Why did you choose to study online?

I needed a course which was part time and flexible enough to work around a young family and work. 

How did you find out about your course at the University of Derby?

I found it via the Ergonomics Society Website. It was the only Ergonomics Masters course listed as online or distance learning and available part time.

What benefits have you found studying online?

The benefits of studying online are the flexibility, no travel, the majority of resources including journals, advice from tutors and discussions with fellow students which are all available online from your home!

The lecturers and the support they have given me was fantastic. The course based tutors were consistently accessible, helpful, supportive and encouraging.

Interaction with other students was highly encouraged and supported via the forum, a residential weekend, and externally at conferences, social networking sites and phone/text.

How have you managed the workload of studying?

Keeping up motivation isn't always easy, as the course is quite long and much of it is done in the evenings after the children are asleep.  Assignment based assessment allows flexibility and staff/other students helped to keep motivation up! Fitting studying into your life works well if you plan and manage time well.

I found that it was not always easy to motivate myself to study online, especially towards the end, but it was probably no more difficult than going to lectures or sitting exams. Unless you have a problem with motivation or aren't really clear why you are doing the course, I don't think it is a huge problem overall.

I definitely recommend online learning, and can't recommend this course more highly.

It is flexible; with excellent written resources; additional reading and availability of journals and texts etc.; very helpful to have the forum to bounce around ideas, suggestions; queries or just release stress and the tutors were fantastic.

Be clear why you want to do the course, and what you hope to gain from it to stay motivated. Be committed - it is quite a bit of work, not an easy ride, and as with anything, you get more out of it the more you put into it.  Interact with other students; there is a lot to be gained from the forum and outside of it in terms of supporting each other, keeping up motivation and helping with coursework. It can be worked around family life, but plan it.  Finally, enjoy it!

What are you doing now and what are your future plans?

My NHS contract (service development) came to an end but I am hoping to go into clinical governance/risk management. In the meantime, I will work for myself doing occupational health/ergonomic assessments for private organizations.

Find out more about our MSc Ergonomics - accredited by the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors (IEHF).