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Bachelor of Science

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A Bachelor of Science (B.S., B.Sc. or less commonly, S.B. or Sc.B. from the Latin Scientiae Baccalaureus) is an undergraduate academic degree awarded for courses taken that generally last three years in the Republic of Ireland, Australia, England, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Israel, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Quebec, Malaysia, Singapore, Switzerland, Wales and South Africa; or four years in North America, Japan, the Philippines and Scotland.

In North America, a Bachelor of Science degree may be used as a more specilized version of B.A., with more focus on the subject and less on a broad liberal arts background; for example, a B.S. in economics may require several more advanced economics courses than a B.A. in economics, and possibly more support courses (such as statistics). The B.S. is also frequently used for professional areas of study such as engineering, journalism, and advertising.

In the UK, which subjects are considered science subjects varies, e.g. economics degrees may be B.A. in one university but B.Sc. in another.

In addition, some universities, like the London School of Economics, offer the B.Sc. in practically all subject areas, even when they are normally associated with arts degrees. While others award arts qualifications almost exclusively, namely the Oxbridge universities. In both instances, this is generally for historical and traditional reasons.

A Bachelor of Science receives the designation B.Sc. or B.S. for a major/pass degree and B.Sc. (Hons) or B.S. (Hon) for an honours degree.

In Germany there is no ordinary Bachelor. The B.Sc. from Germany is equivalent to a B.Sc. (Hon).

Formerly, in the University of Oxford the degree of B.Sc. was a postgraduate degree. This former degree, still actively granted, has since been renamed M.Sc.


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