Masters Propio (ENEB, etc)

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Garp, Jul 4, 2020.

  1. tadj

    tadj Well-Known Member

    In the past few days, I've been observing a Twitter debate thread which was started by William Carruthers, a PhD from Cambridge. It focuses more on PhDs in humanities fields., but it touches on this very issue. He simply asked the following question: “Has anyone yet put forward a compelling argument as to why getting a PhD in arts and humanities is worthwhile even if the end result is not academic employment? Personal enrichment aside—and I think that can be valid—is there literally anything out there?” He clarified his point in this way: “what I’m really interested in is the arguments that have been made in terms of individual employment, I guess. I do think they’re worthwhile (I don’t regret mine). But I think there’s a lot of casting around for justifications as to why else anyone should do one…Yeah, my concern is that the arguments people—and institutions—give are mostly post-hoc. It’s a nice way to spend time if you want to do one, but I’m unsure whether it’s at all necessary for the ‘alt-ac’ paths people end up taking…Outside of a set number of careers (and by academic I really meant museums etc., too) I’m not sure PhDs teach you anything you can’t get elsewhere. What concerns me is institutions claiming that they do.… at the moment, and I’m not sure any of it really works” There are some very interesting thread replies from other professors such as this one coming from Stanford U: “I think we should be honest about a PhD in the humanities being professional training for a career in academia. The alt-ac hype for humanities PhDs is a con, imo. An MA is a great degree to pivot into another career with, and generally at far less personal cost.”

    If you don't have access to Twitter, you can read the thread here:
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  2. Michael Burgos

    Michael Burgos Active Member

    Disciplines within the humanities (e.g., ethics; sociology; religion/theology; philosophy; language/linguistics; history; literature) lend themselves to considerable opportunities. If one pursues a PhD in one of these, I'd hope that person would be after the education it would afford and not merely the outcome of that education. IMO, its a bit tough to generalize given how diverse these are.
    Rich Douglas likes this.
  3. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Indeed. And conversely, could afford the education they were after. A PhD (a real one, not a Costaraguan wall-hanger) costs a LOT. Tuition and living expenses for starters, not to mention opportunity cost. Several years of foregone earnings. It adds up phenomenally.

    I would hope that a person so devoted to a discipline would, at the end - be able to find a career - one that would compensate them somewhat for years of privation - and usually, huge debt. Apparently, this is not usually the case, especially outside academia - and even inside, the competition is grim.

    People have to live. To do so, they have to make informed decisions. It would be "so nice, it's paradise" if people could afford to put years of their lives on hold to pursue their academic passion -- and not starve to death once they're finished - but reality intervenes. We (and they) have to face up to that, before anything can be done about it. The "facing up" is as yet, a glacially slow process, it seems.

    At the moment, such an education in humanities, with little chance of recapturing the cost, would appear to be reserved for the financially privileged. Nothing new about that. The internet is littered with "don't do it" articles by impoverished PhDs.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2023
  4. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I had a deputy once--actually, four times, since she kept coming to work with me wherever I went--who had a PhD in Economics. She was making about$170K when I last worked with her. But she did it as a leadership developer. The point: getting a PhD in something doesn't have to restrict you to that something. She worked as an economist for awhile, but found her actual calling elsewhere.

    Regarding humanities, history and sociology are not humanities. They're social sciences. But I think the point still holds.

    The whole structure of PhD-to-nonexistent academic opportunities is a scam to get cheap teaching labor and indentured servants. It practically demands PhD holders go elsewhere to earn a living sufficient to call it a career.
    Stanislav and Dustin like this.
  5. Dustin

    Dustin Well-Known Member

    When I was in high school, all my teachers promoted going to university as the path to a career. After all, that's what they did. The most common way to become a teacher in Ontario was to complete a 5 year Bachelor of Education program right out of high school. They had never experienced anything else so they were bad advocates for alternative pathways. Similarly, I think a lot of PhD students are expected to go into the academy because their professors and PIs are 100% people who did the same thing and have no insight into any other options. There's little focus on the transferable skills of going into "industry" in a lot of fields.
    nosborne48 and Rich Douglas like this.
  6. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Times have sure changed. People have a hard time in Ontario becoming teachers. So many want in that the Teachers Colleges can't handle them. Many get their Bachelor's at Uni, then get their teacher training (and their B. Ed) across the border, or even in Australia etc. at considerable cost. They come back and find a flooded market. Some get to be supply teachers - others have to find different work. You just can't do what your high school teachers did years ago. (Nor should you.)

    My son has been a high school teacher for a bit over 20 years. From high school, he went to Community College and earned a diploma in media writing. He also won an ad-writing award, that consisted of four short, paid internships in Toronto ad. agencies. He had a great experience, but no jobs resulted. So - he put in a year or so as a graphic designer elsewhere, relying on his good, self-taught computer skills. Someone where he worked got him into a low-level part-time broadcast job. The he got himself a full-time job at a University radio station - "coolest job in the world" he said to me, and he stayed there, learned a lot of skills and ultimately served as Program Director, until Teacher's College approved his application when he was 30.

