BA vs MA
BA and MA are two courses offered in colleges and universities that show differences between them when it comes to their course content and syllabi. The expansion of BA is Bachelor of Arts. On the other hand, the expansion of MA is Master of Arts. One is an undergraduate degree course and the other is a postgraduate degree course. This is the main difference between the two courses. Though both are degrees offered in the arts stream, they are very different from one another. BA is the first degree in the arts stream. Therefore, though it carries a good educational as well as a professional value, this degree is more of a general study of several subjects. MA, on the other hand, is more in-depth study of a single subject.
What is BA?
BA is a three-year degree course. In some cases, this study period extends to four years. It is an undergraduate course. After completing the course, the person is given the degree or the certificate of graduation. Until he completes the course, he is called an undergraduate only.
It is important to know that the students who do their BA degree courses should necessarily study an ancillary or an allied subject too in the first two years of the course of their study. However, remember that this depends on the university in which you study. Since BA is the first degree and the entry requirement is a good grade in the final examination at your school, a large number of students study for BA.
What is MA?
On the other hand, MA is a post-graduate degree or a graduate course. All graduates are eligible to study for MA degree course. MA degree course is offered in various subjects of arts. It is a course that has to be studied for a period of two years and for three years in some cases.
When it comes to the subjects, the students of MA study the major subject only. As MA is more in-depth analysis of a single subject and this requires you to have BA degree first, the number of students who follow MA course is less.
What is the difference between BA and MA?
• Definition of BA and MA:
• BA is the first degree in the art stream.
• MA is the second degree in the art stream.
• Expansion of BA and MA:
• BA stands for Bachelor of Arts.
• MA stands for Master of Arts.
• A BA can last for three to four years depending on the university you are enrolled in.
• An MA is usually two years.
• Entry Qualification:
• For a BA, you need to have good grades at your 10+2 exams.
• For MA, you need to have good grades for your bachelor’s degree. Most of the time, you need to have a second or first class degree.
• Level of Mastery:
• A BA has a higher level of mastery than the secondary education of a person.
• MA is more important as an educational qualification and has a higher level of mastery than BA.
• Focus of BA is covering a general aspect of several subjects.
• Focus of a MA is covering an in depth aspect of a single subject.
• Number of Students:
• BA has a large number of students. Some subjects can even have up to 100 students.
• MA has a small number of students. The whole MA batch can be as small as 30 students.
• For BA, you are expected to read and find information.
• For MA, you are supposed to read and find information more than in a BA.
• Teaching Method:
• You get guidance from lecturers for a BA, but you are expected to do your own work.
• In MA too the same structure is followed. However, you have to work harder than in a BA.
• A BA may or may not have a dissertation. That depends on the course you are following.
• An MA definitely demands a dissertation.
• Other Assessment Methods:
• In both degrees you will have semester exams, assignments, presentations and such as ways of assessment too.
- Yale’s Sterling Memorial Library via Wikicommons (Public Domain)
- Sever Hall, Harvard University by Daderot (CC BY-SA 3.0)