kiana aran lab students posed

What is a Master of Science?

Master’s degree programs are an excellent way to refine your skillset with a concentration in a career-specific area. Of the many types of degrees that exist, such as Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Business Administration (MBA), none better prepares you for a career in science-based industries like a Master of Science. But what is a Master of Science degree and how does it differ from other graduate degree options available?

What is a Master of Science Degree?

A Master of Science degree is typically a two-year graduate degree awarded by accredited institutions in the US and abroad. This degree type is often (but not exclusively) reserved for programs that focus on a long list of scientific subject, which can include:

  • Applied Life Science
  • Bioinformatics
  • Biological Science
  • Computer Science
  • Information Technology (IT)
  • Nursing

However, Master of Science degrees may be offered for many areas that are not traditionally considered “hard sciences,” but where scientific studies of that subject exist. For example, one could obtain a Master of Science in Teaching where the emphasis falls heavily on the science and theories that incorporate pedagogy, versus the practical application of teaching methods and strategies that one might obtain with a Master of Education (MEd) degree.

Master of Science vs. Master of Arts: What’s the Difference?

The primary difference between a Master of Arts and a Master of Science degree is in the type of field that the degrees cover.

Master of Arts degrees are often designed for subject areas in the humanities and social sciences, while Master of Science programs commonly confer degrees for subjects within the physical and biological sciences.

To that end, post-secondary degree seekers who aspire to work in areas such as communications, political science, or literature should consider a Master of Arts degree. For careers in medicine, biological sciences, life sciences, or computer science, a Master of Science degree is the preferred option.

Why Enroll in Master of Science Program?

It’s possible to launch a career in scientific fields with a bachelor’s degree. However, your options for career advancement and your earnings potential in scientific fields significantly increase when you obtain a Master of Science degree or above.

A Georgetown University study on the Economic Value of College Majors found that bachelor’s degree holders almost always earn less in their respective fields than those who went on to obtain a graduate degree. This difference is particularly evident in science-based industries, including health.

For example, the median wage for someone with a bachelor’s degree in Health and Medical Administrative Services was just $55,000, compared to $80,000 for those with a graduate degree. In Biology, the difference was $56,000 for bachelor’s degree holders, compared to $96,000 for graduate degree recipients.

Future earnings aren’t the only benefit of a graduate degree, especially in the sciences. Those who hold graduate degrees such as a Master of Science are more likely to be happy with life thanks to additional benefits such as increased security and quicker promotions.

Earn a Master of Science in Applied Life Sciences from KGI

A Master of Science in Applied Life Sciences from Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) will put you on the narrow path toward higher earnings, better job opportunities, and more job satisfaction.

Our MS degree is focused on the professional development essentials required for a large number of potential science-based careers, including:

  • Technical and/or medical writer
  • Research and development
  • Clinical trial manager
  • Clinical research coordinator
  • Medical and health services
  • Medical science liaison

Our two-year program offers classes in high-interest subjects such as Pharmaceutical Development, Applications of Statistics, Molecular Basis of Disease, and Bioindustry Ethics and Society. Finish your degree with distinct concentrations in areas like Infectious Diseases and Clinical Research to help get your resume noticed in job applications.

Contact us today to learn more about our Master of Science in Applied Life Sciences degree program, including application requirements, curriculum details, tuition costs, and financial aid options.