How To Decide to Pursue an Advanced Degree

If you're finding that your current career isn't all that it's cracked up to be and you're considering going back to school, don't rush to pull out your old college football gear just yet. Before you go back to university for an advanced degree, take some time to consider these things.

Step 1

Can I afford it? Obviously, university is expensive. And if you've already got a degree, then you're probably struggling with the idea of paying for another university education. Consider if you can afford to pay for schooling and go without income during that time. Make sure you have some way of supporting yourself before you decide to get an advanced degree.

Step 2

Will I make more money afterwards? Returning to school may give you an opportunity to work in a different career, but will it improve your current lifestyle? If you're considering going back to university to get an advanced degree, consider what you will gain. Sure, you'll have another degree under your belt, but will you make more money by doing so? Or, could you leave your current job and jump directly into a different job with another company and skip the whole university thing altogether? What is going to improve by getting an advanced degree that can't be improved any other way? Decide whether your advanced degree is going to make your life better by providing more money and more happiness to you.

Step 3

How will my family react? Going back to university to earn an advanced degree doesn't just impact you. It impacts your whole family. Think about how your family will react to the new you. No longer will you be available to act as coach, teacher, mentor, chef and doctor 24 hours a day to your children. You'll spend the majority of your time studying alone, away from your family. Decide if your family is strong enough to survive without your 100% contribution (and decide whether you want to sacrifice your time with them for an education).

Step 4

What if I change my mind? Perhaps one of the most important things you need to consider before going back to earn another degree is your contingency plan. That is, what happens if you change your mind a few weeks into the university program and decide that you want your old life back? Will your boss take you back? Or is your decision final? Be entirely sure that your decision to go back to school is the right one. Have no regrets because it may not only cost you the tuition money, but making the wrong decision may also cost you a steady paying job. Decide whether you're willing to take the risk and test the waters of university again.


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