Undergraduate vs graduate - what are the main differences?

Undergraduate vs graduate – what are the main differences?

Nowadays it is really important if you are an undergraduate or a graduate but here comes the question of what they are and if they have differences or are they the same things.

Not everyone knows what they are so if you are one of them then please continue reading the article so you can learn what they are, which one is better to have, and what are some of their differences.


An Undergraduate degree is for students who have finished high school and want to study further in a field of their choice. Undergraduate degrees provide technical, vocational, practical, and theoretical knowledge of the topic that will help students get good jobs in their field of interest with ease.

There are two types of undergraduate degrees: Bachelors and Associate. Under that, there are several degrees like:

  • BA – Bachelor of Arts
  • BSc -Bachelor of Science
  • AA- Associate of Arts
  • AFA- Associate of Fine Arts


You get a graduate degree once you have built a strong foundation by your Undergraduate degree. A graduate degree is more functional than an undergraduate degree. For instance, a person can study Dentistry at an undergraduate level and then train in Pediatric Dentistry at the graduate level to become a Pediatric dentist known for treating children.

A graduate is any degree received after receiving a bachelor’s degree as more excellent than a Bachelor’s degree like Masters, PhDs, and even certification level programs.

Differences between Undergraduate and Graduate degree

There are many differences between these two but let’s mention the main ones:

  • You get an undergraduate degree right after completing high school usually at the age of 18. An undergraduate degree will help you earn basic knowledge of the subject that you choose to be in.
  • You get a graduate degree after an undergraduate degree because it has a higher level of specialization. People usually pursue graduate degrees at the age of 21 and over, some people even work for a couple of years and then go back to college to get a graduate degree.
  • Undergraduate programs are usually more general in nature. They include general education courses in a broad variety of subjects that are not part of graduate education. Graduate programs are highly specialized and much more superior than undergraduate programs.
  • Undergraduate classes are usually much more comprehensive and less individualized. In graduate programs, students work jointly with professors, often on a balanced basis.
  • While some undergraduate programs require a senior project or a similar activity, graduate studies are more further research-oriented. Master’s and doctoral programs include some classwork, but research development and defense are the main things they focus on most programs. Undergraduate programs usually contain examinations to those related to different classes; graduate programs also cover comprehensive examinations which are very important.
  • It is relatively easy to change undergraduate major subjects and moving to a different school during a program. It is much more difficult to do so in graduate programs, as they are nearly specialized. Graduate programs in psychology, for example, can be very diverse from one university to another.
  • Graduate degrees are more specialized than undergraduate degrees that is why graduate degrees are more valued in some professions, it’s important to have a master’s degree like a Psychiatrists and other medical professions.
  • In graduate programs like PhDs, people work jointly with the professors as compared to undergraduate programs like Ph.D. programs usually cover a thesis which requires more one-on-one interaction.

So in conclusion, if you want to have a better job and better opportunities then pursuing a graduate degree is a must in many fields. Some people also think that having experience in the real world is better because like that you can learn about the challenge that you will face later in the future. So it all really depends on your personal liking if you want to have a graduate degree or not but remember that your decision will affect your future and if you will be able to get the dream job that you have had or not. So again we advise you to be careful when you are making this decision.


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