How to apply for a Masters Programme in the UK
Applying for a Masters is a demanding process that can’t be dashed off in an afternoon. Whether you’re a British-based student or living overseas, extending your education in the hope that it will enhance your career prospects and improve your earning potential is a big decision. Here are our tips.
Do your research
Unlike undergraduate courses which are catered for by one single UCAS application, most Masters degrees require you to contact each university or department directly. There is far less hand-holding at this level. You’ll be expected to research the courses yourself and some, such as Master of Philosophy (MPhil) or Master of Research (MRes) may want to see a research proposal. However, there are shortcuts, such as a UCAS Postgraduate application, which allows you to apply to a number of courses at once. We can help you navigate the masters’ minefield.
Don’t leave it too late
Many courses operate on a first come first served basis so you have to apply well in advance – six months to a year before the autumn start date and earlier if you’re applying from overseas. If you’re knee deep in your university finals, it can be difficult to find the time to apply, but delay and you might find your chosen course is full as some recruit on a rolling basis. Our specialist advisors are on hand to help you at each step and ensure you don’t miss a deadline.
Realise a Masters is different from a degree
You may have cruised through the education system always knowing your next move and you’re now happy in your chosen university. But postgraduate courses tend to be smaller, more specialised, unique to a particular department and shaped by the academics in charge. This means finding the course that suits you can be a needle-in-a-haystack exercise. A university consultant has in-depth knowledge of courses, departments and lecturers and can help find you the perfect match.
Write a brilliant personal statement
You’ve done this once before when you applied for university but at that stage you probably had teachers on hand to help. One statement also suited every application whereas for Masters level, most need to be unique and tailored to the course or even department of your choice. Statements should be at least 500 words long although some courses will want twice as much, and it has to make you stand out from the other candidates. Easy, right? Our UCAS advisors have a lot of experience writing statements and know what admission tutors want to hear and, more importantly, what they don’t.
Secure your funding
Winning a place on the Masters is no good if you can’t support yourself for an extra year or two. Arranging your finances in advance, whether that’s loans, grants, scholarships, bursaries or competitions is necessary if you want to continue studying. It’s a complex system and not every opportunity is advertised widely. Fortunately, we know exactly where to look.
Prepare to be treated differently if you’re from overseas
Irrespective of your education, background and results in your home country, international students may have to jump through some hoops before embarking on a Masters application UK. Some need to complete a Pre-Masters programme, to help with written English and academic and research skills. These range from 10 weeks to 12 months so you need to consider this well in advice. Then there are the practical matters to consider from visas to scholarships, accommodation to financial support. We have years of experience working with students from all round the world so turn to us for help.
William Clarence Education offers unbiased advice on UK School and University Placement, Oxbridge Admissions, US College Applications, UCAS application and extensive support for parents and students in all aspects of preparing for entry to the UK.
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