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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
bitesize Offline
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Can't decide on my career :/ (a bit long,sorry!!) - March 19th 2012, 03:46 PM

From the age of 11, I wanted to be a primary school teacher. I decided to do an arts degree before teacher training college and in my second year was randomly selected to do a minor in psychology (lots of applicants and most people don't get the chance,I prayed and wished for the place and was lucky.) Then halfway through my second year, bam, it hit me: I want to go into psychology. I just don't know what area exactly and it's going to take a lot more years of study and a lot more money.

But whenever I hear about being a teacher I feel wistful. I know I would make a great primary school teacher, and if I followed that path, everything would be a nicely decided straight line. I wouldn't have to worry about lots of different courses and raising money and trying to decided exactly what kind of job I want. Although one of the cons is that there's hardly any teaching jobs in this stupid country right now...

If I didn't go into psychology though, I'd always feel like I was giving something up...psychology feels like it's something that...matches with me, or something. But thinking about it overwhelms me. I'd need to find another 30 - 40 thousand euro somewhere to pay for postgrad courses, of which I'll need to do at least 2, and I really don't know exactly what kind of psychologist I'd like to be. Child psychology sounds fairly appealing, but it's so many more years of training and then what if I decide I don't like it after all??

I feel too old to be having these kind of worries: I'm 21, not 18. I'm graduating from this course (Italian with Psychology ~ and before you suggest it no,I want nothing to do with Italian) in a fe months but I have no idea where I'm going to go after that..............I'm just overwhelmed and I cannot pick one career, they both sound appealing. I've been putting off visiting the careers office in college for advice because I'm afraid they'll turn me away and make me come back when I've decided on ONE: Psychology or Teaching.

Oh and I'd love to be able to squeeze in a Drama&Theatre degree too......but I think that's just adding a whole lot more confusion....!!

Any advice??

Honey, you're familiar, like my mirror, years ago
I slithered here from Eden just to sit outside your door
Níl a shíltear mar a bhítear.
Things are not always what they seem.
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Dedalus Offline
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Re: Can't decide on my career :/ (a bit long,sorry!!) - March 19th 2012, 10:44 PM

Advice? Short answer, try and do psychology. Why? Because its available to you - and 2 postgraduate courses, I don't think that's necessary, because there is a chance you won't have to pay for them - and if you do the right MA then you could easily walk into a job and an MA is only one year - plus if you decide to do teaching then with an MA your wage goes up.

Have a look and see what scholarships are going for UCD - I don't think there are many. Trinity has several and their deadline is in April. Have a look at the UK and apply to universities there - some of the deadlines have passed for scholarships, but St. Andrews, Kent, and many others are still open and all have scholarships going for MA places. They'll likely have ones for psychology especially which will narrow the competition.

Many of these scholarships will cover fees and give you a grant to live on.

Whether you're thinking about it and might choose not to do psychology I strongly suggest you just start applying for these funded places anyway, because what have you got to lose? And if you got offered a place with one, well thats a year with a free degree and worth doing whatever career you go into.

Have a look at different university websites that are still accepting applications and see what different types of masters they offer. Generally speaking the type of MA doesn't really lessen your job opportunities and its very easy to swap between them once you get onto a masters programme.

If you think you could get about 16,000 euros to do a Masters, Edinburgh would accept you - their deadline has just passed for funding. But I can guarantee that you would be offered a place here, and out of the UK and Ireland humanities students from Edinburgh are the choice among schools to employ. Plus if you study here you can apply for teaching assistant positions at primary schools in the UK the following year which pays and gives you experience - which you can't do in Ireland.

In any case, I think you should just start applying - you can always reject the offers. Just apply to Edinburgh, apply to Kent, St. Andrews, Durham, Liverpool and any others you think you'd like to.

I think the opportunities are greater in the UK, plus there is far more employment opportunities for working part-time than there is in Dublin.

If you want to stay in Dublin, as I imagine you will even though I think you should consider elsewhere, Trinity are still accepting applications for funding, and both them and UCD will have fees of 6,000 euros for the year if you don't get funding which can be covered with the postgraduate student loan from the bank - so cost doesn't really close your options.

Plus, if you want to try out primary school teaching as a teaching assistant I'll send you a message with the primary schools in the UK which are employing teaching assistants - jobs you can apply for and get paid for without having a qualification. It'd be a year to try it out and get some money and then think about an MA or teaching qualification.
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