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fallenonion
Saturday, 7 June 2014 at 9:28am
Thursday, 16 March 2017 at 11:11am
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Thread: Finding Masters easier than Undergrad?

posted
16-Mar-17, 11:10
edited about 19 seconds later
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posted about 1 week ago
I found the same. Got a 2.1 in my undergrad, but a distinction masters. I found the latter much easier, and much more engaging. Some people just seem to be better suited to it. At the end of the day, and undergrad degree is very broad, it's about narrowing down your area of expertise. Once you're doing a masters, you've picked - hopefully! - the one are that interests you above all others and have the chance to show off your knowledge and expertise over a greater number of words.

Thread: Need advice on PhD concentration

posted
08-Mar-17, 21:09
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posted about 2 weeks ago
Hi. If you are interested in a career with special needs learners, I would have though a PGCE with SEN specialism would be better than a PhD. There are quite a few around. I know some people who do it as a job and they love it, but it's very tough, hard work.

Thread: Thinking whether to take a scholarship to do masters in UK or not.

posted
05-Mar-17, 21:58
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posted about 2 weeks ago
I suppose the thing to ask yourself is, how would you feel if you took the masters then couldn't get a your old job or a related job straight away at the end of it? Although you will probably know better than anyone what employment prospects are like in your field and country. Would your employer hold your job open for you?

If I were you, I'd look to see if you could do a masters part time while working. That way you get the best of both worlds. I had a similar dilemma a few years back and went the part time route. The benefit of it is you can apply your masters to actual issues in your job, which might be of more benefit to your employer. The other thing is, whilst any scholarship at all is fantastic, there will be some costs to pay plus living expenses, obviously. Why pay out when you could earn and learn?

Unless of course money is no object, in which case, I'd say go for it, have fun!

Thread: Do family understand

posted
05-Mar-17, 21:29
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posted about 3 weeks ago
Yep, I'm a similar age to you. Did undergrad degree over ten years ago and I think my family always assumed (wished!) I'd stop there and that would be the end of it. They complained loudly when I took a study year abroad. Then despaired again when I left a secure but dull public sector marketing job after two years to do my first post grad. Scratched their heads when I was back at uni again a few years later doing a research masters (part time, while working full time) Now confounded further as I'm about to embark on a professional doctorate. (Currently I work in FE, but work with my local uni in the education department and long term, that's where I want to be). I think it's tough, and sometimes it effects my self-belief knowing that my family ultimately think I'm pursuing something that's 'not for the likes of me' (which is their attitude - very working class). But I've learned to live with it (getting a distinction and recommendation for,doctoral study from my Masters supervisor helped). And knowing my CV is getting better and better now and it's just a final (massive) hurdle to achieve my goal. Some people just don't get it, or see the appeal, I guess.

Thread: Social Media education - advice sought

posted
25-Feb-17, 20:35
edited about 25 seconds later
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posted about 1 month ago
No worries!

Thread: Social Media education - advice sought

posted
25-Feb-17, 20:04
edited about 24 seconds later
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posted about 1 month ago
As I remember, Kemmis is the guru on action research, I think I referred to him a lot. Worth looking up, I think he has a website that was useful. Published? Sadly not. I didn't try to, mostly because I got part-funding from my employer to do it, and whilst the research was helpful to my particular college the findings weren't exactly earth shattering or useful anywhere else I'd have thouhgt.

Thread: Social Media education - advice sought

posted
25-Feb-17, 17:50
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posted about 1 month ago
Hi

My Masters was in this area. If you have access to learners to test it on, action research is the methodology I used with a mixture of surveys and semi-structured interviews for evaluation. I also used web analytics to generate other data. Does that help?

Thread: Graduating in 3 months and I don't know anything about finance; how did you all learn?

posted
24-Feb-17, 09:32
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posted about 1 month ago
My advice? Don't bother! Certainly not loans or credit cards. Mortgage? Only if one hundred per cent sure you've found somewhere you want to be for life. Budgeting - everything costs twice what you think it will!

Thread: Master of Arts – A waste of time? Please help.

posted
18-Feb-17, 23:31
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posted about 1 month ago
Hi. I have a perspective on this.

Years ago now, I worked in marketing / PR with a plain old BA in English. I got in through a little bit of voluntary work, and turning a temp job into something permanent. I found that people without a specific marketing degree often did a professional qualificatiion - Chartered Instititue of Marketing, CAM foundation, CIPR etc. Because my role was public sector, and lots of dealing with the press / stakes holder communications, my employer paid for me to do the CiPR qualification. but you already have a PR degree, I'd say that should do. It just ticks a box. Marketing is such a fast moving field, with digital and mobile etc (when I did it, twitter wasn't even a thing...) you'd be better making an effort to stay abreast of stuff like that in your spare time than any course. Find a local charity, do some pro bono work setting up a blog or social media campaign, something like that.

