Master’s Degree vs PhD: Which Is Right for You
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What Are the Main Differences Between PhD and Master’s?
Level of study. A Master’s degree is the first level of graduate study, while a PhD is a terminal degree, or the highest degree you can earn. Length of program. Master’s programs typically span one or two years, while PhD study may take three to seven years. Cost. Since a PhD program is significantly longer than a Master’s, it may have a higher cost. However, some PhD programs come with stipends, fellowships, or teaching assistant jobs for qualifying students, which can help defray costs. Costs will also vary by school and location. Research component. PhD programs are often research-heavy and may require you to complete and defend a dissertation to earn your degree. A Master’s program may involve a capstone course or thesis, but it won’t be as in-depth as a doctoral dissertation.
How Do Career Prospects Differ?
Differences in Length Between PhD Vs Master’s
Average Costs for Both Advanced Degrees
Benefits of Each Program
Which Is Right for You?
How to Cover the Costs of Both Advanced Degrees
Scholarships and grants. You can find scholarships and grants from the Office of Federal Student Aid, universities, and private organizations. Some companies also offer tuition assistance to their employees. Personal savings. If you have money saved up, you could use it toward your degree program. Income from a part-time job. Working on- or off-campus could also help you earn money that you can put toward living expenses and supplies. Federal student loans. Borrowing money from the government is also an option. You could take out Direct unsubsidized loans and/or grad PLUS loans, both of which come with fixed interest rates. Private student loans. If you still have a gap in funding, consider borrowing from a private lender, such as a bank, credit union, or online loan company. Borrowers with strong credit may qualify for a competitive interest rate.
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