For many students, the decision of whether or not to apply for a masters is a big one. Will it be worth the thousands of euro? Maybe. Will you actually gain anything from it? Yes. It's one of those decisions that must be weighed out accurately, with data devised from a number of reputable sources. This isn't one such article but, y'know, might be helpful?
Pro: More Education Is Usually A Good Thing
Broadening your horizons, expanding your mind, etc. I know it's a pain but if you always manage to learn something, it will stand to you in the long run. (I am aware that I sound like a parent when I say that.)
Con: It Costs A Shit-Load Of Money
Seriously. Between fees, rent, bills, food, and transport, you're talking about the better part of €20,000, depending on what masters you decide to apply for.
Pro: A Few Years Before You Have To Worry About Getting A Real Job
With the current climate, though it's improving, we're all better off trying to stay in education for as long as physically possible. Here, there are about one hundred people vying for every one job. Even if the job is a pile of shite.
Con: A Few More Years Before Earning Proper Money
With how time-consuming a masters can be, you're likely not going to be able to maintain a full-time job. However, you could do a masters part-time, though that will obviously take twice as long. But if you are one of those crazy cats that will attempt to work and study full time, good luck! Sleep shall be just a memory.
Obviously, employers will look favourably upon a higher level of education. Though, it has been admitted by some employers that the presence of a masters doesn't make up for a poor degree. So if you scrape a 2:2 and then hope a great masters will look lovely on your CV, think again.
Con: Lack Of Employability
Unfortunately, there are some jobs for which you can be deemed 'too educated', as depressing as that sounds. So depending on the type of work into which you would like to get, a masters might actually work against you.
People get really exciting when you say you have a masters, or are going to study one, so relish in their delight. You can take this time to waft in your own pretension for a while.
Con: Lack Of Funding
Funding is highly competitive, which means your grades have to be stellar. You'll get a higher level of funding for a research degree, but it still may only cover one fifth of your overall expenses.
Pro: Student Card
You can keep your student card and reap the benefits of that tiny piece of plastic. Such wonders.
Con: Word Count
What you write in a masters will be at least twice as long as anything you've attempted to write in college before. So good luck with that. I salute your courage.
Pro: Meet New People
Like-minded people become harder and harder to find once you leave college, so it would be nice to have a bit more time to spend with others who know what it's like to navigate the ridiculous amount of work, and maybe an unloved supervisor.
Con: Lack Of Independence
Depending on whether or not you can maintain a job, you may still be at the mercy of your forgiving parents. It's not the best feeling in the world, calling them up some Thursday night so they can transfer money into your account. "But mam, everyone is going!"