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What is a Bachelor’s Degree?
A bachelor’s degree is an undergraduate degree that students choose to study at a university. It is known as the most basic university degree. Getting this degree can allow you to learn and grow and give you access to many job opportunities. Bachelor’s degrees usually take about four years to complete, give or take, depending on the subject you have chosen and the country you are studying in. For example, in the United States, they take around four years to complete and amount to about 120 credit hours. Students choose from many subjects to study, such as psychology, nursing, business or computer science, based on what they are passionate about. There are online and in-person university bachelor’s degrees, though online degrees are increasing in popularity nowadays too.
Types of Bachelor’s degrees
There are several types of bachelor’s degrees, from the Bachelor of Arts (B.A) degrees to the Bachelor of Sciences degrees, so it’s important to understand what each one is if you are applying for a degree. Here are some of the most popular types of bachelor’s degrees:
The Bachelor of Arts degree is for students who want to study a program in the liberal arts or humanities and social sciences fields, such as economics, literature or history. However, they do include some maths and sciences courses, especially if you are in a liberal arts school that gives a more well-rounded education. In general, however, a bachelor of arts degree is more theoretical than a bachelor’s of science. The only exception to this rule is in the United Kingdom, as there a bachelor’s of arts degree includes all fields of study, even scientific subjects.
On the other hand, a Bachelor’s of science (B.Sc.) degree is another undergraduate degree that combines theoretical knowledge and practical research. Students who choose to study this type of bachelor’s degree study subjects in Natural Sciences, Engineering, Technology and Mathematics. In some cases, some kinds of degrees that are typically Bachelor’s of arts degrees, such as Business and Economics degrees, may also be bachelor’s of science if they have a research-heavy focus.
A Bachelor’s of Applied Science (BAS) degree is a course that has many practical applications like a Nursing bachelor’s degree. That means the degree is more practical than theoretical. In Canada and the Netherlands, a Bachelor’s of Applied Science degree is a professional degree and can be equal to a Bachelor’s Engineering degree. A Bachelor’s of Engineering (B.Eng.) degree is a bachelor’s degree that focuses on an engineering subject. In general, these degrees take from 3 to 5 years to be completed. These degrees are equal to bachelor’s of science degrees and have many areas for specialisation.
A Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A) is a bachelor’s degree that focuses on Business Administration. Students in this kind of degree study courses like Accounting, Economics, Management and more. These are more for students who want to get a more comprehensive management degree than a typical Bachelor’s of Art or Science in Business. A Bachelor’s Laws Degree, known as an LL.B, is for students who are studying a bachelor’s degree in the area of Law. These bachelor’s degrees are less widespread than other bachelor’s degrees and don’t exist in some countries yet. For example, this degree type doesn’t exist in the United States, though it’s popular in the United Kingdom.
Benefits of studying a bachelor’s degree
After learning about the different kinds of bachelor’s degrees, you might be asking yourself why you should even study a bachelor’s degree. Here are some of the reasons students choose to study a bachelor’s degree, rather than forego it:
Higher pay and better jobs
The first benefit to studying a bachelor’s degree is getting jobs with higher pay than what you could have gotten without it. College graduates make more money than those who simply have a high school degree, even while working the same position. You can also get better jobs, as well as be eligible for more jobs, as most jobs actually require a bachelor’s degree as a prerequisite. Some jobs that require a bachelor’s degree are nurses, financial managers, mental health counselers, project managers, marketing specialists and many, many more.
Adding to the previous point, employers are more likely to hire people with a bachelor’s degree as they consider them more knowledgeable than those without. Employers want people who are prepared to work and have the necessary foundation knowledge, as well as hard workers. Whether you study a bachelor’s in arts or sciences, you can bet your employer will be more impressed and more likely to hire you with a bachelor’s degree as it means you more likely than not have the previous qualities.
Another reason why you should pursue a bachelor’s degree is the networking opportunities. When you attend classes, you have many chances to network with professors, students and professionals in your field of study who give guest lectures or sponsor projects. This can help you build a valuable network, learn about potential careers and get advice from mentors that can help you your whole career long.
Gain new skills
An advantage to earning a bachelor’s degree is gaining new skills and knowledge. For example, you’ll gain skills like critical thinking skills, creative skills and problem solving skills. You’ll also learn to communicate effectively, both written and verbally. These key skills will help you during the course of your career, and also help you to develop your personality.
Follow your passions
A bachelor’s degree is also a great chance to follow your passions and study a subject you are passionate about. You’ll get to explore it both theoretically and practically and learn everything you could possibly want to learn. After pursuing your bachelor’s degree in the subject, you might want to go on to pursue a master’s or PhD degree in the same area of passion if you want to further develop your knowledge.
Enrolment requirements for bachelor’s degrees
There are several enrollment requirements for bachelor’s degrees if you want to join the program:
- Past grades: you’ll need to submit your grades from high school. Some bachelor’s programs will have a minimum GPA while others may not.
- High school diploma or equivalent: most bachelor’s degrees will need you to have finished a high school level degree in order to be eligible.
- Standardized test scores (for example the SAT or ACT): some bachelor’s degrees still need standardized test scores like the SAT or ACT for students to become eligible for the study programs.
- Letters of recommendation: some programs might ask for these letters from high school teachers or other professionals who can recommend you for a certain degree or talk about subjects you are good about.
- Personal essays: some universities ask for personal essays or letters for motivation asking why you want to join a certain bachelor’s degree program. In these, you also talk about your experience and the areas you are interested in.