Which Master’s Degree is Right for Me?: A Beginner’s Guide

What are the different kinds of master’s degrees you can get? Let’s take a look.

students in classroom on campus, row desks

Pursuing a master’s degree can be a valuable investment for your education and career. Whether you are looking to advance in your current field or gain a more comprehensive understanding of a particular area, completing a masters’ program can help you achieve those goals.

In this article, we will explore some of the different kinds of masters’ degrees you can get, so you can start to determine which might be the best fit for you. 

Master of Science (MS)

An MS is a degree for those interested in fields such as science, mathematics, and engineering. As data continues to drive decisions across the fashion and lifestyle industry, and the need for employees with data skills steadily increases, LIM introduced an MS program in Consumer Analytics on our New York City campus in 2022. This is a STEM-eligible program for international students.

For more information on our Consumer Analytics program, click here.

Master of Arts (MA)

Where an MS focuses more on proficiency in sciences and technical skills, an MA focuses more on a humanitarian and theoretical understanding of a subject. These subjects include anthropology, English, history, literature, political science and many more. Empowering individuals with advanced knowledge and research skills, you could be well-suited for an MA degree program if you are interested in teaching or academia. 

Master of Professional Studies (MPS)

An MPS is a degree that integrates practical experiences with the traditional coursework of an MA or MS, with the goal of giving you the skills and knowledge to work and advance your career in a specific industry.

LIM College currently has five MPS programs:

  • Fashion Marketing - Learn how to bring strategy, creativity, and new technologies together to help brands create relationships with consumers and impact their purchasing decisions.
  • Fashion Merchandising & Retail Management - Gain both practical and theoretical knowledge in merchandising and retail, with an emphasis on consumer insights, product development, branding and promotion, and visual merchandising.
  • Global Supply Fashion Management - Acquire the practical know-how you need to understand fashion's global supply chain at a management level, and prepare for a career in the critical areas of operations management, supply chain analytics, procurement, or logistics.
  • Business of Fashion - This program gives you the flexibility to choose from LIM’s fashion and business courses to “build your own degree.”
  • Business of Cannabis - If you’re interested in entering or advancing within one of the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy, this online program might be perfect for you. It covers cannabis marketing, retail, cultivation, social justice, legal compliance, and more.

If you are interested in any of LIM Colleges masters’ programs in fashion and lifestyle, go here for more information.

Master of Business Administration (MBA)

An MBA is a postgraduate degree that covers general areas of business management, such as accounting, economics, organizational behavior, finance and more. With the goal of providing students with an understanding of key areas of business and developing the skills to lead businesses, this degree is often sought by those intent on going into the fields of management, accounting, finance, and consulting. Many full-time MBA programs are two-year programs.

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

A Master of Fine Arts focuses on professional artistic practices such as visual art, dance, photography/videography, and theater. If a career in film, graphic design, performing arts, or creative writing sounds enticing, then this could be the degree for you.

Master of Public Administration (MPA)

An MPA is a postgraduate degree that prepares you for public sector roles, such as becoming an executive or policy analyst in local, state, or the federal government. MPA recipients can also work for non-profit organizations or any other public sector institutions. If you are interested in politics or running a public organization/institution, this degree could be the one for you.