STUDENT LIFE / JAN. 24, 2014
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One in Five Adults Have Missed Opportunities Due to Qualifications

A recent study, by Open Study College, has found that one in six adults are ashamed of their level of education and 54% wished that they had put more effort in at school. A third of those polled fear that their level of education is holding them back from reaching their career goals. This is quite evident, as 47% of those polled have tried to improve their qualifications through further education and training.

In summary:

 • A surprising 47% have actively tried to improve their qualifications since leaving school and entering the world of work;

• Almost a third of workers admit their level of education could have held them back in their career;

• 13% have lied about their qualifications – half of those (7% in total) to get a specific job.

These fears are not unfounded as more than one in ten adults have been prevented from working in their chosen industry due to a lack of qualifications and one in five have failed in a specific job or securing a place on a grad scheme because of inadequate grades. Nearly one in ten could not even get a place on the university course that they wanted due to poor grades. Unsurprisingly, by the age of 25, four in ten adults wish they had tried harder in school and spent less time messing around.

Steven Nash at Open Study College, said:

“This research shows most of us at some time reflect on our academic achievements. When you are young, it’s understandable you don’t fully appreciate the impact that your education has later-on in life.

So it can be a blow when people apply for certain jobs, or want to undertake a course to further their career, and realise they don’t meet certain requirements.

Many of us have moments where we think we could have done better at something, but it’s important not to get too hung up on this and there are always steps you can take to enhance your academic achievements.”

A poor academic record leading to missed job opportunities, grad schemes or third level study seems to have driven many of those polled to drastic measures. Some 13% of those polled lied about their qualifications. Half of those people said it was in order to get a specific job, 38% said it was because they were too ashamed to admit their real qualifications and 30% of people said that everybody lies about their results. As one in ten adults admitted there was competition at work between colleagues over qualifications it is not surprising that people would choose to lie in order to save face.

Steve Nash added:

”It’s really not advisable to lie about your qualifications. It’s far better to be honest and to emphasise your other strengths.

If there are weaknesses you wish to address we would recommend retaking exams or working towards relevant qualifications to give yourself an edge when looking for a new job or progressing in your current role.”

However, as a third of people said that they were more interested in the social aspect of school and university than studying, these results are not surprising. In fact, 27% of respondents said that their school days were the best days of their lives and four in ten actually admitted that they spent most of their time messing, chatting and getting in trouble in school.

It would seem then that you really will regret it if you do not put in the work in school during your younger years. Employers really are looking at your academic record closely. The key obviously is to put in the effort and make sure you get the grades to get onto the university course that you want.

 

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