Leaving MSc with PGDip


I'm thinking of leaving my masters degree. I have currently done enough to earn a PGDip.

It has been a bad experience. I have been working on it all year and the isolation (in addition to) the workload has left me feeling absolutely miserable. I have the dissertation left to do which is 10,000 words. I have a deadline of May 2019.

I feel like I cannot stomach another day working on this course and I want a job. I have no desire to work in the (nuclear) industry and I'm 30 now, so really need to focus on getting work. I would like a family one day. I feel like I am going nowhere. My supervisor also doesn't know how to use the software program, so I have no idea what I am doing. I can write the literature review and scientific basics, but when it comes to actually simulating the problem at hand I have no idea.

My motivations to do this course were silly. I was unemployed and they offered a scholarship and bursary due to my first class bachelors in physics. I would have to return the bursary back if I quit, although I have not spent it.

I already had depression before starting the course and it's made things worse. I told my parents last week that it had made me suicidal, which they were obviously shocked to hear. I am one of those people who likes to focus when studying, so I'm not sure if I am able to juggle getting a job whilst finishing this thing off. It is playing on my mind.

I just don't know what to do. I could push through for the few months and (try) to self-teach, but it's all playing on my mind and I'm not sure the stress is worth it considering I have no desire to work in the industry. I was very motivated when doing my undergraduate degree, but I had my year group to talk to. I'm alone on this masters.


Dear m83,

Please first of all I am so sorry to hear about what you have been through! You are not alone there are many students face the similar like you exactly and me one of them. So, please try to stand these few months and dont waste all what you have did.

Wish you happiness and having family as soon as possible


If you are having suicidal thoughts you need to see a doctor today. Nothing else comes close to this in terms of importance.


Hi. You have already posted with another account the situation "Should I quit my masters degree?". Do you need an honest answer or a validation of your desire to quit? It is nonsense. Is 30 years the age of retire or what? Do you have a guarantee you won't be hit by unemployment at the age of 40 or 50? Move on. finish your MSc and look for a job.
Good luck


Quote From eng77:
Hi. You have already posted with another account the situation "Should I quit my masters degree?". Do you need an honest answer or a validation of your desire to quit? It is nonsense. Is 30 years the age of retire or what? Do you have a guarantee you won't be hit by unemployment at the age of 40 or 50? Move on. finish your MSc and look for a job.
Good luck

Hi m83,

I felt compelled to respond to your query after reading eng77 reply. First of all, eng77; people are entitled to re-post a question if they want, you don't have to respond if you don't like it.

Secondly people are entitled to create a new account for whatever reason they want; it could be due to anonymity concerns, or just wanting fresh perspective, or any private reason they like. I feel cyber-stalking someone and drawing attention to their disparate activities on the forum is a gross invasion of their privacy and it is bullying and cyber-stalking.

Overall I personally felt upset reading your reply because it came across very cold and as a shockingly insensitive reply to someone who had expressed feelings of depression and thoughts of suicide. Maybe you were just in a hurry and tone can come across different than intended. But the impression I got from your reply seemed like you were being dismissive and condescending to someone who asked for advice and support to a very common and reasonable problem .

Anyway, m83, I guess my advice to you, is please don't take eng77 comments to heart. I will post in next reply, my thoughts on your predicament.


Hi again m83,

First of all, really sorry to hear you are feeling so depressed. If it helps, and this helps me, this is common in postgraduate degree's especially when you realize the course isn't for you and you have to go on anyway.

anyway just so you know, right now, out in the world there are at least a 100, if not 100's of students feeling similarly about their course choice and life prospects. In general, feeling disappointment , regret, depression or like a failure are as much a part of life (even a good life) as feeling happy, successful and content. someone famous said that (in better words) but its a thought that give me comfort, when I am my lowest.

So you really do need to talk to someone or seek some help if you feeling suicidal. I personally have found the headspace meditation app, really helped me get out of depression hole. there is a free version and a version with more features which costs 14 euro a month. I feel the pay version is brilliant and if you don't find it useful you can cancel at any time. Its a mediation app, so with mediation, it can take a while to feel good effects or even any effects. it is like an adult learning how to swim; the first time or few times, might be very uncomfortable, you might swallow a lot of water, feel sick or think your going to drown and never get the hang of it. But once you get past that phase it becomes really enjoyable and helpful.

I think from you post it seemed like isolation from people you like and who care about you is a contributory factor, so it would be a really good idea if you could try and spend time with some of those people.

contd in next post


as for your specific dilemma,
I think the rational answer is, submit you pg dip requirements (if not already done) and then you have over 6 months to learn a new skill and write 10,000 words. Seems like you could do this without to much pressure, given the time you have available. And given your 1.1. physics degree seems like you should be well able.

BUT it is all very well for something to be rational choice, but you could still feel very strongly, ''i have had enough, I just cant go on with it, I just don't want to go with it'' And you know, that's valid too. You said you are not going to work in the area of your masters, so in grand scheme of your life, it may not make much of a difference.

I do think, however, if you are thinking of quitting, I would firstly submit all requirements for the pgdip, and request a leave of absence for 2 - 3 months.
In that time; take a break, spend time with family and friends, go on a holiday, read some good books on depression, maybe see if you find a counselor who can help you with depression. And then after the 2-3 months are up, you will be a better position to make the decision. you can decide at that point whether to complete.

It does seem like, learning a new skill, even independently and writing a 10,000 thesis could be done in 5 months while still taking weekends off to spend with family and friends and taking care of yourself. You could just look at it, as a sucky job, but thankfully your not stuck in it forever, it's just a means to an end, and a temporary one at that.

so even if you think cant get leave of absence, you could submit the pgdip requirements and take a month off for a breather.

Hope this helps. come back and post how you are getting on. don't let the cyber stalkers put you off!!


I am sorry for being somehow cold and rude. But again. My opinion is to continue. I think I am also entitled to write my opinion either way the readers like it or not.


Dear m83, really I understand how he/she suffers as I am in the same situation! Sometimes these platform is the only way to relieve from ourselves! I will keep hoping you all the best and luck, but please don't ever think of committing suicide! Nothing too late, please keep hope! Continue your masters and I am sure the life is going to be rosy again.

My sincere to you and consider any time to release from your chest, and will you find us helpful! Don't give up, you will be triumphant by the end!


I wish there a service for helping students, it seems that m83 isnot at his/her homecountry and he/she seems suffers and need an actual support rather than just commenting! Please m83 update us about your situation, we would really like help you and any student at foreign who need a spiritual support.