Postgrad study: Top 8 reasons to study a graduate certificate

Have you ever wondered why so many people are choosing to study a graduate certificate these days? There’s definitely been a surge in people looking to take on short, online courses recently – and I think we all know why. The pandemic has shown us just how quickly things can change. And it’s really important to be able to shift and adapt to the world around us. A graduate certificate can help you do that when it comes to your career.

Here are the top eight reasons why more people are choosing to study a graduate certificate than ever before.

1. You can take the next step in your career

A graduate certificate is a more specialised qualification than a bachelor’s degree. They are ideal for people already working in their field or who have qualifications in that particular area, but who really want to take their career to the next level with postgraduate study.

For example, Kathy Talbot has been a teacher for almost 20 years. She’s taught students from preschool through to Year 10 – and loved every minute of it. However, being in the education sector, Kathy saw an area of need. So she decided to upskill in order to answer it. It didn’t mean leaving behind any of the things that made her love being a teacher. It meant building on them to add another string to her bow – and another way to help students grow.

2. You can even change careers

When talking about studying a graduate certificate and changing careers… this is where the term reskilling comes in. Reskilling refers to learning a new set of skills in order to move into a completely new occupation. That could be because a changing workplace means that your role might become automated and you need to find a way to futureproof your career. Or it could be that you want to make a change to your life and pursue a new path.

A perfect example of reskilling to change your career? Charles Sturt student Yaw Kyei.

Yaw works in higher education. He recruits and trains student volunteers to assist with events on his campus. It’s a world away from cyber terrorism and the dark web. But that hasn’t stopped Yaw from pursuing a career change into cyber security.

“When I apply for jobs and say I’m doing a graduate certificate in cyber security, I find everybody perks up. They recognise the importance of cyber-related skills. It’s a really good resume booster. And it’s definitely enhanced my personal profile when I’m networking.”

3. You can start studying sooner

When you study a graduate certificate with Charles Sturt, you can begin your study journey when it suits you.

We have lots of session intakes throughout the year – so when you’re ready, we’re ready. Depending on your course, you could start in March, July or November. Some graduate certificates have even more start dates across the year, so make sure you check out your options.

4. You can expand your network

We’ve all heard the phrase: it’s not what you know, but who you know. Studying a graduate certificate can make both statements equally right!

When you take on a graduate certificate you’re definitely building on the ‘what you know’, but you’re also ticking off the ‘who you know’. Your course will be filled with like-minded people who have the same goals as you – to be the best they can in their chosen field. You’ll make professional connections that you’ll carry with you into the next phase of your career.

5. You can build on your skill set

Postgraduate study can help you take the leap from professional to expert. And who doesn’t want to be known as an expert in their field? Further study allows you to develop advanced skills that undergrad degrees may not provide, as well as the knowledge to tackle larger business issues.

Erin Hollier is part of our Careers and Skills Hub here at Charles Sturt. She has the insider tip on why studying a graduate certificate can make a big difference to your career.

“Put simply, you can always get better at what you do. Postgraduate study can take your career to the next level by helping you define and inform where you want to go. Building on your current skill set could be the edge you’re looking for to put you above other candidates. It can also help you to boost your skills in the day-to-day practice of your work.”

6. You can dip your toes into postgrad study without a full commitment

A graduate certificate gives you the opportunity to try postgrad study before you buy. And what’s not to love about that! You can dip your toes into the water without having to sign up for an entire degree. At the very least, you’re getting a postgraduate qualification, but you can also choose to keep building on the graduate certificate and potentially finish up with a graduate diploma or even a masters.

7. You can study 100% online

All of our graduate certificates can be studied completely online. Online study is the perfect way to fit study around your other commitments. We understand you need flexibility to study when and where suits you.

The best bit? We have comprehensive IT support, so you don’t have to worry about tech issues. And when you access IT support, your lecturer gets a message – so they’ll know you were trying to get that assessment in on time!

Keen to hear first-hand what it’s like to study a online degree? Find out here.

8. You can be finished in just six months!

To think that just six months of study could lead to a promotion, pay rise or a new job offer is crazy, right? But it’s reality. Most Charles Sturt graduate certificates can be completed in just six months.

Ready to start a graduate certificate with Charles Sturt University?

We’re ready to have you. Explore our range of graduate certificates – and really make your next move count.