Talk:Postgraduate education

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Where is term used?[edit]

In Australia and the UK, this term is normally not used. Postgraduate study is considered part of tertiary education.

Then where is it used? Not frequently in the US, either. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 15:49, 27 May 2005

I'm in the UK and i've never heard of this quaternary education. I've heard of post graduate edcuation tho, which I think the article's trying to get at (Barry m 02:26, 29 December 2005 (UTC))
In the UK, Postgraduate study IS quaternary education. Insofar that year 1-6 = primary education, 7-11= secondary education, 12-13 (college - known often as tertiary colleges), and undergraduate degree (also tertiary, although historically considered quaternary), and postgradute - quaternary. It's a logical, and common classification in the UK and I'm sure elsewhere, not in the public domain, but in literature, such as policy reports, etc. Helzagood 22:46, 21 March 2006 (UTC)
I've been in higher education as undergraduate, graduate, and lecturer, since 1980, and I don't recall ever hearing or seeing graduate education described or referred to as quaternary (a word common in palaeology, however). The comments below indicate its frequency on Google. The claim that undergraduate degrees were "historically considered quaternary" is particularly odd.
In any case, in so far as this is all "not in the public domain", then it shouldn't be in Wikipedia. Before adding this claim to the article, reputable citations are needed. --Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 09:31, 22 March 2006 (UTC)
Fine. I too have been in higher education for a similar amount of time, but I shall let it lie. I know what I have stated to be true, because I have seen and heard the term used countless times, but we shall leave the article as you wish it to be, because your knowledge is clearly superior. Helzagood 11:41, 22 March 2006 (UTC)
No, that's not what I said; it's worrying that you read what you want to read, and not what's there. The question concerns citations, as I've explained here and on your Talk page. If you want to add something, you should give a citation. If you don't then any editor is entitled to delete it if they have doubts about it. I've given reasons for my doubts, and now all you have to do is provide a citation. That's how Wikipedia works. --Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 14:11, 22 March 2006 (UTC)
The references provided to show that "quaternary" is used where one from a speech in which the term was not explained, and seemed to refer to a specific type of postgraduate education (though it wasn't clear), and a Swedish site, which doesn't help much with English-language usage. Together with the explanation and statistics in the following section, I don't see any ground for keeping this term in the article. --Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 08:48, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
Is the purpose of Wikipedia to provide all relevant information? What use is an encylopaedia without all the facts?Helzagood 22:45, 6 April 2006 (UTC) Additionally, the article doesn't just refer to the English usage, it actually refered to (even prior to my editing) information about US, British and European Postgraduate study..
I'm not sure what the focus of this comment is. I'm engaged in building up the article, slowly, trying to make it both accurate and readable. There's no point in trying to give all the facts — no encyclopædia can do or tries to do that. Does the Britannica contain all the facts about anthropology, for example, that are contained in the five-volume SAGE specialist encyclopædia? Does it contain every fact relevant to anthropology? As has been discussed at Talk:Graduate school, and elsewhere, the number of different degrees available, the different and conbtradictory uses of the same degree names, etc., all make such an enterprise impossible (and largely pointless). --Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 07:54, 7 April 2006 (UTC)

Proposal: move to Postgraduate education[edit]

Google search: "Quaternary education" -wikipedia --> 580 results (-wikipedia means excluding pages that have the word wikipedia in them, ie removing this site and its mirrors)

"postgraduate education" OR "post-graduate education" -wikipedia --> over a million.

Anyone seriously object to this move? pfctdayelise 10:40, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

Due to overwhelming feedback, I've just made this move, and fixed all the double RDRs. pfctdayelise 04:01, 7 January 2006 (UTC)

This article should really be merged with Graduate school. Exploding Boy 04:33, 14 April 2006 (UTC)

