Can I upgrade my ordinary degree to an honours degree?

(25 Posts)
DesolateWaist Wed 09-Nov-16 21:23:06

When I was doing my degree I had the option of not doing a dissertation and then just having an ordinary degree.
As I was working getting pissed and laid not doing a dissertation seemed like a good idea at the time.

Now it's becoming slightly annoying and I rather wish I had done it.
Is it something I can do now?
I did my degree in 1996 if that makes a difference.

ScoobyDoosTinklyLaugh Wed 09-Nov-16 21:29:17

I also did this! I think you'd just have to find somewhere that would let you do the credits/dissertation. Might have to do a whole year again but I'm really not sure of the ins and outs.

Glad I'm not the only tit who did this grin

DesolateWaist Wed 09-Nov-16 21:36:02

It's not been a complete balls up as I have managed to qualify as a teacher. However like so many teachers I'm wanting to escape and it seems that other jobs want you to have a real degree.

ScoobyDoosTinklyLaugh Wed 09-Nov-16 21:56:07

That's good, I didn't think I'd be able to get into teaching (not that I have any plans to) because of the ordinary degree. I just feel stupid for packing it in at the last hurdle. In hindsight, it would've been so little effort to just do a bloody dissertation!

I do freelance work now and nobody ever asks about my degree, so it's not affected me at all yet but I do worry that if I fancy a career change it might close a few doors for me in the future. I think if I want to increase my income in my current field it'd be good to do a conversion course (my degree is barely related to what I do now) but it'd be difficult to get on one.

DoggyDoggyJoe Wed 09-Nov-16 22:02:44

I'm doing exactly that right now grin. Graduated with an ordinary degree in 2009 and have decided to get my honours before looking at post grad courses.

Good luck!

DesolateWaist Wed 09-Nov-16 22:03:56

I only have Qualified Teacher Status and not a PGCE. So I can only teach in England I believe.

I have no idea what I want to do other than teaching......

DesolateWaist Wed 09-Nov-16 22:04:24

So how are you doing that then Doggy?

LRDtheFeministDragon Wed 09-Nov-16 22:20:28

Not everywhere has the expectation that a dissertation is what qualifies you for honours, FWIW. And not all universities operate on a system of 'credits'. So, even if it weren't twenty years on, you wouldn't necessarily find it was as simple as finding a university prepared to register you for a year and have you do a dissertation with them.

DoggyDoggyJoe Thu 10-Nov-16 11:52:58

Apparently I'm the first to ask to do it and the Uni were delighted and a bit bemused but had no issue at all.

I applied through UCAS as instructed but chose year 4 for year of entry. I was invited to interview which was very informal, the course lead just wanted to clarify why I wanted to do it and to make sure it hadn't been too long since I'd graduated.

chemenger Thu 10-Nov-16 12:00:01

It would depend on the university. You could not do it at my university because you must study here for at least two years to be awarded a degree (so you must enter in the penultimate year if you are transferring credit from another university). If your Ordinary degree was from here you can't use that credit towards another degree so you would not be able to upgrade. Clearly it is possible elsewhere because Doggy is doing it so you need to ask at the university you want to attend.
It does seem odd to me that the dissertation is the only difference between Ordinary and Honours, is an Honours programme not usually a full year longer than an Ordinary programme?

DoggyDoggyJoe Thu 10-Nov-16 12:11:49

For the honours year I'm having to write my dissertation and complete 4 other modules on top.

LooseAtTheSeams Thu 10-Nov-16 15:51:06

If I recall correctly, the OU awards a pass degree for so many credits and then you do a certain number more for honours. It would be worth asking them if they would transfer your degree to their programme or let you do a dissertation with them.

Gman9000 Sat 19-Nov-16 11:38:52

@doggy Can I ask how did you go about finding a university that will allow you do this? I'm in the same boat aswell unfortunately and struggling to find answers online.

NickMyLipple Sat 19-Nov-16 11:46:52

I did this, sort of. I did an advanced diploma which is 300 credits. You need 360 for an honours degree. 2 of my modules to make up the 300 credits were at level 6 (degree level) and were research based. This allowed me to go on to do my masters without having to do an honours degree first. It helped that all my module marks were around 70%. I emailed the lead lecturer for the course I was interested in and asked if it would be enough, and she confirmed it would be fine.

Nearly finished my MSc now!

DesolateWaist Sat 19-Nov-16 13:54:34

I've asked the OU but they have said that they can't as my degree was so long ago.

DesolateWaist Sat 19-Nov-16 13:56:54

It does seem odd to me that the dissertation is the only difference between Ordinary and Honours, is an Honours programme not usually a full year longer than an Ordinary programme?

I did a really odd degree. I have no idea how it was accredited. Amongst the many things it covered were carpentry, upholstery, art history and contemporary dance.

ChuckGravestones Sat 19-Nov-16 14:03:04

I have the same problem, in that my uni decided to stop all evening classes the year i would have been doing my dissertation and then i moved. They had a deal with the OU that I could finish off and do the dissertation with them to complete, but because I took a year out [my moving year] they wanted me to do the whole third year again, which when you are working full time is basically 3 more years. Sod that!

SwedishEdith Sat 19-Nov-16 14:17:42

The OU will let you transfer credits but you have to supply a transcript of previous study. I was a student so long ago, they had destroyed all my records shock. But, this was a pre-1992 place - I would have thought you'd get 240 or 300 credits with the OU and have to do 1or 2 x level 3 60 point modules to top up.

DesolateWaist Sat 19-Nov-16 14:31:25

I did my degree in 1993 Edith.......

SwedishEdith Sat 19-Nov-16 14:35:45

Well, that's still post-1992 (says 1996 in your OP). So they should be able to supply a transcript, as I understand it, as it'll still be the same institution. Don't know for sure but that was the reason I was given for me not being able to get one.

SwedishEdith Sat 19-Nov-16 14:37:07

They did still give me some credit but the bare minimum.

DesolateWaist Sat 19-Nov-16 15:24:18

Sorry, I started in 1993 and graduated in 1996. OU have said that that won't transfer credit from any degree older than 16 years.

lostinthedarkplayground Sat 19-Nov-16 15:36:53

What is the title of your degree? I imagine it would be easy enough to just pick the nearest uni to you, approach them and ask how/ if you could upgrade with them with this degree. (I have some reservations about the possibility as I am unfamiliar with that type of program).
I have had some issues with being an old knacker requesting transcripts (similar timescale). When I first requested them, the uni claimed that they were unable to provide. However, a year later, when I needed an official letter saying they were unable to provide, I approached them again and they sent me the transcripts. Bunch of fuckers.
The other way of doing it would be to approach the uni about post grad study, which would open up the question of your existing degree and how you would update it to become relevant.
I think it's important to clarify exactly what you want out of it. To be honest, if you have been teaching for some time, I suspect this experience will stand you in far greater stead with new job applications than upgrading an aeons old degree (for the amount of effort it will entail). That's not to put you off, but just to examine more closely what your end-game is. There is absolutely nothing wrong with returning to studying and of itself at this point. I've just done it, lol.

JennyHolzersGhost Sat 19-Nov-16 15:47:20

As Lost says, can you not just apply for a Masters and then if they come back and say you need Hons, ask them how they suggest you achieve that - ? They might just let you onto the Masters course and then that would trump your existing qualification anyway !

OutDamnedWind Sat 19-Nov-16 16:48:21

Easiest way to find out would be to speak to your local universities/universities you would want to go to and speak to the admissions tutors in the relevant department.

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