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BA versus BS
#1
I know I read this on here some time ago, but I haven't been able to find that thread! Is there a particular benefit in having a BA as opposed to a BS? My counselor at COSC who did my initial eval tells me I should consider a BS with a concentration in Liberal Arts since I have already met more of the requirements. Has anyone found that having one or the other is a problem?
"The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize!" Clairee in "Steel Magnolias"
BA General Studies COSC 5/31/15
COSC Cornerstone A 10/2013, Capstone A 11/2014
UExel- Social Psych A, Psych of A and A- A, Research Methods/Psych B, Pathophysiology A.
FEMA- 27, NFA-Q118, Q 534, Q137 and Q318
Clep- 2008 Humanities 75, 2009 Intro Sociology 67, US History I 69, US History II 61, American Lit. 71, Analyze & Int. Lit. 75, 2011 Western Civ. ll 58, Social Science 67
DSST-2010 HTYH 463, Ethics in America 433, Sub. Abuse 444, 2011 Art of the Western World 67, Civil War and Recon. 58, Org. Behavior 64, 2010 Env. and Humanity 68, Hist. of the Vietnam War 76, 2011 Intro World Religions 451, 2013 Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union 62, Technical Writing 60, Business Ethics and Society 449.
TEEX- 2013 Cyber Security classes x 3
DACC and IU: Speech, Psych, Rhetoric, Creative Writing
#2
There might be different opinions out there, but a liberal arts degree is a liberal arts degree. You would have to explain any STEM courses you took in your resume whether it's a BA or BS. I've seen BS degrees for non-STEM majors like criminal justice and psychology (technically, psychology can be STEM). Generally, it means that you had less free electives and you might have taken more statistics and research courses along with more courses in the major. The same is generally true for BA vs BS in the natural sciences: you take more courses in the major, less free electives, and the general education requirements include more math and science courses. For graduate school, it really doesn't make a difference as long as you have the prerequisites. Some colleges only offer BAs in the natural sciences because they are liberal arts subjects, which is something many people do not know.

I don't know much about the difference at COSC. I assume that the BS requires less liberal arts credits leaving more room for applied/professional credits? I don't think employers would even know or try to find out the difference. The words that will stick out to them are "liberal arts."
PhD (in progress)
Masters and Graduate Certificate
AAS, AS, BA, and BS
CLEP
Intro Psych 70, US His I 64, Intro Soc 63, Intro Edu Psych 70, A&I Lit 64, Bio 68, Prin Man 69, Prin Mar 68
DSST
Life Dev Psych 62, Fund Coun 68, Intro Comp 469, Intro Astr 56, Env & Hum 70, HTYH 456, MIS 451, Prin Sup 453, HRM 62, Bus Eth 458
ALEKS
Int Alg, Coll Alg
TEEX
4 credits
TECEP
Fed Inc Tax, Sci of Nutr, Micro, Strat Man, Med Term, Pub Relations
CSU
Sys Analysis & Design, Programming, Cyber
SL
Intro to Comm, Microbio, Acc I
Uexcel
A&P
Davar
Macro, Intro to Fin, Man Acc
#3
The only difference at the Big 3, since none require a specific minor, between the BA and BS are the subjects of the credits outside of your Gen-Ed and concentration liberal arts "majors". Outside of academia I don't think anyone would know the difference. For years, I used to look down on my wife who has a BA Chemistry while I hold a BS Civil Engineering naively thinking that somehow "science" must be superior to "arts". Now that I recently have come to understand that BS means not wholly within the traditioal philosophy of the liberal arts and sciences, I realize that my wife has the upper hand on me within certain hoi poloi circles. Now given that the Big 3 allow all kinds of cats and dogs credits (FEMA anyone?) for the BS, I would think that the BA might give you a little more catchet when applying to graduate school. However, always remember that GPA combined with GRE scores trump everything else.
#4
Both are equal. Both are 4-year bachelors degrees requiring about 120 credits. Both are used for admissions into graduate school. There is no accepted difference between the two.

