MBA vs Specialized Master degree: Which is better for you?


When you think of business schools, you generally think of MBA programs. An MBA degree has long been recognized as desirable for those working in business-related sectors and requires a level of study. A lot of business school students are now seeking Master’s degrees in specialized subjects like accounting, economics, and business analytics, signaling a gradual shift that has occurred over the previous few years. Shortly, it is anticipated that this tendency will continue.

There are several major areas where an MBA and a Master of Science differ. Whatever you choose will depend on several things, such as your career objectives, prior experience, financial situation, etc.

MBA and specialized Master’s degree

While MBAs aim to develop suitable abilities on a foundation of a candidate’s life or professional experience, the bulk of Master’s degrees is created to expand on the student’s prior academic background. First off, the goals of the two degrees are dissimilar. MBA programs attempt to build the necessary abilities on a candidate’s previous life or work experience.

An MBA is a professional degree that strongly emphasizes acquiring practical business skills, including accounting, finance, and statistics, and their subsequent use in various business settings. Most MBA programs require applicants to have prior work experience since MBA students usually benefit from learning from one another’s professional expertise. Other skills required for managerial jobs, such as the capacity to collaborate, negotiate, and communicate effectively, are also given focus by MBA programs.

In traditional MBA programs, “case studies” take up most of the class time. Students are encouraged to explore, discuss, and report on case studies—real-world illustrations of business challenges or problems—while working in small groups or “syndicates” with their classmates.

The coursework for specialized Master’s degrees, however, frequently focuses on just one area of study for the duration of the degree. For instance, a Master of Science in Finance degree may focus primarily on developing more sophisticated financial skills and is often more theoretical. Even though more conventional lecture and tutorial classes are offered in certain MBA schools, they are much less common in MBA programs than in Master’s degree programs.

should you go for an MBA?

A Master’s degree or a Master of Business Administration? Which is the best?

The Master of Business Administration and the Master of Arts are excellent options for professional development, but they approach the topic of career advancement differently. Master’s degree programs are available to applicants who already hold a bachelor’s degree but wish to continue their education before starting a job. As a result, it won’t be nearly as important for you to have prior work experience to enroll in a Master’s degree.

The opportunity to build on the knowledge and skills learned during undergraduate study and become well-versed experts in a particular field of research is provided to students who seek a Master’s degree. This is possible because there are many areas of personal specialization where a Master’s degree can be obtained. The course’s material is intended to aid students in developing their technical and analytical skills.

Although an MBA is also a Master’s degree, as suggested by its name, its only focus is on business administration, leading it to take a more all-encompassing approach. Candidates interested in advancing their careers into managerial or leadership-focused roles within the industry are strongly encouraged to earn a Master of Business Administration degree. The course aims to help students build the leadership and management skills required to run a business successfully.

When compared to Master’s degree programs, MBA programs give a lot more weight to prior work experience. As a result, if you have even a little professional experience—say, one to two years—your MBA experience will be quite beneficial. Students who pursue an MBA have a broad and in-depth understanding of business administration and management thanks to the program’s curriculum’s coverage of numerous business disciplines.

“A Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree is a great option for those who want to work in general management, executive leadership, or entrepreneurship because of this.”

Program credentials you are enrolling for:

Both the program length and the prerequisites can change. Before enrolling in a business program, MBA students typically have a few years of work experience. They know that getting a business degree will typically take them two years to complete, but they are motivated to advance their career. M.S. programs allow students with little or no prior work experience to graduate quickly, sometimes in as little as one year. A streamlined route to gaining the breadth and depth of knowledge required to be competitive for jobs in a particular specialization is provided by M.S. programs.

Focus of both the programs:

Focused MBA programs are generally more thorough. These courses’ intended audience is college students eager to learn how to apply their theoretical knowledge to real-world business situations. A specialized master’s program accomplishes exactly what its name suggests: it focuses on a specific area of business and provides students with a deep understanding of that subject.


Price of the MBA and specialized Master degree

Price of the MBA and specialized Master degree

The cost of earning an MBA may be higher, but it may also have a higher rate of return. Businesses are prepared to pay top dollar for a skilled expert with broad business knowledge. For instance, base salaries for MBA graduates can be up to $60,000 higher at some consulting firms. Although a master’s program in a particular field also provides excellent returns, it is frequently less expensive to advance one’s career.

Before we discuss if an MBA is better than a Master’s degree, let’s take a closer look at three considerations you should make while choosing your next academic step:

  • 1.   What are your ambitions for your career?

One of the most crucial factors to consider when deciding between an MBA and a Master’s degree is one’s career goals. You can determine whether you want to pursue an MBA or a Master’s degree once you are clear on the long-term career objectives you wish to pursue. From there, you can select the program that best fits your objectives.

“An MBA program is more likely to concentrate on business administration and management subjects. In contrast, a master’s program might cover a wide range of specific specialties, such as data science and business analytics, as well as the humanities and natural sciences.”

  • 2.   Why does any student intend to enroll for any of the courses?

The second factor influencing your choice is your expectations for a postgraduate program, which should be carefully considered. Before you can do either of those things effectively, you must decide what you want to do with your degree and what talents you want to develop.

“Therefore, an MBA program is the obvious choice for you if you’re interested in learning general business management skills; on the other hand, if you’d want to study specialized skills, a Master’s degree is your best bet”.


How much of your time are you prepared to invest in your studies?


  • 3.   How much of your time and money are you prepared to invest in your studies?

Even if it takes two years to finish the coursework for a Master’s degree and a Master of Business Administration, you must still decide how much time and effort you can afford to put into your further education. For instance, working people frequently discover that enrolling in their MBA or Master’s programs online is the most practical choice because it enables them to study whenever it suits their schedule.

It is now clear that earning a master’s degree may be the best route to specializing. Focusing nearly entirely on a particular subject is one of the most important advantages of receiving a master’s degree. Getting a master’s degree enables you to concentrate on enhancing your primary strength. For instance, learning about subjects like marketing or human resources is okay if you have a strong background in mathematics. The MBA, however, can be a better choice if you are still trying to decide which career will ultimately be the best fit for you since it will allow you to become more aware of your skills as you progress through the program.

Most Master’s degree programs do not require previous work experience as a requirement, but they do accept young professionals who have worked for a while—typically up to a year—in the workforce. The average age of Master’s degree students at some schools is only 23 years old (ranging from 20 to about 27 years old), whereas the average age of MBA degree students is between 27 and 32 years old. As a result, Master’s degree students are typically much younger than full-time MBA students.

The accompanying costs are something you should consider while making your decision. The Master of Science (MSc) program typically lasts one year as opposed to the two years required to acquire an MBA, making it a more cost-effective choice for students worried about the cost of tuition. A one-year commitment is easier on your working life because it necessitates less time away from work than commitments of any other length.



Without a doubt, a Master of Business Administration and a specialty Master’s degree will increase your marketability in the job market compared to just having a Bachelor of Science. The best thing is that an MBA degree qualifies you for jobs worldwide, allowing you to expand your horizons and work abroad if you want. A position relatively high up the corporate ladder will also be more likely to be offered to you almost immediately after you graduate from college. Some of the newest CEOs of large companies credit their quick rise to the top of the corporate ladder to their Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree.