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The Experiences of Working While Studying:

A Case Study of Postgraduate Students at

International Islamic University Malaysia

Tumin (G1326629)
Background of The Study

• Working part-time has long been part of university students’

experiences. Various changes in terms of funding mechanism have
resulted in increasing numbers of students undertaking employment
during their academic studies (Watts & Pickering, 2000). Although
the exact numbers of students working part-time are difficult to
determine, several studies found that between 50 and 60 percent of
all university students are engaged in some forms of part-time jobs
(Curtis, 2007; Häkkinen, 2006).
Statement of Problem
• The issue might be due to the introduction of student loans, which
provides a large extent government funding for university fees. It is
then argued that obtaining debt as a direct consequence of studying
will encourage students to get involved in part-time employment
(Metcalf, 2003). Even though many countries, including Indonesia
and Malaysia, have allocated specific budget for education by
providing scholarships, but not all students have the privilege to get
them. Thus, loans become an alternative for postgraduate students
to continue their studies (Lucas & Lammont, 1998).
Statement of Problem
• With regard to the above-mentioned issue, researching and
investigating the experiences of postgraduate students who are
working while studying is considered significant. Especially at
International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), the research in this
area is still limited. This will contribute to future studies in the field of
education related to students’ experiences who are working while
Research Objective
• the study tries to investigate and explore the experience of working
while studying for post graduate students at international Islamic
university Malaysia and how they manage their time when working
while studying and how they graduate their study on time as
determined by university
Research Question

• The following research questions were used to guide the research in

answering the main objectives of the study:
• What are postgraduate students’ perceptions of working while
• What are the positive and negative effects of working while studying?
• What are the challenges faced by postgraduate students when
working while studying and how do they overcome the problems?
• What are suggestions and recommendations for students who are
working while studying?
Significance of The Study

• The research discussed the experience of working while

studying for postgraduate students at International Islamic
University Malaysia was to help in good understanding of
perception from their original opinions and experiences.
• It is expected that whoever who reads this research will
gate the information how to deal with students who are
working while studying at university.
• The informants mentioned the suggestions and
recommendations for other students who are working while
studying to improve and manage their time properly in
order to be successful in their working and studying.
Research methodology

• This qualitative study employed semi-structured interviews to explore

the experiences of postgraduate students of International Islamic
University Malaysia (IIUM) who are working while studying. A
qualitative method was used to explore more in-depth and rich data
for the study (Cresswell, 2012). A pilot study was carried out first to
find out whether postgraduate students are aware of the issue of
working while studying, and tested out specific research questions
and interviews. Later on, two informants were selected purposively
among postgraduate students who have more experiences and
information about this issue. The interviews were recorded using
voice recorder and transcribed later on.
Literature Review

• A variety of studies have examined the impacts of part-time

employment on full-time students. Manthei and Gilmore (2005), for
instance, considered that working part-time leaves less desired time
to study. In addition, Jogaratnam and Buchanan (2004) stated that
new students who choose to do part-time job while having full-time
academic load were most likely to suffer from stress. As many
studies suggested, indeed a combination of full-time studying and
part-time working can have a detrimental effect in the physical and
mental health of students. It can create the negative effect on
academic performance (Hovdhaugen, 2015; Creed, French & Hood,
2015; Darolia, 2014).
Literature Review
• Curtis and Shani (2002) believed that students who are working part-
time will most likely miss lecturers and feel that they could achieve
higher grades had they not been working. For that reason,
universities should be aware of contemporary student lives. They
should introduce an element of flexibility as a means of structuring
assignments and course requirements to support this (Curtis, 2007).
Positively, perhaps students might acquire personal transferable
skills, enhance employability and increase confidence in the world of
work (Watts & Pickering, 2000).
• Creed, P. A., French, J., & Hood, M. (2015). Working while studying at university: The relationship
between work benefits and demands and engagement and well-being. Journal of Vocational Behavior,
86, 48-57.
• Cresswell, J. W. (2012). Educational Research. USA: Person Education.
• Curtis, S. (2007). Students' perceptions of the effects of term-time paid employment. Education+
Training, 49(5), 380-390.
• Curtis, S., & Lucas, R. (2001). A coincidence of needs? Employers and full-time students. Employee
Relations, 23(1), 38-54.
• Curtis, S., & Shani, N. (2002). The effect of taking paid employment during term-time on students'
academic studies. Journal of Further and Higher Education, 26(2), 129-138.
• Curtis, S., & Williams, J. (2002). The reluctant workforce: Undergraduates' part-time employment.
Education+ Training, 44(1), 5-10.
• Darolia, R. (2014). Working (and studying) day and night: Heterogeneous effects of working on the
academic performance of full-time and part-time students. Economics of Education Review, 38, 38-50.
• Devlin, M., James, R., & Grigg, G. (2008). Studying and working: A national study of student finances
and student engagement. Tertiary Education and Management, 14(2), 111-122.