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Choosing the Right Degree

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The editors at Grad School Hub decided to research the topic of:

Choosing the Right Degree

What matters most when choosing a graduate degree? Money? Doing something you love? The journey to finding the right master's degree can be a long one.

What Do You Want?


- Consider these options when choosing a graduate school:
  • Location
  • Quality of life
  • Degree programs offered
  • Cost
  • Time
  • Resources
  • Faculty
  • On-campus or online
  • Ranking
  • Accreditation

"Love what you do and do what you love." - Ray Bradbury, author

What Do You Like?


- Think about the things in your life that excite you. There may well be a master's degree option that allows you to truly do what you love.

The Realistic Path


- If you like to...
  • Do things with your hands
  • Be outside
  • Work with real-world materials
  • Work solo

- Consider these fields: farmer/rancher, surveyor, forester, mechanical drafter, technician, firefighter, correctional officer, animal control worker, chef, landscaping, carpenter, explosive worker, machine operator, repairer, machinist, agricultural inspector, animal breeder, jeweler, precious-metals worker, pilot
- Possible degree
- Oregon State University
- Master of Forestry
- Average graduate tuition
- Resident: $13,188
- Non-resident: $21,219

The Investigative Path


- If you like to...
  • Do an extensive amount of thinking
  • Mentally search for facts and figures

- Consider these fields: coroner, computer and information scientist, engineer, animal scientist, biologist, physicist, chemist, economist, anthropologist, archeologist, geographer, historian, political scientist, astronomer, sociologist, dentist, nutritionist, veterinarian, detective
- Possible degree
- University of Colorado-Denver
- Master of Science in Chemistry
- Average graduate tuition
- Resident: $5,087
- Non-resident: $15,619

The Artistic Path


- If you like to...
  • Work with form, design and pattern
  • Express yourself
  • Not follow a clear set of rules

- Consider these fields: architect, art director, fine artist, animator, fashion designer, actor, dancer, musician, graphic designer, interior designer, creative writer, film editor, makeup artist, choreographer
- Possible degree
- Parsons The New School for Design, New York City
- Master of Fashion Studies
- Average graduate tuition
- $20,855

The Social Path


- If you like to...
  • Work with, communicate and teach people
  • Help others

- Consider these fields: social worker, probation officer, counselor, health educator, clergy, teacher, nurse, physical therapist, athletic trainer, speech-language pathologist, child care worker
- Possible degree
- Loyola University (Illinois)
- Master of Social Work
- Average graduate tuition
- $13,950

The Enterprising Path


- If you like to...
  • Start and carry out projects
  • Make many decisions
  • Take risks
  • Deal with business

- Consider these fields: chief executive, general manager, legislator, manager, education administrator, funeral director, logisticians, producer, program director, copy writer, head cook, special agent, PR specialist, insurance agent, product promoter, ship captain
- Possible degree
- Central Michigan University
- Master of Science in Administration
- Average graduate tuition
- $7,305

The Conventional Path


- If you like to...
  • Follow set procedures and routines
  • Work with data and details
  • Follow authority

- Consider these fields: treasurer, controller, insurance adjuster, accountant, auditor, financial analyst, loan officer, tax preparer, database administrator, librarian, medical transcriptionist, proofreader, inspector
- Possible degree
- William & Mary, Williamsburg, Va.
- Master of Accounting
- Average graduate tuition
- Resident: $29,610
- Non-resident: $40,010

Know Your Financial Aid Options


- To be sure, financing a graduate degree can be an expensive proposition. But consider the various types of financial aid available.
  • Scholarships
  • Grants
  • Veteran's education benefits
  • Loans
  • Employer-based aid
  • Teaching and research assistantships

It's About Getting a Job, Right?


- Top graduate degrees for pay and career growth through 2020:
- Mid-career pay Projected growth by 2020
- 1. Physician assistant studies $97,000 30%
- 2. Computer science $109,000 22.3%
- 3. Electrical engineering $121,000 17.7%
- 4. Mathematics (tie) $91,000 24.7%
- 4. Information systems (tie) $95,500 23.3%
- 6. Physics $114,000 20.3%
- 7. Occupational therapy $79,200 33%
- 8. Healthcare administration $87,800 22%
- 9. Nursing $85,900 21.7%
- 10. Economics $115,000 14.3%

Time an Issue? Consider Online


- Top online graduate schools:
- Washington State University
- Cost: $509 per credit
- Top programs: Business and engineering
- Duke University - Fuqua School of Business
- Cost: $6,381per year
- Top programs: MBA, executive MBA
- St. John's University
- Cost: $35,520 per year
- Top programs: Law, education
- Carnegie Mellon University
- Cost: $453-$540 per credit hour
- Top programs: Engineering, business, computer science
- Stanford University
- Cost: $890 per credit hour
- Top programs: Law, engineering, medicine
- Columbia University
- Cost: $628 per credit hour
- Top programs: Engineering, computer information technology
- Penn State University
- Cost: $8,222 per year, in-state
- Top programs: Clinical psychology, engineering, education
- Arizona State University
- Cost: $463 per credit hour
- Top programs: Engineering, education
- Central Michigan University
- Cost: $477 per credit hour
- Top programs: Business, education
- Georgia Institute of Technology
- ost: $1,100 per credit hour
- Top programs: Production/operations, supply chain/logistics, chemical engineering, civil engineering, physics

SOURCES


- http://www.campusexplorer.com
- http://mappingyourfuture.org
- http://oregonstate.edu
- http://www.ucdenver.edu
- http://www.newschool.edu
- http://www.luc.edu
- http://global.cmich.edu
- http://mason.wm.edu
- http://www.emory.edu
- http://www.forbes.com


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