A Guide To Being A Mature Student

middle aged lady

It's never too late to become a student but what should you know before you take the plunge.

Taking a degree is a major commitment for all would-be students regardless of age but there are issues that tend to be of more concern to those not going straight from school - the mature students! You may think that you do not have the right qualifications or that your age precludes you from considering such a step. Many mature students already study at university and you would not be on your own if you apply and accept a place.

Mature Students

Universities recognise the value of mature students and academic staff who have had the opportunity of teaching mature students comment that they enjoy the committed and enthusiastic approach such students bring to their studies. Although you might be concerned that you may be out of your depth at university, you should be reassured to know that, generally, mature students do well and often achieve better than average degree results.

Specific issues for mature students :

If you have children nursery fees may be subsidised for students' children, calculated on a sliding scale according to income.

Some universities have accommodation specifically for mature students.

If you didn't do too well in school exams there are plenty of 'Access' courses to help future undergraduates gain a place at college.

Mature students as a group :

When referring to mature students it is recognised that this is a very diverse group of people encompassing a wide age range. In many ways it is impossible to make any accurate generalisations. However, there can be common areas among this group. For example, mature students and graduates may :

  • be concerned that being older will hamper their quest for a good job

  • have concerns about age, particularly in the employment market

  • be worried about age-prejudice in other employees

  • Ageism and discrimination against older graduates

Age discrimination in the workplace does, undoubtedly, exist. Mature graduates are more likely to experience prejudice from employers and may have greater difficulty securing employment than their younger counterparts. However, there is encouraging evidence of significant action in order to reduce discrimination.

Useful Websites

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  • King's College London
    Leading London university offering key courses including Medicine and Law. A top college within the heart of the city.
  • Kaplan Open Learning
    Distance learning with Kaplan. The open learning university where you can study from home to gain a foundation degree in business management & marketing online
  • Cambridge in Colour
    Night photography Sean T. McHughof Cambridge University in England, with prints for sale. Digital camera tutorials, techniques, and examples available.
  • Amelia Young
    A professional piano and cello teacher. Amelia is a former student of Jacqueline du Pré and has degrees in music from Oxford University and the Royal College of Music, London.
  • UCAS
    Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, the UK central organisation through which applications are processed for entry to higher education.
  • Knowledge Media Institute
    Understanding and sharing knowledge from the Open University
  • Add Your Website Here

Further Reading

  • A Guide To Student Loans

    Student debt is in the press a lot now so what are student loans, maintenance grants and all the issues surrounding them?
  • A Guide to Student Loans

    Student loans. A useful guide to help you understand how student loans work and how much money you could get.
  • Why Have a Credit Card?

    Why would you choose to have a credit card? Choosing the right one for you is more important than ever with debt and your credit rating at stake.
  • How Exercise In Old Age Can Protect Our Immune System

    Keeping fit in old age can be just as important to our immune system as for our weight and mental health. Read our guide to see how you can make some simple changes.
  • How To help Your Child Have A Healthy Life

    The latest research suggests that by the time children leave primary school 1 in 5 of them are obese. What can we do about this?

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