Whether you’ve decided to sit out the placement interviews and head for a Masters programme right away or you have gained a few years of experience and are looking to take the next step in your career, a Masters degree is worth its weight in gold.
Unsure about whether to choose a regular Master of Science (MS) or an integrated MS PhD program? Is it a better option to pursue this degree in India or head out to Europe or the United States instead?
These questions have plagued the mind of almost every engineering graduate. We’ve done the research for you! Let’s examine each one of these possibilities, so you can take an informed decision regarding your path ahead.
Let’s start at home. India is a popular choice for many engineering graduates to pursue a Masters degree owing to the more affordable fee structure and the quality of education offered.
- MS Degree in India
This two-year post-graduate level course may not be as popular an option as an MBA or MTech degree amongst young Indian engineers but is a practical career choice all the same.
Due to its comparative exclusivity to an MBA or MTech, it is often given more value in the competitive job market.
You could opt for a highly niche field pertaining to your specific type of engineering like Bioinformatics, Computational Linguistics or Manufacturing management, to name a few. This is sure to give you an edge and a specialised understanding of the domain you choose.
Being a highly research-based course, it could even set you onto the path of an academic career or becoming a researcher, if you are interested. The advantage of opting for the MS degree over an integrated MS PhD is that it opens doors to the corporate world, an academic career as well as entrepreneurship, even just at the Masters level.
- Integrated MS PhD Degree in India
If you have been interested in opting for a career in research and a PhD is definitely part of your long-term plan, an integrated MS PhD is a great option for you after the completion of your Bachelors degree. An integrated MS PhD will save you approximately a year when compared to doing a 2-year Masters followed by a 3-year PhD.
In addition to coursework, the student will also get the chance to participate in a laboratory training in an internship format as well as a research project. These form the basis on which they can develop their scientific skills to the level of developing a PhD thesis. The program is highly competitive and exclusive to a handpicked number of colleges across India.
USA is a very popular choice for Masters-level education amongst Indian students vying the American dream! Being home to some of the world’s most prestigious universities and at the forefront of the world’s leading technology, the appeal of studying in the USA is not going to die down any time soon.
- MS Degree in the USA
If you’re hoping for a future in industry roles, getting an MS degree in the US is a step in the right direction. The 2-year-long MS courses in the US follow a pattern quite similar to that of India pertaining to niche specialties with technical courses as well as research-based programs ending with a thesis. In contrast, these courses are generally priced a lot higher (international fee structure) than their Indian counterparts.
- Integrated MS PhD Degree in the USA
The MS PhD has become increasingly popular in STEM fields, for the obvious advantage of completing the course with a Masters degree as well as a PhD.
It gives aspirants inclined towards research a headstart into the field as you wouldn’t need to go through the process of applying for a PhD from scratch.
However, entry into the integrated MS PhD is highly competitive and it still faces a high rate of attrition owing to the stress of being in a research-intensive field and the rigorous overall work demand of the course.
The European continent has, over the past few years, been increasing in popularity among Indian students. It works out to be more cost-effective as compared to higher education on the other side of the ocean and grants aspirants an entry into the EU. Europe is also a cultural hotspot exposing students to a culture that they can easily grow into.
- MS Degree in Europe
The MS Degree in Europe could be anywhere between 1 or 2-years and this varies from one university to the next. The quality of European education (from select countries) comes close to the level offered across the ocean. One feature about gaining a European Master's degree that appeals to Indian students is that it is easier to get a job as compared to the US. The course per se offers a great insight into both practical and theoretical aspects of the field preparing the student for a bright future in both the corporate world and research.
- Integrated MS PhD Degree in Europe
Finding an integrated MS PhD program in Europe pertaining to your field of study may be challenging but once you gain admission into the program, you’re sure to get a headstart into the fascinating world of research. Usually, this course turns out to be shorter in duration than integrated courses elsewhere considering that the Masters-level training happens within a period of a year instead of the traditional two.
It is imperative that you chart out your career and long-term goals and then arrive on a decision regarding the course and where you study.