Undergraduate Degree

So what is an undergraduate degree, and who may be interested in obtaining one?  Let’s take a look at what path one may take from high school moving forward, and where the undergraduate degree comes into play.

The student who graduates from high school has many decisions to make. He will decide whether to go to college or enter the work force with only his high school diploma. If he does decide to go to college, there will be a lot of other forks in the road and the decision-making practically never ends.

The first decision he has to make is what course to major in. Typically, a student takes courses towards getting an undergraduate degree right after graduating from high school. It is the first post-high school higher education that the student gets into. The term “undergraduate degree” is the generic colloquial term used for a Bachelor of Science or a Bachelor of Arts degree, and it is even used to refer to an associate degree.

A bachelor’s degree is more often than not received by a students who finish all the subjects required of his institution for his course in three or four years. Note that the given period is the norm but what is really important is for a student to finish the required number of credit hours, which vary from major to major. For a variety of reasons, students may finish in a shorter or a longer period than the norm.

An associate degree, on the other hand, is typically finished within two years, and may be enrolled in by a student who either does not want to spend four years studying or plans to follow through with getting a bachelor’s degree later on. It may also be awarded to students who are pursuing a bachelor’s degree after having finished two years in college. An associate degree is limited in how it can help a person who earns it. There are still many white-collar jobs that are exclusive to people who have earned their bachelor’s degree.

An undergraduate degree is usually required to get into graduate degree programs, like the Master’s Degree, Doctorate Degree and some professional degrees. A bachelor’s degree, rather than an associate degree, is mandatory for people who want to earn their Master’s, as well as those who want to become doctors of medicine or lawyers. Again, the required major would depend on the field of graduate school the student wants to enroll in. For example, someone desiring to get into medical school would most likely need to have a Bachelor of Science degree in one of the natural sciences. Someone who wants to get a Master’s Degree in the field of education would perhaps be required to have a bachelor’s degree in a similar field. Those who want to get into law school may need to have a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Someone who wants to get his Doctorate Degree needs to have earned his Master’s, in addition to the bachelor’s degree which he will be required to have for his Master’s Degree. Again, the prerequisites depend on the institution the student wants to enter and the field of specialization he intends to go into.

Perhaps, it is good for a high school graduate to sit down and come to a decision on how far he wants to go education-wise. This way, he can plan just what kind of courses to take and what undergraduate degree and graduate degree he wants to earn.

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