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What is the Difference Between Major and Degree and How to Choose

Majors
On education
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Nadine

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Every student has to make big decisions when they start college and choose their degree and major. Yes, a degree is something, and a major is something else completely. Some people might confuse a major and a degree, but they’re not the same. It’s important to understand the difference and think thoroughly. After all, choosing a major and a degree will shape the rest of your college journey and, ultimately, your professional life. 

 

So Educatly is here to help you understand the differences between a major and a degree and how each one affects your college experience. We'll also discuss some tips for choosing the right major for you so that you can make an informed decision about your college journey.

 

What is the Difference Between major And degree?

A degree is an academic title earned by completing undergraduate or graduate-level coursework at a college or university. A bachelor’s is a degree, and so is a master’s, a foundation, and an associate's.

 

A degree generally takes four years to complete, although some degrees, such as associate’s degrees, can be earned in two years or less. The length of time required to earn a degree also varies by country. In the United States, for instance, it typically takes longer to earn a degree than in Europe.

 

The Difference Between Major and Degree

 

On the other hand, a major is a field of concentration within a degree program. When you take your degree and study history or medicine, history or medicine is your major. It’s the area you study, and it’s very important to choose your major, just like you choose to get a bachelor’s or a master’s degree. 

 

Sometimes, depending on the institution, students may be able to declare multiple majors within the same degree program. In general, however, most undergraduate degrees require students to complete between 120 and 180 credit hours of coursework. This coursework is typically divided into General Education requirements (which all students must complete regardless of their major) and requirements specific to the student’s chosen field of study.

 

How Do You Choose Your Major and Degree?

There are a few things to consider when deciding on your degree and major. One is what degree you should get next. If you’re starting your higher education journey, then you can start with a bachelor’s. If you want to continue your education in the same field, you would get a master’s afterward. For example, if you want to learn something new and get into a new field and you already have your bachelor’s degree, then maybe you can get your foundation degree in a new field or a new bachelor’s altogether.

 

Obviously, sometimes choosing your degree level is pretty straightforward, and sometimes you need to have a major in mind to know the next step. Another thing to consider is whether you want to go to a four-year college or university or if you want to pursue a two-year degree. Two-year degrees typically cost less and take less time to complete, but four-year degrees often lead to better job opportunities.

 

The Difference Between Major and Degree

 

If you already know what you want to study, then choosing a specific major is the next step. Think of your interests, hobbies, skills, academic strengths, and the workforce demands and future career prospects. These are all factors that can help you determine what major to pursue in college.

 

If you browse through Educatly programs, you will find that there are foundation degrees, courses, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees (Ph.D.) There are also 21 majors, such as Business & Management, Health & Medicine, and Computer & IT, and 250+ major concentrations or minor fields of study.

 

Now that you know the difference between a major and a degree and how to choose both, you can start your study abroad journey and start applying. Just sign up to Educatly, update your profile, and you can browse through 65,000+ programs abroad and get matched with the most suitable opportunity for you.

 

What are you waiting for? Start now.

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