While it may seem like there’s not much difference between a college degree, a technical certificate, and other similar documents, there is actually a world of difference between them, and it may surprise you which is the best choice for you.
Different types of training and education are designed to meet the specific needs of learners and help them prepare for their future careers. Keep reading to learn the difference between a certificate and a degree.
What Is a Certificate?
A certificate shows that you have completed a certain program or series of courses related to a particular subject. For example, if you wanted to learn how to design Web pages, then you might take an online course called “Designing Web Pages” or some other similar title.
What Is a Degree?
A degree is a type of education that is typically offered by colleges and universities. Degrees can be classified as associate degrees, bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, and doctoral degrees.
A college degree is not just a certification that you made it through an institution—it is the culmination of what you are able to accomplish at the institution in terms of academic accomplishments and skills.
Difference between a Certificate and a Degree
One of the most significant differences between a certificate and a degree is how long they take to complete. While certificates are short-term programs that can be completed in as little as six months, degrees are much more intensive, typically requiring four years or more of study.
A certificate is designed to teach learners individual skills and equip them with the basic knowledge and skills they need for their specific jobs. A degree program is usually geared toward providing learners with transferable skills which will prepare them for many different types of jobs in their field of study.
Certificate vs Degree
A certificate is a document that proves the training you have done, and it’s usually an alternative to college. It doesn’t always require any testing or previous experience, but it usually requires that you take courses in order to get your certificate.
Moreover, a certification is something like auto mechanics, for example. In contrast, a degree is a higher level of education and more complicated than just taking courses. You need to have taken at least 120 credits in order to get a bachelor’s degree and usually take at least four years of classes before getting one. A degree is something like a bachelor’s degree in nursing.