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MS vs MBA- Which Program to Choose for Masters in USA

Graduation courses are pursued for advancing the set of knowledge in an individual’s subject of interest and career growth. Studying graduation courses secures good positions in the firms and organizations around the world. Graduation courses are credited under titles like Masters of Arts, Masters of Science, Master of Philosophy, Master of Business Administration, and so on. MS and MBA courses are most sought after postgraduate degrees in USA. MS and MBA are two study programs that focus on scientific and administration knowledge respectively.


Students often get confused as to which course suits them the best. Since more and more engineering students tend to turn towards a management career, whether or not to pursue a dedicated Masters in Science can be a dilemma. 

While that stands true, a management degree is expensive and after pursuing a management degree, the candidates cannot move back to a technical career. 

To solve this confusion, we’ve broken it down for you! Here’s a comparison between MS and MBA that will help you decide which degree suits you the best! 



Master of Science

Master of Science is a commonly pursued degree. MS is a degree that is focused on scientific and mathematical subjects. Although, MS in USA has variety of subjects ranging from science, film, arts, engineering, medicines, accounting, etc. Therefore, there are many universities in the country with almost every specialized subject under MS. Master of Science in USA is often pursued by Indian students as the program is very well structured in the country and many engineering and science field students have gained benefits from studying MS mostly in terms of professional growth and broadened knowledge and skills. The duration of MS course is from 1 to 3 years.

Examples of MS degrees

  • Master of Science in Computer Science
  • Master of Science in Creative arts and Design
  • Master of Science in Accounting
  • Master of Science in Data analytics

Eligibility Criteria for MS

  • Depending on the specialized MS degree, students have to be prepared with set of requirements for submitting during application process.
  • If an individual is opting for a MS specialization in mathematics related subject, the student has to appear for a GMAT and GRE test along with appearing for English proficiency test (TOEFL or IELTS).
  • Other subjects like science or creative related, students can submit their application with the English proficiency test i.e. either TOEFL or IELTS.
  • Students are required to submit a Letter of Recommendation and Statement of Purpose. Prepare a CV.

Master of Business Administration

Master of Business Administration, MBA is a business management related degree. MBA degree also provides specialized degrees like Accounting, Economics, Financial management, Business management, corporate management, etc. Students who are interested to pursue and learn about business ethics and management should preferably pursue this higher education course. While, MBA courses may be of 2 years of duration depending on the specialized subject, the duration of the program may differ. MBA is often pursued by people who are seeking for managerial positions in organization or entrepreneurs who are looking to broaden their knowledge about management in the business field.

Examples of Master of Business Administration degrees:

  • MBA in Marketing
  • MBA in Human Resources
  • MBA in Operations Management

Eligibility Criteria for MBA

  • MBA students have appear for GMAT and GRE and give either of English proficiency test (IELTS or TOEFL).
  • CV/Resume
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose

Difference between MS and MBA

Master of Science (MS)

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

Degrees under the title MS focuses on science, mathematics, medicines and engineering related specialized subjects.

Degrees under the title MBA focuses on business management related specialized subjects.

Duration of the degree ranges from 1-3 years.

Duration of the degree ranges from 1 to 2 years or more.

Require 30 credit hours.

Require 36 to 48 credit hours.

Students can pursue doctorate level degrees after this course.

Individuals can directly approach jobs with management level designations.

Endowment/Scholarship is available.

Scholarship/Endowment is available

The subjects under of Master of Science in USA are equivalent to Master of Arts in India. The scope after studying MS in USA will give individuals an opportunity to secure jobs in well-known organizations and well paying designations in the firm. Master of Business Administration on the other hand is entirely focused on management and administration based knowledge, the scope after studying MBA in USA will give individuals the opportunity to work in managerial positions in organizations.

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