162 Best Dual Degree Programs: Guide to In-Person & Online Programs

162 Best Dual Degree Programs: Guide to In-Person & Online Programs
Imed Bouchrika, Phd by Imed Bouchrika, Phd
Chief Data Scientist & Head of Content

If you are looking at a career that straddles multiple disciplines, you can prepare by taking special disciplinary programs. Another option is taking the dual degree program route. There are several reasons you might be better off taking the latter. For one, dual degree programs offer courses beyond intersecting topics as you would expect from an interdisciplinary program. The wealth of additional topics may spur you to embark on a novel research venture, propping you up for better employment among varying industries.

Aside from giving intersectional areas more focus, joint and interdisciplinary degree programs may impart less translatable skills from one field to another. Hence, a dual degree program can be a better option if employment prospects are a great concern. Of course, this varies from program to program, but these seem to be their general features.

In this article, we are going to discuss what a dual degree program is, what to expect, its difference from a double major, and the benefits of enrolling in one. Better yet, we are going to list down the best dual degree programs available in-person and online, categorized in a series of related fields.

What is a dual degree program?

A dual degree program is an opportunity for post-secondary students to earn two degrees simultaneously. It is called different names, including double degree and double graduation, among others. The main goal of these programs is to impart interdisciplinary education and to provide a way for students to earn two degrees at, more or less, the same amount of time as those working on a single degree. Or, at the least, earn two degrees at a much faster time than taking them both separately.

Degree Pairings

Typically, the two degrees conferred in these dual degree programs are in the same study area or are in related fields. Pairing a bachelor’s in mathematics and a master’s in engineering is an example. There are also those that offer degrees in two totally separate subjects. These include the popular pairing of a bachelor’s in engineering and a bachelor’s in liberal arts.

Dual degree programs are usually paired because of some theoretical or practical relationships that are useful both in research and industry. They are geared to develop people with the knowledge and skills to attack problems from different angles. Also, these prepare people who have specific skills for a specific profession or research program.

Institutional Setups

Dual degree programs can also have different setups depending on the institutions involved. Generally, dual degree programs are offered by the same institution. But there are cases where a dual degree program is supervised by two different institutions, sometimes by those from two different countries. Students enrolled in such dual degree programs get the opportunity to travel to different places and learn other cultures and languages.

Levels of Education

Dual degree programs can also vary in terms of levels of education. However, the most common is the master’s level double degree programs. Popular ones include a dual program in master’s in business administration (M.B.A.) and Juris Doctor (J.D.). Aside from this general dual master’s degree, there are also highly specialized dual degree programs like a master’s in anthropology with a master’s in public health.

Even though they are not as common, double undergraduate dual degree programs are available in the United States. One of the best dual degree programs undergraduate offerings is a bachelor’s in engineering and a bachelor’s in liberal arts. Students enrolled in these programs study three to four years in the liberal arts and two years in engineering.

Learning Environment

Dual degree programs can also be offered in different settings: in-person, online, or blended learning environments. Depending on the programs, some institutions give students the choice of their preferred settings. This can also vary between courses and departmental offerings.

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Dual Degree vs. Dual Major

It is easy to confuse a dual degree program with what is called a double major. However, they are totally different. When you choose to have a double major, you are earning only one degree that comes with two majors or specializations. This, of course, depends on the number of courses you take under a subject area. So, students will earn double majors when the two majors they take will lead to the same degree name like a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science. For instance, a student can graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and Biology.

On the other hand, graduates of dual degree programs get two separate degrees. For instance, a dual master’s degree or a dual bachelor’s degree. They can also earn a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in the same area. One common instance of this is a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Engineering.

The bottom line is a dual major is under a single degree while a dual degree program confers two different degrees.

Types of Dual Degree Programs

As mentioned, dual degree programs can have different types. They can be undergraduate degrees, master’s, or doctorate degrees, among others. In general, there are four types.

