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Thread: Studying mummies

  1. #19
    Sal Guest


    Babydust, I studied my grad dip of psychology last year full-time, I had my last exam when I was 32w preggers. I found it fine, except I was extra tired and fell asleep in front of my books on a few occasions LOL.

  2. #20

    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    Thank you everyone for sharing all your experiences and hopes! It's so inspiring to hear so many stories and realise people do the study/baby thing all the time.

    Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, Amben...

    I'm a postgrad student: full-time PhD. I've been trying to get my head around the whole baby/study balance thing. I'm lucky as I don't have any classes to attend as such - unless I have to teach. The bloody enormous thesis is another matter! Childcare at uni is apparently awesome, though, and heaps of women in my department somehow manage to balance academic career and kids. DH is set on a great path and there's no way he can be the stay-at-home parent, either financially or in terms of his training. Plus with funding etc. this is really the only time I can do this. I get some maternity leave too which is an unexpected bonus.

    I thought I wanted to devote myself entirely to motherhood and this is really the thing that bothers me. Will I let our kids down or will I enrich and equip them in other ways?? A big question. At the very least I will absolutely have to go part-time after kids if we have them sooner rather than later. I imagine it will be unimagineably tough.

    Sal - re superwomen: I certainly won't be one. If I'm wearing my undies on the outside, it'll be because I'm too sleep deprived to realise I've put them on over my jeans and certainly not as part of a superhero costume!!

  3. #21
    Sal Guest


    LOL Queenie!! I haven't worn my undies on the outside, but I have worn my tops inside out on a number of bleary-eyed occasions - does that count?!?!

    Wow, PhD, that would be really tough. You can did it part-time OK?

  4. #22


    Theresa, I put all my course fees on HECS (or whatever the new name is). If your partner is working you have to apply for whatever they now call Ausstudy which is means tested. In regards to books, the costs of them depends on what you're studying. But you can usually pick them up second hand at the Uni book shop or on Ebay or students put notices up on notice boards. You can also borrow most texts at the uni library (and they almost always have a set that can't be borrowed out which means you should always be able to park at the library to read what you need to read). Most universities have a child care centre on campus that you can use and fees are generally discounted for full time students. But fees vary from place to place so give them a call to find out the costs. HTH.


  5. #23
    cazoraz Guest


    Quote Originally Posted by Theresa
    Just wondering what government assitance (if any) is available to studying parents with a partner that works?

    I'm still tossing up studying (I'm a terrible decision maker) but am thinking about the costs of daycare as well as the stuff like textbooks etc when we are on only 1 wage now and not paying for these things, but not having the $$ spare either.

    Would love to hear your stories from the financial aspect as well.
    Depending on how much your partner earns, there are other options available to you from Centrelink. Austudy (for over 25yr olds, Youth Allowance for under 25yrs olds) is payable to anyone whose combined income is less than around $860 per fortnight. Austudy is around $365 per fortnight.

    Alternatively, you can apply for Parenting Payments, which goes by the same income tests and is the same amount as Austudy, but has extra benefits of reduced childcare costs. If you are studying and receive the full amount of Parenting Payments & Child Care Benefits (basically combined income must be less than $33k per year), you can also apply for JET childcare. JET childcare is an extra subsidy for parents studying to go back into the workforce, and reduces your childcare costs down to $2 per day for up to 50hors per week.

    see this site for more details:

    Hope that helps!

  6. #24

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...


    Hi Theresa,
    Have you considered starting off as Part Time study?
    That way your costs are generally half of what Full Time would be...
    I started PT this year, and had Aidyn in 2 days of childcare per week (works out to $50/week after you take the CCB out based on my DP's income)
    I applied for through HECS to pay for my subjects, so havent had to pay a cent for that yet.
    I also bought all of my textbooks 2nd hand (there is a textbook exchange website where students sell their 2nd hand textbooks, I can give you the URL if you ever think you will need it in the future!)
    The textbooks CAN be really expensive though... I am doing 3 subjects next semester and my textbook list is well over $500! And unfortunately I am having trouble finding them all 2nd hand too.
    Might have to utilise photocopying or the library for some of them I think.

    Queenie - WOW at doing your PhD! That would be so hard... good on you for keeping at it!!

  7. #25


    Ambah, you're doing Nursing aren't you? What books are you having problems getting? If I have it and don't need it you can buy mine. But there is also a 2nd hand shop here in Melb that might have it - a few blocks from work. If they stock them 2nd hand I'm happy top pick them up and post them to you. Have you checked Ebay?

  8. #26

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    House of the crazy cat ladies...


    Theresa I have PMed you the URL.

    MG - I have been looking on Ebay but have not had any luck... Only the USA sellers seem to have them, and even then most of them are not exactly the ones I need.
    I will send you a PM now...

