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What Are The Different Types Of Postgraduate University In The US?

American UniversitiesPostgraduate work refers to college courses you take after you get your bachelors degree and there are several options available if you plan to complete graduate school in the United States. The option you choose depends on what career you are hoping to pursue and how much course credit you already have. Postgraduate degrees include both a masters degree and a PhD degree. There are a variety of ways to get either and understanding your American postgraduate university options makes it easier to choose the program that best meets your needs.

Public University

In the United States, public universities are those open to anyone who qualifies. They are also often called state schools. You will pay tuition and book costs to attend, but state colleges tend to be larger and have more room to accept many students. There are many courses available and a large variety of degree programs available so it's easy to find something you want to pursue at a state college. Some public colleges offer scholarships to help you defray the cost of attending.

Community College

Community colleges are smaller than state universities and cost less when it comes to tuition and the price of books. Most community colleges do not offer dorm options so if you plan to live on campus, this is not an option here. Sometimes you can complete a community college degree faster than at a state university and classes are often more flexible, with a more comprehensive online and night class schedule.

Private Non-Profit College

Private colleges in the United States charge a tuition, which is often much higher than a state university or community college, but the schools are usually smaller and more specialised. You can often pursue a very specific course of study and get a specialised degree at a college like this one. Non-profit status means that the college does not necessarily make a profit from your tuition and their main goal is to help you complete your education.

Private For-Profit College

This type of postgraduate school is very similar to a non-profit, in terms of course study and general cost. However, unlike a non-profit college, a for-profit university is set up as a business and that means they want to make money. While their goal is still to help you complete a course of study and get a diploma, their bottom line is to make a profit and that might affect how you feel about being on campus as well as the type of degree programs offered.

Liberal Arts Colleges

A liberal arts college differs from a typical postgraduate university in that they usually offer one expansive area of study rather than specific degree tracks. The culture on a liberal arts campus is often very different from that on a traditional university campus. Most liberal arts colleges focus on an undergraduate education, so finding one with a good postgraduate degree program may be a bit difficult. However, liberal arts colleges are usually much smaller than a state college so you'll get more attention from your instructors.

Online Postgraduate College

For busy people who have their undergraduate degree and already have a job, getting your postgraduate degree online is certainly a viable option for many people. You may have to spend a small bit of time in the classroom, especially as you get closer to graduation, but for the most part, you can complete your coursework and classroom discussion on your computer at home or during your off time at work. An online degree is no less valuable than one you get by attending class every day, but allows you to have more flexibility when it comes to completing assignments and finishing the required classroom discussions.

In Conclusion…

Getting a postgraduate degree is a big decision and understanding the many avenues for getting there can help you make the right choice, based on your needs and what course of study you want to pursue. It makes sense to research your various options and talk to a professional about how things will work so that you are sure you've chosen a college or university that meets your needs and helps you complete your higher education and pursue the career you dream about.


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