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The Difference in Degrees

The Difference in Degrees

Remember, any college degree is better than no college degree!

Elizabeth Hoyt

July 02, 2013

Do you know the difference between an AA, BA, BS, BFA or MFA? You should – especially if one is going to have your name on it in the near future!

Distinguishing the different degrees can easily become alphabet soup, unless you understand what each really means.

It’s easy to confuse bachelor’s degrees with one another, since the variations are comprised of general education requirements, along with some elective courses.

In the United States, there is not a set standard program for each that colleges must follow, which is why there can be many variations on the two degrees. There are also schools within the U.S. that award BS degrees for all majors, like MIT.

They’re also similar in that both types of bachelor’s degrees typically require four-years of full-time study in order to complete the amount of academic courses necessary.

Such graduation degree requirements can vary and usually depend on the school, major and the intensity of a particular student’s schedule.

You likely won’t have to choose which degree you’d like to work towards because it will automatically fall under one of the three categories once you’ve chosen an area of study.

Also, keep in mind that most employers pay little attention to the difference between types of bachelor’s degrees when making hiring decisions.

Should you continue your education, a master’s degree would be the next level of completion. Even further is a doctorate (PhD), which is a highly specialized, expert degree.

We’re breaking down the tiers of degrees so you can get a better understanding of what you’re working towards.

Certificate or Diploma –


• Most likely offered within a technical or vocational field, as in the occupational fields of an associate’s degree

• Often leads to a specified job within a field, such as a Certificate in Office Administration


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