  • Associate’s and Bachelor’s Program. Here, students earn an associate degree from a community college and a bachelor’s degree from a university. For example:
    • Associate’s in Accounting and Bachelor’s in Accounting
    • Associate’s in Graphic Design and Bachelor’s in Graphic Design
    • Associate’s in Business Management and Bachelor’s in Business Management
  • Dual Bachelor’s Degree Program. This program offers two bachelor’s degrees to students. Examples are:
    • Bachelor’s in Biology and Bachelor’s in Chemistry
    • Bachelor’s in Computer Science and Bachelor’s in Cognitive Science
    • Bachelor’s in Biology and Bachelor’s in Computer Science
  • Dual Master’s Degree Program. This is the most common type of dual degree program, and it confers two master’s degrees in two fields. A few examples are:
    • Master’s in Business Management and Master’s in Business Analytics
    • Master’s in Anthropology and Master’s in Public Health
    • Master’s in International Affairs and Master’s in Social Work
  • Dual Graduate Program. This is a combination of different graduate degrees, including Master of Arts (M.A.), Master of Science (M.S.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)., Medicinae Doctor (Doctor of Medicine — M.D.), and many more. These include:
    • Juris Doctor and Master’s in Middle Eastern Studies
    • Medicinae Doctor and Juris Doctor
    • Juris Doctor and Master’s in Social Work

Can you get a dual degree online?

Yes, there are many online dual degree programs available, especially now because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But even before that, online dual degree programs are widely available. But as you will see below, the best dual degree programs in STEM are typically available in the traditional on-campus setting.

Regardless, an online degree nowadays is quite widely accepted. Online education is one of the top online education trends as universities expand their offerings to the digital space. Moreover, speaking generally, the quality of online learning tools and techniques has also improved because of the pandemic. More teachers and students are now equipped with the right tools and techniques to make online teaching and learning experiences better.

In fact, according to recent online education statistics, 50% of undergraduates find their online education experience to be about the same in quality as traditional in-person education. A significant 39% claimed that it is better. Only 11% reported that it is not that good. About 52% of graduate students, on the other hand, reported that their online experience was better than their experiences in the traditional setting. Only 10% reported that it is not that good. The rest, at 38%, reported that both are about the same. But, of course, not all programs are created equal. The quality would depend on the particular institution that offers them.

Also, it is best to find online dual degree programs that are accredited. Enrolling in an accredited program not only ensures that the quality of education is good but also it gives you a bigger chance of getting hired. You can easily check what kind of accreditation your prospective programs have on the school’s website or do a quick search on your favorite search engine.

Source: Learning House, 2020

Reasons to Take Dual Degree Programs

Taking dual degrees can be difficult, especially when the degrees you are taking have less to do with each other. It requires great flexibility and mental aptitude to switch from one study topic to another. It also requires a good deal of time management for one to graduate, more or less, at the same time as those who are only taking one degree.

However, having a dual degree can have many rewards. In this section, we are going to outline some of them.

An avenue into interdisciplinarity

Today, interdisciplinarity is highly valued in both academic research and industry. This is because many areas of knowledge and skills overlap. This is also the main reason why dual degree programs and interdisciplinary programs are made available in many schools today. They provide training and development of people who can tackle sets of problems using various tools from different disciplines, ranging from theoretical or formal ones to those that are applied and practical. This approach is very valuable and almost indispensable.

In fact, there are fields that are purely interdisciplinary. Take cognitive science, for example. Many disciplines contribute to the field. They include neuroscience, philosophy, psychology, linguistics, artificial intelligence, and anthropology. Many would think that these disciplines are quite disparate from each other. However, they cooperate in creating and developing a new field.

One can also argue that these fields, among many others, are historically and intellectually intertwined. In this sense, interdisciplinary and dual degree programs shed light on this interesting confluence of approaches and knowledge across disciplines.

The aptest term, maybe, is consilience. We, albeit crudely, will give a general idea.

The word’s roots can be traced back to philosopher William Whewell (1840), who declared, “The Consilience of Inductions takes place when an Induction, obtained from one class of facts, coincides with an Induction obtained from another different class. Thus, Consilience is a test of the truth of the Theory in which it occurs.” This is found in his landmark work The philosophy of the inductive sciences, founded upon their history.  In Whewell’s definition, consilience is somewhat limited, in a simplified view, to inductive methods of investigations in one subject matter. However, this meaning was overshadowed by the term’s later popularization.

