Further study can take many different forms, depending on the industry you are wishing to enter. Funding for different study routes varies significantly and should be taken into consideration when making your decision.
These are industry-specific qualifications, that are often a requirement to work within a particular sector. Some professional qualifications must be gained before entry into an occupation, while others can be completed alongside employment.
Examples of professional qualifications typically taken before entry:
- Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE)
- Legal Practice Course (LPC)
- Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy)
Examples of professional qualifications typically taken alongside employment:
- Association of Chartered Accountants (ACA)
- Association of Chartered and Certified Accountants (ACCA)
- Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA)
These are typically vocational programmes of study that can be completed full-time over one year or part-time over a longer period of time. They can be a useful route into industry, help in a change of direction, and enhance your overall career prospects.
Masters degrees and PhDs
These types of qualification, commonly known as higher degrees, can be studied full-time, part-time or via distance learning. Often a higher degree will build on previous qualifications; most require a minimum of a 2:1 at undergraduate degree level.
Higher degrees can both enhance career prospects and form a natural route into a career in academia.
Continuing professional development (CPD)
Once you have entered your chosen occupation, you will often be expected to attend courses and read literature that keeps your knowledge current and your skills up-to-date. In certain professions, including medicine and accountancy, this is a mandatory requirement of the professional body.