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Is it normal to feel bored in a Masters program


gradschoolprobs
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Maybe it is just me, but I don't find that much of a difference between Undergrad and Masters. Definitely there is more exposure to theories and more internship/research opportunities, but all professors are teaching their own area without making connections to other courses. I feel like I'm just learning stuff to get a degree and there is constraint in what we are learning. Is it normal to feel bored? Also, is it true that PhD programs allow more independence and creativity?

Edited by gradschoolprobs
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Hi!

 

I am earning two masters: A MLIS and an MA (History). I feel bored from time to time. Sometimes courses cover stuff I already know. Some cover stuff I don't care about or aren't interested in. Sometimes the work feels pointless. But I know it's worth it for the degree in the end. I am even applying to more programs. I think that as long as not EVERYTHING is boring to you, that's okay. If everything is boring to you, perhaps you are in the wrong field. If you find that you hate doing it or that you don't care about anything, you might want to reevaluate. But as another grad student, I do feel bored sometimes. So I would say that is normal.

 

Good luck!

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On 11/10/2018 at 12:10 PM, gradschoolprobs said:

Maybe it is just me, but I don't find that much of a difference between Undergrad and Masters. 

 

One can work as hard as one wants or does not want to work to earn a masters degree. As many (if not most) professors are unlikely to put in the energy and effort to motivate masters students, it's incumbent upon students to figure out how hard they want to work and to develop the tactics and work habits that will get them where they want to go.

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I'm not sure how your program is structured, but my MA program had PhD and MA students in the same graduate courses, which elevated the level of discussion a lot. That was the main difference for me between undergrad and MA. 

As for the courses not feeling connected, I think it really helps if you try to find a way to connect the topics to your own research interests as best you can. I'm not sure what field you're in, but for me, if I was in a course based on a different time period than my own specialty, I would incorporate the theory I was using in my thesis and apply it to the course texts. For final papers, this really helped me deepen my understanding of the theory, while expanding my knowledge to more diverse texts. 

However, if you have done similar things WRT connecting material to your specialty and still don't feel a lot of passion for the program, then I agree with @ElizabethIsGolden that you might be in the wrong field.

Edited by kgras13
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I don't know if its normal to feel bored in a Master's program or even a PhD program, but I've certainly experienced it.  I experienced boredom in Undergrad too though.  The difference I have found is that in Undergrad it seemed like there was less flexibility to explore my interests in some ways.  There were so many general education requirements and even though I could choose which class to take to fulfill a requirement sometimes there weren't many choices and I disliked all of them.  My psych classes were more interesting because that was my major, but there wasn't always time to focus on what I was actually interested in because broad content had to be covered.

In my Master's and now in my PhD I find that even though I'm bored at times there is more flexibility to focus on my actual interests.  I can pick a presentation or paper topic that fits my interests rather than being assigned a random topic like many of my Undergrad classes did.  I also have more flexibility to learn beyond the classroom and often attend community lectures/talks, read research articles/books independently, and can obtain hands on experience through research or clinical work.

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