7 tips to select your master's program
By BAM Team
School, University, Postgraduate Program, Dream Job… Some people have their path pretty clear since very early stages, while others don’t have such clarity but prefer to go with the flow and see what the future holds. Even if we choose the second way of life, at any time there are some life-changing decisions to be taken.
Nowadays, due to the vertiginous pace of progress, the pandemic, and the digitalization era, these kinds of decisions are not taken once but many times during our lives just to stay up to date in the professional environment.
This is why, for those who find themselves being aware that the next step is a postgraduate program but can’t see clearly the path to achieve their goals, we would like to recommend some tips to better choose that Master or Ph.D. that will open new doors and route them towards those objectives:
1.- Trust your gut
Do you remember which projects you enjoy the most while as an undergraduate student? The ones that made you spent hours and hours of no sleeping, poor eating, forgetting to shower, or even engaging in a conversation with other humans, but didn’t matter because you had fun putting all your heart and soul into materializing those ideas. Well, as Mandalorians would say… this is the way! Follow that instinct because that may be the specialty that makes you stand out as a professional.
Your interests have a lot of weight in this decision. If you like research or projecting, design or project management, taking care of the finances or the theory; this will define the direction you’ll need to turn to and the kind of Master’s program you should choose.
2.- Like fish in the water
You can evaluate in which subjects you did better. Sometimes this is a valuable clue. These subjects may not be what you loved the most but you’re so good at them that, if you choose it to turn your career in that direction, it may lead you to very good opportunities.
If those areas in which you stand out don’t represent anything too important nor too hideous, you can explore into that way. For example, if you were the best in your class of architectural theory, maybe you could study a theory-related Master’s, then sign up for a Ph.D. and then become a professor.
3.- The apple doesn't fall far from the tree
Even without knowing it, you have had great examples of steps to follow while being a student: your teachers! Whose work do you like better? Which one do you look up to? Which of them do you admire and wish you were in their shoes? In whom do you see yourself reflected? Which of them makes you think «I want to do what she/he does»?
Sure some of their essence as architects, professionals, and even as individuals lingers in you and that is a good sign to look at when choosing a Master’s program. You could also ask them for advise or just to tell you a little more about their experience.
4.- Aim for the stars
While being students and even after graduated, we keep learning about architecture offices: the most awarded, the most innovative, the one with the most modern and sustainable projects, or those with the most famous architects.
Which of them has impressed you? What do they do? What would you have to do/learn to work with them? What specialization would you need? Maybe you don’t end up working there, but all these questions help you defining your selection according to what you like and admire.
Another thing to have in mind when choosing a Master is what universities offer postgraduate programs in the field that you like. You could make a list of pros and cons of all these universities taking into consideration their location, reputation, faculty, admission requirements, fee, the program’s subjects, and length, etc.
Here you can find our searcher of Schools of Architecture around the world that can be useful if you are reading this.
6.- A sneak peek didn't hurt anybody
Take a look around what’s happening in other creative fields like fashion, scenography, structural engineering, art, computing engineering, or music could be the source of inspiration for your next specialization.
Sometimes, thinking out of the box may lead you to the weirdest, funniest, and exceptional course of action which mixed with some ingenious could take you even beyond the achievement of the goals you have set for your professional life.
7.- Stay updated!
With a small research, you may find out which areas have more job offers and what skills are the firms requiring so you can develop those abilities in order to stay up to date in the field.
You could also look for the areas that are lacking of specialists and study to become a master in that subject so your profile becomes more appealing.
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We are sure there are so many other suggestions, but here is a compilation of what has worked for our team throughout all these years. We invite you to join us on Instagram and Facebook and share your experience while choosing a postgraduate program to reach the next level in your career.
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