Most employers do not believe postgraduate degrees give workers an edge in terms of their skills, a new poll has suggested. According to a survey conducted by the Institute of Student Employers (ISE), only 19% of employers said that graduates with a masters degree had better skills than those who did not take a postgraduate qualification. The report showed that only 6% in the IT sectors believed that there are benefits in doing a postgraduate degree, whilst no employers in the consumer goods sector valued the qualification. Whilst charities and public sectors do value masters degrees, the graduates are not guaranteed to progress faster than those without the qualification. The survey concluded that only 12% of employers said that those with the postgraduate qualification progress more quickly in terms of salary than those without it. Chief executive of the ISE, Stephen Isherwood said; “In reality, most employers simply don’t discriminate between those with a master’s and those with a degree. They see them as the same. They are treated the same when they join. They do not go on a faster track or get paid a premium. I think that is a bit of a shock to some master’s students going into the labour market.” These findings may come as a surprise to the hundreds of thousands of postgraduate students who are paying more than £9,000 a year with the hope that a masters degree will boost their job prospects A Universities UK spokesperson said: “Higher-level skills are a key driver of economic growth with employers reporting an increasing demand for these skills in the future. Additional qualifications can enhance the valued analytical skills of students and can also give them a greater depth of knowledge in key subjects and sectors.”


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