What is the difference between BS/MD and BA/MD?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by matthewjems1, Jul 11, 2013.

  1. matthewjems1

    matthewjems1 New Member

    im looking at colleges and would like to know the disadvantages of being one and not the other. im trying to be a pediatrician. i looked for colleges with combined degrees and i get BA/MD instead of BS/MD
  2. Boethius

    Boethius Member

    Don't know about earning Medical Doctorates (MDs) via distance learning. You do know this is a distance learning forum, right? It seems your question is concerned more with traditional brick and mortar schools but the MODs and other senior folks here will chime in soon enough.
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    If I understand your question correctly . . .

    You can get into medical school with any bachelors degree. You'll need a really high GPA, you need certain courses like anatomy, organic chemistry, etc. but it doesn't really matter if your degree is in English or Physics.
  4. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    Sometimes there really is no distinction between the BA and BS. It just depends on each individual school. For example, Berea College, in Berea, Kentucky, awards the BA for every major it offers, with the exception of their lone BS in nursing. They even award the BA for their hard science programs like math, physics, etc.
  5. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    BA = Bachelor of Arts, it will have more "liberal art" type credit. Typically around 90 credits or so.

    BS = Bachelor of Science will allow more professional and technical credits and have fewer liberal art type credits.

    Charter Oak State explains it here : Charter Oak State College - Completing Your Degree

    Either way you will have to get all those science pre-reqs done for MD school.
  6. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I think this is true at a lot of schools. In some others it relates primarily to the distribution of credits across the spectrum.

    "If I took one more Physics course I could have gotten a BS but instead I took a History course and so got a BA." That sort of thing. It's hard to know how important it all is in the long run. In the case of the original question it probably doesn't mean much because medical schools won't even consider your application if you don't have the necessary prerequisites (science, math, etc.).
  7. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    In practice, both the BA and the BS are both generally regarded as perfectly valid undergraduate degrees. I've never run into an employer or graduate school that had a specific preference for one or the other, with one exception.

    That exception is engineering. The standard undergraduate engineering degree in the United States is the BS (or occasionally the BE, for Bachelor's of Engineering), with professional accreditation from ABET. Some schools do confer BA degrees in engineering, but the BA generally signifies that the degree lacks professional accreditation, and so it would not be considered as interchangeable with the BS.
  8. japhy4529

    japhy4529 House Bassist

    I recall an old colleague of mine (I worked at a large pharma company) who at the time was pursuing his bachelor's in biology (this was maybe 5 years ago). Our VP (who had a PhD in Physiology) recommended that he obtain a BS vs. a BA. The explanation was that since he was pursuing a science degree, it would more advantageous for him to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree. The VP was a very smart man, so there might be something to this. If you're not pursuing a science or engineering degree, then it probably doesn't matter.
  9. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    In many countries, the "MD" is a MBBS which is a Bachelor of Medicine and a Bachelor of Surgery!
  10. Boethius

    Boethius Member

    Now I understand your question based on what others have posted. (Sorry!)

    As I understand it, some medical schools don't even require a bachelor's degree as long as you have the requisite courses under your belt and do well on the MCAT (spelling?) exam. As far as BA or BS, it depends on the requirements and they are not the same from one college/university to another.
  11. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    The now defunct Mountain State University used to state on its web site that they would accept associate's degree graduates directly into their PA program. Since I'm sure the program was highly competitive, I'm not sure how many who only had associate's degrees actually made it into the program.
  12. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Even if it's theoretically possible, I wonder how often applicants without Bachelor's degrees are really admitted to American medical schools.
  13. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    I know some older U.S. Physicians that were accepted without a bachelors degree many years ago. However, one of them was awarded a Bachelor of Science in Biology half way through medical school anyway. Foreign medical schools usually want about 60 to 90 credits of hard core sciences. Like I mentioned earlier, many foreign countries recognize the medical credential as a "bachelors" level and often they have a 6 year Physician/Surgeon program straight out of High School leading to the MBBS.

    I'm probably going to get heckled for this statement but the US system of medical education is lacking overall! That's why graduates need a 3 plus year residency and there are so many specializations in areas that are considered part of "general practice" in many countries. The foreign med grads I've worked with from Europe and yes, Africa can hit the ground running with as little as a one year internship!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2013
  14. Boethius

    Boethius Member

    Do you know if these MBBS holders are called "doctors" or "medics?"
  15. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    The are called "Doctor".

    Link to reference guide for foreign medical credentials:
    ECFMG | Reference Guide for Medical Education Credentials
  16. Boethius

    Boethius Member

    Don't know how often. The University of Chicago, for example, indicates, like Delta, "Applicants must have completed 90 credit hours (using the AMCAS methodology) prior to matriculation from an accredited four-year degree-granting U.S. or Canadian college or university. A baccalaureate degree is not required but is strongly preferred by the Admissions Committee. "
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2013
  17. japhy4529

    japhy4529 House Bassist

    My Optometrist entered Optometry school without a bachelor's degree and was awarded a BS along the way (he's in his early 50's). Most professional schools do not require a bachelor's degree for admission (usually 90 credits, including the science pre-reqs), however, my guess is that not many applicants are actually accepted without a BA/BS.
  18. Boethius

    Boethius Member

    I wouldn't count this group out. Although we don't know for sure, I think if they did outstanding in the key science courses and scored high on the MCATS, they would have a shot, as anyone else with a Bachelor's degree, at getting admitted to a medical school. But here is the thing: if you have 90 credits, then you should just go for the extra 30 credits (10 courses or less) to get your Bachelor's degree for the total of 120 credits. I think this is more of a reason why there would be less people without bachelor's degrees applying to medical school.
  19. RobbCD

    RobbCD New Member

  20. Vinipink

    Vinipink Accounting Monster

    Dr Bear in his book, mentioned that in England they are call Mister.

    Excerpt from Wikipedia: United Kingdom the status and rank of consultant surgeons with the FRCS, titled "Mister", etc., and consultant physicians with the MRCP, titled "Doctor", is identical. The MRCS also gives a "Mister" title, but the Doctor cannot become a consultant with an MRCS alone. Surgeons in the USA and elsewhere continue to use the title "Doctor", although Australia and New Zealand use the titles of Mr and Doctor, in the same way as the United Kingdom
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2013

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