August 18, 2022

Professional vs Academic Degree: What is the difference?

Decision-making is an indivisible part of your career. At every step, you have to make decisions that will affect your career. It could be about which field to make your career in, or it could be about which elective to pick. In order to make decisions that you will not regret later, you have to consider a number of things such as your aptitude, long-term objectives, etc. At the same time, it is important that your nature matches up with the nature of the career you pick. This element of decision-making is very important. Because if your personality type is not suited for the kind of career you pick, it will produce new challenges for you. And dealing with these challenges will take up a lot of your time and resources. Hence to avoid this unnecessary waste it is important to understand the types of careers that are available for you. Today we’ll be discussing Professional vs academic degree and how you can chose the right one!

What is a Professional Degree? 

To start off the Professional vs Academic Degree debate, we need to understand what these two terms mean.

A professional course is a course that offers the highest degree of expertise that an individual might need to work in a particular field. They prepare the student to provide professional services effectively. These courses are practice-oriented. This means that the knowledge gained by the student is with the objective of applying it to that particular profession. Such education cannot be given without hands-on experience.
Usually, the curriculum of such courses includes practical knowledge, internships,
fellowships, etc. This is because professional courses are designed in a way that equips the student with the necessary skills that are needed for that profession. Since the term professional degree is used to describe very specific types of careers, there are some popular professional degrees in India. Here are some of them.

  • Medicine 

This is a good example of a professional service. Everything that is a part of healthcare and medical science can be considered a professional degree. So this includes courses like MBBS, BDS, BPhram, etc.  They are intensive courses that train the students to provide medical services on a professional level. They include internships that give the student the necessary experience to become successful and reliable medical professionals. 

  • Law 

Many young students choose to acquire professional degrees in Law such as LLB, LLM, etc. Law is a large and complicated field that is an important branch of the Indian State. This makes it a good professional course that will help the student make a successful career in the field of law. It also includes learning tools like case studies, moot courts, and internships. 

  • IT 

Information Technology is one of the fastest-growing sectors of modern time. Courses like BCA or BTech are popular professional courses that offer good scope and excellent career opportunities. 

  • CA/CS 

Chartered Accountant or Company Secretary courses are professional certification courses that are popular in India. They are good career options for people who are interested in subjects like corporate management, accountancy, law, etc. 

Professional degrees are usually intense and detail-oriented. The difficulty level of such courses is high. Even the entrance exams required to get into such courses are tough to crack. They cover all areas of the particular field so that the student can grow into a competent professional.  This is the reason that the payoff for such courses is also high. Such careers are challenging and quite fulfilling. They also pay well and overall, provide good job opportunities to the student. Choosing these courses is a good way to build a secure and successful career. 

Academic Courses

Academic courses are courses that focus on the knowledge aspect of education. They are supposed to provide in-depth knowledge about a particular subject. They develop the critical thinking abilities of the student. They usually involve the ‘study’ of something. This means that academic courses are research-oriented. Academic degrees usually require the student to complete a thesis or a research paper in their area of interest.
Hence, it’s not just about gaining knowledge, but also about creating knowledge. Some examples of academic courses in India are BA,
Bsc, Economics, Political Science, Psychology, etc. Such careers usually require a high level of study and understanding. The student might have to complete Ph.D. or MPhil courses depending on their selected area of study.

Professional vs Academic Degree 

One can understand that the primary objective of a professional degree is to provide practice-oriented education and the primary aim of an academic degree is to provide knowledge-oriented education. Professional degrees usually require the student to go through tough entrance exams. Academic degrees require a high level of reading and knowledge retention.  Hence, the very nature of these degrees is different. The career outcomes of both types of degrees are also distinct from each other.

There is an enormous difference between the two. An endless amount of data to be analyzed, building a career path that will help you excel and so much more! Dheya is here for exactly that. We offer you, mentors, from the top of their field. We will help you make a decision that will match up your personality and aptitude for a dynamic career.  

– Saee Walkikar

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