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Is it worth getting a degree ?

Community Veteran
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Registered: 02-08-2007

Is it worth getting a degree ?

Most people who have had a degree for a number of years are likely to say it was well worth it but what advice would you give to someone these days who had got the necessary A levels and had been offered a place at university ?
Assuming of course the Degree they were going after was in a useful subject ?
45 REPLIES
Community Veteran
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

I would say go for it as an awful lot of the better jobs now demand a 2:1 degree as a minimum
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

A friend of my daughter has just achieved a degree in criminal psychology.
Jobs she has chased so far have stipulated at least 1 year practical experience Undecided
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johpal
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

I work in a profession "allied to medicine". Almost without exception, all such employment is now only open to candidates holding a degree. I have to say the aptitude of some recent graduates leaves much to be desired. Many people, who would otherwise make ideal candidates, are excluded by this high entry barrier. Don't be fooled that your average medic considers these graduates in any way equal either; some consultants regard themselves on a par with God.
Community Veteran
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

To the OP, does this person have a specific career in mind? If so, have they had an work experience in that career at all? Do they know somebody, or could they approach somebody locally to them already in that career and ask for advice. The person could also look up the careers section on the websites of likely companies they would wish to work for in the future and see what skills/qualifications they are looking for.
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

people have forgotten that education is to enrich the mind, not provide a gateway to a lucrative job·
the quality of graduates has been sinking for years as more and more 'fluffy' feel-good degree courses have been introduced.  generally, the people taking this sort of degree - sociology, history of art and the like, are as daft as the courses they took and boy! do they ever have a high opinion of themselves.
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

When the NHS introduced degree courses for student nurses it became clear that those properly trained by conventional methods (a mixture of one the job tuition and hospital-based study leading the SRN and SCM qualifications) would soon be sidelined by University products who could chat well but were not very interested in real patients. Experience in Canada of SRNs from UK who were much valued as opposed to the locals who were degree qualified but could not nurse. Tutor Sisters in UK were quick to express the view that a degree was the last thing wanted in the ward!
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

Very true but remember student nurses were often used as a spare pair of hands and wards were run on lines very similar to military discipline, no young person of todays generation would be willing to accept the type of training that took place in those days.
If you were not up to the job you would soon be out, no appeals or anything like that !
Perhaps the way forward is a pre training year in a hospital covering the same shifts as staff including night duty with the emphasis on feeding, cleaning incontinent patients and a range of other non glamorous tasks, this would soon get rid of the non suitable type !
Community Veteran
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

Yes there were difficult features of the old training but at least it turned out dammned good nurses in the main. Your suggestion of a preliminary period of "on-the-job" training before electing for a degree course or just packing it all in could well be a help. What is happening now is that youngsters are looking for jobs which do not demand the dedication needed to do it well, only the pay cheques for minimum application. You can only look at the publicised disasters in the NHS to see that the basic principles are being neglected these days. When Matrons and Ward Sisters knew their jobs backwards and had proper control over their own staff, the machinery of hospitals generally worked well. Out-sourcing of work to outside agencies whose object is to provided the cheapest staff who, because they were so poorly paid, had little or no enthusiasm for the work can never be the right path whatever the accountants say!
PS. I like your quotation, where did that come from?
Colin
alanb
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Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

Yes, as colintivy suggests, for certain jobs you will be sidelined if you do not have a degree. When an employer receives several thousand CVs for one job, they have to prune the pile down to a reasonable number for interviewing, so out go all those with spelling mistakes, coffee-cup stains, silly jokes; those where the applicant obviously has not understood the job requirements, and in some cases those without a degree if the employer wants it as a qualification for the job.
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

Quote from: colintivy
ose object is to provided the cheapest staff who, because they were so poorly paid, had little or no enthusiasm for the work can never be the right path whatever the accountants say!
PS. I like your quotation, where did that come from?
Colin

It came from A Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells (Book 7) The Western Fells by A Wainwright
VileReynard
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

There are two reasons for getting a degree:-

  • Because you have a deep interest in the subject.

  • Waste 3 years of your life, to avoid being eliminated arbitarily.


I prefer the first.

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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

Quote from: colintivy
Out-sourcing of work to outside agencies whose object is to provided the cheapest staff who, because they were so poorly paid, had little or no enthusiasm for the work can never be the right path whatever the accountants say!

Gotta be said Colin you're absolutely right. Although I've never done agency work I've been in jobs that try to pay you the absolute worst wage on earth and yes its very discouraging. They'll try to make you work your backside off and give you nothing but grief and terrible pay for the privilege.
On the other side of the fence I've also worked for employers that pay very good money (considering I'm not qualified at anything) and even then when you are enthusiastic and want to work hard you end up with some twat of a boss out the army who see's you as a threat and tries to run you into the ground. Moons ago people used to see enthusiasm and intelligence as a good thing. Now you're lucky if the boss doesn't see you as a threat to his job and tries to get rid of you. When I say this I speak from experience. In my last position I was the most experienced person they had, had the NVQ2 which even our team 'leader' (who could only shout not lead) didn't have and instead of making me feel valued they treated me like scum while praising up the useless lazy ones. There is only so much of it you can take before it starts to destroy you inside.
It's very hard for us young people now. What ever we try people are determined to keep us down and screw us out of every penny they think they can. Oh.. and we also feel the cold too.
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magnetism2772
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

there just isnt that many jobs to  go around
there is approximately 8 million adults including school leavers who have recently left school
looking for work 
most areas wouldnt mind if you had a degree or not, but some would not view  it  as a plus
and that you would be seen as  either  too qualified  or then that their job 
was  just being used as a stepping stone, well the boss would not  want such a person , he /she ideally wants a person
who would want  to stay
Also many  degree's  become antiques and employers look at them as outdated
such degrees would be electronics, aeronautics, mechanical, and loads of others
So unless I was deeply interested in a subject I (that is me ) would prefer a good job than a degree any day
its  better to have an enjoyable job and earn money , One must earn money while they can
there is loads of unemployed  people with a degree out there
Bruce47
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Re: Is it worth getting a degree ?

I'm currently in my final year of a biochemistry degree Shocked
The career area I'm applying for previously needed only an undergraduate degree and evidence of aptitude.  Now most employers are asking for a Master's or even a PhD in some cases.  Most also ask for several years "professional or research experience" on top.  Fortunately there is quite a bit of funding available for Master's and PhDs in this subject.
The demands on graduates is getting much tighter as more people are now educated to a much higher standard.