Consilience, as a concept, was popularly resurrected by the father of sociobiology, E.O. Wilson (1998), in his book Consilience: The unity of knowledge. Consilience, for Wilson, is “Literarily a ‘jumping together’ of knowledge by the linking of facts and fact-based theory across disciplines to create a common groundwork of explanation.” Wilson expanded it to cover the various disciplines not limited to the natural sciences. Whewell’s example of consilience was Newton’s laws and their causal unification (e.g. gravitational law). One of Wilson’s examples was in the synthesis of the Darwinian theory of evolution and Mendelian genetics. Two disciplines or subject matters jump together to form a more superior groundwork.

Wilson’s take might be too general and too generous for the taste of some scientists and philosophers, but it seems to take into account why dual degree programs and interdisciplinary disciplines have come about—through their effectiveness. If different disciplines can indeed come together to form better theoretical and empirical underpinnings of research objects or some human undertaking, then it is possible that some degree of consilience among disciplines is possible and useful. And, as mentioned, cognitive science is a good candidate for this. Another possible one could be forensic science.

Wilson’s more generous account of consilience is both a description of what approach works and a prescription to take it in both theoretical and empirical research across disciplines. And, apparently, interdisciplinary approaches have helped in many discoveries and inventions that affect our daily lives and our understanding of it. A dual degree or interdisciplinary training can be your avenue to contributing to society through your career.

Moreover, taking it a bit further, one can also find consilience in the actual workings of an organization where multiple disciplines and approaches are used to help the whole thrive. Somewhat indirectly, this leads us to another benefit of getting a dual degree.

Improve employability with transferrable skillsets

Many dual degree programs focus on highly specialized functions. For instance, dual M.B.A. and nursing degrees are targeted at people who could fill in important job positions in healthcare management. Criminology and law dual degrees can lead to highly specialized occupations in law enforcement and the judiciary system. Furthermore, people with dual degrees can also find work in not just one but two fields.

Moreover, if you are looking to become a researcher, a dual degree can help you widen your understanding of different fields and also become an expert at specifics at the same time. Thus, your insights can be valuable to collaborators coming from many different disciplines. In this scenario, cooperation can lead to the creation of rich scientific or academic literature in multiple fields.

Take neuroscientist and medical doctor Karl Friston, for instance. He is mostly known for his work in brain imaging. His expertise in different fields (physics and psychology, among others), however, allows him to collaborate on many topics and with other researchers from different disciplines. Today, he is the main proponent of the free energy principle and predictive coding in cognitive science. He collaborates with all sorts of researchers, from mathematicians and philosophers to psychologists and artificial intelligence experts. With a rich skillset and broad understanding of the connections of different fields, people like Friston are sought after today.

If you take a dual degree, you have more of a chance to have valuable contributions to both industry and research. Also, if you are taking it in two different countries, you will not only be learning various things from two separate disciplines but also get the chance to learn from other cultures as well.

Study at two institutions in different countries

There are many dual degree programs that are offered by cooperating institutions from two different countries. The arrangement conveniently affords students the chance to widen their horizons and networks by traveling and understanding other cultures. This serves as a distinct advantage in acquiring better employability options and in setting up collaborative research. You get an advantage not only because of your interdisciplinary pedigree but also through the breadth of your contacts. This can be more expensive than taking a dual degree program in just one institution. The return on investment, however, can more than make up for it.

A good signal for employers

Graduating with two degrees tells employers that you are dedicated, committed, and can manage your time well. Of course, interdisciplinarity is valued because of having highly transferrable skills. But employers also look at the intangibles that are very important in the workplace setting. Having a dual degree provides them with a positive insight into the value of having you in their organizations.

Note, too, that if you want to pursue an interdisciplinary field, you can always find good interdisciplinary programs. You do not have to earn a double degree. An advantage to this is that you really get deeper into the subject areas that you are interested in. For instance, if you are interested in both music and music technology, you do not have to enroll in both degrees or a dual degree program. You can directly enroll in music and technology or music technology programs.

Some interdisciplinary programs include degrees in science and public policy, political communication, business and political economy, data science and behavioral science, and symbolic systems. But then again, these only confer a single degree to graduates. Moreover, unlike dual degrees, they might not be as good as a signal to employers of your dedication and commitment.

