Postgraduate queries

 

 

I’m 56, have a Masters degree in history and would love to do a PhD, either full-time or part-time. Do you know of any sources of funding for people of my age?

There are a variety of pots of money available for PhD students, but the competition is fierce, and you probably won’t know if you qualify for them until you’re well

down the track of applying for your PhD place. However, university admissions services and academic departments, are well tuned-in to the funding opportunities, so they will help you with your search.

The first category is subject related. The Arts & Humanities Research Council (ahrc.ac.uk) and the Economic and Social Research Council (esrc.ac.uk) both support postgraduate students in historyrelated areas, always administered through universities.

There are also scores of special interest organisations, societies and trusts that give smaller awards for research in their specific areas. You may also be able, partially, to pay your way at your chosen university by doing some teaching, or other assistance, within your academic department. Much of all of this depends on how highly the universities rate your previous academic track record, and value the potential of having you enrich the research pool within their faculties.

For more generic funding advice, it pays to have a look at the postgraduate funding section at prospects.ac.uk.

I’m interested in the science behind what we eat, and its link to public health. Are there are postgraduate avenues I could go down to learn more? I have a first degree in chemistry.

There are numerous postgraduate courses in the market which touch on this link, both in a developed and developing world context. And, in almost all cases, these courses

are rooted in science, so your chemistry degree will stand you in good stead. At this stage, though, you probably need to pare down your search to a specific area of interest. For example, are you interested in how food is manufactured and the role of the industry in improving public health? Is your interest, on the other hand, closer to the field of education, namely contributing to the process of persuading people to change their eating habits to benefit their own health? Do you see your working life spent mainly in a laboratory alongside other scientists, or out in the community transferring your knowledge to people not steeped in the science?  Answering these questions will help you start to narrow down a large field of potential courses.

I’ve just done a management degree and now want to set up my own business, but don’t know whether to do a Masters course first.

There’s no straight answer, I’m afraid. But here are some thoughts that might help you to make up your own mind. First, given that you obviously have the  entrepreneurial gene, you should probably restrict your search to Masters courses that have the potential to feed and fire that impulse. Many such courses have the word “entrepreneur” in their title or among the lists of modules to choose from. Then you’ll need to weigh up whether you think the time and money spent on such a course will pay off in the short to medium term when you start your own enterprise. On the other hand, does your business idea have a “seize the moment” feel to it? Is there a danger that, 12 months down the line, you’ll have missed the boat, and lost ground to competitors? In that case, you might put further study on hold. You can always go back to a course later in life, after all!

 

Send your queries to Steve McCormack at steve.mcc@virginmedia.com

News
Shoppers at Selfridges department store in central London
news

News
Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.
peopleFormer Newsnight presenter is being touted for a brand new role
News
Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
people
Voices
File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
voicesAnd nobody from Ukip said babies born to migrants should be classed as migrants, says Nigel Farage
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Avatar grossed $2.8bn at the box office after its release in 2009
filmJames Cameron is excited
Arts and Entertainment
Stik on the crane as he completed the mural
art
News
Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
people
Arts and Entertainment
Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
tvReview: It's gripping edge-of-the-seat drama, so a curveball can be forgiven at such a late stage
News
Brazilian football legend Pele pictured in 2011
peopleFans had feared the worst when it was announced the Brazil legand was in a 'special care' unit
News
i100(More than you think)
Sport
Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
News
The Magna Carta
archaeologyContemporary account of historic signing discovered
News
Phyllis Dorothy James on stage during a reading of her book 'Death Comes to Pemberley' last year
peopleJohn Walsh pays tribute to PD James, who died today
Sport
Benjamin Stambouli celebrates his goal for Tottenham last night
FOOTBALL
Life and Style
Dishing it out: the head chef in ‘Ratatouille’
food + drinkShould UK restaurants follow suit?
News
peopleExclusive: Maryum and Hana Ali share their stories of the family man behind the boxing gloves
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Student

Guru Careers: Clinical Sales Exec / Medical Sales Exec / Field Sales

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Clinical Sales Exec / Medica...

Guru Careers: Clinical Sales Exec / Medical Sales Exec / Field Sales

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Clinical Sales Exec / Medica...

Guru Careers: Clinical Sales Exec / Medical Sales Exec / Field Sales

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Clinical Sales Exec / Medica...

Guru Careers: Clinical Sales Exec / Medical Sales Exec / Field Sales

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are seeking a Clinical Sales Exec / Medica...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game