On each building of Dongguk University, we can easily find the labs researching for various fields of study.
/Photography by Yoo Joon-sang
Two-thirds of 2022 has already passed, and the fall semester has begun. Students may be eagerly looking forward to the beginning of a new semester, making new relationships, and participating in various activities. However, some students, especially the senior students, may not be so delighted as time passes by, since it is time for them to make a crucial decision that may affect the rest of their lives. They should decide whether to get a job after graduating from university or to go to graduate school to continue their studies.
Students who are deeply interested in their major often decide to go to graduate school for in-depth study. One of the pleasures of being a researcher is to publish a research paper with the newly created knowledge and leave their name on it. Students can also increase their value in the job market by obtaining a higher degree. However, two additional years are needed to obtain a master’s degree, and the tuition can be a significant burden that makes students hesitate to go to graduate school. As a course to reduce the burden on students, the "Integrated Master's Degree Course" exists in Dongguk University.
An integrated master's degree course has many advantages
An integrated master's degree course is a system implemented to promote the research ability through continuity of study by linking the bachelor’s course and master’s course. The greatest advantage is that the time needed to achieve a master's degree can be shortened. In general, it takes six years to obtain a master's degree (four years of undergraduate studies and two years of master’s course), but through the integrated course, it can be reduced to five years (3.5 years of undergraduate studies, and 1.5 years of master’s course).
There are several advantages of an integrated master’s degree course. It is possible to apply for additional credits during undergraduate periods, and pre-take master's course lectures for up to 12 credits (maximum of six credits per semester). Grade evaluation on the credit of master’s course lectures taken during the undergraduate period is based on absolute evaluation and is recognized as credits for completing major courses. Graduation thesis or exam required to graduate from bachelor's degree and interview screening on the admission process of master's degree are exempted. Also, among master's degree candidates, those who participate in a research subject of each professor and submit research activity reports, "Dongguk Future Talent Scholarship 2" is given. Additional research funding exists depending on the professor's research projects.
According to the graduate school academic admission office, 71 students applied for integrated master's degrees last semester, and all were admitted. Dongguk university graduate school is recruiting students from 12 colleges and 53 departments for the integrated master’s degree course within the range of 30% of the entrance quota of the graduate school. Among the undergraduate students, students who have been attending for four to seven semesters with a grade average over 3.5 and satisfying the graduation requirements, or students who have been attending for eight semesters with a grade average over 3.0 and satisfying the graduation requirements can apply for the integrated master’s degree course. If the above application requirements are met, after submitting the required documents such as application, pledge, and transcript, the admission process ends without an additional process such as exams or interviews.
Interview with a student who has been undergoing master’s degree course
Serious consideration should be preceded about what you want to do in the future, whether to get a job and build your own career or to conduct an in-depth study. Consultation with a professor researching in a field you are interested in or the seniors working in the field or studying in graduate school may help you make your decision. If you have made up your mind to go to graduate school, an integrated master’s degree course may be a good option.
To help the Donggukians who are agonizing about their future, the Dongguk Post interviewed Kim, who began her master's course this July. She graduated from the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering in February and began preparing for employment. She wanted to enter the semiconductor industry, but things did not turn out well. She wanted to study deeper about semiconductors, so she contacted one of the professors at the Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, entered the lab, and has been studying about ferroelectrics and next-generation semiconductors. She said, "Although I did not major in the Department of Electronic and Electric al Engineering, I could enter the lab researching about semiconductors. Many things have changed when it comes to lifestyle or studying since I entered graduate school, however I think for those who have a field that they are deeply interested in and want to study more about, going to graduate school would be a good choice."
Yoo Joon-sang firstname.lastname@example.org
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