Savings on Money and Time

The last, but certainly not the least important reason for taking the dual degree route for most people, is that a dual degree program can save you both money and time. It allows you to not only pay less than taking both degrees separately but also save on some hidden costs that some fail to factor in when investing in their college education. These include board, lodging, transportation, and other needs like books and a budget for internships. By taking two degrees simultaneously, you will optimize the time and money you spend.

This is very important if you are plotting your career with a return on college investment in mind. Many graduates have to deal with the lingering problem of student loans. In fact, in Q2 of 2021, the outstanding student loans according to the Federal Reserve (2021) reached $1.732 trillion. This also does not exempt students enrolled in the top universities in the country.

In fact, the average student debt in schools like Northwestern University, at $36,350,  rivals the average student loan debt across the country at $38,792 (U.S. News, 2021; Kurt, Brock, & Clarine, 2021).

So, a dual degree program is a really good option for saving on your college investment.

Source: U.S. News, 2020

Best Dual Degree Programs

There are many dual degrees available in the U.S. alone. We have listed 162 of the best ones you can find. These include programs with dual degrees in medicine and in business, business and the humanities, and a mixture of programs in the STEM fields. The latter will serve you well if you are looking at STEM careers. Also, they are a mix of in-person and online degree programs from many prestigious institutions.

Medical Sciences and Business

Business acumen is very important in the medical field. Management skills are limited not only to medical procedures, they are also vital to many clerical, strategic, and operational aspects of an organization. This is why many dual degree programs are being offered to match this need. Popular ones include an M.B.A. and a master’s in nursing. Many schools offer this program, including Northeastern University and Kent State University. Capella University also offers a dual bachelor’s and master’s program in health care management and healthcare administration, respectively. The best online dual degree programs in these fields are also available in the table below.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchools
In-PersonMedicinae Doctor (M.D.)Master’s in Educational PsychologyUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Public HealthYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in NursingGardner-Webb University, Kent State University, Northeastern University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in NursingRobert Morris University,
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Nursing Administration and LeadershipCalifornia University of Pennsylvania
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Nursing – Health Systems ManagementJohns Hopkins University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Nursing – Healthcare AdministrationUniversity of Mary, Robert Morris University,
OnlineMaster’s in Nursing Master’s in Health AdministrationLiberty University
In-PersonMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Health System ManagementTexas Woman's University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Health Care Management Master’s in Health AdministrationCapella University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Health Care Management Master’s in Public HealthCapella University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Public HealthBenedictine University, University of Alabama - Huntsville
In-PersonExecutive Master's in Business Administration Master’s in Healthcare LeadershipCornell University
In-PersonMaster’s in Health Care Management Master’s in Information TechnologyMarymount University
In-PersonMaster’s in Health Studies Master’s in Library ScienceTexas Woman's University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Nursing Leadership and Healthcare AdministrationWilmington University
OnlineMaster’s in Public Health Online Master’s in Management and Organizational BehaviorBenedictine University

 

