Many high-achieving students elect to undertake a research degree because they have the drive to progress as far as they can in their chosen field.
They find the continued challenge and enjoyment of independent research are rewards in themselves. There are also major benefits for career development. Graduates from Graduate Research programs are highly employable across all fields of study. Check the statistics for your field of interest on the Gradlink Website.
In some fields, it is almost mandatory to have a Master's or PhD in order to progress. Similarly, in order to make a career in academia a graduate research qualification is necessary. Graduates experience a high rate of success in employment because the generic or transferable skills required for success in their research degree are the same skills that are in high demand by employers.
Gaining a research degree indicates to a prospective employer that you have excellent project and personal management skills, shows you can think independently and critically, solve problems and communicate effectively. Transferable skills developed through a research degree are usually more durable, and therefore more valuable, than the content knowledge gained.
However, the decision to enter into a research degree should not be taken lightly. You should investigate all that graduate research involves before making a decision and should prepare carefully before starting. This is important whether you are progressing from Honours or are a graduate from another university.
You must be prepared to give high priority to your research work. Those with other major demands on their time, such as work or family, are advised to carefully consider these factors. Students with competing demands on their time may choose to opt for part-time candidacy or to delay their application until a more suitable time.
To successfully undertake research higher degree study, you must have an aptitude for research - for intellectual enquiry and rigour.
If you enjoy the challenge of striving for and achieving difficult goals, are disciplined in work habits yet creative in approaches to problem solving, and, most important of all, genuinely believe in the value of research training, the experience will be one of the most rewarding life has to offer.