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3rd class in physics...any advice?

by Brynjolf
Tags: advice, class, physicsany
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jspenuk
#19
Feb3-13, 11:45 AM
P: 12
I would be careful advising OU study on the assumption that it is easier to obtain an OU degree. I have been studying with a variety of institutions, from the OU to Oxford (graduate and undergraduate) and I think if anything studying through the OU can be "harder".

The OU has to go through the same quality assurance processes as full-time "brick and mortar" universities. The OU's BSc (Hons) Natural Sciences degree (both new "Q" and old "B" Physics Pathways) is of course Institute of Physics accredited.

So it will not be any easier to get an OU physics degree based on my experience. In fact, if the OP is struggling at a full time school with all the support that comes as part of that process, studying more independently for OU exams can be a bigger challenge, which may require grater motivation and self discipline. This may be especially so for working students.

Just to clarify: The OU offers so called "Open" degree. They allow students to mix various modules based on their individual interests. This is in contrast to OU's named degrees, which must follow a pre-defined curriculum. Information about the new BSc (Hons) natural Sciences degree (see Physics major/pathway) can be found here:

http://www3.open.ac.uk/study/undergr...ways/q64-6.htm

The OP would get credit from the OU certainly, and would bypass year/stage 1, and possibly some of year 2 courses.
mdxyz
#20
Feb3-13, 01:00 PM
P: 51
Quote Quote by mal4mac View Post
It's ambiguous!

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_degree "First degree may refer to: An undergraduate degree or a first professional degree..."

"I got a first degree from Hull, and then a second first degree from the OU; thought I'd highlight the one I did best at..." Makes sense...
Except you never get to explain that to a person. Either:

1. You complete the form honestly and your application is deleted by a computer or

2. HR checks out your background and you are binned for lying (possibly by a real person albeit one earning less than 20k who you will never meet).

You can pretend the world is not run unfairly by idiots if it makes you feel better, but that doesn't make it so, and it does OP a disservice to mislead him.

The point is *any* degree lifts you to a whole new level of employability, with less competition, where you can earn a *lot* more money.
No it doesn't. A degree is useful for precisely two things:

1. Academia. No way without at least a 2.1 if not a 1st.

2. Graduate schemes. No way without a 2.1 except possibly in engineering and teaching. Even then only really with a 2.2.

OP is already out of the running for 1. If he graduates with a third, he puts himself out of the running for 2. as well. The reason it's better not to graduate is that if he doesn't graduate, he merely fails to meet the requirements. If he gets the third he can never meet the requirements no matter what he does later in life.

Quote Quote by jspenuk
I would be careful advising OU study on the assumption that it is easier to obtain an OU degree.
I'm advising OU because it's cheaper, not because it's easier. You only get 4 years of state tuition loans in the UK. After that you pay cash, for some subjects at international rates.
mal4mac
#21
Feb4-13, 10:45 AM
P: 1,175
As already mentioned, there are many more paths to careers than "academia" and "graduate schemes".

I'm not encouraging anyone to lie on their CV, just to massage it...

The OU isn't that cheap, it's worth looking at other universities to see if there are better part time opportunities for getting that second first degree.

Actually there are so many good jobs you can get with "less than a second" that the OP probably will not bother...

The OU should be easier for the OP as he can move away from physics and choose courses that aren't so Math heavy.
mdxyz
#22
Feb4-13, 12:56 PM
P: 51
There are but those paths don't require a degree. If you Know A Guy or can prove you can program or are willing to work the cash desk at a supermarket as a way into management no one cares if you have a piece of paper in something of no business relevance.

OU is cheaper than a brick and mortar university.
mal4mac
#23
Feb6-13, 06:45 AM
P: 1,175
If you want to work as a computer officer in a UK university then you will usually see "degree or equivalent required" on the job offer - class of degree isn't specified. I know many people who have become computer officers with less than 2i degrees. It's *possible* to become a computer officer without a degree, but it's very exceptional (e.g., having many years of relevant computing experience and an incredible CV.) By having a degree, of any class, you can get round having to "know a guy" or "proving you can program really well". Universities *do* care if people have degrees (!) You can't really argue against this mdxyz as I worked for 25 years in a variety of university environment, including some interview panels, and know what I say is true.
mickybob
#24
Feb8-13, 03:52 AM
P: 34
Quote Quote by mdxyz View Post
E

No it doesn't. A degree is useful for precisely two things:

1. Academia. No way without at least a 2.1 if not a 1st.

2. Graduate schemes. No way without a 2.1 except possibly in engineering and teaching. Even then only really with a 2.2.
You missed out the third use, which is actually the use it's put to by the majority of graduates:

3. Putting you ahead of non-graduates in the queue for jobs which don't really require the skills and knowledge of your degree, but for which a degree has become the de facto entry requirement because of a large supply of graduates.
the_godfather
#25
Feb9-13, 02:01 PM
P: 22
Similar sort of position here. Getting that low class degree doesn't help in any way shape or form. It is a major drawback. Can't get any job. any at all. I've worked in retail for 6 years. Most will reject me straight away unless I have a good reference from someone already there. Not even a second glance. The only way to get a job for we would be to build up a network of friends in high places.
I also can't get onto any non-graduate training schemes. It really is a bad situation to be in


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