Business and Other Specializations

Business is a wide field and with many specializations. It also changes rapidly, pressuring schools to create programs that can satisfy market demand. In the following list, we have M.B.A. programs paired with many specialist degrees, including master’s in forestry, master’s in mechanical engineering, and master’s in Asian studies. These types of dual degree programs help graduates develop business skills and acumen in specific practical settings like engineering, church management, and art management. The top schools offering these kinds of programs include the University of Texas – Austin and Yale School of Management. The largest providers of online versions of these programs are Indiana University and Dallas Baptist University. The latter offers specialized degrees paired with an M.B.A. like master in children ministry and master in discipleship.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchools
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationJuris DoctorYale School of Management,California Western School of Law, Florida State University, Northeastern University, University of Texas - Austin, Columbia University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Social WorkKennesaw State University, University of Texas - Austin
In-Person Master's in Business AdministrationMaster's in LeadershipMarymount University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Human Resource Management Master’s in ScienceCapella University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in SciencePurdue University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in Strategic ManagementIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in Applied EconomicsIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in CommunicationIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in BiotechnologyIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in AccountingNortheastern University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in EngineeringPurdue University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in ArchitectureKent State University, Yale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Communication StudiesUniversity of Texas-Austin, Kent State University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Library and Information ScienceKent State University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in TranslationKent State University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in CybersecurityMarymount University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Human Resource ManagementMarymount University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Information TechnologyMarymount University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Leadership and ManagementMarymount University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Human Resource ManagementMaster’s in ScienceCapella University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Hospitality ManagementUniversity of North Texas
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in AccountancyUniversity of Oklahoma
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in AdvertisingUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Asian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in JournalismUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Public AdministrationUniversity of North Dakota
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Energy & Earth ResourcesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMedicinae DoctorYale School of Management, University of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Russian, East European, & Eurasian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonBachelor’s in Business Administration (home institution)Bachelor’s in Business Administration with Global Business Concentration (from Walden University)Walden University
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Environmental ManagementYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in ForestryYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Global AffairsYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Fine ArtsYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in DivinityYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in ReligionYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster's in Business AdministrationDoctor of PhilosophyYale School of Management
In-PersonMaster’s in AdvertisingMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas Austin
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster's in FinanceAuburn University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Industrial and Systems EngineeringAuburn University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Information SystemsAuburn University
OnlineMaster’s in ManagementMaster’s in Organizational LeadershipColorado State University - Global Campus
OnlineMaster’s in Management Master’s in Children’s MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in ManagementMaster’s in Global LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Management Master’s in Student MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in ManagementMaster’s in Higher EducationDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Children’s MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in Christian MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in DiscipleshipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Global LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Student MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Educational LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Higher EducationDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Curriculum and Instruction Master’s in Educational LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Business AnalyticsIndiana University, Dallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Sport ManagementDrexel University
OnlineMaster's in Business AnalyticsMaster’s in Sport ManagementDrexel University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Entrepreneurship and InnovationIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in FinanceUniversity of Michigan, Webster University, Indiana University, Northeastern University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Global Supply Chain ManagementIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in IT ManagementIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business Administration Master’s in MarketingIndiana University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in EngineeringPurdue University
OnlineMaster's in Business AdministrationMaster’s in Science Management and LeadershipWebster University

 

Public Administration, Politics, and Other Specializations

One could argue that the difference between public administration and politics with businesses is that the former is done in the public space. But the skills needed to be successful in these fields are not very different. This is why many dual degree programs offered with public administration and politics degrees are the same as those found paired with M.B.A. programs. These include degrees such as Juris Doctor, master in journalism, and master in Asian studies. However, there are also very specialized degree pairings that look at public space as the main domain of politics and public administration. These include master’s programs in sustainable design, public health, and international relations. So far, the top three institutions with the most offerings in this field are the University of Texas – Austin, University of Chicago, and Columbia University.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchool
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Master’s in JournalismColumbia University
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Master’s in Urban PlanningColumbia University
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Juris DoctorColumbia University
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Master’s in Public HealthColumbia University
OnlineMaster’s in Public AdministrationMaster’s in Public HealthUniversity of Illinois - Springfield
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Master’s in Quantitative Methods in the Social SciencesColumbia University
In-PersonMaster’s in International Affairs Master’s in Social WorkColumbia University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Public Policy Studies Master’s in Public Policy StudiesUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Public Policy StudiesMaster’s in Social Service AdministrationUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Public Policy StudiesMaster’s in International RelationsUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in Community & Regional Planning Master’s in GeographyUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Community & Regional PlanningMaster’s in Sustainable DesignUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Community & Regional PlanningMaster’s in Urban DesignUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Asian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Energy & Earth ResourcesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Information StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in JournalismUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesMaster’s in Russian, East European, & Eurasian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonBachelor’s in Computational Analysis and Public PolicyMaster’s in Computational Analysis and Public PolicyUniversity of Chicago

Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM)

