What Is the Difference Between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS Degree?

This article discusses the difference between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS degree, and more.

We are familiar with the bachelor’s degree programs at accredited institutions. Colleges offer a bachelor of science (BS), bachelor of arts (BA), bachelor of fine arts (BFA), and a bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree.

Students enrolled in programs that concentrate on science and mathematics earn a BS or a BAS degree, while BA and BFA degrees are conferred to those who focus on humanities or artss courses.

Bachelor of science and bachelor of applied science are degrees specifically for students in science-related courses. Arts students earn a BFA or a BA degree at accredited institutions.

In this guide, we have discussed the difference between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS degree. Every college degree is unique and useful, whether it’s a BS, BA, BFA, or BAS.

BS BA BFA and BAS Degree

What Is a Bachelor of Science degree or BS?

Generally, students who are enrolled in Bachelor of Science degree programs are already familiar with mathematics and science courses. Before gaining entry into a college to study and obtain a bachelor of science degree, you must have shown excellent academic performance in science courses while in high school.

Colleges and universities usually require applicants applying to a BS degree program to maintain an average score in mathematics and science courses. It’s impossible to get into a bachelor of science program with low scores in mathematics and science courses like biology, chemistry, and physics.

Getting into a bachelor of science degree program involves learning advanced curricula in mathematics and science courses. However, there can be a little mix of both science and arts courses.

For example, some colleges and universities offer majors like business administration and economics as both bachelors of science (BS) and a bachelor of arts (BA). 

Economics is a course accepted in bachelor of science degree programs. This is because BS programs place a stronger emphasis on mathematical, technical, and numerical analysis.

Generally, bachelors of science degree programs usually consist of 120 credits (40 courses). BS programs can be completed within the space of four years.

Some majors lead to a BS degree, and they include engineering, science, technology, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Obtaining a bachelor of science degree from an accredited institution comes with a job prospect. Those with a bachelor of science degree can get jobs in industries such as computer science and technology, medicine, engineering, and healthcare.

Also Read: 15 Best Bachelor of Science Degrees to Study for Success

What Is a Bachelor of Arts Degree or BA?

Bachelor of arts degree programs offers coursework relating to humanities and liberal arts. Just like high school students are expected to present excellent scores in mathematics and science courses, those who want to earn a bachelor of arts are also expected to perform excellently in arts courses.

Applicants to a bachelor of arts degree program are expected to present excellent scores and grades in arts courses, while in high school. Admission into colleges and universities is dependent on excellent scores and grades.

Bachelor of Arts degree programs usually takes four years to complete. BA programs are available on a part-time and full-time basis as well.

Political science and psychology are some of the subjects that can lead to a bachelor of science (BS) or a bachelor of arts (BAS) degree.

A lot of students prefer to study and obtain a bachelor of arts (BA) degree. it also has a good job prospects, especially in the finance sector. Graduates with a bachelor of arts (BA) can choose a career path in communication media, international relations, journalism, and lots more.

It’s a degree that can get holders some of the best-paying jobs in the finance sector. In general, those with BA degrees can decide to further their education and obtain a master’s degree. It could be a requirement for a better job position.

A bachelor of science (BS), bachelor of arts (BA), bachelor of fine arts (BFA), and bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree are all important, and they serve different purposes.

What Is a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree or BFA?

Generally, BFA programs cover majors in the performing arts, visual arts, and dramatic arts.

There are several entry requirements for students who want to study and earn a bachelor of fine arts degree. The requirement which is considered important for applicants to BFA degree programs include auditions and supplementary materials.

If you want to earn a bachelor of fine arts degree, expect to go for auditions, and you will also be required to present certain materials.

Core bachelor of fine arts (BFA) courses emphasize applied training and development. So, students must show a high level of creativity to impress instructors.

Creativity is required in majors such as acting, creative writing, filmmaking, music, photography, and studio arts.

There is a mix of subjects between a bachelor of fine arts (BFA) and bachelor of arts (BA) programs. The difference is that bachelor of fine arts (BFA) programs lead students to develop applied technical and innovative skills.

For instance, those in BFA film studies programs make movies, and their work is reviewed. But students in BA programs only study film history and film theory. This shows the difference between a BFA and a BA degree.

Just like other bachelor’s degree programs, BFA can be completed in four years.

What Is a Bachelor of Applied Science Degree or BAS?

We are still on the subject of “the difference between a BA, BS, BFA, and BAS degree”.

Bachelor of applied science degree programs concentrates on technical or STEAM subjects. Unlike a BS degree, BAS degrees nurture and develop specific career skills. 

In general, graduate students with a bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree may find it difficult to qualify for general master of science programs in the same discipline. 

