Does Going to Grad School Pay Off?
As you near the end of your time studying toward an undergraduate degree, it’s important to start thinking about the next stage of your life. An alternative to beginning a career is to continue your education by going to grad school. But is it worth the investment? That depends on what kind of work you want to pursue and your other goals. There are a few things to keep in mind when making this decision.
How Long You’ll Be in School
How long the program will last depends on whether you’ll be studying for a master’s degree, a PhD, or a professional doctorate. A master’s degree typically takes between one and two years, whereas a PhD or doctoral degree could take three to five years. Many students opt to do a master’s degree first, but it is possible to apply for some PhD and doctoral degree programs straight after a bachelor’s degree.
Your Reasons for Going to Grad School
There are many reasons why you may consider going to grad school. You may need a particular qualification for the career you want to pursue, you may want to stay in education for longer (particularly for the opportunity to study at another university, perhaps with a semester abroad), or it could be a personal goal you want to meet for the sense of achievement. If you have a compelling reason, attending grad school is definitely something to consider.
Can You Earn More with a Graduate Degree?
Students often decide to continue their education for the chance to receive higher pay. Even some jobs that don’t necessarily require a graduate degree may offer a higher salary to candidates who are better qualified. In some cases, the pay stays the same, but candidates who have graduate degrees are more likely to receive invitations to interviews. Finally, you may be able to avoid entry-level jobs and enter your field at a slightly higher position.
Would Grad School Be Worth It for You?
There’s no clear-cut answer as to whether grad school is worthwhile — you need to figure out whether it would be worth it for you. This means weighing the benefits (like job opportunities, the sense of achievement, and the experience) against the costs. We don’t just mean financial costs: there’s also the time commitment, stress, and need to balance studying with other commitments, such as a job.
When to Attend Grad School
Lastly, you need to decide when you’d like to go to grad school. Waiting a few years could mean you’re more financially stable and have some experience in your field. It will also mean you can take a well-deserved break from your education. However, attending immediately after you finish your bachelor’s degree could be useful for preventing a loss of momentum.
If you decide grad school is worth it, you’ll need to decide where you’d like to attend and find nearby housing. Since you won’t want to live on campus, you’ll need to search for off-campus student housing. Ottawa has 1Eleven — it’s ideal for undergraduate and graduate students alike. You can live in a shared suite with roommates or have your own bachelor apartment. Book a video tour to see the facilities before you sign a lease.