Is an Honours Degree necessary to get a job?


BA Honours Degree

It’s a question that many university students have started to ask us more frequently. We can’t always say that the answer to that one is, “yes.” This is because not all industries have the same requirements in order to find employment. However, we can say that we’ve seen the effects of increased competition within the job market. This has meant that many candidates are now returning to study qualifications like a BA Honours Degree in order to set themselves apart.

By no means are we saying that you won’t get a job if you don’t have an Honours. Instead, we’re saying that in today’s world, a postgraduate qualification could be the deciding factor for recruiters.

Whether it’s a BA Honours degree as a postgrad to your Bachelor of Arts or an Honours to complement your Accounting degree, here’s why you should consider one.

It’s less about getting ahead of the pack and more about keeping up…

Times have changed and people are more concerned about their futures than they used to be. This has driven an increased awareness of education and its importance. Now, students are returning to the books so that they can stay in the running for the jobs they really want. Last year, the world-renowned London Zoo placed a job vacancy ad for an unpaid intern. What’s wrong with that? Well, nothing. Except that they required the intern to have a Master’s Degree. Yikes!

Your possibilities without a postgrad

Again, there’s no reason why you can’t get your dream job with a Bachelor’s Degree alone. Many people will tell you stories of how they were hired without one. They’ll also add that work experience and personality also helped them get that vacancy. Whilst this is true, can you afford to risk not studying further? Studying an Honours after your Bachelor of Arts won’t guarantee you a job but then again, not studying one wont either. It all depends on you and where you see yourself ten years from now. We just happen to be of the belief that you can never be too qualified. This is especially true when applying for jobs that have minimum qualification requirements. You might very well be the best person for the job but if you don’t have the qualification level they’re looking for, you’ll find your CV out of the pile.

It depends on your industry

Whilst we did touch on this briefly above, the industry you choose will help determine whether you do or don’t need an Honours Degree. For teaching in particular, many schools will only consider educators with postgraduate qualifications. The same can be said for the science and accounting fields. Should you find yourself in an industry that might not require an Honours, we’d still urge you to reconsider. An additional qualification will help you better understand your working world and where you fit into it.

You could earn more

Studies have confirmed that a postgraduate degree impacts your ability to earn more money. Over time, the combination of qualification, work experience and skills can lead to more prosperous earning potential. This is most definitely a drawcard for those considering an Honours.

Your characteristics matter, too

Before you think that your qualifications are all that prospective employers are looking at, think again. Your personality traits and ability to demonstrate key skills are also under the microscope. As always, the best candidates are the ones who are qualified, have the right attitude and show the most potential. Although, how will you give recruiters a chance to see your personality if you never get passed the first stage of the CV screening process?

Studying further says a lot about you

This is something that few candidates realise. By pursuing an Honours Degree, you’re sending the message that you’re ambitious, driven and passionate about what you do. You’ll also be showing that you value education and aren’t afraid to put time into learning new things. It also highlights that you invest effort in things that pay off long term, the same way you would with your career.

A higher level of knowledge = higher understanding

Few things can beat a higher understanding of your working world. It’s something that helps you perform well, get ahead and make a lasting impression. Whilst you don’t need an Honours Degree to get this kind of knowledge (you could read up on it or take short learning programmes), you should choose these sources of knowledge wisely. To put it plainly, your chosen sources of knowledge shape your world and you’d hate to shape your world with ineffective tools. It’s why we always suggest studying respected and accredited programmes that provide the right blend of industry-relevant knowledge. It’s also a way to ensure that you don’t reach the end of a programme, only to have recruiters say that it isn’t recognised by their corporation.

How far do you want to go?

This is a question that we ask all of our students at The IIE Varsity College. For many, the answer is “as far as possible”. As a result, we’ve seen more and more students boldly take the Honours plunge in the name of a brighter future. Small sacrifices add up to incredible results and we commend those who decide to study further. Some of our candidates are already in their chosen field, so they study part-time to get the best of both worlds. This proves that there are really no excuses when you’ve got big dreams and the determination to make them a reality.

If you’ve got a question you’d like to ask us, please click here for more enquiries. At The IIE Varsity College, our team of Student Advisors are always ready and waiting to help you make decisions that shape your future.

Think you’d like to add an Honours Degree to your CV? We’ve got more than one way to help you do just that. For more on IIE postgraduate programmes that are helping our students go further faster, please click here.

Varsity College is an educational brand of The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE).