Role of Research-Based Learning on Graduates' Career Prospects

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  • Source:
    Higher Education Studies, v11 n3 p10-20 2021. 11 pp.
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    Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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    • Abstract:
      Education is still a leeway towards achieving individual's personal growth as well as professional development. Further and Higher Education (FHE) are even more crucial in accelerating the achievement of these goals. Consequently, graduate students explore endless opportunities to enroll for postgraduate programs, hoping to gain financial independence, economic freedom, and improved standard of living after completion. Since graduate programs offer such tremendous career and life-changing opportunities, it is imperative to investigate if programs like the master's in business administration are still relevant in today's fast-moving business environment. This phenomenology study systematically utilizes underlying assumptions of research-based learning to assess a core aspect of universities' MBA curriculum, that is writing a dissertation. It examines the value added by dissertation to graduates' long-term career goals. Data for the study was obtained from fourteen MBA graduates through unstructured in-depth interviews. All the graduates currently work as full-time employees in their respective organisations, who were drawn from four main departments namely marketing, education, accounting and the IT industry. Our findings are thought provoking, yet compelling, in the sense that participants expressed mixed opinions concerning whether the dissertation prepared them for their current job roles. Most of them attributed their career successes to luck and hard work. Good communication and leadership skills also played major roles. Only few of them did acknowledge honing such skills while writing their dissertation during the research process. The implication of this research to stakeholders of higher education institutions, and policy makers, are also discussed.
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    • Education Level:
      Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
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