I am trying to look for a master taught degree course but unfortunately most of the courses require a minimum of a lower second class. I received my result with a 49.5% in total (0.5% away from a lower-second class) any chance that they will consider me? do I ask them separately by email? or what are the possibility that I will receive an offer?
You might have an outside chance but funding is extremely unlikely. 3rd class is not looked on with much merit these days.
There are a few possibilities, but none might be what you want to hear.
1) Look for some sort of employment for starters and put the Masters idea on ice for now. Resit your exams next year as an external candidate next year if possible, but bear in mind your resit mark will be restricted to a maximum of 50%. This might edge you up to 2(ii) again depending upon University regulations.
2) Resit your last year if possible, however, you will again probably be restricted to a maximum of 50% for the last year. As for option 1, this might nudge you up to 2(ii).
3) Apply to do a post-grad diploma instead. If your marks are good enough part way through, you might be upgraded to masters. However, again your 3rd class degree will probably count against you. A few years works experience may help you with this option as it might with a masters application.
Funding will be next to impossible to obtain no matter what you apply to do and a career development loan may be your only option. Depending on your country, a standard student loan might be possible.
I've watched what is considered acceptable change over the years with more people going to University and more people being available with higher grades as a consequence. Where a 3rd a long time ago might have been okay to obtain a basic job or an unfunded masters way back, a 3rd is no longer acceptable. Similarly, 2(ii) might have been okay in some cases but now a 2(i) is needed (or a 2(i), a 1st).
I do wonder if the 3rd class category should be done away with now, as it doesn't do much for the employability or consideration of the person obtaining it wanting to do other things.
Sorry I couldn't be more help.
First, I would have to disagree with Ian's last point which basically means the OP would be in a worse off position of not having a degree despite being 0.5% away from passing in the world where 50% correctness is 'done away with'. That's just not helpful.
I do, however, agree that options are much more limited, especially if you want to embark on the higher education route.
To me, there are two practical options:
1. As suggested in point 3) above, a PG diploma or cert (see link). These are sometimes seen as conversion-type courses (at least in Ireland, and I'm pretty sure in the UK too) so the entry requirements sometimes only require a Bachelors degree. This requirement varies between subjects and universities, naturally.
2. Work your way up in the industry you want to pursue. People drop out of university and manage to find jobs at the lowest level in a hierarchical company and work their way up. Work experience counts for so much more than a degree these days.
If you are willing to put in the work, you can work your way up. But you need to work. If you didn't work hard enough to earn good grades, then work hard to gain work experience.
(link removed by admin, sorry!)
It totally depends on what your degree is in, why you want the Masters and what your career goal is. If you want the MA to get on the a PhD it would be very, very unlikely (not 100% impossible) but very remote chance of gaining a PhD place with a 3rd class degree unless your MA is a Distinction alongside considerable relevant work or research experience. You could consider vocational Post grad quals which are as respected in employment as an MA and then don't put your degree grade on your CV, employers usually never ask your degree class anyway. Or....consider the Open University, it is well respected these days. My first degree is an OU degree and I started my MA there before transfering in the second year to a brick uni. These are the option with the OU
1) Apply to an OU Masters course straight off as they don't usually ask fo your degree grades just prof you have a degree.
2)If you want to get on a PhD I would stongly suggest APEL your current degree into an OU degree rather than re-sits. This is because they point score your previous degree as credit rather than a grade so whatever grades you get with the OU is your new grade. There will be a min number of courese you have to take with them and Max APEL credit you can carry over (plus you might have to check that there is no content overlap) but if you are confident you are much better than the 3rd class you can if you work hard enough get any grade you work for, even a first. Although you are basically re-taking a year I personally think that's a better option than re-sit with the 50% rule where you might only scrape a 2.2.
Hope that makes sense.
Apology accepted admin ;) (for removing my link, though I don't really understand why, it was just a link to the prospects page with information PGDip and PGCerts, as opposed to advertising for such positions. Anyway, OP should be able find it with these key words now :P)
The information 'wowzers' gives on the Open University is certainly interesting and an option I've never thought about. If you can seriously up your grade via the OU whilst working in a relevant occupation, this is definitely a way forward. Good thinking 'wowsers'!!!
