Getting Your Master’s Degree While Working Full Time

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Advice and Tips for Getting a Master's Degree While Working Full Time

When you’re working full time and still want to continue your education, pursuing a master's degree online is a popular option to explore. However, for those who are juggling work shifts and their studies, strong time management skills can be the difference between success and failure. Here are just a few of the ways Ashford University makes it easier to pursue a master’s degree while working full time, as well as some tips for reaching that goal.

You can take each six-week class one at a time

When you are pursuing a master's degree while working full time, it may often feel overwhelming with a lot of different priorities to manage. Fortunately, when you study online at Ashford University, you can take one class at a time. Breaking down your goals into six-week increments helps you to balance your time more efficiently, and because all assignments are provided at the beginning of the course, you can more readily plan ahead and adjust your schedule accordingly. This flexibility allows you to make time for your other commitments as well, and set yourself up for success as you pursue your degree. 

The faculty is accessible and responsive to your needs

An understanding faculty that is available to work with you within your time constraints is another key to successfully getting your master's degree while working full time. If you have a packed schedule, you can easily communicate with Ashford’s instructors to help balance your workload and time commitments. Additionally, Ashford provides many online resources to help you connect with your instructors and fellow peers, such as the Canvas app, where you can enter a virtual classroom complete with course resources and live discussion boards, and CHAMPS, Ashford’s peer mentoring program. Other resources include an exhaustive online library, the Ashford Writing Center, and Career Services, all accessible in the student portal. Whether it’s the attentiveness of our faculty or evolving technology suite, Ashford’s people and programs are here to support you in your online learning experience. 

Effective time management strategies are essential

Proper scheduling and time management are essential when you are balancing a career and school. Here are a few tips that can help you manage your responsibilities and obligations to meet your academic goals:

1. Plan your vacation time around your school and exam schedule. This planning allows you to focus your energy on your studies when you need to, then get away and recharge when you have space.

2. Utilize every free moment. Take your lunch hour to prepare your workload for that evening. And if you get up an hour or two earlier, spend some time completing assignments before beginning your workday. 

3. Create and maintain a structured schedule. Sticking to a daily routine is one of the most important strategies for graduate students who are also working. By sticking to structured days, you will be able to accomplish a lot more than you expect!

4. Ask for help. If you are falling behind, or are completely overwhelmed, don't be afraid to ask for help. The faculty at Ashford University is here to foster your success and help when you are overloaded.

5. Be passionate. Study something that you love, as this passion will help make it all feel worthwhile, no matter how difficult the process. Completing a master's degree while you are working full time can be challenging, but it is very doable with the right mindset and approach. 

Interested in taking the next steps to obtaining your master's degree? Take a look at our admissions page to find out more!

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Or talk to an Ashford University advisor who can help provide additional details on each program.

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Written by Ashford University Staff

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This program requires you to be a current licensed registered nurse. Please check out other programs to reach your education goals such as the BA in Health and Wellness.