HOP | Adult Learners Week
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Adult Learners Week

As part of Adult Learners Week we have interviewed our Outreach Coordinator Craig and our Marketing and PR Coordinator Rachel about their experience as an adult learner.

Craig Outreach Coordinator.

  • What Masters are you currently or have done? Masters in Education, Inclusion and Special Needs.
  • Why did you decide to go back and study a masters? My reasoning was threefold;
  • Just wanted to re-engage my brain into education and self worth.
  • Progression of career in education.
  • Having never attended University I wanted the academic experience (part time).
  • What were you most worried about going back to study? Time! The biggest single concern was time. I have many other hobbies and interests that I needed the Masters to fit around. I didn’t want to give up any of those so working it required serious time management!
  • How did you find the transition going back to study? Huge shift change – left school at 16 – never went to college or Uni. Wanted to prove to myself almost I was capable. Had to get CPD on essay writing, how to research etc. The basics. The Uni were ace, lecturers super helpful. Its been a very positive experience.
  • What would you say to someone thinking about retraining or returning to education as an adult learner? It is a big decision, I think there are optimum times when it is possible. Sometimes life throws curveballs or opportunities, take the chance. The positive experience and course participation is a life changing experience. I believe that life experience (I have plenty) is really helpful. The critical thinking, ability to be patient and understanding when learning is pivotal – that comes with age in my opinion. That said, the chance to learn alongside young people straight out of undergrad degrees helps both sides immensely. All ages, cultures, backgrounds, international students etc, makes the course far more worthwhile than just the qualification.
Craig smiling

Rachel Marketing and PR coordinator.

  1. What Masters are you currently or have done? MSc in Advertising and Marketing.
  2. Why did you decide to go back and study a masters? I had already got a degree in theatre and drama and was making theatre/ performing for around 5 years. I really enjoyed promoting and marketing shows and ended up really wanting to go into that field. Although I had learnt a lot on the job I really wanted to go back and fine tune my skills though Higher Education.
  3. What were you most worried about going back to study? I was worried about potential age between myself and other people on the course. I was also worried about my ability to write academically after 6 years out of education. Time was also a worry too, making sure I could still work and continue to make theatre in my spare time.
  4. How did you find the transition going back to study? I found the change refreshing! My worries of the age gap were gone on my fist day as there were a mix of ages on the masters. I also found that because I was older and had a better understanding of how I uniquely learn and because of that I was getting better grades then I did in my undergrad. I was surprised to see how much free time I did have. I managed to work still and perform on the side.
  5. What would you say to someone thinking about retraining or returning to education as an adult learner? I think I would say find someone to talk to about it like a careers advisor and go to open days because it’s a big decision and it can feel unrealistic with worries of finance, fitting in, learning to learn again but there are people available to show you that YOU CAN DO IT and will make it work for whatever circumstance you have. For me it was the best thing I ever did, not just for my career but as a person. It really showed me how many skills I already have and how I could use them in an academic sense. I also met other people on the course from all over the world and got so many different insights which I wouldn’t have got anywhere else.
Rach sitting at desk

We also recently interviewed some adult learners talking everything from, why they went back in to HE, how they are finding their course, barriers they felt, financial implications, remote learning, accommodation and if they feel their course is value for money.

If you would like any advice feel free to speak to our careers advisors Sanna and Amy. No question is a silly question.

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