Tips & Guidelines for Planning a Master’s Degree

Many students are back at the beginning of their undergraduate and bachelor studies, wondering how they can approach the planning of their Master’s degree program. The Master is shorter, but also more intensive than the Bachelor.

Since a master’s program can open many doors, many students are considering continuing their studies after completing their bachelor’s degree. But how can you effectively tackle the master’s program and what should you look for before it even starts?

The selection of the right master’s program

Choosing the right Master’s degree program can be very important to the success of your master’s program. The master’s program is one of the so-called consecutive degree programs. These are further degree courses that expand the basic knowledge from the first degree course.

Many are studying a direct continuation of their bachelor’s degree. It is worthwhile, however, to find out which other courses of study could also be considered. Especially the master sharpens your profile on the job market and can complement already acquired in the bachelor’s degree knowledge.

When choosing the right master’s program you should also include your current situation in the planning. Have you just completed your bachelor’s degree or did you already work after completing your bachelor’s degree? Anyone interested in studying for a master’s degree may also involve the employer in this decision. Maybe he is willing to pay for a specific degree if it benefits him directly or your employer can advise you.

Select the correct study location

Now that you’ve decided what you want to study, it’s time to pick the right college or study location. This step is also crucial for the success of your studies. After all, you want to feel good at the new study site. The feeling that your environment is tailor-made for you can certainly influence your academic success.

If you are looking for a good college for your masters degree, you should take a look at the university rankings. Every year, the best universities for master’s programs are listed here. The ranking offers a good starting point for a first orientation.

In addition to the rankings, you should also include other factors in your decision. For example, it makes sense to look closely at a university on the day of the open door, to visit the subject-specific counseling on site and to have the study content explained in detail and to ask the student initiative for the subject of your choice once, how the study conditions really are.

Mastering Restrictions for Master’s Degree

Also note that every university has different requirements for their masters degree programs. For example, there are universities with good master’s degree programs that do not require entrance examinations. This is not because of the quality of the study, but depends on how many places the university can provide for this study place. If there are few, they may be competitive and an NC and entrance exam will be needed. In degree programs that do not require many resources from the university, however, entrance examinations are rather uncommon.

Regardless of admission restrictions, some degree programs also have other limitations, such as certain languages, work experience, special bachelor’s degrees, or stays abroad.

The design and structure of your master’s program

You have found a degree course and a university? Congratulations! Now you have to organize and structure your studies.

Many universities distribute a module handbook. This gives you a good insight into the many modules and lessons from which you can choose. Especially at the beginning of your studies, we recommend you to take a look at various lectures. Look at the style of the lecturer and if you like the lecture content. The nice thing is that in a master’s program you sometimes have more creative freedom in terms of the structure of your studies than in the bachelor’s degree.

Should there be further assistance, such as Study guides, introductory events or special programs for newcomers at the university you should definitely use this and not adorn yourself. The tips you hear there are often worth the gold and should not be ignored.

Take every opportunity to get in contact with your fellow students. The sooner you are well connected, the better, because a semester goes by fast and you need a study group to prepare for the first exams. In addition, other fellow students may also have more experience at the college, and may be able to give you advice that you certainly do not want to do without. Even doctoral students who are already writing, revising or proofreading their dissertation are a good contact – just do not be shy.

Complete module successfully

Now you have selected lectures and you are very sure that you can successfully complete these modules. We advise you to learn regularly and to actually attend tutorials and exercises – even if others taunt them – because the absences can take a vicious revenge. You can strongly assume that the contents of the exercises will be queried in the exams. In addition, start early to go through probiotic examinations and familiarize yourself with the requirements of the exam.

Many students chose not to write exams when they felt that they did not learn enough or got scared. We strongly advise against pushing exams – especially if you have already learned. Pushing is the most common reason for overdrawing or even dropping out of college.

Keep in mind that by pushing a retreat, you will greatly increase the workload for the upcoming semester. What makes you think that you will be so much more capable in the next semester that you suddenly manage to do more than pretend? So there is a risk that the pushing triggers a chain reaction and brings you permanently out of step.

Should it happen that you have to write a term paper or seminar paper, then you should carry out the appropriate literature search in advance, hold meaningful presentations, which you can use as preliminary studies some and timely agree with your teacher a topic.

Also keep an eye on the planning of your master’s thesis. It is not easy to find the right supervisor for the master thesis, the right topic and the right time slot. You should start well half a year or earlier with all necessary planning steps, so that you can meet your own time requirements safely.