There are study areas that offer a master of applied science (MAS) degree. However, a bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree can also lead to higher academic degrees.

Generally, some subjects support bachelor of science (BS) and bachelor of applied science credentials. For instance, some business programs lead to a bachelor of science. Some business programs also confer a bachelor of applied science (BFA).

Bachelor of applied science (BAS) degrees apply to various fields of study such as agriculture, engineering, information technology, physical sciences, and business.

Bachelor of applied science (BAS) degrees can be completed in four years.

Bachelor of Science Vs. Bachelor of Arts

Both bachelors of science (BS) and bachelor of arts (BA) are offered at accredited institutions, but what is the difference between a BS and a BA? Well, let’s find out.

Bachelor of arts degrees is conferred by accredited colleges and universities. Colleges grant bachelor of arts degrees in study fields such as humanities and social sciences.

BS degree programs just like other bachelor degrees can be completed in four years. Obtaining a bachelor of arts degree has a good job prospect. Those with BA degrees get jobs in the finance sector, and they can also pursue careers in communication media, education, journalism, and international relation.

Bachelors of arts include majors in humanities and social sciences, while BS programs include mathematics and science majors. Science majors like chemistry, computer science, and environmental science.

Both bachelor of science and bachelor of arts are completed within four years. Students enrolled in both BA and BS programs must earn a minimum of 120 credits to complete their degree.

In both programs, students complete classes in their major as well as electives and general education requirements. General education courses offered for BS and BA are different.

Students enrolled in bachelor arts programs take communication, English, and history general education courses, while those enrolled in a bachelor of science programs take math and natural science courses.

There is always a difference between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS degree.

What Is the Difference Between a Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS)?

Generally, the coursework for students studying to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree is quite different from those who want to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. The Bachelor of Science program includes majors in mathematics and natural sciences.

Applicants seeking admission to bachelor of arts programs are required to present one year of foreign language coursework. This is not a requirement for students who want to earn a Bachelor of Science degree.

Students who want to graduate with a BA degree take humanities and social science courses. Mathematics and science courses are more specifically for BS majors.

Generally, both bachelors of science and bachelor of arts degrees are completed in four years.

Which Degree is Better, a Bachelor of Science or a Bachelor of Arts?

Both BA and BS degrees are unique and useful, serving different purposes. Most students are good at arts courses, and they decide to stick with their preferences. Some students are top of their class in high school, performing excellently in science courses.

A bachelor of science is not better than a bachelor of arts degree and neither is a BA better than a BS. It all depends on a student’s choice and ability to perform in a specific area of study.

Also Read: 15 Best Schools In Florida For Psychology 2023

Choosing a Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree

Bachelor of science programs offer courses that assist students in understanding the technical aspect of natural sciences. BS programs are usually completed in four years and they include science-related majors.

Graduates with BS degrees pursue careers in engineering, computer and technology, medicine and healthcare.

Common Majors in BS

Here are the common majors in BS programs.

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Environmental Science

Career Opportunities for a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree include;

  • Health Educator
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Mental Health Counsellor
  • Marketer Research Analyst
  • Wildlife Biologist

Choosing a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree

A bachelor of arts program usually covers humanities and social science courses. BA degrees are completed in four years. Graduates with BA degrees build careers in international relations, journalism, education, communication media, etc.

Common Majors in BA programs include;

  • Education
  • Communication
  • Media
  • History
  • English

Also Read: What are the Easiest College Majors that pay well?

Career Opportunities for BA degrees also include;

  • Graphic Designer
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Marketing Manager
  • Technical Writer
  • Probation Officers

Types of Bachelor’s Degrees

There is a difference between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS degree and they all serve various purposes.

Accredited colleges and universities both offer different bachelor’s degrees. Although these different bachelor’s degrees can be completed in four years, their majors are different and concentrate on various fields of study.

Other common types of bachelor’s degrees include

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)
  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA)
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS)

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are frequently asked questions regarding the difference between a BS, BA, BFA, and BAS degree.

What other bachelor’s degree types are available?

Besides the four bachelor’s degrees mentioned in this guide, accredited institutions also offer other specific designations. Colleges and universities also offer a bachelor of engineering (BE), a bachelor of business administration (BBA), and a bachelor of criminal justice (BCJ).

Which bachelor’s degree is best for me if I don’t have a preferred major in mind?

If you find yourself in such a situation, perhaps a bachelor of arts will be the best option for you. BA degree may provide the most flexibility if you don’t have a major in mind.

Conclusion

The difference between a bachelor of science (BS), bachelor of arts (BA), bachelor of fine arts (BFA), and bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree is the majors they offer. Bachelor’s degrees are completed within four years and each serves a unique purpose.

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