The thought of heading off to college can be exciting. But it can also be nerve-wracking and slightly confusing at times.

For instance, you may know the exact future career path you’re interested in, but in order to get there, you must choose the exact right degree. And, since most degrees are called by their shorter acronyms, things can get confusing!

If you’ve seen the acronym BS floating around, you may have wondered what kind of degree this is. Let’s start by addressing the elephant in the room. BS does NOT stand for what you may have assumed at first. Yes, there is a good joke in there but no, that’s not what it stands for.

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, let’s figure out what a BS degree really is.

What is a BS Degree?

BS is actually an abbreviation of a Bachelor of Science degree. Generally speaking, this degree will take you four years to complete and will require 120 credits. Having said this, with so many online programs available these days, it is now possible to earn this degree in a shorter amount of time through an accelerated degree program. (Oh, and you can usually save a LOT of money going this route as well and we’ll show you some strategies how!)

As the name suggests, the career fields that will be related to this specific degree are in the science world. So this means careers in health-related professions, technology, math, engineering and similar areas.

What are Some BS Program Examples?

One of the great things about BS programs is that they are available in a wide range of subject areas. And, depending on the school you choose, you may find they may offer BS subjects that you may not think of when speculating a traditional science programs. Subjects like sports science and behavioral science.

Here are some other examples of available BS degree programs offered at most institutions:

  • Animal behavior
  • Neuroscience
  • Statistics
  • Interior design
  • Geography
  • Game design

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, more and more colleges and universities are offering online courses to help adults students earn their degree. Some common online BS degree programs include:

  • Public health
  • Sports management
  • Mathematics
  • Information technology
  • Environmental science
  • Electrical engineering

One of the valuable things we do here at OnlineDegree.com is to offer courses you can take for FREE.  This helps figure it out if you even like the subject, and then you could apply those credits to your BS degree to lower your cost of college. Take a look through our courses, we think we offer some pretty amazing subjects like astronomy and astrophysics, biochemical engineering, computer science, oceanography and much more!

What is the Average BS Salary?

According to the website PayScale.com, as of September 2019, the median annual salary for those holding a Bachelor of Science degree was $69,000. Obviously salary can vary greatly depending on the industry and job title, that’s why this is a median average. Other factors that can possibly affect salary would include location, employer, skill sets, work experience, and more.

What Careers Can Result from a BS Degree?

A BS degree can open the doors to many varied career paths. In fact, as we briefly mentioned, a Bachelor of Science degree offers myriad majors, including engineering, health sciences, business, and technology. With so many options and possibilities offered is it any wonder thousands of students, traditional and adult, choose to earn their BS degree each year?

Whether you’re a recent high school graduate or an adult thinking about going back to school, it’s good to know exactly what kind of career you can build for yourself with a BS degree as your foundation.

Here are just some of the exciting careers that you may enter upon graduation:

  • Applied Physics
  • Architecture
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemistry
  • Civil Engineering
  • Community Health
  • Computer Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Construction Management
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Environmental Geology
  • Geology
  • Healthcare Administration
  • Informatics
  • Mathematics
  • Nuclear Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Nutrition Sciences
  • Public Health
  • Sports Medicine

And that’s only a partial list!

How a BS Degree Can Help You Land Your Dream Job

If you’ve spent any time pounding the pavement in the job market, you know that jobs are not easy to come by these days. It’s also undeniable that earning a bachelor’s degree is one of the absolute best, if not the best way to set yourself apart from other candidates and get your foot in the door.

The reality is, science-related careers are growing exponentially due in large part to technological advances and competitive changes in many of today’s top industries like computer science, healthcare, engineering, and information technology. The good news is the scientific workforce is absolutely booming right now. The even better news is, earning your BS degree will show prospective employers that you have the skills and expertise to add value to their team.

Having said this, if you REALLY want to give yourself every opportunity to land an excellent job upon graduation, then do some research NOW to determine the exact fields that need the most workers. Not all majors are in high demand at this time, so as you investigate potential majors and colleges, be sure to also spend some time uncovering the fields that will offer you the greatest potential.

Here is a bit of data to get you started:

The Medical Field

The medical field is always in need of skilled professionals. And, with the baby boomer population aging, this field needs workers more than ever. Consider a career as a nurse, pharmacist, or nutritionist.

Technology

In this day and age, you simply can’t go wrong focusing on a career in technology. Consider a career as a programmer, web developer, and data security analyst.

Construction

You’ve probably heard in the news that America’s infrastructure is in dire need of some major upgrading, which is why we can expect a surge in open positions in this field. Consider a career as an architect, cost estimator, and construction manager.

Engineering

If you’ve always had a head for problems solving, this may be the right field for you. And the good news is, there is big demand right now. Consider a career as a civil engineer, software engineer, or electrical engineer.

