How to Earn a Bachelor of Science Degree
The first step to any college or university degree is a high school diploma, G.E.D., or equivalent. If you are an overseas or international student, check with the school to see if they will accept your high school diploma. Entry requirements for a Bachelor of Science degree may also include relevant test scores, entrance exams, minimum GPA, or even an interview.
Where Can I Find Bachelor of Science Scholarships and Grants?
No matter where you get your Bachelor of Science degree from, paying for it is a concern. To help, we have gathered resources on where and how to apply for scholarships and grants.
- FAFSA: With just about every college, university, and institution having some form of financial aid, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is an important tool. Similar to doing one’s taxes, it assess your income, expenses, and more to determine if you qualify for aid, how much, and what programs can assist you. With application deadlines looming at all times of the year, be sure and fill yours out early and every year afterward.
- Fast Web: AS previously mentioned, this is an excellent site for anyone pursing a Bachelor of Science or any other degree. They can match you with a scholarship that is right for you, deadlines, and even let you create a personalized page.
- Grants: If looking to learn more about grants, stop here. Student Aid has loads of information on educational grants and how to apply for them.
- Financial Aid Calculator: Once you know where you are going and how much it is going to cost, visit here for custom calculators to help you figure out what the bottom line is. Popular calculators include college cost projector and savings plan designer.
- Free Eligibility Finder: The FAFSA4caster is one of the easiest tools to help you get a picture of what sort of scholarships and grants you are eligible for. Once completed, it will even allow you to transfer data to your actual FAFSA application.
- Financial Aid Office: No matter which school, the financial aid office in it has people whose sole job is to make sure students can pay for school. Contact them directly for financial aid options.
Be aware that there are differences between scholarships, grants, and financial aid. Scholarships are given out to students who meet a certain criteria, be it academic or needs based. Grants are given out by the government and are usually on a needs basis. A highlight is that neither has to be paid back if the student completes studies. A student loan does have to be paid back. However, payments do not begin until after graduation and have a low interest rate.
Ranking Systems for Colleges and Universities
Because each ranking system has its own basis for rankings, prospective students should take that into account when choosing a Bachelor of Science degree. For example, the latest list from U.S. News and World Report generates loads of prestige for schools who made the cut. However, a close look shows that the schools seemed to be ranked using questionable methods. Two main factors used to judge schools were total cost of tuition per year, with the top school charging $37,012 in tuition and fees for the current year, and the fall acceptance rate, in which only 7.9 percent of applicants are admitted to the top school.
When searching for Bachelor of Science college rankings, don’t just stick with the traditional methods. There are alternatives for students and families who put little value on the above factors. One good example is Fastweb’s useful advice on choosing a college for any degree. Topics cover alumni assessments of colleges, diversity, and much more.
Bloggers also weigh in on college rankings. An excellent choice is the blog Wise Like Us. It is written by a private college counseling company whose main interest is placing students in the college that is right for them. Check out loads of blog entries on choosing colleges, or contact them on the main site for more. Other private sites such as Forbes and Kiplinger also regularly rank colleges and have different standards than others.
How do I Transfer Bachelor of Science School Credits?
One of the most important things to consider when earning or transferring credits for a Bachelor of Science degree is accreditation. This is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality. One of the best places to search for accredited schools is the U.S. Department of Education. The database includes all accredited schools, which agency they are accredited by, and how long they have been accredited for.
This is an important step because while all schools listed are accredited by the Department of Education, they are not accredited across certain lines between accrediting agencies. For example, if a school is regionally accredited, transfer of credits may not be allowed in another region, even if it is inside the United States.
If you have basic courses completed from a nationally accredited school and want to pursue a Bachelor of Science in a school that is regionally accredited, some credits may not qualify for transfer. If you have taken and passed 101 level classes such as math, science, history, and English, check with the school you would like to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in to see how many credits will transfer before choosing.
If a regionally-accredited school does accept transfer credits from a nationally accredited one for your Bachelor of Science, limits still apply. For a Bachelor of Science, the maximum number of transfer credits just about any school will allow is 60. The classes usually have to be first or second year classes, with a majority of the specialty classes taken at the school which will award the degree.
What Sorts of Careers are Common for Students With a Bachelor of Science?
A Bachelor of Science is a great tool in unlocking the door to many different career opportunities. We have listed just a few of them below:
- Human Resources: A position in HR supports in the hiring, maintaining, and assisting the other employees in a work setting.
- Project Manager: Often hired in the construction field, they can manage every aspect of a project from the ground breaking to the finishing touches.
- Psychologist/Psychiatrist: Working in the area of mental health, they can become therapists, counselors, or other related positions.
- Office Manager: Keeping an office running smoothly by placing orders, managing projects, and overseeing employees are just some of the tasks here.
- Information Technology Specialist: With a Bachelor of Science and a few certifications you can learn to set up and maintain complex computer systems and networks that are the cornerstone of so many businesses today.
- Security Manager: From planning and implementing a surveillance system to preventing hacking attacks, this career has many specialties.
- Federal Agent: If looking for a career with the FBI or other security agency, a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice, Information Technology, Linguistics, or other is a requirement.
- School Teacher: Although each state sets its own requirements for certification, most require teachers to have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college and pass a state-licensing exam.
- Science Technician: Whether working in a lab or other research facility, research is an incredibly technical field that requires a Bachelor of Science or higher.
- Nurse: Most registered nurse (RN) positions will go to people with a B.S. in nursing, and the degree is a great stepping stone to a more advanced nursing degree in a specialty such as midwifery or anesthesiology.
What is the Average Salary for Someone with a Bachelor of Science?
According to the U.S. Census, those with a Bachelor of Science or any bachelor’s degree, make nearly $29,000 a year more in income than someone who didn’t graduate high school. They make $23,000 more per year than those with a high school diploma, and $14,000 more than someone with an associate’s degree.
Other careers that a B.S. can prepare you for are human resources management (mean annual wage of $108,600) construction project management (mean annual wage of $93,900) and physician’s assistant (mean annual wage of $89,470).
The Bachelor of Science is a respected degree worldwide, and can open doors into the professional world as well as leading to further education and personal growth. Choosing a school, finding financial aid, and getting started on the path to your degree are choices that will positively influence the rest of your life.