"Gradute school" is a largely North Amrican notion, and is inappropriate for most other countries' systems. --Mel Etitis (Μελ Ετητης) 09:58, 14 April 2006 (UTC)
In the US, the term "postgraduate" can be confusing because of a second possible interpretation - it could refer to studies undertaken after graduate school, such as a post-doc. Overwhelmingly, what is called "postgraduate" education in the UK is known as "graduate" education in the US. {Bubbha 02:41, 29 October 2006 (UTC)}
As an American: We usually refer to those as "postdoctoral studies". I've never heard of them being called "postgraduate". "Postgraduate" is in the American English dictionary, and it should be recognized as an American word. As a graduate student in the United States, I have heard the terms "postgraduate education" and "postgraduate degree" used repeatedly. I have a feeling there is confusion here with people thinking postgraduate studies are not called that simply because we use the term "graduate school" to refer to postgraduate programs here. With that in mind, I'm not certain the statement "(often known in North America as graduate education,..)" is accurate. In my experience, we do not typically call it "graduate education," actually. Since the two terms are synonymous, I've just altered the text to reflect that (because it isn't as if "postgraduate" is an uncommonly used word in America).Mjatucla (talk) 01:55, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
At my university especially, I would be considered a graduate student before I had actually graduated (RIT 5 year masters / bachelors, both degrees are provided at the same time), thus contradicting the above definitions of 'postgraduate studies', as I have not graduated bachelors. Just saying (talk) 02:51, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

What about Theological / Seminary degrees ?[edit]

I am not well versed on how seminary colleges interact with academic ones but I have often seen clergy using the title "Doctor" and sometimes the postfix "DD" for Doctor of Divinity. Any suggestions on integrating this into this article or a related one? -- Low Sea (talk) 22:21, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Request for Review of the History Section[edit]

It looks like several Wikipedia articles that cover the history of academic degrees (e.g. PhD, doctorate, academic degree, postgraduate education) have been cut and pasted or edited from a reference mentioned as "the Catholic encyclopedia", and sometimes contradict each other.

For example, it is stated in some of those aforementioned articles that the Master's degree in medieval times was awarded as the terminal degree in the Faculty of Arts, after which one could proceed to the higher faculties (Theology, Law, etc.) where the terminal degree was that of Doctor. However, the postgraduate education article at the same time implies at one point that master's degrees were also awarded in the higher faculties (prior to a doctorate) and that practice actually varied from country to country. On the other hand, although there appears to be a consensus in the various Wiki articles that the master's degree conferred the right to teach in th Faculty of Arts, it is unclear whether a doctorate was actually required to teach in the higher faculties (which doesn't appear to be the case in England for example where doctorates were rare).

That seems all confusing to me and I suspect that there may be inaccurate information in some of the Wiki articles. I suggest someone who is an expert on the topic review the "History" sections in all relevant articles and clean them up, preferably using more than one reference and avoiding cutting and pasting. (talk) 10:38, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Post-Graduate is also a course of instruction in Secondary Schools[edit]

The term Post-Graduate or ``PG is also used to refer to post high-school graduation.

Various schools, typically called High Schools, in the United States offer this course of study for those students who wish to have a transitional year between High School and College.

PG students seek to benefit from the additional academic time in school and generally gain entrance to more, or "better" colleges from their additional maturity and education. —Preceding unsigned comment added by TheMightyHercules (talkcontribs) 19:00, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

merge with Graduate School[edit]

At the moment, this article consists of discussion of postgraduate education in general, postgraduate education in specific countries, graduate schools in North America, and has a tiny little bit about something completely different, which happens to be referred to as "postgraduate education" in the US, but isn't really the topic of this article. The article on Graduate School is the same content as here, except that for Australia and the UK, there's a sentence say "go read this other article" instead of copy-pasted content.

Is there any compelling reason to keep them separate? I notice on the other talk pages people objected to discussing postgrad education on an article title graduate school, but generally I think this is solved by saying "Postgraduate eduaction or, in North America, Graduate school", using the article title in general cases and the relevant term in specific subsections. (I would go for "postgrad", not "grad school", partially because I'm Australia, and partially because it's easier to say/understand "or in North America" rather than "or outside North America".)

Obviously having the same info here and there is completely redundant and increases the amount of work people have to do, so the current situation isn't really maintainable.