A masters is a lot to spend in both time and money and honestly, employers are often not that wowed by them, especially non-vocational ones and would rather have experience. I wouldn't imagine that dong one would automatically make someone a better writer in the way you're hoping for. I did become a better writer doing mine, but only a better academic writer and honestly, that means very little in marketing. Customers tend to like the snappier end of the spectrum! Remember marketing is very results orientated. Someone with no qualifications but who gets results will get a job over someone with all the qualifications but no results.

I hope that helps. I'll qualify all this by saying I left marketing a long time ago for something totally different - didn't float my boat in the end, but that's just me, many people love it - but I think it all still stands!

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
18-Oct-16, 21:02
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posted about 5 months ago
Well yes, that I can understand, that perhaps the day job might effect the research quality. certainly something to consider.

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
16-Oct-16, 20:00
edited about 18 seconds later
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posted about 5 months ago
Yes, it's purely that I'm railing against. I think ultimately, people should be able to fund a PhD however they want. Bursary, work, a mix of both...mum and dad...whatever means necessary... All that should matter is the quality of the research. Heck, I'd probably, like, sell crack or my booty if it got me where I want....(only joking!...just).

That's interesting what you say about external conference grants and the like. I have heard that also. In fact, I've read of one case where someone got close to ESRC levels of funding by accessing various different pots. I did this to a small extent when I did my Master's. I was working full time, but wrote off to a charity specialising in my area - they sent me a cheque for 500 quid, no questions asked. I could have managed fine without it, but on my CV now I can put that I was funded (a bit cheeky, but you've got to what you can). Mind you, I've also heard it said in some cases the amount of form filling and hoops to jump through for tiny amounts can be a distraction in itself. I guess it depends on each individual one.

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
16-Oct-16, 17:51
edited about 4 seconds later
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posted about 5 months ago
I fully appreciate that. I was in the same situation in that my grant for doing a PGCE made me better off that working when I did that. Perhaps I have been overly polemical. I think my broader point has been lost, somewhere - that self-funding shouldn't automatically be seen as a red flag to hiring committees when it depends entirely on the person.

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
16-Oct-16, 16:49
Avatar for fallenonion
posted about 5 months ago
As I've said before, didn't intend for this to turn into a slanging match, I'm just saying things as I see it and speaking from my experience. My point was simply that a funded PhD would see me, personally, out of pocket compared to doing it part-time and I don't see why, should I choose to do the latter, that should count against me long term. But lets's do some maths anyway. Maximum bursary is 14, 15k, that about 1200 a month. Average UK rent these days - about 800? Now I know EXACTLY what it's like to live on that as my first graduate job paid that fourteen years ago after tax pension and the Great Student Loan Robbery. Then my NQT salary was about the same again when I started with that ten years ago and there's no way I would go back to that. If others can, then fair play to them but personally I smell something fishy because even taking home more than double that, I have a two bed flat, bus everywhere, buy clothes second hand, shop in Aldi. Half term in a week so me and my partner are treating ourselves to a hostel in the Dales for one night. Come summer, we might manage a week in a cottage in Wales. That's if I can get some free time from my second job as a team leader for a national charity, taking kids out on expeditions. Or is that my forth job, after examining, and associate lecturing? Do anything I can to make ends meet basically. Why? Because my partners wage is only a little over what a PhD bursary would be and she struggles at times just with keeping her ten-year old car on the road. If I was on that too, we'd be up a creek and no mistake. So don't think it adds up, all this 'holier than thou'.

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
16-Oct-16, 09:29
Avatar for fallenonion
posted about 5 months ago
Well I didn't think my comments (which at the end of the day are valid, as are anyone's) would be met with such hostility. I expected of course some 'holier than thou'-ing of course, and I got it. And inevitably the old 'chip on your shoulder' - a well worn and all pervasive social construct designed to render working class grit taboo and promote deference to our 'betters'. Fear not, I will get out my sack cloth and ash this morning, say ten Hail Marys to Teresa May and whip myself until I bleed, lest I get above my station again and ready myself to go down t' pit where I belong. Ever so sorry to have troubled all you learned sirs with my ill breeding, ever so humble your honor.

Thread: Self-Funded PhDs. Good or Bad?

posted
15-Oct-16, 22:57
edited about 4 seconds later
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posted about 5 months ago
Hi pd1598. Well, my point to the OP is that, personally, I think it depends on circumstance. A blanket view that no funding means don't do it, I think is too sweeping. I have heard of self funded candidates getting jobs, so it has to happen to someone. I was trying to help, sorry if it wasn't clear. I'm assuming that the OP has some form of income, as I,doubt they expected yo live on air for years.

I'm sorry also if you think I'm ranting. My point is, there are (or should be) different routes for everyone. Not everyone peaks at undergrad, and knows at the age of 21 or 22 that academia is what they want to do. Some people, like me, felt it wasn't an option, went off and did other things, then came back to it later. Once you've got a mortgage and stuff, it's difficult to get by on a bursary. But If you've worked, and saved and are prepared to make the sacrifices necessary, why shouldn't that be rewarded? It makes no sense to me.
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