What is a Master’s Degree?

Gaining a university education is a valuable means for people to improve their lives. There are many benefits that can materialize from gaining higher education. Those who attend college have easier access to the available job opportunities in the market. This is because a college or university education equips them with the necessary skills to qualify for these jobs. People who are armed with a university degree are able to advance in their careers while improving on their personal growth.

Possessing a degree normally provides evidence that someone has gained university education. At the university level, students may choose to go for various degrees in their desired careers. One of these is a master’s degree, which is the second level of university education after the undergraduate level. The duration of this academic degree often takes between one and three years before completion. Of course, this is dependent on the practical training and courses involved in the discipline.

Features of a Master’s Degree

There are various characteristics that distinguish a master’s degree from other levels of university academic degrees. One of these features is its duration, which usually takes a maximum of three years to complete. This is in contrast to other academic degrees like the doctoral programs or bachelor degrees. These academic levels have been known to take a long time to complete. For example, undergraduate students have to study for at least four years before graduating with a bachelor’s degree. For those engaging in a doctoral program, the maximum period before graduation can peak at eight years.

Financial aids are the other feature that differentiates master’s degree from other academic qualifications at the university level. While students of doctoral programs receive a lot of financial aid, this is not the same case for those undertaking master’s degree programs. It is common for these students to receive a little financial grant that only covers part of their education. On the other hand, doctoral programs accord students with numerous types of financial assistance like loans, assistantships and scholarships among others.

Master’s degree also exhibits some flexibility with regards to the examination. Some programs allow students to undertake a written thesis while others permit them to undertake a comprehensive examination at the end of these programs. In contrast, some academic programs like the doctoral ones demand that students must submit a dissertation. This dissertation aims to unravel new knowledge in the program and must be publishable.

Types of Master’s Degree

A master’s degree can be subdivided into various categories. One of them is the Master of Arts (MA) degree program, which is one of the most common. This course focuses on one important element that normally culminates in the submission of a research project. It is similar to the Master of Science (MSc.) degree program; another popular type of master’s degree.

Master of Laws (LLM) is another kind of master’s degree and denotes those undertaking a master’s degree course in law. In most cases, it takes one year to complete for those who undertake it full-time. The other branch of master’s degree is the Master of Business Administration (MBA), which caters for people who need to advance their qualifications in management.

All master’s degree programs are advantageous since they symbolize an individual’s advancement in knowledge and skills. They are basically an upgrade of an undergraduate degree. Those who have a master’s degree are in a good position to secure jobs than those with bachelor’s degrees.

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