Why Being 50 Years Old Is Still Not Too Old For College

50 Year Old Student

Hundreds of thousands of students aged 50 and up to return to school each year. They obtain degrees to change occupations, advance in ones they began years ago, or pursue long-held interests.

Is 50 too old for college? No, you can never be too old to attend college and further your education. It can be intimidating to attend a school where many of your peers are younger than you. There are techniques to assist you in acclimatizing to being a student again if you’re worried about being in a college classroom.

While returning to school later in life may not be the best option for everyone, it is becoming a more appealing option. If you’re unsure about getting a bachelor’s degree after 50, there are a few factors to consider.

Am I Too Late For University?

A graduate degree can transform your performance and grasp of the subject at any age or stage of your career. Maybe you’re in the middle of a career you love, but you’d like to advance to the next level. Or perhaps you’ve realized later in life that the job you’re doing isn’t appropriate for you.

Acquiring an advanced degree in the field of interest might be advantageous to moving forward or in a different path. But when is it “too late” to return to a university?

Most people pursue bachelor’s degrees in their younger years. However, plenty of undergrads are career changers or ambitious individuals who never completed their bachelor’s degrees. Most of which are sighting for promotions as well.

While older and middle-aged students are uncommon in undergraduate classes, they make up a significant portion of graduate and doctoral programs. The country’s average age of graduate students is 33 years old.

This figure has been constant for decades, dating back to the 1990s. 22% of graduate students are over the age of 40. 14% are between the ages of 40 and 50, and 8% are above 50.

These figures illustrate that it’s never too late to further your education, whether you’re 40, 50, or even 60 years old. If you’re still on the fence, we reassure you that pursuing a master’s degree later in life is a wonderful choice.

Things You Need To Know When You’re 50 In A University

You Must Be Competitive In The Workforce

Obtaining a college diploma doesn’t always suggest that you must change your field of endeavor. A degree might also help you stay competitive in a tech-savvy job that is becoming increasingly younger.

Making this investment will add to your broad field experience. It will help you expand on current knowledge and provide you with additional competence. It should result in a significant increase in your annual revenue.

You Must Be Open To New Challenges

Adults that are 50 years old and above are likely to adopt a sedentary, unmoving lifestyle devoid of drive and fresh challenges. It can be troublesome on a psychological as well as a professional level. Bore out can cause employees to become stagnant, underperform, and lose confidence.

Returning to a medium that will keep you engaged professionally and intellectually is an exciting opportunity to grow. On the same note, it will also help you avoid psychological distress.

Challenging ourselves to perform better than we usually would is helpful to ourselves and the people around us. It has a positive impact on how your family and close friends perceive you.

You, as an individual, are setting a great example and paving the way for others to do the same. So, deciding to acquire a degree at the age of 50 and beyond is still advantageous.

Many Degrees Are Flexible

The so-called “competency-based approach” is a relatively recent formula for obtaining a degree. Many institutions now allow you to study at your speed without affecting your daily life.

But it might be difficult if you have a job where you can’t suddenly quit. Or if you have children still living with you or a significant other who relies on your assistance.

Colleges frequently allow you to study at your speed and pass tests. This is especially useful for professionals who have experience in the area but don’t have much free time.

You’ll be given credits once you’ve passed their tests, allowing you to continue or graduate. When you’ve decided that getting a degree is a good idea, check with your local universities to see if competency-based courses are offered.

You Can Get Money From The Government To Help You Pay For School

The federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998 may assist you in receiving government funding for your education. However, the help will still depend on your circumstances.

Dislocated workers may be entitled to support services and training through state-run programs under the legislation.

Before you get very excited, remember that money is a finite resource. In addition, you must meet specific criteria to be considered. If you were laid off, for example, you might be qualified, but not if you resign your position.

For more information, contact your state’s workforce or employment department. Ask about other resources for senior workers while you’re at it. Some states have their programs or might direct you to community agencies that can help.

Years Are You Planning To Work

The last thing you need to think about is how long you want to work after you graduate. Sometimes it’s just not worth it.

It’s critical to devote some extra time to thoroughly planning out your future profession. It can also determine whether or not you’re getting adequate “bang for your buck.”

While education is usually a fantastic decision, it can occasionally put a strain on your family’s finances.

There are other education-related costs to consider, such as transportation and books, which can be costly at times. Similarly, you’ll delegate essay or paper writing to services on occasion, and you’ll need to account for that as well.

Benefits Of Getting A Degree At 50

College At 50 Will Boost Cognitive Functioning

The brain’s traffic cop is cognitive skills. Memory and critical thinking are enhanced when you have good cognitive skills.

Seniors who prefer to read regularly and solve problems for fun have higher cognition and a lower risk of dementia. Doctors, therefore, recommend crossword puzzles as a type of mental gymnastics.

So, what do you do in college? There will be a lot of reading and problem-solving, and you will be able to rely on a lifetime of experience this time.

When it comes to problem-solving and analysis, senior pupils generally outperform their younger colleagues. They’ve been doing it for a long time, after all.

Meeting A Long-held Goal

Obtaining a degree is a lifelong desire for many adults. It is particularly true for those who have never completed a degree or attempted many times to return to school.

Going back to college is a method of finishing what they started and accomplishing a long-held desire. It can be for personal fulfillment, to inspire a kid or grandchild, or to be able to say, “I did it.”

Many universities now recognize previously acquired credits. Some can also translate workplace expertise into transfer credits or will grant credit for on-the-job training. And for many of these folks, the path may be substantially shorter than imagined.

Some universities have a long history of providing high-quality online programs to working adults. Some have the goal of ensuring that the decision to return to school pays off. Many of these colleges are developing new courses.

These new courses make this a viable option for even more individuals, including those in their 50s.

Tuition reductions like Champlain’s are rare in higher education. However, colleges are increasingly looking for innovative ways to make it easier for adult students to acquire a degree. In the last twenty years, the number of colleges offering online degrees has exploded.

Do You Need It?

There are many reasons why you shouldn’t pursue a new degree after the age of 50. One of the most important is that your years of experience have taught you far more than a degree can. While you may learn something new about the craft, the time and money spent will be in vain.

When it comes to acquiring a new degree that has nothing to do with your previous professional expertise, though, the thought process should be significantly different. Ask yourself if that newfound interest lasts? And how long will it last?

A new degree also implies you’re starting from scratch. It’ll take some time to hone your talents and advance to the level of a seasoned and well-paid professional.

Tip For Going Back To College In Your 50s

If you have decided to go back to a university at this age, we suggest taking an online course.

The popularity of online schooling has skyrocketed across the United States. These distance-learning systems bring the flexibility and convenience of a college degree program to places where it was previously unavailable.

Seniors with mobility issues would appreciate the simplicity of access to get one of the top degrees by logging in. Furthermore, many elders prefer not to travel at night, making online learning an ideal option.

It’s vital to think about what kinds of accommodations the college provides for senior students who want to attend on campus. Many seniors suffer from hearing or vision impairments, making learning in a traditional on-campus setting difficult.

The top institutions for older folks will cater to their specific requirements. To locate the appropriate program for you, look at our ranking of the finest online colleges and institutions.


Obtaining a college diploma at 50 is a commendable endeavor that will provide you with benefits. However, it would help if you first determined whether you can afford it and whether it is an investment that will yield a significant return.

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