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Studying international development, either at undergraduate or master’s level, gives you a strong understanding of global issues affecting developing nations. Doing a degree in development studies can be the foundation of a career in helping some of the poorest people in the world or those affected by disaster and conflict. However, doing a degree in development studies can be a large financial and time commitment, so is doing an international development degree really worth it?
Studying a degree in international development is worth it if you want a career in humanitarian aid or fighting global poverty. Studying international development gives a strong understanding of the issues affecting developing countries and can help you get a career in international NGOs or the UN.
Many people who study international development or development studies will tell you it is worth it. A degree in development studies teaches you the history, methods, ideas and challenges of global development. It is definitely worth studying a degree in international development to research and learn in-depth about economic, social and political development. It is also worth doing a degree in development studies to work with like-minded students to tackle the issues facing developing countries and build your professional network.
If you ask many people with exciting jobs in NGOs, international government departments or the United Nations, they will often say they’re degree in development studies helped them start their career. If you want a career finding solutions to global issues, then a degree international development is definitely worth it.
Is a Degree in Development Studies Marketable?
A development studies degree is marketable to the industries of humanitarian aid, human rights, charity campaigning, economic development and public policy groups working with refugees and migrants. If you want to work in these industries, then yes, a development studies degree is marketable. A degree in international development is also marketable if you want to work in government, diplomacy, journalism or at the United Nations.
An international development degree is marketable to these industries because of the skills that it teaches you. By studying development, you will learn the history, ideas and practical methods of economic, political and social development. International development degrees also allow you to explore your own research into specific development problems and encourage you to gain knowledge of worldwide issues. These skills are highly marketable if you study a development degree.
However, although a degree in development studies is definitely marketable to industries related to world affairs, if you are not interested in working in these industries, a development studies degree may be less marketable. Although studying international development equips you with solid skills related to tackling global issues, the knowledge you learn is very specific to development and would not be so marketable to unrelated industries.
When choosing to study a development degree, it is important to know what you want to do with it and what your career aims are. Really, the answer to whether a development studies degree is marketable depends on what you plan to do with it. Essentially, a degree in international development is marketable to the specific industries it relates to. However, because the skills you will learn on a development studies degree are specific to international industries, if these are not your career aim then you should avoid a degree in development studies.
International Development Online Courses
A great way to find out if a degree in international development is right for you is to take an online short course. We highly recommend the course Management of International Development: Towards Agenda 2030. It looks at the current international development model as well as the trends that will be key to global development in the near future. Follow the link to the course’s page for more information.
We also think the online course Sustainable Development in the 21st Century by Yonsei University to be one of the best for those interested in studying international development. Delivered by former UN Secretary General Ban-ki Moon, the online course would be a great addition to the CV of anyone looking to work in international development. The link is to the course’s page.
If you are interested in the practical methods used on international development projects, we recommend the online course How To Design & Fund International Development NGO Projects. The course teaches students the tools needed to establish and run impactful development projects. Click the link to visit the course’s page for more information.
Is Development Studies a Good Degree?
Development studies in considered a good degree if you want to work in international aid, global economic development or poverty reduction. Organisations such as international NGOs, development think tanks and the United Nations view development studies as a good degree. This because a degree in development studies teaches you the knowledge and skills needed to work international development. Development studies is the most relevant degree for these employers and so they view graduates of development studies as showing a dedication to a career in international aid and so see development studies as a good degree.
Outside of the humanitarian aid industry, development studies can be a good degree if you are interested in working in government or in diplomacy. Studying international development gives you an understanding of issues faced across the world as well as an international worldview. Government departments such as foreign office, international trade or defence look for graduates with these skills and would consider a degree in development studies to be beneficial.
Another industry that would view a degree international development as strong is universities and academic research. Doing a degree in development studies involves completing significant research and investigations into global issues and the skills gained can be beneficial to a career in academia. Many universities and think tanks conduct research into new technologies, methods and approaches to tackling global poverty and so would view a degree in international development as good.
A final industry that would definitely view a degree in development studies positively would be charity campaigning and advocacy. A lot of charities have campaigning and policy departments that work to create long term and systemic change on issues such as the environment, tax avoidance or the arms trade. Campaigning charities regularly recruit international development graduates and development studies is a good degree if you want to work in charity communications, advocacy or public policy.
Why You Should Study International Development?
You should study a degree in international development if you are interested in global issues and working to improve the world. If you do, there are several key reasons why you should study international development. Firstly, studying international development lets you research global issues that you are passionate about and allows you to begin working on solutions to these problems. You should study a degree in development studies to take this opportunity to begin working for a better world.
The second reason you should study international development is because employers in the NGO and humanitarian aid industry’s look favourably on development studies graduates. Many job advertisements for international development jobs require a related degree.
Completing a degree in development studies shows your dedication to a career the international aid industry. If you want a career with an international NGOs or the United Nations, you should study a degree in international development.
A third reason why you should do a degree in international development is because it can open the door to an exciting and rewarding career. Although jobs in international development or humanitarian aid can be competitive to get, working traveling the world, responding to current affairs and creating practical solutions to the world‘s problems is an amazing career. You should study international development if that’s want you want from your job.
A final reason you should do a degree in development studies is that you will study with like-minded people from many different places and cultures. Many international development degrees market that they recruit students from both developed and developing countries. This means you can work together and build ideas of how to solve the world’s problems with of like-minded people from across the world. You should also do a development studies degree to help build your network in international development.