However, 3rd class is a hard place to start from and my suggestion to resit as an external to gain a 2(ii) might still be considered if time does not permit the OU study route. But if the OU route is a possibility then I'd consider it. I'll have a rummage on the OU website when I have time.
'Contradirony', I wasn't trying to be unhelpful. However, what value does a 3rd class honours degree give to a person if serious rectification work is now needed to put that person back on course? You can leave the degree classification off when applying for a job, but what if an employer asks for a copy of the certificate as proof of qualification at a later date? That makes the candidate look dishonest.
Whilst I've not been asked for the level of my degree in interview, I certainly have been asked for the certificate as proof of having the degree later in the interview and assessment process.
Replying to myself :) Looks like they have changed the rules since my time. Shucks. I could have got a higher degree grade!
The way things are nowadays it's darned near impossible to find something with a third class degree. Heck, I have a first class degree and even I faced a real battle to secure funding for my PhD last year.
I don't mean to denigrate you in any way but were there any exceptional circumstances that led to you getting a third class mark? Maybe there's a possibility you could ask for those circumstances to be taken into account?
As for not disclosing your degree classification, I've always been asked for proof of mine and even if its a rare occurrence, it's never wise to run the risk of being found out later down the line.
As a qualified careers advisor this is the usual advice I give to get a better chance at securing job interviews. Everyone is right, never be dishonest but for the point of job applications if they don't ask for a specific grade just put the degree title on your CV. If applications ask for a grade declare it. If the employer asks for your degree certificates(they don't always ask either!) you will have to provide them, but, most jobs in the private sector (unless you are going for an internship etc) aren't that fussed about the class.
My OU first degree took 6 years part time whilst working. I got a 2:1 Overall (about 2% off a first, grrr), 6 yrs is a long time to keep up the grades!! Downside to OU, mixing study and work and the grade barriers are higher 70% + for a 2:1 and 85%+ for a first. Be aware here that the OU say they have a different marking system and that their tutors are used to this BUT this is not strictly true. Many OU tutors work at brick unis and can't get their head around the OU mark system so it can (although not officially) be more difficult to get high grades wih the OU. I fell foul of this, was getting pass and merit scores at the OU, transferred to brick uni and got distinctions for all aspects. If you haven't the money or the time def think about the other advice to re-sit as an external and think if there are any exceptional circumstances you can declare during the re-sit (it's too late now for your curent degree if it's already been awarded)I hope that's been useful. :-)
The OP has received some good advice here and I'm sure he / she will make an informed, adult decision based on that and other advice. My general remark was not meant to hinder.
Have you been awarded your degree? If not, might there be extenuating circumstances by which you could appeal to the exam board (health, family problems, etc.). 'Wowzers' does give some generally good advice.
I didn't mean to be demeaning to your circumstances. The point I was trying to make is with still increased numbers of people going to University, it is harder for people with lower grades to compete as you've probably discovered. I do feel for you at this difficult time.
I understand what you are saying. As regards placing your grade on a CV, then I would agree leaving the grade off may help the OP. At interview stage, you're right in that a potential employer is more interested in your experience than your degree and having the degree a tickbox the potential employer is able to check off if holding a degree is necessary or advantageous to the job. So do what will get you the interview and just say you have an honours degree in whatever subject you have done on your CV.
My own experience is, however, on reaching final interview stage or being offered the job (and in many cases, first interview), I AM asked for my degree certificate (batchelors and above). At this stage, if the employer doesn't care about the grade then fair enough but this will not be the case everytime. Only for one job (which I did for five years) was I not asked for my certificates.
That said, this forum is also read by countries outside the UK and Europe and we do have North American posters. They live in an employment market where human resources can be more throrough and proof of qualifications berequired. Our North American posters may have a different viewpoint on this issue. The OP has not said where they are from.
I have just been offered a taught Masters place with only having a 3rd class degree from 15yrs ago. However, I have had very relevant work experience in-between. I would say that I was told I shouldn't bother applying by several admissions depts (including the one I'm now going to) in the past. They didn't even ask me in for an interview this time, got an unconditional offer.
I do wonder if getting hold of your fees is becoming more important in these difficult times, but that's just a guess. It's clearly worth applying anyway!
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