For many people with a science or technical background who are learning about Professional Science Master’s degrees for the first time, there may be a challenge deciding between the PSM and the well known MBA degree. The decision is not so complicated.. It is simple really: do you want to work with advanced science or not?
- If you want a career that uses knowledge of advanced science or technical skills in a lab setting: an MBA with an undergrad degree in science will not likely get you there. A PSM may offer you enough advanced science skills to get you into the lab setting, and you may decide a PhD is needed for continued technical career.
- If you want to work analyzing scientific discoveries or patents but NOT work in the lab: an MBA with an undergrad degree will not likely get you there. A PSM may offer you enough advanced science to function in various situations. For the patent portion of this example, a JD or possibly an MBA would give you the legal and business background needed to be effective.
- If you want to work in product marketing, strategic planning, or project management in a scientific or technical organization, a PSM may strengthen your understanding of the technical side, and the MBA could strengthen your understanding of business issues. In this situation it is up to you to decide which skill set you want to be strongest: technical or business.
For help with your PSM application process, look at my book – “Putting it all together: How to Apply to Professional Science Master’s Programs“