Felix the Cassowary 11:48, 28 January 2010 (UTC)

  • Oppose: Articles should remain as is. Western Pines (talk) 02:54, 14 February 2010 (UTC)
This wasn't a request for votes, but a request for discussion. Why do you oppose? Are you volunteering to always ensure that the copy-pasted parts of the two articles are identical? —Felix the Cassowary 13:04, 15 February 2010 (UTC)
  • I agree that the articles should be merged. To me, having two separate articles for postgraduate school and graduate school implies that they are two separate concepts, but as far as I know they are the same thing. Leaving them as separate articles could be confusing to readers who are unfamiliar with (post)graduate education as they may take the existance of two separate articles to mean that they are two separate entities. For example, when I first read this article - about 3 years ago - I got the impression that postgraduate school was something you did after graduate school as adding the prefix "post-" to a word implies that it occurs after something else. Merger of the articles would help to prevent any such ambiguities from existing in the future. Also as Felix the Cassowary mentioned, merger would make it considerably easier to maintain/edit the article.

P4lm0r3 (talk) 01:27, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Oppose; I'd like to point out that one is titled "Postgraduate Education" and the other "Graduate School". Receiving a postgraduate education is not limited to attending a graduate school, outside of North America. Universities in, for example, New Zealand, Australia, and the United Kingdom offer degrees from Bachelour level to Doctorates but they are not graduate schools. Merging postgraduate education with graduate school is to forget that outside of North America, the world has differing approaches to postgraduate education. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:31, 21 September 2010 (UTC)

  • Maybe we should merge "Graduate School" into the "Postgraduate Education" article. As pointed out above, "Postgraduate Education" can be seen as being more general than "Graduate School." This form of the merger would allow us to consolidate the information contained in the two articles, but we would not have to imply the equivalence of "Postgraduate Education" and "Graduate School." P4lm0r3 (talk) 06:27, 6 November 2010 (UTC)
This discussion seems to have stalled. The proposal by P4lm0r3 would seem to address the only concerns raised--that "Graduate Education" is a broader concept in the UK and New Zealand and Australia. If there is no further discussion, I propose that we merge "Graduate School" into the broader term "Graduate Education." Further comments? If I don't hear objections to this approach within one week, I will complete the merge. Sunray (talk) 21:52, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

Oppose: After looking at the two articles further, I think that to merge them would be difficult. Moreover, the term "postgraduate education" isn't used much in North America, where it is referred to as "graduate education" or "graduate school." Perhaps the articles should remain as there are, with good links cross-referencing the two. Since it looks like I am the swing vote, I will remove the merge tag. Sunray (talk) 17:41, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

merge with Graduate School, take 2[edit]

@Cassowary, Western Pines, Cassowary, P4lm0r3, Sunray: The previous arguments do not seem applicable to the current version of the articles. Currently many sections are nearly duplicates across the two articles. Also notice the graduate education redirect can be used. Finally, maybe Postgraduate studies should be preferred, so as to better embrace the research component. Fgnievinski (talk) 17:32, 15 November 2014 (UTC)


Why isn't there a europe section? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:35, 30 June 2010 (UTC)

Europe is a continent, not a country or a State, and continents do not have education systems. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:45, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

Australia doesn't have an education system? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:17, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

What has Australia got to do with Europe? GermanicusCaesar (talk) 13:38, 25 April 2014 (UTC)


I added the 'refimprove section' to the entire section on Australia because there is only a single dubious reference anywhere in it to a single university's information. It also makes some specific claims I'd love to see backed up with references, e.g. "Research degrees generally require candidates to have a minimum of a second-class four-year honours undergraduate degree to be considered for admission to a Ph.D. programme (M. Phil are an uncommon route)." A claim I believe may be discipline specific. I suspect to the sciences because this was discussed in the previous sentence "Most of the confusion with Australian postgraduate programmes occurs with the research-based programmes, particularly scientific programmes.". In my discipline, doing a Research Masters is a very common route to a PhD in Australia or overseas.

In general postgraduate degrees in Australia are pretty straightforward: Graduate Certificate (6 months FT taught), Graduate Diploma (12 months FT taught), Master of [Arts/Science/etc] (12 to 24 months taught), research Masters degree (18 to 24 months research) which can be MA/MSc or MPhil depending on the University and Faculty, taught Doctorates like the J.D., and finally the PhD or D.Phil (24 to 48 months research). But as I've got no references for this I won't put it into the page until I turn those over. GermanicusCaesar (talk) 13:38, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

Non-postgraduate education[edit]

This edit [1] included a lot of information; unfortunately, most of it was about education in general -- even primary education -- which is clearly outside the scope of the present article. Fgnievinski (talk) 16:47, 15 November 2014 (UTC)