We know that STEM fields not only power industry but are also indispensable tools in understanding how the world works and our place in it. To be successful in both of these functions, however, other disciplines play a huge role. These include management, leadership, and those concerning social responsibility. This is why many STEM degree programs are paired not only with other STEM fields but also with other disciplines that may not be considered as STEM per se. Perhaps the most popular one is the dual degree program in engineering and liberal arts. This type of program is usually a transfer program where a student takes three or four years of liberal arts education from a home institution then takes two years of engineering in a university. Deemed as bachelor’s in engineering and bachelor’s in liberal arts (3+2 or 4+2), it is being offered by prestigious institutions, including the California Institute of Technology, Dartmouth College, and Georgia Institute of Technology. The best dual graduate degree programs in STEM are also included below.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchool(s)
In-PersonBachelor’s in MathematicsMaster’s in MathematicsUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in StatisticsMaster’s in StatisticsUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Chemistry Master’s in ChemistryUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Computer ScienceMaster’s in Computer ScienceUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Computational Social ScienceMaster’s in Computational Social ScienceUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in MathematicsMaster’s in EngineeringTexas Woman's University
In-PersonMaster’s in Information TechnologyMaster’s in CybersecurityMarymount University
In-PersonBachelor's in Engineering Bachelor's in Liberal Arts (3+2 or 4+2 Program)Columbia University, Washington University in St. Louis
In-PersonBachelor's in EngineeringBachelor's in Liberal Arts (3+2 Program)California Institute of Technology, Case Western Reserve University, Dartmouth College, Georgia Institute of Technology
In-PersonBachelor's in Computer Science Bachelor's in Cognitive ScienceUniversity of Pennsylvania
In-PersonBachelor’s in General Information TechnologyMaster’s in Information Assurance and CybersecurityCapella University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Information Assurance and CybersecurityMaster’s in Information Assurance and CybersecurityCapella University
In-PersonBachelor’s in General PsychologyMaster’s in Clinical PsychologyCapella University
In-PersonBachelor’s in General Psychology Master’s in Education or Higher EducationCapella University
In-PersonBachelor’s in General Psychology Master’s in PsychologyCapella University

Education Sciences and Religious Education and Management

Education science is a wide field covering many topics, from pedagogy to management and curriculum design to education policy. It also forms the basis of educational delivery practice, with its rich theoretical literature spanning across disciplines. Many dual degree programs under this category are offered online, as they are mostly at the graduate level where students are expected to be independent and self-starters. Degree pairings not only focus on general education science but also on library science and behavior analysis. Likewise, religious education, church management, and ministry are included in this category. The top provider of these specialized religious education dual degree programs is Dallas Baptist University with its mainly online offerings.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchool(s)
In-PersonMaster’s in Health Studies Master’s in Library ScienceTexas Woman's University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Education and Teaching CertificateMaster’s in Education and Teaching CertificateUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in Special Education Master’s in Applied Behavior AnalysisGrand Canyon University
OnlineMaster’s in Special EducationMaster’s in Applied Behavior AnalysisDallas Baptist University
In-PersonMaster of Library ScienceMaster of Science in Health StudiesTexas Woman's University
In-PersonMaster’s in Liberal Arts Master’s in Children’s MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Liberal Arts Master’s in Children’s MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Children’s MinistryMaster’s in Global LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Christian MinistryMaster’s in Student MinistryDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Family Ministry Master’s in Global LeadershipDallas Baptist University
OnlineMaster’s in Global Leadership Master’s in Student MinistryDallas Baptist University

Social Sciences, Art, and Humanities

The social sciences and humanities, like art, explore the human condition, albeit in many different ways. In today’s research practice, the social sciences and humanities are rapidly picking up techniques from the natural and formal sciences to enhance understanding in their particular fields. This is why many social sciences, arts, and humanities degree programs are paired with other programs that study and improve the human condition in individuals as well as in societies. These include information studies, music therapy, and law. Moreover, this also includes specializations in specific geographic and cultures like master in Latin American Studies and master in Eastern Studies programs. The top provider of these types of dual degree programs is the University of Texas – Austin.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchool(s)
In-PersonBachelor’s in the HumanitiesMaster’s in the HumanitiesUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in Architecture Master’s in Urban DesignKent State University
In-PersonMaster’s in Music – Music Therapy Master’s in Counseling and DevelopmentTexas Woman's University
In-PersonMaster’s in Counseling and DevelopmentMaster’s in MusicTexas Woman's University
In-PersonBachelor’s in Middle Eastern StudiesMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Digital Studies of Language, Culture, and History Master’s in Digital Studies of Language, Culture, and HistoryUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in Latin American and Caribbean StudiesMaster’s in Latin American and Caribbean StudiesUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonBachelor’s in the Social SciencesMaster’s in the Social SciencesUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in Anthropology Master’s in Public HealthUniversity of Chicago
In-PersonMaster’s in Communication Studies Master’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Communication Studies Master’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Information Studies Master’s in EnglishUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Information Studies Master’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Journalism Master’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in JournalismMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Journalism Master’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Latin American StudiesMaster’s in Community & Regional PlanningUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Latin American Studies Master’s in Community & Regional PlanningUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Latin American StudiesMaster’s in LawUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Latin American StudiesMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Latin American StudiesMaster’s in Social WorkUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesMaster’s in Information StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Radio-Television-FilmMaster’s in Latin American StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Radio-Television-FilmMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Radio-Television-FilmMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Radio-Television-FilmMaster’s in Russian, East European, & Eurasian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Russian, East European, & Eurasian StudiesMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Women’s & Gender StudiesMaster’s in Information StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonMaster’s in Women’s Gender StudiesMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin

