Bachelor’s degree is a college degree obtained after putting in four years of school usually. Bachelor degree programs are usually completed in a four year period with a 120+ credit hours. 60 credit hours usually constitutes to graduating with an associates of arts(AA) or an associate of science(AS)/associate of applied science(AAS). An AA is needed to transfer from a two-year college to a four-year college or university whereas an AS allows you go into the job market after a two-year period.
AA degrees mainly revolve around general education courses and electives: College Algebra, US History, World History, Biology, etc. First two years is basically a well rounded education in various subjects. Kind of like getting a feel of what interests you and what major you want to pursue. Your major strongly affects what bachelor’s program you’re going into. Your last two years of college is obtaining that bachelor’s degree.
There are two kinds of Bachelor’s degree paths:
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.): Bachelor of arts is for undergraduates persuing careers and degrees in many different fields of art. Such as if you’re going into graphic design, creative writing, theatrical productions, drama, english, literature, or anything else associated with the arts, you go for the B.A. degree. B.A. degrees are required when going into certain post graduate programs.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.): Bachelor of science is for undergraduates persuing anything related to the various sciences such a mathematics, logic, physics, business, biology, marine, biology, etc. For example, if you want to become a mathematician, biologist, astronomist, or any other science specialist, you go the path of obtaining a B.S. degree. B.S. degrees are required when going into certain post graduate programs. If you want to get into the medical field, you’re going to need a B.S. degree first before continuing any other education.
Undergraduates start their bachelor’s programs in their college junior years. However, not all schools require four years to obtain a bachelor’s degree. It is possible to obtain a bachelor’s degree within less than four years. I was accepted into the International Fine Arts Academy (IFAC) in Miami, Florida long before it merged with the Art Institutes International (Art Institute of Philadelphia, Art Institute of Ft. Launderdale, etc.), we had a meeting with the admissions people and I took a look at the curriculum.
The way the curriculum was structured with the various programs, you could obtain your bachelor’s in three years and an associate’s in one to one and a half years. The first five courses of the semester which are three credit hours each are subjects in general education such as mathematics, english, humanities, etc. After that first semester, all of your classes after that one will revolve around your major. Depending on how long you earn your bachelor’s is depends on how long you go to school for and how the curriculum for the various majors are structured.
If you go to school on and off or change between full-time and part-time, it will take longer. A bachelor’s degree is more a suped up diploma. But degrees specialize in different fields of arts and sciences. However, most places will require you have a bachelor’s degree in any subject. But there will be other places that will require you have a bachelor’s degree in a certain field of study. For example if you want to be a science teacher, you’re going to need to have a bachelor’s of science. Then your degree would have to be in a specific field of science. You want to be a biology teacher, you’re going to need a B.S. degree in the field of biology.
In short, a bachelor’s degree signifies that you’re done with school and that you’re ready to enter the “real” world. However, you don’t need to obtain just one degree. When obtaining a degree, be sure to take a careful look at how the courses and curriculum are structured.