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Homework Help: Is doctorate the highest level at a university?

  1. Jul 3, 2004 #1
    In the United States, some universities offer the highest level -Doctorate level and some offers only up to Master's degrees. What is the difference between these universities? For what intention ? May I know the details about that?
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  3. Jul 3, 2004 #2
    Doctorate is not the highest level by the way. Some schools only offer Master degrees because they just don't have the staff/money/interest/whatever... to support anything 'higher'.
  4. Jul 3, 2004 #3


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    Then what is the "highest level"??

    In some fields the doctorate is not the highest level. For example, the "Master of Fine Arts" is considered a "terminal" degree in the fine arts (painting, sculpture, etc.) and the "Master of Business Administration" might be considered a terminal degree in businees but your response sounds like there is a degree higher than doctorate: I'm wondering what it is.
  5. Jul 3, 2004 #4

    In Germany there is something called the "Habilitation" which translates to something like: post-doctoral lecture qualification. If you know some maths. history, you'll remember that a lot of famous german mathematicians did there "Habilitation", which was usually harder than getting a doctorate since you had to do what is known as a "Habilitationsschrift" which is basically the book you have to write after getting your doctorate. This is usually done by Doctors who want to become full professors.
  6. Jul 3, 2004 #5


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    The post-doc...is a hybrid between education and work. You can get a post-doc at a non-educational institution - like a National Lab.
  7. Jul 3, 2004 #6
    RE: " post-doctoral lecture qualification. "

    Gee, I did a post-doc. I never realized that entitled me to an even HIGHER degree. :)

    RE: "In the United States, some universities offer the highest level -Doctorate level and some offers only up to Master's degrees. What is the difference between these universities? For what intention ? May I know the details about that?"

    Some universities cannot give out doctorates because their charter signified them as primarily educational, not research, institutions. The California State University system is one example (although they sometimes give out doctorates in the weaker subjects).

    To answer your question, we need to know what you are seeking.
  8. Jul 3, 2004 #7
    Let's start my opinion, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo is one of the Cal State campuses in California. It only offers Master degree that is the highest level for this campus. What is the difference between Engineering Program offered by it and that of UC system?
  9. Jul 4, 2004 #8
    Cal Poly probably has the stronger engineering program at the undergraduate level (I used to teach there), primarily because it is focused more on education than research. (Although it tends to fall into the research-research-research trap just like all the other universities.)

    Given its locale and reputation, I would certainly pick it over any UC, unless there are considerations that you have left out of the discussion.

    Have you visited San Luis Obispo? I know the area like the back of my hand. Great weather, lots of parties, and zero crime. Great place to live and have a good time. If you are planning on visiting, shoot me a private message and I will fill you in.

    The UC campuses are meant for graduate students and faculty. I can't think of a single one that I would want to attend as an undergraduate, but that's just me. Maybe others disagree.
  10. Jul 4, 2004 #9
    Cal Poly,SLO is said to be comparable to Cal Tech and MIT in the U.S. I don't think so. But it is the best one in Cal State campuses .
  11. Jul 6, 2004 #10
    As an UNDERGRADUATE, I would rather attend Cal Poly than Cal Tech or MIT if I was later going to enter grad school.
  12. Jul 11, 2004 #11
    How is the Master Degree offered by Cal Poly? What do you think of the quality of Master Degree program of Cal Poly?
  13. Jul 12, 2004 #12
    Cal Poly has no Masters degree in physics. All focus is on undegraduate instruction.
  14. Jul 14, 2004 #13
    How about Aerospace Engineering Program of Cal Poly?
  15. Jul 14, 2004 #14


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    Desipite being the best CSU you can attend, it still isn't at the UC level (on second thought, maybe up there with riverside). Maybe i'm partial because I go to UCSB, but I had the chance to attend Cal Poly since I was accepted in, but wasn't really blown away by anything in particular about their physics department. IMHO of course.
  16. Jul 15, 2004 #15
    I am not that familiar with the aerospace engineering program.

    In what regard? I would think the quality of the instruction is every bit as good as at the UC system, if not loads better.

    What is the average class size at a typical UC campus? In physics at Cal Poly we had a cap limit of 35, even in the introductory courses.

    Were any of your labs taught by graduate assistants? All labs at Poly are taught by full-fledged members of the faculty, all of which have Ph.D.s.
  17. Jul 17, 2004 #16
    I actually applied to Cal Poly and got rejected then I got into UCDavis. I would agree that Cal Poly has probably the better undergraduate engineering programs than most UC's if not all. The physics classes here at Davis are around 120 students each and yes the labs are taught by grad students.
  18. Jul 19, 2004 #17
    And why do you suppose they pack 120 students into an introductory course? Here's a hint: It isn't because it improves the quality of instruction.
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