If you want more information about a doctorate degree vs PhD, this article is for you. We talk about the difference between a doctorate degree vs PhD, and the different career paths you can choose with a doctorate or PhD.
Most degrees can be studied on campus, but there are a few online doctorate degrees, or you could choose to study in a hybrid format. Whatever format you choose, make sure you check out the admissions requirements and dissertation requirements before deciding between a doctorate degree or PhD.
What Is a Doctorate Degree?
It is a terminal degree, meaning it is one of the highest degrees you can earn. You can study for a doctorate degree in a wide variety of subjects such as business administration, education, nursing, or public health. The study area focuses on studying the chosen field and applying that knowledge to the field. A doctoral degree tends to be more professional-oriented and leads to a professional career.
Types of Doctorate Degrees
- Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
- Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
- Doctor of Education (EdD)
What Is a PhD?
A PhD is a Doctor of Philosophy. You can study many different topics to earn your PhD like, psychology, engineering, physical sciences, health, humanities, and art. Although it is traditionally considered a degree that you can use to teach in your field of study, it can also lead to work in those fields of study.
Types of PhDs
Is a Doctorate Degree Faster Than a PhD?
No, it is not. A doctoral program from start to finish, including acquiring a bachelor’s and master’s, can take up to 10 years to complete. PhD programs can take between five and six years to complete. This is dependent on your professional goals and academic qualification. A doctorate caters to professional careers, and a PhD caters to academic careers.
Is a Doctorate Degree Easier Than a PhD?
A doctorate degree is not easier than a PhD. They’re different and both take hard work. It would be best to research the area of study you are pursuing. A PhD demands years of original research, while a doctorate degree looks at an existing body of knowledge and looks into theories created by this knowledge.
Is a Doctorate Degree Better Than a PhD?
A doctorate degree isn’t better than a PhD, it depends on your outcome. They both lie in the doctorate study category. If you’re into theoretical research, a PhD will suit you. A professional doctorate degree would work for you if you’re interested in solving existing problems in your field of study.
They also offer different career options. A doctorate degree focuses on hands-on, real-world problems suitable for a professional setting. A PhD focuses on the theoretical aspects of the topic you choose, suited to educational settings in terms of career opportunities.
5 Key Differences Between a Doctorate Degree and a PhD
1. Program Focus
A doctorate study program will educate and train you in hands-on, real-world problems and the application of knowledge within your chosen career. A PhD study program will educate and teach you in the theoretical aspects of your chosen topic and can be more research-intensive.
2. Student Differences
A doctorate study program focuses on practical application in a given field. PhD students typically have already acquired their bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Most PhD program graduates aspire to academic research and prestigious academic careers. While doctoral students are also working professionals who are aspiring leaders seeking professional career advancement.
A doctorate dissertation focuses on identifying real-world issues within a field of study and figuring out the solutions professionals can apply. A PhD dissertation focuses on exploring, developing, and defending theories. A PhD candidate analyzes their data using analytical techniques and develops hypotheses and theories to contribute to their field.
4. Time to Complete and Average Cost
A doctoral degree can take up to 10 years to complete, including graduating from bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. A PhD can take between five and six years to complete, with PhD learning taking approximately two to three years. Achieving the dissertation requirement can take another two to three years.
According to the Education Data Initiative, the average cost of a doctorate degree is around $114,300 and the average cost of a PhD is $98,800. While this is quite expensive, having an advanced degree like a doctorate or PhD leads to higher salaries. According to Statista, those with a professional doctorate degree or PhD earn an average salary of $136,702 per year.
5. Career Options
The career options can overlap in terms of doctorate versus PhD. That said, doctorate students are usually already working in a particular profession and use their degree to achieve their future career goals like leadership roles. PhD students typically pursue an academic career that allows them to apply their academic research skills, including education leadership roles.
Jobs That Require a Doctorate Degree
- Lawyers. Lawyers advise clients on legal matters and require a Juris Doctor Degree to practice law in the US. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states Juris Doctor Degree graduates who become lawyers can earn an average annual salary of $126,930.
- Postsecondary Education Administrator. Education administrators take care of student services, academics, and faculty at their education facility of employment. They require a Doctor of Health Administration (DHA). According to the BLS, their average annual salary is $97,500.
- Chief Executive Officer. CEOs make major corporate decisions and manage the overall operations and resources of businesses. They are the link between the board of directors and operations. A Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) is helpful for the role. BLS indicates an average annual salary of $107,670 for chief executive officers.
Jobs That Require a PhD
- Dean. Deans are responsible for recruiting and retaining academic administrators, faculty, and staff at colleges or universities. They require education administration doctoral degrees or a PhD. According to BLS, the average annual salary for this role is $97,500.
- University Professor. Professors instruct undergraduate students in a wide variety of academic and vocational subjects. They require a PhD in Education or specific to the subject they intend to teach. The BLS reports the average salary for this profession is $80,560.
- Research Consultant. Research consultants analyze all kinds of data in various formats and construct plans of action to find and verify data. The BLS states an average salary of $86,200 for this role. A PhD is a research degree, and you would specialize in the area you study.
Should You Get a Doctorate Degree or a PhD?
Yes, if a postgraduate degree aligns with your career goals you should get a doctorate degree or a PhD. If you’re interested in acquiring a leadership role in your professional field, it would be best to pursue a doctoral degree program and achieve your doctorate degree. If you are interested in a career in an academic field, it would be best to pursue a PhD program and earn your PhD degree.
PhD stands for doctor of philosophy. Philosophy means the study of existence, knowledge, and reality. A PhD will be an excellent choice if you want to study a particular subject deeply and present new findings to the world. A professional doctorate program applies to a specific career, like medical doctors, Juris doctors, and psychologists.
Both degree options offer excellent average salaries and future career goals. Since both are doctoral degrees, these doctoral degree holders can benefit in terms of career goals, advancement, and average salaries.
Doctorate Degree Vs PhD FAQ
Universities give an honorary degree to people for their generous or altruistic actions that benefit a community, nation, or humanity. Honorary degrees are awarded to recognize a lifetime accomplishment. Those awarded honorary degrees do not attend an academic institution to earn this degree. Universities all have different criteria for these awards.
Yes, you can avoid unemployment with a doctoral degree or PhD. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, it pays to be educated. People with a doctoral degree or professional degree have the highest chance of avoiding unemployment and earning higher salaries.
Yes, you can get a job without a doctoral degree or PhD. If you have business knowledge or you’re tech-savvy, you can get a job without a degree. You can also get high-paying jobs with a technical certificate or an undergraduate degree like an associate degree or a bachelor’s degree.
No, bootcamps do not offer doctoral degrees or PhD’s. Bootcamps offer intensive technical training that have the potential to land you the best tech jobs in the shortest amount of time.
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