Law and Other Specializations

Law, in itself, has many specializations. However, to really better understand the context of the law and its intersection with culture, economics, and policy, a deeper dive into specific topics is needed. This is why many institutions pair a Juris Doctor program with other specialized degrees, including geographical and cultural studies and other practical disciplines. Many of these specialized pairings are offered by the University of Texas -Austin.

TypeDegree ADegree BSchool(s)
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Community and Regional PlanningUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Global Policy StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Information StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Middle Eastern StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Public AffairsUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Russian, East European, & Eurasian StudiesUniversity of Texas - Austin
In-PersonJuris DoctorMaster’s in Social WorkUniversity of Texas - Austin

 

Is a dual degree program right for you?

You have to take into account two main considerations if you are looking to take a dual degree program. The first one, and probably the most important, is your passionate interest in both fields of your choice. This is because passionate interest will be the component that drives you and keeps you steady while you are in your studies. Taking one degree could be challenging enough. Earning two degrees at the same time can burn a student out more. Course materials and requirements can be a little here and there. It would take a good amount of concentration and willpower to keep you on course. Passion is what keeps you going.

We say passionate interest here because we want to differentiate from mere interest. One can be interested in many things, like subject areas in physics, those in the medical sciences, artificial intelligence, and some aspects of business or finance. However, one does not necessarily deep dive into these subjects. Those who have passionate interests, however, are almost obsessive (if not pretty obsessive) when it comes to learning about them and working within these fields. This makes a big difference not just in finishing your academic requirements to earn your degree but also in thriving in an interdisciplinary research project or workplace practice.

If finding a well-paying job is the only thing that matters to you, then a dual degree may not be the best course of action to take.

The second important consideration is feasibility. This is in terms of time and finances. As you may have inferred from the statistics on average debt in the United States, many graduates still have outstanding loans. Given the volatility of a job market that is still reeling from the pangs of COVID-19, it is highly possible that many of them will not be able to pay those loans off in the next five years. Sure, enrolling in a dual degree program will help you set yourself apart. Also, you will be able to graduate earlier than taking two degrees separately. However, it can also take you longer to graduate than those who only take one degree.

If finding a well-paying job right after graduation (or even while in school) is of great priority, then maybe taking two degrees separately is the route for you. You may need to save up first to be able to afford your second degree. Also, there are also companies that hire people without a degree. If you have the natural talent and passion for the type of work they are offering, you might as well get a job and study part-time. Getting a second degree in another or related field can be easier further along your career path.

 

References:

  1. Federal Reserve. (2021, August). Consumer credit outstanding (levels). Statista.
  2. Kurt, D., Brock, T., & Clarine, S. (2021, September 9). Student loan debt: 2020 statistics and outlook. Investopedia. Retrieved October 14, 2021, from Investopedia.
  3. Learning House. (2020, June). Online college students 2020. Wiley.
  4. U.S. News. (2020, September). Average student debt of students at the top 20 U.S. universities in 2020. Statista. Retrieved October 14, 2021, from Statista.
  5. Whewell, W. (1840). The philosophy of the inductive sciences, founded upon their history. London, J.W. Parker. Internet Archive.
  6. Wilson, E. O. (1998). Consilience: The unity of knowledge. Knopf. Google Books.

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