Biology B.S. vs B.A. for undergrad

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by bluebirds, Nov 13, 2017.

  1. bluebirds

    bluebirds Rookie

    Jan 2, 2016
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    Nov 13, 2017

    Hello all!
    I am a current college freshman and I am majoring in secondary education and biology. At the moment I am trying to decide whether I would like to work towards a B.S. or a B.A. I was originally planning on doing a B.S. but I find that I'm struggling in chemistry (consistently falling 10% or so below the average scores on exams). I am mainly concerned that if I do a B.A. program that I won't be as hirable in the future. I want to be a high school biology teacher.
    Which is more practical (in terms of grad school and hirability), a B.S. or a B.A.?
  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

    Jul 19, 2014
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    Nov 13, 2017

    Early chem can be a struggle. When you get further along into the much more organic chem, it gets better. Honestly, if you want to teach biology, a BS just makes sense to me. I do have a BS, so my opinion may be skewed. All I can say is that it has worked well for me. When chem does start clicking for you, it may be prudent to retake any courses that are significantly below a desirable grade. A second run at the course may be just what the doctor ordered.
  4. Bioguru

    Bioguru Companion

    May 25, 2011
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    Nov 15, 2017

    You will be just fine with a B.A. in biology as far as being hired to teach high school biology. I think you'll probably find that all administrators care about is if that you're certified to teach in your area. I have a composite science certification (in Texas) and even though I have a B.S. & M.S. in biology, I've been approached for physics jobs, chemistry jobs, and biology jobs simply because of my certification. Get your B.A., get your certification, and if your area is like mine you'll have principals beating your door down.
    futuremathsprof likes this.
  5. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

    Aug 10, 2010
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    Nov 18, 2017

    I'm going to disagree with the two previous posters. First, organic chemistry is traditionally MUCH harder than intro chem. Second, it might depend upon the district on whether or not a BA is just as good as a BS. Twice when we've hired new teachers, the final decision was based on just that.

    That being said, in my local area, teaching is about the only job you'd get with a BA instead of a BS in a science field. There are just too many people getting the BS instead. I'd worry that if you got the BA you might find that you can't move away from teaching if it turns out to be something you don't enjoy.
    Numberspell likes this.
  6. Numberspell

    Numberspell Rookie

    Nov 22, 2017
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    Nov 22, 2017

    I agree. Don't pigeonhole yourself. I have a B.A. in Psychology and still to this day I'm mad the B.S. option wasn't offered at my university. I have a great appreciation for the arts but I did not obtain an "arts" degree when I did in fact conduct research.

    If you obtain a B.S. you will strengthen your job opportunities as well as your post-bacculerate options.

    And to me a B.A. in Biology just sounds wonky. Lol.

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