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  • Bryony Ondria Croos

The Dynamic Landscape of PhD

The role of higher education is highly dynamic in today’s society and is a universal topic of interest. Higher education can be viewed as a point of convergence of information and knowledge. An individual with higher education contributes to the country’s economic growth by fostering innovative ideas. Thus addressing significant social and global issues. Many organizations are looking for skilled individuals with a master’s degree or a PhD since higher education moulds individuals to be key drivers of growth performance, and competitiveness.



Do you have a scholastic interest and greed for knowledge and wisdom? Provided that this is true, a PhD may be the correct decision for you. However, what is a PhD, and how could you get one?




Here is an overview of the importance of a PhD in today’s dynamic world:


The word PhD is driven from the ancient Greek word “Philosophia”. It basically means “love of wisdom” (Higginbotham, 2020). PhD is a globally accepted doctoral research degree and a postgraduate scholastic/academic degree awarded by universities to a student. It is simply the highest level of academic qualification a candidate can achieve. This doctoral research degree is awarded to candidates who have submitted a dissertation or a thesis, based on broad and unique research in their selected ground. The explicitness of the PhD degrees fluctuates depending on your location and the modules that the candidate chooses to study.


Generally, a candidate can follow a PhD after a Master’s degree, nevertheless, certain universities permit students to advance directly to a PhD from their bachelor’s degree. Also, certain universities provide an opportunity to ‘fast-track’ or ‘upgrade’ a Master’s degree to a PhD, considering the candidate's grades, knowledge, aptitudes, skills and candidate’s research capabilities.


A PhD candidate needs to complete an oral defense or a viva to complete the PhD. Generally, PhD candidates are likely to study in college full time with close supervision. However, due to this fast-changing competitive world, universities are now offering distance education and e-learning schemes with a growing number of part-time PhD candidates.



The Role of a PhD Thesis


PhD candidates are generally expected to submit a structured, supervised research towards the end of the PhD program. This research should be perused in the candidate’s expertise field by indicating evidence of their ability. The results or the findings of the PhD thesis should suitable for a publication with the relevant knowledge and the originality of the research. However, a PhD candidate should be certain of their significant interest in the thesis topic to be researched along with a solid academic background.


It is a fundamental fact that a PhD thesis should be an original and a unique contribution towards a scholarship. Another motive behind a PhD thesis is to act as a basis of a book once the thesis is published. Subsequently, it will turn out to be a part of candidate’s documentation in his/her professional career, thus it is evidently proven that the value of PhD solely depends on the thesis and not the awarding body.


There is no uncertainty about the domain of knowledge in a PhD thesis. Also, the findings and the recommendations of a PhD thesis perpetually will sway towards economic and social upliftment. Moreover, the content of a PhD thesis will pave the way to new panoramas of investigations thus will hearten the inter-disciplinary method which will fortify the various lifestyles in the society. Hence, it is the scenario of an ongoing cycle in higher education.


Why a PhD is Worth it



Many graduates question themselves on “Why do a PhD?” or “Is there a need to undertake a PhD study?”. However, there are many unexpected benefits in doing a PhD. Doing a PhD will be beneficial in both personal and career development viewpoints. Following are a few of the benefits of a PhD,


1. Personal Development



The term personal development is the most common term used among PhD candidates. Personal development is not only enriching an individual’s outlook or obtaining good grades. It is a combination and a cluster of various things.


A PhD candidate will be engraved to organize the pattern of behaviors and attitudes that makes the candidate distinctive through their PhD. Additionally, an individual will be able to boost their confidence throughout the PhD program. The knowledge and skills gained through a PhD program will enhance an individuals’ self-confidence thus enabling them to maintain healthy communication with others. The educational phase behind a PhD program will inject confidence to candidates throughout the course to enhance one’s personality.


2. CV Booster


A PhD qualification is CV shows a candidate’s ability to work independently and knowledge. Even though there are many stories of applicants being rejected due to PhD , since the applicants are “overqualified”, it is reported that PhD holders have the lowest average unemployment rate in any profession.



3. Extensive Network


Building a bigger network is a vital skill as it can be beneficial in both your personal and professional career.

Strengths your business connections: Networking is simply about forming trust, sharing ideas, and helping each other to work towards the goal. A PhD will enable you a candidate to regularly engage with your peers, lectures, postdocs and etc. This will provide you an opportunity to maintain smooth relationships thus enabling you to reciprocal assistance when needed. Further a wider network of informed associates will provide you a great opportunity to learn and exchange different industry techniques, plus be abreast of the latest business trends and developments.


Networking Improves your Health: Expanding your network with knowledgeable and informed contacts will positively affect your mental and physical health, thus making a massive impact throughout your whole life.


Nations are putting knowledge, skills, and information first in driving their economy to make a better world. This can be attained through skilled and knowledgeable top-notch minds, through significant advances in science and technology. Therefore individuals with a PhD are vital for any society as PhD students are always researching thus embarking new innovations or innovative ideas to develop the nations’ economy.


However, Prof Andrew George states that “You should only do a PhD if you are really interested in it, not if you can’t think of doing anything better” (Top Universities, 2011).



Reference:

Higginbotham, D., 2020. What Is a Phd? | Prospects.Ac.Uk. [online] Prospects.ac.uk. Available at: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/postgraduate-study/phd-study/what-is-a-phd [Accessed 12 December 2020].


Top Universities. 2011. Why A Phd Is Worth It!. [online] Available at: https://www.topuniversities.com/student-info/careers-advice/why-phd-worth-it [Accessed 23 December 2020].


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