Students are often pleased to learn that joint Master of Arts/Ph.D. programs exist. Although these are very intensive programs, they are generally considered worth the effort. These programs are an excellent way to obtain two degrees, possibly representing very different fields, at the same time.

Difference About These Programs

In most cases, dual degree programs offer two very different types of programs. An example might include a Master of Arts combined with a Doctor of Medicine or a Master of Public Administration with a Juris Doctor. Graduates will receive a separate degree for each program.

These options are different from double majors, although they are sometimes mistaken for each other. With a double major, a single degree with two concentrations is involved. Because this path involves a single degree, it is usually completed in the same amount of time as would be expected of a single graduate degree.

Two Schools, Two Admissions

The admissions process involves applying to two schools. To pursue a dual degree, an applicant must be accepted at both schools. Each school will have a somewhat different application process, so prospective students need to familiarize themselves with it early for a smoother application. It is usual for new students to have a lot of questions, and having them answered before starting will make it easier to focus on academics.

Another thing that is important for students to remember is that, with two schools involved in the degree process, there will often be two different deadline dates. Knowing these dates is essential because some colleges make early decision policies that may obligate a student to choose that particular university.

Number of Credits Required

Dual degree students should plan on requiring 20 to 105 extra credits to graduate. One of the most significant factors to consider is whether the university uses quarter or semester systems. Knowing which type of system the university uses will help make the planning process much more manageable.

On average, dual degree students might require 140 to 225 credits to complete their programs and graduate. Knowing how many credits a degree requires makes it easier for students to think about how long they will take to complete classes. Most classes that students take during these programs are three or four credits each.

Longer Time in School

Dual degree programs may require five to six years of study. However, most students consider the effort worth the time, according to U.S. News & World Report. Following the guidance of academic advisors is a good way students can ensure that the courses they take are the most relevant.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that professions requiring graduate degrees are likely to see modest to substantial growth. Even though there is a considerable time commitment required of such programs, the reward is expected to outweigh any inconveniences that students might experience due to the time spent pursuing the dual degree program.

Joint Master of Art/Ph.D. programs require a lot of study time and effort. However, they are very rewarding to students due to the benefits of better employment.

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