhances the quality of the postgraduate student experience across all campuses. Their aim is to ensure that the academic and social interests of postgraduate students, both taught and research, are provided for, which includes provision of high-quality facilities, organisation of social events, conferences and more. Click here for information for prospective postgraduate students at Kent.
  • The Careers and Employability Service has extensive information about postgraduate study and whether this might be for you.

– In the UK and abroad

UCAS postgraduate

 

This UCAS site acts as a portal and you can apply directly to universities via the listings. However, it only lists some postgraduate courses, but not all. Kent is not advertising there, so you may find similar universities also not advertising there.

Click here to access the UCAS postgraduate portal.

 

  • British Government’s resources for postgraduate funding – includes information about allowances, bursaries, government grants and bursaries.
  • FindAMasters.com is database of taught and research masters courses in the UK and abroad. There is also information about postgraduate open days, advice about funding, types of masters programmes and many FAQs about studying for a master’s. Help also provided about applying for a master’s.
  • Graduate Prospects have a dedicated section about postgraduate study, what to consider, selecting an institution and how to apply. Includes study abroad and funding details.
    Click here for the pages about studying in other countries.
  • Target Postgraduate Courses, a dedicated site for anyone with an interest in postgraduate study.
  • The Open University could be an alternative, if you wish to work and study for a postgraduate qualification alongside. All courses are provided by distance learning, giving you the flexibility to study when you have time.
  • Study in the USA: FULBRIGHT SCHOLARSHIPS 2015-16: FOR UK CITIZENS TO STUDY IN THE USA The only organisation that offers scholarships for academic work in any subject at any accredited US university. Awards ‘offer scholars the opportunity to have a transformative cultural and academic experience and provide unparalleled support both during and after their Fulbright year’. They also offer subject-specific awards in partnership with prestigious UK and US institutions in a wide range of fields, including public affairs and finance. For more information visit the Fulbright Awards page at website (www.fulbright.org.uk). Deadlines for applications tend to be 1 November!

7. Thinking about a PhD?

PhD Kent group

  • Getting a PhD (what is a PhD? types of PhD? how to get a PhD and fees)
  • Information for the PhD programme (postgraduate research at KBS)
  • FindAPhd.com (A database of PhD programmes, research projects and studentships available in the UK, Europe and further afield. There is a forum, information and advice about types of PhD, funding, writing research proposals and more.)