Financial Services

Have a head for numbers? Then you’ll be happy to know that the financial services industry is heating up and looking for skilled employees. Consider a career as an accountant, auditor, or financial advisor.

Of course, these are just a small sampling of the possible career paths that await you when you earn your Bachelor’s of Science degree. The sky is really the limit when you work toward higher education.

Is a BS Degree the Same as a BA Degree?

No. They are both bachelor’s degrees, but where BS stands for Bachelor of Science, BA stands for Bachelor of Arts. Like a BS degree, a BA degree typically takes four years to complete but usually requires fewer credits.

Which areas of study do people earning their BA focus on? Usually English, art, music, modern languages, communications, criminal justice, and other similar subjects. The skills you will gain with this degree include critical thinking and reading, communication, analytical and research skills.

When it comes to careers BA degree holders can go for, think of:

Art Careers

  • commercial arts
  • media
  • Photography
  • art therapy

Psychology

  • relations
  • retail management
  • sales
  • market research
  • advertising
  • education

English

  • education
  • public relations
  • technical writing
  • publishing

Foreign Language

  • FBI
  • CIA
  • publishing
  • film industry
  • commerce
  • international business

Political Science

  • journalism
  • non-profit work
  • business
  • broadcasting
  • law (post-grad)

Similarly to a career with a BS degree, the average yearly salary for someone with a BA degree is $60,000 according to PayScale.com.

Besides the obvious name difference, what else sets these two degrees apart?

One of the biggest differences between these two degrees is that while a BS degree will be heavily focused on your chosen major, a BA degree is a bit broader, focusing instead on giving you a foundation of learning. This is why many high school students that aren’t 100% certain of what they want to major in start by pursuing a BA degree.

While earning your BA, you will typically only be required to earn 36 credits toward your actual major. The other credits will go toward foundation learning courses in humanities, social sciences, and languages.

Another distinction between the two degrees is that the electives you can choose from as part of your BA program are usually more flexible. This is a great option for recent high school graduates who may be uncertain about the career that’s right for them, because it allows them to take a more exploratory approach to higher education.

But it’s also a smart path for many adults students who want to make a career shift but are perhaps not entirely sure which way to go.

So, the main difference between a BA and BS, beyond credits required, is that a BS has a stronger focus on technical orientation and advanced knowledge of a certain topic, whereas a BA offers broader, more general knowledge that is often used as a foundation for further learning.

All-in-all, a BS will give you a more in-depth education that is entirely focused on your major and desired career path.

What are the Similarities in a BA Degree and a BS Degree?

As we mentioned, both courses are usually completed in four years, though we’re about to tell you exactly how you can speed up that process! Both types of degrees also have a curriculum that is made up of three components: general education courses, courses related to your chosen major, and electives that students use to specialize in a particular area of study.

While prospective employers do look for most candidates to have at least a bachelor’s degree, they won’t necessarily care whether your “B” is followed by an “A” or an “S.” The most important thing to an employer is that the candidates degree corresponds to their chosen field.

So Which Degree is Better – BA or BS?

There really is no better. It is all determined on what career you hope to have, or, in the case of an adult student, what career you currently have but would like to advance in. Then again, there are plenty of adults who have a desire to change careers. So the real focus should come down to selecting the right career path for you and then going for the degree that will get you there!

How OnlineDegree.com Can Help with Your BS

We have one mission, and that is to help students afford college, plain and simple. We know that a lot of today’s students are adults who must deal with the realities of going back to school. For them, this means juggling a full-time job with family responsibilities. It can be incredibly difficult to earn a BA or a BS with so much on your plate.

But we think we’ve solved that problem.

We offer FREE courses that can be applied to the degree of your choice. Not sure which career path you want to travel down just yet? No problem. You can take as many free courses as you’d like from the comfort of your own home. You can learn about marketing, computer programming, psychology, education, and much more from excellent professors around the country.

We’ve gone ahead and built relationships with universities around the country that can give you credit for the free courses you’ve finished. Not only does this give you the ability to save thousands on your degree, it also allows you to potentially earn your degree sooner.

Whether you decide to earn a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science degree, OnlineDegree.com wants to help you get there.

Enroll today. It takes less than 60 seconds and you can be on your way to earning your degree and living your best life!

 

About the Author
Grant Aldrich

Grant founded OnlineDegree.com with a purpose-driven mission: make college accessible and affordable for everyone. After graduating college with an overwhelming amount of debt, he was determined to change how students embark on their education. He's a frequent speaker and author in higher education, and has been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg Businessweek, AOL, Thrive Global, Reader's Digest, Inside Higher Ed, Evolllution, EducationDive, and nearly 100 radio shows and podcasts.