Degrees in US education system

Associate Degree

It is an intermediate level between the end of school and the bachelor’s degree. This degree is awarded after two years of study at a college program leading to a bachelor’s degree after completing two additional years of training.

Bachelor’s Degree

In the US, the first stage of higher education (after high school graduation) normally lasts four years (in some professions, such as architecture, the need to study 5 years) and  training ends Bachelor’s degree . Education at this level is called in English undergraduate. It can be divided into two two-year unit with an intermediate degree of Associate. In this case, after the first two years of junior colleges (where education is cheaper), you can change the institution.

When you receive a Bachelor’s Degree you become a so-called graduate student. Education at a level above undergraduate (after the Bachelor’s Degree), is called graduate (or postgraduate, which is increasingly used in the UK) and can end:

  • Master (duration 1-2 years);
  •  Master, and future doctoral studies (another 3 years);
  • assignment immediately doctoral degree (not less than 4 years)

Master’s Degree

Master’s degree is not assigned to all high schools, but only those who have the appropriate training and have passed the necessary certification. In the arts, humanities and other purely academic areas, schools offer degree of Master of Arts (MA). In the technical sector – Master of Science (MS). The university business school graduate university students to the level Master of Business Administration (MBA). Besides, part of the name of the degree can be the subject of learning, such as Master of Science in Electronics.

There are also the extent to which the title are narrow specialization. This is done to confirm the high professional qualifications and, as a rule, they do not lead to a higher degree. This is – professional degree.

It is important to know which degrees are available in a particular university and whether you can do after that to study at higher levels.

Education Master’s degree lasts from one to two years, or from 30 to 60 credit hours. Credit hour – a measure of how busy a student studies. Nominally, each credit hour equals one academic hour sessions per week during the semester. But in some specialties, the student may receive one credit hour for 2 or 3 hours of weekly academic workshops. In addition, it includes a few more hours of independent work (with its obvious results in the form of course work, etc.). Lectures and practical sessions for each subject take about two to four hours per week. Universities do not set limits the number of courses for which a student can enroll, but the tuition fee is charged depending on the number of credit hours of those items for which the student has applied. Therefore, enrolling in courses necessary to calculate forces to, then, “failed” the exam, do not lose the money spent, as well as payment is collected in the beginning of the year for those items that the student is going to listen, and not passed examinations.

To get a degree, you must have a minimum of 30 credit hours to get score of “B” (good). Number of classes in the training program, you can choose among the proposed academic courses. In addition, most programs require independent research (thesis) to obtain a Master’s degree (this requirement depends on the expertise and specific university). It is conducted under the guidance of a professor or professor’s advice and to help in the selection of research programs. Here the student should be different original thinking and creativity.

Doctoral Degree

Education for the degree of Doctor leads to the title of Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in the arts, humanities and technical sciences, or Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in disciplines related to teaching. Also, there are a number of special doctoral degrees.

The basis of doctoral programs – independent research, leading to doctoral dissertation.

Doctor degree is the next degree after master’s . However, in the United States you can become a doctor without a master’s degree. Some universities have courses for a doctorate without passing a Master. Accordingly, the duration of such programs is greater than the length of programs for those who already have a master’s degree. There are also combinations of the program, learning in which you can get a Master’s degree and then the Doctor. The duration of these programs is usually less than the training by two degrees separately.

You can also post-baccalaureate study in a year or two to prepare for the doctoral program. In this case, the candidate is not required to have a Master’s degree. After this training, you can apply for admission to the doctoral program. If the university approves it, begins training leading to a doctorate.

First-professional Degrees

Professional degrees – are the degree recognized by the U.S. Department of Education is necessary for the subsequent licensing. They are given in the following areas: veterinary (DVM), theology (Mdiv, BD), medicine (MD), optometry (OD), osteopathic medicine (DO), orthopedics (PodD, DP, DPM), right (LLB, JD), dentistry (DDS, DMD), rabbinical training (MHL, Rav), pharmacology (Bpharm, PharmD), chiropractic (DC, DCM).