Whether building up, something completely different or just going abroad: There are many possibilities for the Master. But which type of master suits you? This overview helps.
The “classic” master
The standard model of the Master’s program takes place at a university, usually based on a suitable Bachelor. Depending on the requirements of the desired course of studies, you can also take a different direction in the Master. Meanwhile, many colleges restrict access to the master with an NC. You may also request an application with motivation letter and invite to the interview.
- Duration: normally four semesters, sometimes only three
- Advantages: full concentration on studying, normal student life
- Disadvantages: no work experience
If you want to go deeper into the subject of your field of study, you can choose the consecutive Master. He builds on the basics of the Bachelor. The prerequisite is accordingly a Bachelor’s degree in the same or a similar subject. To ensure that the entire standard period of study does not exceed five years, a consecutive Master may not last more than four semesters.
The non-consecutive Master is intended for anyone who wants to reorient themselves. Because these courses do not build on the previous Bachelor. For example, students who have a bachelor’s degree in engineering can apply for an economics master’s degree.
The non-consecutive Master does not require any prior technical knowledge; only a university degree is important. Therefore, there is no limit to the total study time. Non-consecutive Master’s degree programs, like the consecutive ones, are either application-oriented or research-oriented.
The study is divided in theory at the university and practice in the company. Whether both phases alternate in blocks or are integrated on a daily basis depends on the university. More common is the block model. Like the classic master, the dual usually builds consecutively on a bachelor’s degree. The range of dual Master’s programs is still limited. Industries that already offer the dual study program are the technology industry, the economy and social welfare.
Duration: normally four semesters, sometimes shorter
- Advantages: Experience gained in the job, compensation for work in the company, often small vintages and thus individual promotion
- Disadvantages: time-consuming, no semester breaks, but counted holidays, possibly two residences
Master in distance learning
- The name says it all: It does not exist on the campus of a university. Expertise is provided through audiovisual and written teaching materials. Without exception, all remote universities offer a virtual campus. So the exchange with fellow students such as mentors is possible and materials can be uploaded and downloaded.
- Duration: no planned regular study period, usually a master can not be completed under four semesters
- Advantages: parallel to the job possible, self-determined learning pace, sometimes even without a bachelor’s degree
- Disadvantages: a lot of self-discipline necessary, hardly any contact with fellow students, usually longer duration
Thanks to the Bologna Process, studying in other European countries is relatively easy and the degree is internationally recognized. Many universities even offer extra master’s programs for foreign students. So usually only a language proof for English is necessary. Nevertheless, skills in the national language may be required. If you stay within Europe, you can apply for International BAföG. Attention: Application deadlines abroad are often much higher than in Europe! And do not forget to inform yourself about things like a visa.
- Duration: two to four semesters
- Advantages: other specialization opportunities, often more practical relevance and interaction, often shorter study duration, international experience
- Disadvantages: Tuition rates vary, just outside the EU and in the UK, they can be very high, new college and study system, often higher cost of living