Top Up Masters - Is it realistic?


| 66 Posts

Chartered Member

7 Jan, 2013 13:55

Hi All

I am really interested in starting my top up Masters qualification.  I completed my CIPD diploma back in 1997 and I am now a stand alone HR Manager in a small charity.  I feel that gaining my Masters would be really beneficial for me from a strategic point of view as well as enabling me to gain a qualification I never thought I could!

 My only hesitation is the commitment required for the dissertation, I have two children and work full time in a part time job and am not naturally academic!  Am I being realistic to achieve this?  It sounds ideal as is only one year and the tuition commitment is achievable with work but the dissertation side scares me silly!

Would be really interested to hear from anyone who has completed this in a similar situation and how they found their experience?

Many thanks


  • Rebecca

    | 10 Posts

    Chartered Member

    7 Jan, 2013 15:03

    Hi Donna

    I finished my Masters top-up Dissertation last year (handed in in Sept - phew!) - it was hard work but not as bad as I thought - the first few months weren't as onorous as they could have been, it's just getting the time to pull together ideas and the research aspect. The last few months were quite tough, the tutor meetings helped as he set me a goal for the next meeting - i.e. finish metholology chapter, e-mail me 3 reccomendations etc  and without that structure I would have found it difficult to plan the time.

     I was in a different situation in that I don't have any children but do work full time in a demanding job - my husband was brilliant - he basically took on all the housework and sorted the dog on weekends so I could get my head down. I also found it tough to work on an evening with getting in from work, dinner etc so did to the majority of work either in lunch hours of weekends.

     To take it on I'd consider the time commitments for the last few months especially, discuss help at home for the period and if the kids can go on holiday to grandparents for a weekend etc to give you chance to work. Also speak to work about if they would be willing to give you any study days to help with the final write up. If it's a work based issue you can also do the research during work time which may cut down on the impact.

     Sorry I can't be more enlightening, good luck whatever you decide!


  • Helen

    | 243 Posts


    7 Jan, 2013 15:11


    I did my MSc top up last year - also work part-time and am Mummy to two small people!  It was hard work, but not as bad as I'd thought.  I was able to do it on an evening and I had support from my husband at weekends, where Sunday morning was my reading / writing time and he took them out!! 

    Good luck


  • Donna

    | 66 Posts

    Chartered Member

    7 Jan, 2013 20:53

    Thanks Rebecca and Helen for your advice.  Its good to know that it is manageable  if planned correctly.

     I think I will go for it, budget willing.  If I can remain focussed and organised, the only thing I need get my head around is pitching it at the right academic level!

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