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The upside of being a mature age student

The chances are you've developed the maturity needed to attain your educational goals.

The upside of being a mature age student

Hear the word student and you immediately think of someone under 25, right? While that might have been a reasonable assumption once, it's no longer the case.

The days when you learnt all you needed to know at school then went on to live your life without ever needing to pick up another textbook are long gone. In order to keep your skills up to date and advance or change your career, it's likely you're going to have to periodically return to the classroom as a mature-age student. This isn't as daunting as it might initially seem.

1. You are there because you want to be

All too often, younger students embark on an inappropriate course of study just because they got the marks for it, or their parents are pressuring them to do it, or simply because they don't have enough self-knowledge to realise it's not the right path for them. One of the advantages of having lived a little is you're likely to have worked out what it is you want to do and be highly motivated when studying to acquire the necessary skill set to do it.

2. The dog is less likely to eat your homework

Given you've probably had the responsibility of a full-time job, possibly combined with the demands of raising a family, you almost certainly have better time-management skills and more self-discipline than you did as a teenager. This will stand you in good stead when it comes to meeting the demands of studying. There's a reason the stereotype of the mature-age student is of someone who has all their assignments handed in by the second week of term and has read more about the subject than the lecturer.

3. You can see the payoff

While younger students have a somewhat abstract notion that they need to study to get a good job, you're likely to have a much deeper understanding of how what you're being taught can be applied in the real world and how valuable the skills you are learning will be in either developing your existing career or creating a new one.

The upsides of being a mature-age student at TAFE NSW can largely be boiled down to one thing: possessing life experience. As a mature adult, the chances are that you've now developed the maturity needed to attain your educational goals.

Courses for change