What is the difference between a BA or a BS?

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Discus: College Search and Selection: September 2003 Archive: What is the difference between a BA or a BS?
By Ahlawahed (Ahlawahed) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 07:33 pm: Edit

What is the difference between a BA and BS, which one is harder and looks better, and why do some offer one or the other, does it make a difference to have a BA in biology or a BS in biology? I don't understand, someone please help

By Shennie (Shennie) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 07:58 pm: Edit

BA - Bachelor of Arts, BS - Bachelor of Science. The difference between the two degrees is basically the amount of science and math credits that you have vs. the amount of other classes. At some school, you could probably get a BA in biology, but it would not look so good because it meant you were pretty light on math and only took the minimal amount of science classes you needed to get the degree. However, a BA in English or Music makes perfect sense since you would not need a lot of math or science to do those majors. I do know a guy getting a BS in music, because he is also getting a BS in computer science so he has all the science he needs, but it is unusual and unecessary to get a BS in a field that is part of the arts or humanities.

By Ariesathena (Ariesathena) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 09:03 pm: Edit

With some fields, like psychology, they are almost equivalent - most job descriptions list B.A./B.S as a requirement. One of my friends was given the choice between which degree she preferred. Shennie is absolutely correct about the distinction, which applies in more science or art fields. I have a B.S. in classics because my primary degree is in engineering.

By Haon (Haon) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 10:07 pm: Edit

Most liberal arts colleges do not offer B.S.s

If you attend a LAC and receive a BA it will not put you at any disadvantage to those who have received BSs at other institutions.

By Lethalfang (Lethalfang) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 10:01 pm: Edit

Physics and pure Mathematics majors at UC Berkeley receive BA, because they are departments under the College of Letter and Science. It depends on each school. It doesn't matter at all. Only high school students and college freshmen are worried about that.

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