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Studying with a young child

(14 Posts)
lowrib Sun 10-Aug-08 01:09:36

I was due to start university part-time, as a mature student this autumn.
The course will help me get part time / flexible / more fulfilling / better paid work.

Now I'm (very happily) pregnant, due Christmas day(!) & think starting a course in October and having child in December is a bit too ambitious really!

The college say they'll hold the place for 2 years. I know I've got plenty of time to think about it, but I'd appreciate any advice. Is doing a degree next year with a 6 month old reasonable, or better to wait another year?

What do you think?


mamalovesmojitos Mon 11-Aug-08 15:50:34


didn't want to leave your message unanswered but dont have a real answer for you! i had my dd in february but couldn't begin studying the following september due to health problems.

i began the following year when she was a year old. although i was impatient to begin i am now so glad i had to wait. the first year is so precious and i wanted to soak up my time.

however my course is very full time, lots of hours and pressure. you dont say how part time yours is. also consider if you'll be breastfeeding and if so will it be possible to fit it all in. it was because i stayed home that i was able to bf for over a year.

beansmum Mon 11-Aug-08 16:08:37

I couldn't do it, I went back to uni when ds was 4 months old and really struggled. Partly with actually finding time to study and not getting a full nights sleep, and partly just being totally isolated. I couldn't go out with the other students (single parent, no babysitter) and didn't know any other mums as I moved house a month before ds was born. I didn't graduate in the end but have done a couple of OU courses since then and am starting a new degree in jan, it should be easier now ds is a bit older.

That's me though! I'm sure loads of people manage.

btw, I bf between lectures, ds's nursery was on campus, and expressed when his feed times didn't fit in with my timetable.

fairylights Sat 16-Aug-08 13:04:46

am interested to read the answer to this - i have completed one year of basically a 4 year very demanding law course with a ds who is nearly 2 now and hope to have another child soon - when i started the course my ds was one and that was v challenging so i am not sure how i will cope with a baby and a toddler and expect i will take a year off (which we are allowed to do). figure that is the only way i will cope! all the best to you smile

lowrib Sat 16-Aug-08 15:29:10

Thanks everyone for the responses. I'll wait and see how it goes, but it seems that college with an 18 month old will be much easier than a 6 month old?!

The course is only part time, but as it's a degree they'll be a lot of homework I expect.

Beansmum, thanks for reminding me about OU. I think I might do a OU module as a warm-up to the degree to see how I go and (hopefully!) get back into studying.

Jazzicatz Sat 16-Aug-08 15:31:47

I did a masters when my ds1 was 6 months old and began my PhD when ds2 was 4 months. It can be a real struggle but if you have support around you its doable.

beansontoast Sat 16-Aug-08 15:43:06

it's a bit swings and round abouts. i think the biggest variable is not teh age of your child but how much support/resouces you have at your disposal.

i found studying much easier when my son was a baby as he slept that bit more (12 hrs a night and a nap)i could study at 7.30 of an evening.

increasingly once he was a toddler his night time routine demanded more of me and crept a bit later...

however the emotional side of 'leaving my baby' was tough for the first few weeks.

congratulations on both counts smile

trumpetgirl Fri 29-Aug-08 22:27:47

I did OU for a year, but didn't get on with it as I had a child round my feet all the time, and wanted to meet people. I went to some of the seminars but people didn't really speak to each other.
I'm now doing a full time degree at university, and it's hard work but I have the social side I desire.
The first year my daughter was in nursery, and that worked really well. She started school last September, and I have had problems finding childcare for half terms, teacher training days and when exams are at really strange times! (We also get lectures on bank holidays, but there's nothing I can do about that!)
So, I say try and get your education out of the way before your child starts school.
I think you could well be ready to do something by the time your child hits 6 months anyway, I certainly was. Housewifery just isn't for me!

sleepycat Fri 29-Aug-08 22:30:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LittleMoosh Tue 09-Sep-08 21:23:00

I started study AAT 3 years ago as homestudy when I had one DS, age 3 at the time. I was also working full time. Since then I have had another DS, now age 20 months and oldest now 6 YO. Also carried on working (after taking 9 months mat leave). Have just qualified and now looking to start studying CIMA. So yes, studying can be done as long as you are determined and stayed focused.

ElfOnTheTopShelf Tue 09-Sep-08 21:32:02

I started studying AAT when my DD was about ten months old. I did a year at college and then, as DH's job changed, I switched to distance learning.
I am aiming to complete AAT by June next year, which includes all my exams, projects, portfolio etc.
I will then take a short break, which I plan to have another child in (!) and start ACCA.
Its doable, but you do have to have support, and dicipline.
I work full time, spend the evenings with my DD and then study when she is in bed, so I do get tired, but it is doable.
Good luck

hettie Wed 24-Sep-08 13:46:22

you could do what I did- start the course this semester then stop at christmas, then return for the spring/jan term the year after.... bubs will be one then and this might help. Tbh as others said age not so important as how you organise it/support (unless they are so little that they are still feeding a lot and not slepping at night- this I think would have been hard). My uni were cool about the above arangements- yours might be too?

charlotte121 Sat 27-Sep-08 11:21:28

The past two years at uni I had a baby each year of the course. Neither of which were planned but I was lucky enough that mine were june babies so I was able to complete the course, do my exams and then pop a baby out the following week lol. It also meant I had the summer to recover (and get pg again)
I was on a full time course but it was only 2 days a week so was manageable whilst being pg. talk to your course tutor and discuss your options. You might find that you are able to carry on with the course this year and just have a break over christmas when you have had your baby. It just depends on the uni and the support you have.

mumieluv Thu 16-Oct-08 14:08:00

i am studying a business diploma in college and i have a 2 year old so dont get much home work done but most colleges have a nursery or daycare centre on campus. if there is no places available speak to them to see if they will fund you through another nursery. thats what i do. and with regard to breast feeding extract the milk yourself and give them in bottles to the nursery for them to do it for you.

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