Within specific colleges, there can be differences, but in industry they are EXACTLY the same. Choose whichever allows you to complete your degree with the least resistance.
#5
The only real noticeable difference is that the BA requires more liberal arts courses and has less room for non-liberal arts electives, where as the BS requires less liberal arts courses, and has more room for non liberal arts electives.

Charter Oak, for example, states the following on their website:

"You may earn a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree. Both baccalaureate degrees are in General Studies and require 120 semester credits. In addition to satisfying general education requirements, the Bachelor of Arts degree requires 90 liberal arts credits, while the Bachelor of Science degree requires 60."
#6
publius2k4 Wrote:Charter Oak, for example, states the following on their website:

"You may earn a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree. Both baccalaureate degrees are in General Studies and require 120 semester credits. In addition to satisfying general education requirements, the Bachelor of Arts degree requires 90 liberal arts credits, while the Bachelor of Science degree requires 60."

Excpet in rare circumstance I don't think you will find either to have an upper hand on the other. I do list my concentrations on my resume. I technically have a BS Individualized Studies, I put on my resume BS with concentrations in Organizational Leadership and Health Care....this is fully supported by my CPS.

Consider splitting your major at COSC in two....18 UL credits in primary concentration (15 plus the capstone)....then 9 credits in a second concentration with what is essentially a single UL elective....so long as you can articulate a cogent argument in your CPS COSC will likely allow it.
MBA, Western Governors University February 2014
BS Charter Oak State College November 2011
AS in EMS August 2010

I'm always happy to complete the free application waiver for those applying to WGU (I get a free gift from WGU for this).  Just PM me your first/last name and a valid email so I can complete their form.

Thread; COSC AS using FEMA http://www.degreeforum.net/excelsior-tho...total.html
#7
JohnnyHeck's view of a BA vs. BS is pretty much the same one I had as well. I thought the STEM degrees earned a BS and the "easier" degrees earned a BA. That isn't how it works. Pretty much everyone else that has already posted got it right. Practically there isn't a difference, but where there is one, it comes down to the number of liberal arts courses vs. non-liberal arts courses (and natural science courses are liberal arts courses).

With all of that said, if you are getting a degree in a STEM field then a BS might serve you a tiny bit better, because I'm sure that JohnnyHeck and I are not the only ones who associate a BS degree with STEM fields. If you are trying to get a STEM job and have a BA instead of a BS, an employer might find it a little odd. On the other hand, if you have a BS in English instead of a BA then the person reviewing your resume/grad application might find that a little odd.
#8
And I was just thinking that employers and grad schools might find a BS in Liberal Arts a bit odd.
PhD (in progress)
Masters and Graduate Certificate
AAS, AS, BA, and BS
CLEP
Intro Psych 70, US His I 64, Intro Soc 63, Intro Edu Psych 70, A&I Lit 64, Bio 68, Prin Man 69, Prin Mar 68
DSST
Life Dev Psych 62, Fund Coun 68, Intro Comp 469, Intro Astr 56, Env & Hum 70, HTYH 456, MIS 451, Prin Sup 453, HRM 62, Bus Eth 458
ALEKS
Int Alg, Coll Alg
TEEX
4 credits
TECEP
Fed Inc Tax, Sci of Nutr, Micro, Strat Man, Med Term, Pub Relations
CSU
Sys Analysis & Design, Programming, Cyber
SL
Intro to Comm, Microbio, Acc I
Uexcel
A&P
Davar
Macro, Intro to Fin, Man Acc
#9
sanantone Wrote:And I was just thinking that employers and grad schools might find a BS in Liberal Arts a bit odd.

This could make for some pretty humerous degree titles haha

Bachelor of Science in Art Appreciation
Bachelor of Arts in Biology
Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science
....the ironic titles could go on forever, I'm sure...
#10
Years ago (1970), a BA required at least 2 years of foreign language studies, and the math requirements were much higher than now - College Algebra and Statistics were usually the bare minimum. Those of us who were good at math but bad at foreign language went to engineering school. We preferred Differential Equations over French. However, the BA Physics was always considered at that time as the top of the heap for diploma titles. This bachelor's degree at that time carried as much weight with employers as a Masters would today because the curricula was generally known by all to be the most rigorous and intellectually challenging.


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