Benefits of postgraduate study

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Ask any group of postgraduate students about their reasons for taking a Masters degree and the chances are you’ll get a number of responses. Among the most common are:

  • improving my employability
  • changing career
  • career progression
  • becoming an expert
  • taking on an intellectual and personal challenge
  • studying for enjoyment.

Improving my employability

There’s little doubt that postgraduate study can help you to enhance your CV, develop your knowledge and skills, and stand out in an increasingly competitive job market. A Masters degree demonstrates that you have dedication, commitment and a passion for your subject.

Some courses offer industry experience, giving you the chance to network with experts and employers and make valuable connections. Here at Anglia Ruskin, you’ll also have the chance to take optional entrepreneurship and language modules.

Changing career

If you’ve been working for a number of years and want to change direction, postgraduate study could help you take the first steps towards a new and rewarding career. There’s a range of ways to study, including part-time and distance learning, and a number of qualifications – as well as Masters degrees, you’ll find MBAs, Professional Doctorates and continuing professional development (CPD) courses on offer.

Career progression

For some careers, postgraduate qualifications or training are a requirement. In other sectors they’re not necessarily a prerequisite, but increasing your skill set can pay dividends. The higher-level skills and knowledge you’ll gain are sought after by employers, and can be a springboard into more senior or specialist roles. You might find that your employer is able to fund your course.

No matter which subject you choose to study, you’ll be gaining an important range of transferable skills. From an employer’s point of view, an aptitude for critical thinking, project management, time management, problem solving, research, and data analysis can be invaluable.

Becoming an expert

Postgraduate study gives you the opportunity to learn from experts – and ultimately to become an expert in your own right if you choose to progress to doctoral study.

Research* consistently shows that experts are made, not born. Those who are leaders in their field have studied hard – and, crucially, studied with devoted teachers. We know that the development of real expertise takes time, effort and commitment. Our own experts – 720 leading academics – will be on hand to guide you through your postgraduate career.

Taking on an intellectual and personal challenge

One of the greatest benefits of postgraduate study can be your own, personal development. Taking time to absorb yourself in a subject you love and further your expertise can be hugely rewarding.

Most of our postgraduate programmes involve a dissertation or research project: a stimulating intellectual challenge that, once completed, is testament to your knowledge and understanding, and your ability to think critically.

Studying for enjoyment

If you’re passionate about your subject, having the time and opportunity to explore it in depth can be immensely fulfilling.

Just ask Kelvin, who recently graduated from our MSc Marketing degree:

The really great things are the genuine enjoyment that comes from working with others who bring different cultural experiences and skills to the group. Also, for someone who loves their subject like I do, to have access to extensive research tools and study resources that help you to improve your understanding is an absolute joy.

Funding for postgraduate studies

Funding is an important consideration for most postgraduate students. The good news is that, since September 2016, the UK Government has offered a postgraduate loan (PGL) of up to £10,000 for new Masters students.

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries for postgraduate students, and there is also funding available from charities, trusts and foundations, as well as public bodies such as the NHS.

You can read more about funding options for postgraduate students in our finance section.

Work-life balance

Flexibility is one of the great benefits of postgraduate study: part-time courses, 24-hour libraries and virtual learning all make it easier to fit study into your life. Find out more on our work-life balance page.


*Research compiled in Anders Ericsson, K. et al, eds. 2006. The Cambridge Handbook of Expertise and Expert Performance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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