Difference between Undergraduate and Graduate Schools – A Brief Analysis

Difference between Undergraduate and Graduate

Major Differences- for an Aspiring Graduate Student
A Detailed Analysis
An Apt Summary (Difference Between Undergraduate and Graduate Schools)

Aspiring graduate students who are applying for doctoral studies or a masters degree, make some notions about the graduate schools. Graduate schools that offer doctoral degree are profoundly different from the undergraduate schools. Understanding the difference between undergraduate and graduate schools is crucial, but is hardly discussed.

Major Differences – for an Aspiring Graduate Student

  Undergraduate School

Graduate School

Money Matters

  • Treat you like a customer
  • Students pay hefty fees
  • Profit Motive
  • Focus on maintaining a high number of students
  • Graduate students are not a source of income, but a source of expense
  • Doctoral students get monthly stipend
  • Performing students are preferred over numbers

 Degree Completion Rate

  • The chances of failing the  exam are negligible
  • In case a student is dismissed, he/she vanishes overnight, and nobody talks about such students.
  • More than half of the doctoral students fail to complete their doctoral degree.
  • Students pursuing doctoral programs leave their school only when there is a clash between them and their faculty members or advisors over a dissertation topic.

 Difficulty Level

  • You can pass with less studies
  • You will have a limited number of courses, and will follow specific books for your studies.
  • You need to work really hard to pass
  • You will be given the infinite reading material in graduate school, and it becomes quite difficult to go through all of them.

 Teacher’s Consent

  • You need to have a more disciplined approach
  • It is mandatory to take your teacher’s consent regarding the study related works.
  • Students can act independently
  • Having the capacity to see things uniquely in contrast to the consent and encourage an argument, is esteemed, as well as empowered.

 Deadline Related Matters

  • You can take the deadlines lightly
  • Missing deadlines won’t lead to extreme consequences
  • Deadlines should be strictly considered
  • You will be in deep stress, if you get a delay in doing your class assignments over the long haul.

  Making Connections

  • Having connections may or may not be important.
  • A significant number of the connections will originate from being around different individuals
  • Having connections can play a decisive role
  • Students understand the importance of making intelligent connections.

 Critical Thinking

  • Critical thinking is judged differently in undergraduate and graduate schools.
  • There are limitations of subjects and their concepts, students in such schools engage themselves with the course in a shallow way.
  • Critical thinking is valued and the individuals are encouraged to think outside of their important values.
  • Students have to engage themselves with various concepts of a subject with limited time period.

 Conflict Related Matters

  • Differences may occur simply for the sake of it.
  • Conflicts are common and not surprising
  •  You are always taught to be aware of your augmenting positions.
  • You should show how bad argument is different from good argument, and also how to oppose the different arguments.

 Relevance of Knowledge

  • Knowledge is everything, it acts like a powerful tool in your class, even when others are against your viewpoints.
  • Capacity to gain knowledge is one of the important factors in undergraduate school learning.
  • The importance of knowledge is only till how much you know.  Because, above a certain level you are at par with the knowledge of your classmates, as you work in groups.
  • The gaining of more knowledge is not as valuable as the ability to think outside the box, and being different from other people around you.

  Having an Opinion

  • To have a different opinion is not a big thing. Your opinion may not be challenged, no matter if it is amenable or offensive.
  • Equal value is given to all opinions
  • Different opinions are always challenged on a regular basis, and your opinions have to reflect social or scientific reality.
  • Your opinions can be heard, but won’t get the equal importance.

Asking Questions

  • You get satisfactory answers to questions related to correlations.
  • If you ask some good questions, then your question will be opposed by others and this will lead to debate.

A Detailed Analysis

Money Matters

  • Undergraduate schools treat you like a customer. They charge you, your parents and other third parties for their services, like attending their school, cost of attendance etc. they are business oriented. All they want is your money, and it does not matter how dull or bright student you are. Most undergraduate schools, focus on maintaining a high number of students. On the other hand, there are a few concessions as well. If you don’t like the school or have other significant reason, then you can change the college easily.
  • However, such schools have retention departments to keep the undergraduates enrolled in the school, so that they can keep charging money on a regular basis. The prime job of the retention department is to enroll the student and charge a hefty tuition fee. But if we compare the undergraduate schools with the graduate schools, then it can be said that the undergraduate schools are like a profit oriented business whose sole purpose is to make money at the cost of education. On the other hand, the graduate schools pay money to the deserving graduate students for enrolling in the doctoral programs.
  • For students who have already enrolled in the doctoral studies, know the real difference between undergraduate and graduate A student pursuing the doctoral studies is a not a source of income for the schools, instead they are a source of expense.
  • Just like the employees of the school or university, such students get a monthly income. These graduate students are not comparable to the undergraduate students who pay money to the schools, in exchange for their services.
  • PhD students work as an assistant to the professor and teach junior students as well. They get the benefits of taking up the doctoral studies without really paying for it. Students pursuing doctoral studies are not like the customers who pay the fees, instead they get the desired benefits of taking up the free program. They get a stipend, free tuition and also work assistant to professor which enhances their experience and gives them a practical outlook. Doing a doctoral degree is just like working for some private firm or government in which you get paid for your work.
  • In graduate schools, you work like a respected employee and just like in offices, you work is supervised by your senior. If your supervisor or senior are not satisfied with your work or performance, you can be fired or terminated.

