Key Difference – Top Up Degree vs Degree
Degree is an academic qualification given by a college or university upon the completion of a course of study. Bachelor‘s, Master’s and Doctorate degrees are the most common types of title associated with the term degree. However, there are other types of degrees such associate degree, foundation degree and top up degree in modern higher education. A top up degree is similar to the final year of an honours bachelor’s degree. The key difference between top up degree and degree is the time taken to complete the degree; a top up degree can be completed in a year whereas a degree, in general, takes more time to complete.
What is a Degree?
A degree is an academic title given by an institute of higher education such as college or university to a student who has completed a course of study. Bachelor’s, Master’s and doctorates are the most common types of degrees. While bachelor’s is traditionally considered to be first degree, or the starting level, there are now lower level higher educational qualifications which are tilted as degrees. Associate degrees and foundation degrees are such types of degrees.
Common Types of Degrees
Bachelor’s degree is an undergraduate degree awarded upon the completion of a course of study lasting minimum of three years.
Master’s degree is awarded upon the completion of a course of study demonstrating mastery of a specific area of study or an area of professional practice. A master’s degree generally requires bachelor’s degree in a related field.
Doctorate, commonly known as Ph.D., is a degree earned by passing a doctoral thesis. There are various doctoral degrees, awarded in different disciplines.
What is a Top Up Degree?
A top up degree is equivalent to the final year of an honours bachelor’s degree. They can be studied by students who have completed a two-year HND (Higher National Diploma) course or a foundation degree.
Higher National Diploma
HND or Higher National Diploma is a higher educational qualification available in the UK and countries that follow similar educational systems to the British system. This is a semi-professional or semi-vocational qualification that may take up to 2 to 3 years.
Foundation degree is a combination of academic and vocational qualification in higher education, which is available in the United Kingdom. A full-time foundation degree can be completed in 2 years’ time and is equivalent to a two-third of an honour’s bachelor’s degree.
Students who complete a top up degree will be awarded either a BA or BSc. Thus, completing a top up degree gives a bachelor’s level qualification. Completing a top up degree typically take only one year.
What is the difference between Top Up Degree and Degree?
Top Up Degree vs Degree
|Top up degree is a qualification that is equivalent to the final year of an honours bachelor’s degree.||Degree is an academic title given by a college or university to a student who has completed a course of study.|
|A top up degree can be completed in a year.||A bachelor’s degree takes a minimum of three years.|
|The student must have completed an HND or foundation degree.||The student must meet the college’s academic standards.|
|Professional and Technical Experience|
|A student with a top up degree will have technical and professional experience since they complete HND or foundation degrees.||Degrees mostly give academic qualifications.|
Summary – Top Up Degree vs Degree
The main difference between top up degree and degree is that top up degree can be completed in one year, unlike an undergraduate degree which takes a minimum of three years. However, a student must have completed a Higher National Diploma or a foundation degree in order to enroll for a top up degree. Thus, completion of a top up degree is equivalent to a bachelor’s degree level.
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