How to earn a Masters Degree while working full time

Ready to take on your Masters Degree? If you’re working full time, online study might be your best option. Discover how to embrace flexible study and get support when you need.

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Pursuing your Masters Degree can be an inspiring achievement, but planning it, especially when working a full-time job simultaneously, can be a stressful process.

While each student’s situation may be different, understanding how to adapt to a full-time work load and studying at the same time is crucial no matter your end goal. 

Online study could be the answer you’ve been looking for - read on to learn why and how you can make this solution work around your busy schedule.  

Study for your Masters Degree online

Whether you want to pursue a Masters in Teaching or a Masters in Business Administration, online courses are the most straightforward way to get your degree, while still focussing on your career. 

Online learning is the future, so why not embrace it? Providing more variety, greater flexibility, adaptable timelines and more resources - taking on a postgraduate degree and simultaneously working full time is no longer impossible. In fact, thousands of students do just that through Open Universities Australia (OUA) every day. 

Study your way

Offering flexible, part time options from the comfort of your own home, you can study at your own pace - which is crucial when you’re committed to prioritising both work and study.

Studying online allows you to build a more dynamic schedule in advance, which can make balancing work, study and leisure much easier. By planning when and where you want to listen to lectures and complete coursework, you can set expectations up front with co-workers, managers, instructors and peers around your obligations. 

By saving valuable hours commuting to and from campus, you’ll also have more time to do those assignments. More time also means more opportunities to simultaneously maintain your social life, whether that's continuing to work on your side hustle or spending time with friends and family.

Adapt your study schedule to coordinate with your full-time job

Traditionally, studying a Masters meant going on-campus, sitting through lectures at scheduled times, and making yourself available at any given moment for tutorials or other practicum. Choose online study, however, and you can adapt your study schedule to work with, not against, your full-time job.

Masters available to study online with leading universities through OUA give professionals the flexibility to set up your weekly diary however it suits you. For some, studying before the 9-5 grind might be your best bet. For others, listening to a lecture between meetings at lunch could be ideal. No matter your current role or responsibilities, you really can make a Masters through OUA work for you. 

OUA offers a range of Masters and postgraduate degrees online. Designed for students in a similar position, our database of online Masters programs puts you in the driver’s seat. Choose how many subjects you’d like to study - many professionals choose to take on just one at a time - and then study around your commitments. 

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

It can sometimes be daunting stepping into the unknown. Juggling a Masters Degree and a full-time job is something that requires a lot of thought and planning, but it is possible with the flexibility of online study. If you’re feeling lost, confused or want a second opinion on what direction to take - OUA is here to help.

Our expert student advisors are on standby to help you navigate your Masters. From helping you find the ideal course based on where you see yourself next, to unlocking stepping stones to help you get into a degree, it’s our goal to make this process as manageable as possible for you.

Not ready for your Masters? A graduate certificate or diploma could be the answer

Getting your Masters is a big commitment. If you’re not quite ready to make the jump, a graduate certificate or diploma could be the perfect option for you. Depending on the course, you may even be able to use credits gained for your Masters when you're ready.

Graduate certificates and diplomas are similar to Masters Degrees, but oriented more so around improving a set of specific skills instead of the full suite a Masters may offer. Much of the time, they're engineered for professionals already working in their field - meaning you can put pre-existing knowledge to propel your career further.

Studying for your Masters Degree online FAQs

Is getting my Masters Degree online worth it?

Before pursuing a Masters Degree, it’s important to understand the benefits that it will bring to your career. Will you be able to move up in the ranks? Will it help you earn a higher salary? Or, are you wanting to earn a Masters to fulfil a personal goal instead?

These are things you should consider before starting your studies. Once you’ve defined your goal, you can more easily make a decision on whether it’s worth it for you. 

It’s also worth noting that pursuing a Masters Degree online gives you much more flexibility than a brick-and-mortar scenario, especially when balancing a full-time workload at the same time. If you plan to work and study concurrently, enrolling in an online Masters Degree is something that many professionals find worth the investment. 

If you’re still unsure of making the commitment but feel the need to upskill, a short course online is worth investigating. Through OUA, you can upskill online in just weeks. 

How long will it take to get my Masters Degree online?

Traditionally, a Masters Degree can take 2-3 years to complete. However, though OUA, you have the ability to take on more (or less) subjects depending on the commitments you have outside of study.

For some, loading up and speeding through is a good way to go. For others, slow and steady wins the race. With study periods operating year-round, you can even study through Christmas to get your degree sooner.

For tips on how to manage your workload and a more definitive timeline, get advice from the expert team at OUA.

Can I get a Masters if I’ve never studied before? 

Did you know that through OUA, you can study some postgraduate degrees without previous study experience? It’s true. Some courses allow you to count work experience towards meeting the entry requirements - particularly if you have five years or more experience in the field you’d like to continue studying in. Here’s how our expert student advisors can help you understand this in greater detail. 

Does it look bad to get a Masters Degree online?

Absolutely not! Studying online continues to increase in popularity and it’s no wonder why. When you choose to study your Masters online through OUA, you’ll learn from credible leading

Australian universities, and graduate with exactly the same degree as if you had studied on campus.


To express your interest in any of the courses on offer through OUA, fill out the form on this page and a friendly student advisor will get in contact. Otherwise, start browsing thousands of courses from leading Australian universities right now.