Student walking with text: your next steps - information for final year students

Considering postgraduate study?

A postgraduate qualification may ‘help you to stand out from the crowd’ but make sure you do your research first as, although it may enhance your career prospects and earning potential in some cases, in other cases relevant work experience will be more valuable. Many students also opt to undertake postgraduate study to further develop subject knowledge or to convert to a new career area such as law, medicine, education or IT.

If you are unsure about what to do next and feel that studying a postgraduate course will give you more time to help you decide, think about whether this is the best strategy. Postgraduate study is time-consuming and can be very costly so you should be reasonably clear about your career goals/aims before starting a course.

Discuss postgraduate options or get help with a postgraduate application

It’s easy to get bewildered by the wide range of postgraduate courses on offer. Discussing your career objectives and postgraduate study ideas with an adviser can help to focus your search for the course that’s right for you. If you have already decided on the course, our advisers can provide tailored feedback and advice on personal statements for postgraduate applications to help you effectively demonstrate your motivation and suitability for your chosen course to admissions tutors. To book an appointment, email or call 0151 231 8740.

Other resources

For further information about different course and funding options, download our handy guides on postgraduate study, applications and PhDs from the resources page of the Careers website.


Postgraduate loans are available for students on Masters courses at universities across the UK. Students under 60 who ordinarily live in England can apply for a loan of up to £11,222 (from 1 August 2020); visit the GOV.UK website for more details of the scheme for students from England. However, if you are from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland the schemes vary slightly so do check the various government websites. For further information on eligibility and available funding, check the Find a Masters website. A separate loan system for PhD study is also available.

Additional postgraduate funding options include employer sponsorship, part time study combined with working or charitable trusts and foundations. Check the Prospects website for further details. You can also look on the LJMU web pages here

How and when to apply

The majority of applications are made directly to the institutions concerned; however, some vocational courses such as teaching, law and social work require applications to be made via a central admissions service, which will restrict the number of courses you can apply to and will usually stipulate a particular closing date. Not all courses have a closing date; however, it is still highly recommended that you do your research well in advance as some courses fill up very quickly and may have particular entry requirements i.e. relevant work experience. Applications (or enquiries) regarding PhDs/ Masters by research should ideally be made around Christmas time; the earlier your application, the more likely it is to attract funding.

Get a 20% discount off your LJMU postgraduate course

Whether you are looking to specialise, change direction, enhance your earning potential or boost your employability, staying at LJMU for postgraduate study is a great investment in your future success, with increased earnings for postgraduates compared to graduates. To discover more, call 0151 231 5090, or visit our postgraduate study section.