If you have been out of the classroom for a while and are thinking of going back to study, you would be regarded as a mature age student. Fantastic - I'm thrilled that you are considering going on to learn more and improve your current situation.

You are never too old to start learning again and I get inspired by people who tell me how they've gone back to study and are learning something new.

Whether it's to follow a hobby, gain a qualification or to change your job prospects, I applaud you for looking into becomming a mature age student. Many people dream about it, but you have taken action.

Life is a continuous learning journey and every day, I go out of my way to learn something new. No matter what qualifications you have, there is still room to add more knowledge.

It's a very positive way to live your life and a far cry from those who believe they know it all and who often become professional dinosaurs.

The first step to becomming a successful mature age student is to realise that you can do it. Once you believe it can be done, the doors will open up for you and you will then have to decide in which direction to go.

The second step requires you to do research into what you would like to do and why. If you just commit to the first course you see advertised, you may end up learning about something you lose interest in. There are many courses being offered these days, including formal and informal, online and on campus. Some may lead to formal qualifications but many do not. Each course has it's own merits and it's up to you to decide which one is right for you.

My very own grandfather started and completed his first computer course in his 80s and he thoroughly enjoyed himself. There are many other stories like his that can only inspire you to begin a course on whatever it is you want to learn.

The final stage of becomming a successful mature age student is to start your course and commit to it. Try to plan your life around your course and put it high on your priority list so that other situations don't cause interruptions. This can be difficult, especially if you are raising a family or have heavy work committments. However, where there's a will, there's always a way, and you will find a way if you are totally committed. Ultimately commitment and enjoyment together should lead you to experience the satisfaction of successful completion.

Lastly, enjoy. Interacting with a potentially younger crowd in your class should be taken as a positive as it gives you the opportunity to mingle with people outside your normal circle of friends. Try to learn from them and just be yourself!

In the meantime,
Good Luck with everything you do,

Vanessa McCallum
Author of University Wisdom

Author's Bio: 

Vanessa McCallum began her University degrees in 1990 after travelling the world for 12 months at age 18. She studied Science and Engineering at Monash University in Clayton, Melbourne Australia. While Vanessa was at University she tutored High School students in Maths and Science. Her experiences with her students led to her desire to help other students, which culminated in the writing of this book.

Vanessa's studies at University were enhanced by a six-month working opportunity in Switzerland with ABB (Asea Brown Boveri). This was a great experience allowing her to network with other students from all over the world. She also took the opportunity to realise one of her life-long goals of climbing the Matterhorn. These positive experiences have enriched Vanessa's horizons enough for her to want others to achieve their goals as well.

Vanessa is now at a stage in her life where she is building businesses and creating passive income so she is less reliant on her formal job. This will free up her time to work on her own projects and spend more time with her family. Her ultimate goal is to help others find this freedom. This book is her first attempt to help students organise and balance their lives, so that their success and eventual freedom is possible.