  9. #27


    I am thinking of going back to study for next year. I will be doing my Masters of Education (ESL) or my Masters of Educational Studies (Administration). Haven't decided which path I want to go down. We are having a HUGE influx of African Families here in Perth, especially in the area I work. So I am thinking I might go back to do ESL studies but then again I would like to move into Admin and the Educational Studies would be a great way to do that.

    I will be studying part time and working full time and also running around after the 3 kids!!! I have studied with kids before. In 1995 I went to Uni for the first time to begin my Bachelor of ECE and then found out I was pregnant! I had Emma in the December and she came to Uni the following year for a few of my classes. One of my lecturers from the end of 2nd semester 1995 had a baby shower for me!!! LOL she brought in this HUGE basket of goodies for me and said that she was really happy to hear taht I wasn't going to give up Uni once the baby had arrived. I took Emma in to see her the following year and she told me that if anyone gave me a hard time to let her know LOL.

    When Em was about 8mths old we moved to Warracknabeal and I studied externally part time but because of the move I was no longer working which made Studying a little bit easier. I found a fantastic Family Day care provider who lived on a small farm and Em loved going there and seeing all the animals! That made studying so much easier! I did a prac in Horsham for 2 weeks (a 120kms round trip) and Em went to day care full time.

    We moved 12 months later to Bordetown and I was still studying and while on my Kindy prac found out I was pregnant. Jack was born in the mid year break (good timing) but the lecturers at Uni were great and told me to get assignments in when I could etc as I was so tired, especially studying and looking after a 2 1/2 yr old! When Jack was born I used to study when he slept (which luckily was most of the time) and once he was 12 weeks he used to go to day care one afternoon a week (feed him before and then when I picked him up) and once he was 6 months he was on a bottle so he went 2 afternoons. Then we moved again!!! This time to Loxton.

    I had a 4 week prac this time and my XH's Mum came and looked after the kids for me. They usually went to day care but couldn't get them in for the full time hours. Then in October 1999 we speerated and then I moved back to Adelaide. I made the decision to go to Uni full time for my final year and it was great. I got JET support to pay my day care fees and had very few contact hours. I had one prac at the beginning of the year (carried over from 2nd semester the year before... wasn't a good time for me to try and teach!). My final year I passed everything with a credit average and still got to be home with Emma and Jack one day a week (Fridays).

    Now I don't know how I will go ... Emma is in Yr 6, Jack in Yr 2 & Asha is now 2. Can I study part time and work full time ... who will look after the kids? Ryan doesn't finish his MBA until the end of 1st Trimester next year so should I wait .... anywho ... This is really long winded and was only supposed to be a quick reply (hence the name of the box LOL) .. apologies.

    Good luck to all those studying, thinking of studying and congratulations to those of you who have finished!


  10. #28
    jbie Guest


    i'm starting law this semester 2 (doing a full load of 3-4 subjects), and will be doing my year end exams at 28 weeks pg..

    i was going to take next semester 1 off (right after tbe birth!), but i do need to study one subject, starting when bub is 4 weeks old!! :S
    but, my uni allows distance/on-line study, so i won't need to go onto campus at all, and even if i do, they have a childcare centre, and i could always get mum or sis to help out occasionally...

    i figure.. hopefully i'm not too wrecked to handle 7 hours a week of study.. plus will get all the help i can from DH and family..
    fingers crossed huh

  11. #29



    Congrats on your PhD work, it is tough but worth it in the end (I just finished mine in 2002 and hubby in 2004). What field are you in, we might even know each other, lol!

    How you will cope will depend very much on what year of your PhD you are in. If you have just started or are in your second year, you should be fine as bub's routine will be managable by the time you get to your thesis stage, although your DH will need to help a bit as writing part-time or on weekends does really drag it out for a long and frustrating time.

    If you are now in your final/thesis stage things get more tricky. I would suggest that you aim to have the first full draft of your thesis complete BEFORE you have bubs. Thesis writing is very demanding and you really need solid blocks of time to 'get into the flow', which will not be possible with a small baby. If you leave it till bubs is a little bigger you will find that you will have forgotten a lot of the detail and will have to go back over work which is an extra burden that you do not need. Corrections and changes to an existing draft are much less demanding and can be done here and there to fit in with bub's routine, and you spend a more of this time waiting for supervisors to return your draft rather than the corrections themselves.

  12. #30



    I didn't know this thread existed (even if it is old), but I'm wondering how everyone is doing now? I have one final subject to do this coming semester to complete my Masters and it feels like I've been on a marathon. I've only been doing it part-time (with work and a baby) but I feel like I've been studying forever.

    I love learning new things (especially now they relate to work) and the interaction with other students, but I'm so over assignments and exams.

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