Degree Completion Rate

  • If we take a look at the graduate schools, more than half of the students pursuing doctoral studies fail to complete their doctoral degree. But when it comes to the undergraduate schools, you will never face such problems, because as far as these universities are concerned, you are just like a money making machine. So, the chances of failing the exam are negligible. In case a student is dismissed, he/she vanishes overnight, and nobody talks about such students. To add to the insult, their names are removed from their respective departments.
  • Graduate students pursuing doctoral programs leave their school only when there is a clash between them and their faculty members or advisors over a dissertation topic. For example, if you are a doctoral student in history and want to write the topic of a dissertation on German history, but your advisor or other faculty members do not agree to let you conduct research on Germany history because no one had ever conducted a research in Germany then you are in big trouble. If, you disagree with them, then Your job and pay checks will be kept by faculty members. Moreover, you will not get any pay check.

Difficulty Associated with the Examination

While in undergraduate school, you can pass without studying once in a while, but in the while pursuing your masters or doctoral studies your potential and ability to draw this off are restrained. Just keep in your mind that unlike in undergraduate school; you will be given the infinite reading material in graduate school, and it becomes quite difficult to go through all of them. In case, you are expected to take some liability for your learning in an environment of the graduate school, then your experience becomes applicable to take the liability of your learning.

Teacher’s Consent

Another major difference between undergraduate and graduate schools is the way the graduate students interact with their mentors.
In our undergraduate school, something that is by all accounts supported is to dependably achieve some sorts of consent from the teachers and professors regarding the study related works. While in graduate school, having the capacity to see things uniquely in contrast to the consent and encourage an argument, is esteemed, as well as empowered.

Deadline Related Matters

If an aspiring graduate student considers the difference between undergraduate and graduate school’s approach towards deadlines-
During the under graduation years, if you delay your work submission or if you miss a deadline, then the consequences may not be much. In graduate school, any delay by the graduate students is like a figurative capital punishment waiting up to happen. Whether this is on the grounds that you have classes to instruct or are in research or have full-time work, you will be in stress if you get a delay in doing your class assignments over the long haul.

Making Connections

In undergraduate school, a significant number of the connections will originate from being around those individuals who come from the world in comparative ways. In graduate school, you will understand the importance of making intelligent connections.

Critical Thinking

  • In graduate school, in certain disciplines, critical thinking is valued and the graduate students are encouraged to think outside of their important values. Multiple perceptions are expected in how you evaluate anything.
  • Critical thinking is judged differently in undergraduate and graduate schools. As there are limitations of subjects and their concepts, students in such schools engage themselves with the course in a shallow way. But in graduate school, students have to engage themselves with various concepts of a subject with limited time period.

Conflict Related Matters

In the case of any conflict, both types of school act differently. In undergraduate school, differences may occur simply for the sake of it. In graduate school, you are always taught to be aware of your augmenting positions. It is expected from you that you should show how bad argument is different from good argument, and also how to oppose the different arguments.

Relevance of Knowledge

  • When it comes to knowledge, in undergraduate school your knowledge is everything, it acts like a powerful tool in your class, even when others are against your viewpoints. But, in graduate school, the importance of knowledge is only till how much a graduate student knows. Because, above a certain level you are at par with the knowledge of your classmates, as you work in groups.
  • How much knowledge you have and your capacity to gain knowledge is one of the important factors in undergraduate school learning. In graduate school, the gaining of more knowledge for a graduate student is not as valuable as the ability to think outside the box, and being different from other people around you.

Having an Opinion

  • In undergraduate school, to have a different opinion is not a big thing. Your opinion may not be challenged, no matter if it is amenable or offensive. In graduate school, if you have different opinions, then they are always challenged on a regular basis, and your opinions have to reflect social or scientific reality.
  • In undergraduate school, equal value is given to all opinions. In graduate school, your opinions will be heard, but they do not get the equal importance. The importance of an opinion is based on the level of analysis, reasoning, ability to translate different opposing viewpoints, and not on how influential the speaker is.

Asking Questions

The major variance between both the schools is that you can ask good questions in graduate school. In undergraduate school, you get satisfactory answers for questions related to correlations. In graduate school, if you ask some good questions, then your question will be opposed by others and this will lead to debate, imaginative thinking and, research.

Class Size

In a graduate class, graduate students have to read a lot, even more than you ever thought and you also have to arrange the readings which are important. Virtually there is no lectures in class and the classes in general have very few students. The numbers of students in the undergraduate school remain at least 25 or more.

An Apt Summary (Difference Between Undergraduate and Graduate Schools)

Indeed, there quite a lot of notable difference between undergraduate and graduate schools.
In graduate school, you have to be equipped for seminars and participate in the logical conversation. Your perceptions will be heard by your professors. You are expected to deliver high quality in your presentations, papers and group projects. You will spend more time in reading in graduate schools as compared to the undergraduate schools. The life of a graduate student will be limited to the academic department from the rest of the university. In the end, graduate school is completely different from undergraduate college. You enter into the new world of education, where to have to become independent for all your studies and research.  Your viewpoints will be criticized in graduate school, and you are expected to give logical reasoning to prove your viewpoints.
From the above facts, it is obvious that, graduate schools have a completely different approach and no matter- How big is the difference between undergraduate and graduate studies, students are expected to adapt to the challenging environment and explore the life changing experiences.