Friday, January 8, 2016

What’s the Difference Between an MS and MBA?

By Xiao Lu
WES Student Advisor

It’s one of the most asked questions from prospective business school students: What’s the difference between an MBA and a master’s degree? Our webinar on business school admissions will answer that query and much more, but right now let’s explore the differences between these two types of graduate business programs. Here are the three main distinctions:

Program Length
The first difference is the length of each program. Usually, an MBA program requires at least two years of full-time study. You have some flexibility with how long it takes you to complete the degree, but typically an MBA degree must be finished in 5 years. A master’s program, in contrast, takes between about one and two years.

Range of Study
Another difference is the range of study for each program. MBA programs provide students with broad, integrated skill sets. For example, MBA students typically concentrate in an area such as marketing, management, or accounting, but they also have a core curriculum that includes courses like corporate finance or business technologies. An MBA is traditionally a program for professionals seeking advanced managerial positions. Master’s programs, on the other hand, usually provide specialized skills and knowledge in a specific business function, such as a master’s in accounting, or a master’s in information systems. These programs may be more suitable for recent college graduates who aim to add a professional credential to their skill set in a short period.
Work Experience
The last difference involves work experience. MBA programs are designed for professionals who have been working for several years and are now seeking advanced-level management jobs. When reviewing your application, admissions officers will focus on your work experience. On the other hand, a master’s degree may be considered as an add-on to a students' specialization before entering the job market; work experience is not as important in your application package for a master's degree.

If you have more questions about U.S. business school applications, sign up for our webinar archives to access our free webinar: Get Admitted to U.S. Business Schools. The speakers include:
  •  Shri Ramakrishnan, Assistant Director of Graduate Recruitment at Syracuse University’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management
  • Sherry Yu-Hsuan Liao, Master’s Candidate at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business

Watch today!

Xiao Lu is a Marketing Associate with the WES Advisor team. With a passion in both marketing and research, she manages WES Advisor social media accounts in an analytical and strategic way. Xiao was once an international student from China herself and holds a Master’s in Marketing Intelligence from Fordham University. She now enjoys her travel and life in the U.S. 

1 comment:

  1. We all should think of quality education as it shapes our life. Without a proper education, it’s very difficult to achieve life goal so I’d suggest people to be active when it comes to education and take a help of expert to choose right kind of education.
    Thanks for sharing such a great post which relate to education & career development.
    IDP Education - MBA in Australia


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