Studying a business qualification can give you a set of skills that open doors to many career opportunities. It means you could potentially work in any business area and even make the world your office. Adding a business qualification to your curriculum can move you to higher management roles or it can switch your career path altogether. This makes the business field a good choice if you are or you are not sure exactly what direction you want to take with your career.
There are different business qualifications from entry level to advanced management. The four main qualification levels include associate, bachelors, masters, and doctorate. You can always find a suitable business program to fit your needs. Following are some points that clarify the differences between these levels so you can have a better understanding when you decide which one to choose.
Associate’s Degree in Business Administration or Business Management usually lasts for two years and it is very attractive due to its relatively low tuition fee. You can apply for associate’s qualification at technical schools and community colleges. Admission requirements include high school diploma and you may need to apply with SAT test or similar. Some associates’ credits may be transferable to Bachelor’s degree so it is worth checking beforehand in case you decide to advance your studies.
Associates qualifications can prepare you for entry-level positions in various fields within technology, health-care administration, other administrative roles, sales or retail, real estate, office management etc. Typical roles can be a graphic designer, labour relations specialist, office manager, administrative specialist etc. A good advantage of that qualification is that it does not require much time before you can enter the workforce and there is a good potential for salary growth after gaining more experience.
You can earn a Bachelor’s degree such as BA in Business Administration Management if you devote 4 years full-time of your life. Some universities offer Bachelor’s program for a duration of 3 years. Admission requirements may vary for each university and it is good to familiarize yourself in advance. Upon enrolling you can choose your main area of studies such as Finance, Business Economics, International Business, Human Resources Management, Marketing and Planning.
This is an undergraduate type of program that many employers require as a minimum for their business management positions. After completing a Bachelor’s qualification in Business you may work in entry or management level positions in different fields. You can be Financial Analyst, Marketing Specialist, Human Resources Assistant or Manager, Public Relations Coordinator etc.
If you are aiming for top management positions the employers may prefer those candidates with more advanced qualifications. For example, MBA degree is a graduate program where you can find concentrations such as Management, Marketing, Finance or Healthcare Management. You would have to study for one to two years full-time to earn your advanced qualification. Some universities offer part-time classes and the duration may vary. There will be typical requirements of Bachelor’s degree and working experience for MBA, recommendation letters, a high score on a graduate entrance exam such as GMAT or GRE. If you select to study Master in Management, instead of MBA, you may not need work experience.
Usually, the universities that offer advanced programs also have career centres that will assist you in finding a job. The positions you will be able to apply for are within the same business fields but at senior-level with more responsibility and higher pay. Some of the employers may even offer you full tuition stipend to obtain your MBA.
Doctoral programs, also known as Ph.D., are possibly the most advanced type of business qualification that you can obtain. In most cases, the candidates should have Master’s degree before applying for PhD but there are some exceptions when you can apply for a Doctoral program directly from your Bachelor’s degree. You can view the additional requirements in the websites of your selected universities. They may include letters of recommendation, submitting test scores and others.
It will usually take you several years to complete a PhD. program depending on the university and probably at the end of your studies, you will have to submit a dissertation and make an important research project. If you earn a PhD qualification you can be an expert in business areas or you can be a professor.
There is no doubt that having a business qualification in your resume will make you more attractive candidate in the competitive job market compared to candidates without business school experience. Try to enjoy studying your business degree no matter which level you choose. You will have the chance to make valuable friends and connections during your program that can be long-lasting and very useful in the future.