Seeking professional development versus obtaining a degree to advance your career

The employment market is as competitive as it has ever been. And in a crowded market you need every advantage. Let’s weigh up professional development versus obtaining a degree.

In a busy market, additional education and training will help to make your resume stand out among a pool of potential candidates or to seek prospects for promotion within your chosen sector. And there are two ways to achieve this: take professional development classes or obtain a higher education degree.

While both paths might get you to your desired position, they both provide advantages that are distinct from one another. To assist you, we’ve compared the two so you can make an informed decision on which one is best for you.

The similarities between professional growth and earning a degree

If you want to further your career, combining professional growth and obtaining a degree will prepare you to succeed in reaching your full potential. Each route delves into a high degree of industry knowledge and develops a skill set that will make you an indispensable member of your future team.

With the help of academics, mentors, and experienced professionals, you will be well-prepared to face relevant job settings and problems.

With advancements in technology and easily available resources, you may pursue either education option from anywhere. Most institutions offer both on-campus and online undergraduate or graduate degree programs, allowing you to further your career no matter where you are or what stage of life you are in. 

Professional development provides several opportunities to learn from relevant professionals in your sector through conferences, webinars, and certification programs. MBA Discovery provides online courses and if you’re specifically looking to pursue an MBA, you can apply for an MBA easily from their website.

The differences between professional development and earning a degree

While each of these career paths has advantages, they also have distinctions that may influence your decision to follow one over the other. Many professional development classes or seminars are either free or cost hundreds of dollars, although acquiring a degree is estimated to cost thousands of dollars.

Depending on the results you seek, the financial investment is something to keep in mind as you go in your quest to improve your talents and abilities. This commitment is not only expensive but also time-consuming. Professional development classes can take anything from hours to months, and completing a degree might take anywhere from months to years.

Professional development allows you to improve your abilities at your present level, whereas a degree prepares you to take on tasks that demand particular qualifications. Becoming a student necessitates adhering to strict deadlines, maintaining constant communication with lecturers, and interacting with peers. Professional growth is a far more self-directed pursuit.

Aside from the time and financial investment required, the certifications obtained through both of these educational paths differ dramatically. Professional growth is represented in certificates, whereas enrollment in a university results in a degree.

Fortunately, most firms encourage their employees to expand their expertise through professional development or by obtaining a degree, and some may even provide monetary support. Both of these solutions will make you an indispensable member of any organization and distinguish you from the competition.

How will you further your career?

Once you’ve entered the industry, it’s critical to maintain growing professionally and hone your abilities. Professional development and degree programs ensure that you obtain the most relevant experience and industry knowledge necessary to apply yourself in the workforce while progressing in your field.