5 Things I've Learned On My Master's Degree (So Far)

10 Mar 2018

Something that I talk about quite often on here, particularly in my gratitude lists, is university and the fact that I'm a Master's student. That being said, I don't think I've ever done a post dedicated to the topic, which seems a bit silly, doesn't it? Considering that I'm halfway through my course, I figured it was a good time to write a post about things that I've learned whilst studying for my Master's degree. 6 months has absolutely flown by and before I know it, I'll be completely finished! But let's not get too ahead of ourselves, so here are 5 things that I've learned so far.

  1. Lecturers see you as an adult - this sounds a bit silly, but it's so freaking true. Lecturers see all students as adults because that's what they are, but there's something different about being a Master's student. You're often left completely to your own devices - for example, our final year project/dissertation hadn't been explained to us whatsoever, but we were told that we should be able to figure out what we were meant to do on our own. Thankfully, we've had a session now that has clarified absolutely everything about it, but how on earth could we possibly have figured it out by ourselves? Everyone needs to make a bit of a jump in maturity to function as a Master's student, I think.
  2. The library will become your second home - even though I did an English degree, I feel like I was barely ever in the library. As a Master's student, it's like I'm there almost every other day. Don't get me wrong, I love being in the library and it's the best place to do work because there's no distractions (particularly in the postgrad room, which is like a beige cupboard), but I had no idea that I'd be there so often! In fact, it's turned into somewhat of a mate date location, and I'll often go there to work with a course mate or two and then get lunch. Clearly they're working well, considering my first point!
  3. I'm smarter than I thought I was - I didn't want to include anything too personal in this, but this was something that I just couldn't leave out. I don't know if my bachelor's degree was just the wrong one for me, but I kind of just accepted that 2:1 marks were the best I was going to get. I got a First for my final year essay (I think it was 72) and I was beside myself with joy. But every single mark I've had back on my Master's, apart from one, has been a First, with three of them being in the 80-85 zone. Of course, I still get stupidly happy and do a little dance when I get marks like this back, but it just makes me feel so pleased that I chose to do Multimedia Journalism as a Master's. It shows that I'm better at it than I thought I'd be and it's something I could do in the future.
  4. You won't get on with everyone, no matter how hard you try - there are always going to be people that you just don't click with for some reason or another, and that's ok! For me, I really struggle to get along with immature people, so if I'm put into a group with someone like that or if we have to have a class discussion, I find it so difficult to get on board with them. It's something that goes without saying, but it's something that has really been apparent to me since I started my Master's/
  5. If you want to get your money's worth, you have to work for it - it's no secret that doing a Master's degree is scary expensive (it's even scarier when you realise that you also have 4 years of undergrad fees to pay back), and sometimes, it feels as though you aren't really getting what you're paying for. This is something that can be changed though, so if you aren't getting the grades you think you deserve, you need to push yourself to work harder (Master's marking is much harder than undergrad and no one can crack the whip except you), or you aren't satisfied with lectures or seminars, take it up with the lecturer or course rep. If you want change it has to come from yourself!

So those are just 5 things that I've learned whilst doing my Master's degree for the past 6 months. I'm certain that there are plenty more things to share with you guys, but I think I'll save them all for an end-of-Master's post in September.

Whould you like to comment?

  1. I've got a Bachelor's in English too and doing a Masters was always something I considered but it seems to be something you have to put 100% into. I hardly went to the library for the whole three years of my degree so the idea of going there every day is quite foreign to me haha


  2. I found similar things with doing my Masters too! It's such a different approach than to undergrad, and it goes so quickly too! Hope it all goes well lovely! :)

    Maeve x

  3. I’m also doing a masters degree at Goldsmiths, and I can totally relate. As a masters it is completely different to being an undergrad student. You are left to your own devices; I find myself in the library quite a lot too. Whereas during undergrad I rarely went to the library.

    Freda x


  4. I've just finished my English degree and going on to do a media and Journalism masters!! I'm so excited to start. I only discovered the Library in the last couple of months of my undergraduate and have thought what have I been doing the last three years