“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.” - Pele
Further studies aren’t just for those looking for work. Those in work can choose to study to improve their opportunities in a given field or to learn new skills and change careers. Around 47% of Brits are unhappy with their careers so it’s hardly any surprise that so many people want to learn new skills to change careers or get ahead.
Whether you want to change careers, get a promotion, or find more rewarding work, here are some great reasons to go back to school.
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Boredom at Work
Going back to school and studying when you’ve been out of education for a while isn’t for everyone. You have to learn how to learn again, manage stress, fit into a classroom dynamic, and get along with those who may be much younger than you.
However, there are still many people who consider changing jobs and switching careers.
To break the routine that they’re sick of in their current career path.
A lot of people are bored at work and can’t see themselves spending the rest of their lives in the same job. If there aren’t any career opportunities, then you might start looking at other routes and options, including going back to school. Going back to school when you’ve been working for a while can breathe new life into your career or help you find your dream job.
Boredom can creep in at any time. Some people start feeling bored after just a few weeks at work whereas others can spend years in the same job before the boredom creeps in. There's nothing wrong with a midlife career change if you're no longer enjoying your life at work.
When you start to feel this, it might be time for a change either by continuing education, validating your skills, etc. These options are a great way to help you see your work in a new light.
There are plenty of courses for those to do. Whether it’s university studies or professional training, there are a lot of options. Similarly, if you find that your current job is getting in the way of your work-life balance, it might be time for a mid-career change.
If your career isn't doing anything for you, find a career that does. There's nothing wrong with starting a new career later in your working life.
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Lifelong Learning: Improving Your Skills
Boredom at work doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to change careers. While retraining is a way to change careers, studies can also further your current career. Lots of people choose to study more to improve skills for the field they’re working in.
You can change your career without changing careers. Those who go back to school as mature students can use their professional experience to help them learn new skills and vie for promotions.
Is it that effective and useful?
The answer is yes. However, some fields are disappearing while others are being created. If you're looking for job openings but don't have the necessary skills, you don't need to change your career goals if you can get the said skills and change jobs.
By gaining professional skills, it’ll be easier to access new jobs in the company you work in or work for other companies. This is particularly true in digital businesses. A lot of people have had to learn computer skills and improve their digital literacy to get ahead in certain fields.
This might also help you to create your own business. If you want to start your own business, you’ll need to learn how to manage it! Luckily for you, training’s not just for fields like science, tourism, IT, etc. There’s also training and studies for business management. While you might change roles at work, you’ll be able to use your experience to help you. There’s still hope!
Going back to school to gain new skills doesn’t mean you can’t improve your current career. It’s worthwhile looking for funding and finance options to help you improve your quality of life as a student and a professional. This isn’t always easy but it's great for your career development.
However, if you want to find a job or make a career change, it's much easier to find a job if you've got more useful skills.
Find out more about the cost of becoming a mature student.
Studying to Change Careers
Further study is most commonly undertaken by those who want to completely change careers. Once you’re working in a certain job, you might notice that you don’t enjoy it anymore. Additionally, there might be more job opportunities if you opt for a career change.
This could make you want to change your life after decades in the same job. Others may have a passion for something that they’ve never explored.
This can happen because when we’re younger, we’re often obliged, be it via social pressure, teachers, academic results, or our parents, to choose career paths that we don’t like. In these cases, it’ll always be bubbling under the surface.
Whether it’s becoming a florist after years of managing a business, a baker after a career in marketing, or a tour guide after being a lab tech, anything’s possible. A bit of career exploration could be just what the doctor ordered!
You need to think carefully about what you’re passionate about so that you can discover all the training and courses available. Focus on the different options available for mature students and the entry requirements for each course.
Of course, if you're a job seeker, going down a new career path might be the way to go if there aren't any career options in your chosen field. Maybe you've got a lot of transferable skills that you could put to use in a different career field.
A career transition might be necessary if employment opportunities in your field are starting to dwindle or you're working in a field that won't exist in a decade or so. Sometimes the job market can change and there's nothing you can do about it but change with it. Career changers are becoming more common, after all.
Whatever you decide to do, give yourself every chance to be successful in your new career. Don’t hesitate to talk to people in a similar situation to you and a career coach to appraise your skills and find out every option available to you.
If you're looking for a career change, transitioning from one career to another is much easier if you go back to school.
Find out more about being a mature student.
Going Back to School for Fun
In some cases, you might decide to study more for non-professional reasons. Some professionals choose to study just for fun.
Learning can be good for your self-confidence and enjoyable and if you're sick of looking for jobs in a certain field, it might be time to change things for good.
Is there a field that you’re interested in? So why not enrol in a university course without worrying about needing the degree?
If you go back to school, you’ll probably be one of the better students because you’re interested in the subject and have a passion for learning.
Some employers even encourage staff to undertake additional training and learning. You might be interested in learning sign language or a foreign language. Studying for fun is a great way to learn and discover new things and perhaps your new studies will be useful once you’ve finished them.
Of course, if you want to study for fun or learn new skills, you’ll need to find both the time and money. It can be difficult to study while also balancing work and family. In this case, you might want to consider distance learning. Distance learning allows you to learn at your own pace and work around your schedule.
In terms of money, some companies may even foot the bill. This will depend on who you work for, though. There may already be a job offer on the table for you once you finish your studies.
While changing career might be serious for some, if you never have any trouble finding a job, you might just want to go back to school for the fun of it. You mightn't be looking for one, but you may find a new career by trying something different.
Find Motivation at Work
Learning new skills is a great way to find motivation at work. A new professional qualification, lifelong learning, or distance learning is a great way to encourage you to take pride in your work. You’ll have the opportunity to use your new skills and knowledge at work and it’ll also help you see your work in a new light.
Going back to school just clicks with certain people. Once you start working, you can start to miss your time at school. However, when you return to school, you might find a new appreciation for your work. A lot of workers come back more motivated than ever before. Their studies are a break from work that gives them some time to breathe.
Nobody’s saying that you need to do a master’s degree or a doctorate, but what about doing a short training course?
Go for it!
If you need help, consider getting a private tutor for career advice, job interview techniques, job hunting, switching careers, etc. Career planning is much easier with a second opinion and there are plenty of talented career tutors on Superprof. Additionally, you might want to consider going to job fairs or career fairs to give you a better idea of what's available before you change careers and search for jobs.