    He got into a tech teacher's program - no degree required, (some had, some didn't) but 10 years' work experience, which he had. It was a hard time in general for teachers to get hired, but NOT tech. teachers. He told me his prof. had said "we have 50 of you in the program. We could use 500!" (I don't think that applies any more.) He did well enough that the School board offered him a job, to start some bit of time before the end of the program. They arranged with the College to "set him free" (early graduation) and he was a full-time teacher, as he is 20+ years later. A happy one, too. It's a lot of work, but rewarding in many ways. (From what I've read, the pay schedule here seems WAY above the averages in US.)

    Kind of a different way to get to teaching -- but it worked. And I forgot to mention - for several years after Teacher's College - he was back there every summer - "making more tech teachers," by teaching the same program that he graduated from.

    And he still gets to write. He's had a side business in that for years - and I believe he's currently finishing a book.
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2023
    tadj, Stanislav and Messdiener like this.
  7. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    After decades of abuse and neglect of teachers, we're finally experiencing a shortage. Some districts are hiring little more than warm-bodied babysitters.

    A colleague of mine with a master's degree and a long, successful career started substitute teaching on an emergency credential while getting ready to pursue a teaching credential. It took him one semester of this to drop the idea entirely. And no, it wasn't the semester of working on his teaching credential; it was the whole experience dealing with the school and its administrators. He had tons of experience in public bureaucracies, but it didn't prepare him for that. He left to go tend bar in a local pub.

    When the military moved to get rid of a bunch of us in the mid-1990s, the worked out a program called "Troops to Teachers" where retiring/separating military members--and there were a lot (like me)--would be hired by school districts as teachers (not aides) while pursuing their credentials. The federal government would pay for their teacher training and subsidize their salaries while doing so. But the state I was in, Nevada, had no alternatives to credentialing except for full-time school, so it didn't participate in the program. Pity, because I probably would have done it. ( worked out.)
  8. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Probably made better money as a barkeep.
    Messdiener likes this.
  9. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    As someone that works full time in academia, I can see why this is the case. I am talking about Business doctorates, industry jobs do not valuate much a PhD or DBA as much as certification such as CPA, CFA, etc. A CPA is much more valuable than a PhD in Business in industry, it can lead to 200 or 300K jobs with the right experience. A PhD in business can make in academic about 150K after some experience, the same person might make almost the same with an MBA.

    Some PhDs in business also have no business skills, all the can do is write papers. Many cannot get jobs other than training or analyst jobs.

    Most PhD graduates would rather go for academic careers that pay better and are more stable. However, a lot of them get caught as adjunct professionals with the hope to land a full time at some point but then it is very hard to switch to industry with 10 years as an adjunct.
    nosborne48, Stanislav and Dustin like this.
  10. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Just like law school.
  11. Mac Juli

    Mac Juli Well-Known Member

    Dustin likes this.
  12. Messdiener

    Messdiener Active Member

    Great to see someone trying out one of the UCAM degrees from Formacion Alcala. Now, on to the questions:

    How was the application process? Was it just a matter of submitting scanned copies of your passport and previous diplomas? Did you need to submit any official transcripts?

    As for the classes, are they mostly PDF readings and paper writing? Are there any recorded lectures? What about (proctored?) exams?

    Finally, I have seen several other titulo propio programs require a Trabajo final de Máster (thesis) but don't see that mentioned on the page you linked to. Is this purely a course-based degree program?

    Thank you in advance!
    Dustin likes this.
  13. Mac Juli

    Mac Juli Well-Known Member


    No application process. Sent scanned copies of my credentials (I am returning customer, so, no need to send my scanned passport again) and that pretty much was it. The lectures are .pdfs, online lessons and, sometimes, videos. Exams are not proctored but time-limited, and you must submit answers to questions as running text in the "Supuestos prácticos". The final thesis is optional. Overall, the program is quite feasible.

    Best regards,
    Mac Juli
    Dustin likes this.
  14. Mac Juli

    Mac Juli Well-Known Member

    Seemingly, it's not offered any more...
  15. Messdiener

    Messdiener Active Member

    Meaning they pulled the rug out from under you? They're not letting you finish out your course, even after you paid tuition?
  16. Mac Juli

    Mac Juli Well-Known Member

    No, they just don't offer any UCAM Master sin Tesina any more for new enrollments.

    ... I bet someone will crack a joke like "Master sin Tesina is a sin anyway"...
    Messdiener and Dustin like this.
  17. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    It won't be me... but I will say - it looks like the tesina is now required as proof of the pudín. :)
  18. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Interesting. You're using "Máster" for the degree title which I guess works but in Mexico the title is "Maestría". I wonder if it's the same thing or not?
  19. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Yes - Maestría is "Master's degree" and that's "just so proper, check it out now!" * The people who sell these thingies usually call them simply "Máster" and I have no problem with that either. After all, the diploma with the name of the providing university usually has "Máster en ---" on it to indicate what the degree is, so... . To indicate different types, there's Máster Profesional, Master Universitario etc.

    Aquí hay un ejemplo -
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2023
    manuel and nosborne48 like this.
  20. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Sorry. I goofed. Fatboy Slim's lyric is "The funk soul brother check it out now" not "The funk's so proper..." I guess I've listened to so much loud music my hearing's gone.... they told me in 1966 that might happen. :)

Share This Page