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Graduate vs. Masters: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Updated on December 25, 2023
A Graduate refers to someone who has completed a degree program, while a Masters is a specific advanced degree beyond the bachelor's level.
Graduate vs. Masters

Key Differences

Graduate generally refers to an individual who has completed any level of higher education, including bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degrees. Masters, on the other hand, specifically refers to an advanced degree that follows the completion of a bachelor's degree. Both represent significant academic achievements.
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Dec 16, 2023
A graduate can be someone who has recently completed their undergraduate education or any higher degree. In contrast, a Masters is a specific type of graduate degree that focuses on advanced study in a particular field. Both are essential steps in academic and professional advancement.
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Dec 16, 2023
The term graduate is often used to describe students who have completed a degree at a university or college. Masters, however, refers to a particular level of graduate education, usually involving specialized courses and research. Both terms are key in the context of higher education.
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Dec 16, 2023
Graduate can also refer to students who are currently enrolled in a post-bachelor's degree program, including master's or doctoral programs. In contrast, Masters is the degree awarded upon completion of specific graduate-level coursework and, often, a thesis or capstone project. Both are milestones in a student's academic journey.
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Dec 16, 2023
In the context of education, a graduate signifies the completion of a course of study, which can range from an associate's degree to a doctoral degree. Masters specifically signifies a postgraduate academic degree awarded by universities or colleges. Both represent different levels of academic achievement.
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Comparison Chart

Definition

An individual who has completed a degree program
A specific advanced degree beyond the bachelor's level
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Level of Education

Can refer to any level of higher education
Specifically refers to postgraduate education
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Type of Degree

General term for any completed degree
Specific type of degree focusing on advanced study
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Educational Focus

Completion of a course of study
Specialized courses and research in a specific field
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Typical Requirement

Completing undergraduate or graduate programs
Completing advanced coursework and often a thesis
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Graduate and Masters Definitions

Graduate

A person who has completed a degree program at a college or university.
She became a graduate after completing her bachelor's degree in biology.
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Dec 11, 2023

Masters

A degree awarded after completing specific post-bachelor's coursework.
He chose to pursue a Masters in Literature to deepen his understanding of the field.
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Dec 11, 2023

Graduate

Someone who has earned a degree, whether undergraduate or postgraduate.
As a recent graduate, he is exploring various career options.
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Dec 11, 2023

Masters

An academic degree beyond the undergraduate level.
Obtaining a Masters degree often opens more professional opportunities.
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Graduate

Refers to completing an academic degree or program.
After becoming a graduate, she pursued a career in research.
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Dec 11, 2023
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Masters

A graduate degree emphasizing specialized knowledge and research.
Her Masters thesis in Environmental Science won an award for its innovation.
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Graduate

To be granted an academic degree or diploma
Most of the entering freshmen stayed to graduate.
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Dec 10, 2023

Masters

An advanced academic degree following a bachelor's degree.
He is studying for his Masters in Engineering at a prestigious university.
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Graduate

To change gradually or by degrees
"The most weighty of all the arguments against treating the races of man as distinct species, is that they graduate into each other" (Charles Darwin).
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Masters

A postgraduate degree requiring advanced study in a specific field.
She earned her Masters in Business Administration in two years.
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Graduate

To advance to a new level of skill, achievement, or activity
After a month of diving instruction, they all graduated to back flips.
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Masters

Plural of master
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Graduate

To grant an academic degree or diploma to
The school has graduated many gifted chemists.
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Masters

A master's degree.
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Graduate

Usage Problem To receive an academic degree from
How many chemists graduated the Institute last year?.
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Masters

United States poet (1869-1950)
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Graduate

To arrange or divide into categories, steps, or grades
Graduate an income tax.
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Graduate

To divide into marked intervals, especially for use in measurement
Graduate a thermometer.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

One who has received an academic degree or diploma.
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Graduate

A graduated container, such as a cylinder or beaker.
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Graduate

Possessing an academic degree or diploma.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

Of, intended for, or relating to studies beyond a bachelor's degree
Graduate courses.
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Graduate

A person who is recognized by a university as having completed the requirements of a degree studied at the institution.
If the government wants graduates to stay in the country they should offer more incentives.
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Graduate

A person who is recognized by a high school as having completed the requirements of a course of study at the school.
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Graduate

(Philippines) A person who is recognized as having completed any level of education.
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Graduate

A graduated (marked) cup or other container, thus fit for measuring.
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Graduate

Graduated, arranged by degrees
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Graduate

Holding an academic degree
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Graduate

Relating to an academic degree
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Graduate

To be recognized by a school or university as having completed the requirements of a degree studied at the institution.
The man graduated in 1967.
Trisha graduated from college.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To be certified as having earned a degree from; to graduate from (an institution).
Trisha graduated college.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

(transitive) To certify (a student) as having earned a degree
Indiana University graduated the student.
The college graduated him as soon as he was no longer eligible to play under NCAA rules.
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Graduate

(transitive) To mark (something) with degrees; to divide into regular steps or intervals, as the scale of a thermometer, a scheme of punishment or rewards, etc.
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Graduate

(intransitive) To change gradually.
Sandstone which graduates into gneiss; carnelian sometimes graduates into quartz
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Graduate

To prepare gradually; to arrange, temper, or modify by degrees or to a certain degree; to determine the degrees of.
To graduate the heat of an oven
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Graduate

(chemistry) To bring to a certain degree of consistency, by evaporation, as a fluid.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To taper, as the tail of certain birds.
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Graduate

(Japanese entertainment) Of an idol: to exit a group; or of a virtual YouTuber, to leave a management agency; usually accompanied with "graduation ceremony" send-offs, increased focus on the leaving member, and the like.
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Graduate

To mark with degrees; to divide into regular steps, grades, or intervals, as the scale of a thermometer, a scheme of punishment or rewards, etc.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To admit or elevate to a certain grade or degree; esp., in a college or university, to admit, at the close of the course, to an honorable standing defined by a diploma; as, he was graduated at Yale College.
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Graduate

To prepare gradually; to arrange, temper, or modify by degrees or to a certain degree; to determine the degrees of; as, to graduate the heat of an oven.
Dyers advance and graduate their colors with salts.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To bring to a certain degree of consistency, by evaporation, as a fluid.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To pass by degrees; to change gradually; to shade off; as, sandstone which graduates into gneiss; carnelian sometimes graduates into quartz.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

To taper, as the tail of certain birds.
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Graduate

To take a degree in a college or university; to become a graduate; to receive a diploma.
He graduated at Oxford.
He was brought to their bar and asked where he had graduated.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

One who has received an academical or professional degree; one who has completed the prescribed course of study in any school or institution of learning.
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Graduate

A graduated cup, tube, flask, or cylinder; a glass measuring container used by apothecaries and chemists. See under Graduated.
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

Arranged by successive steps or degrees; graduated.
Beginning with the genus, passing through all the graduateand subordinate stages.
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Graduate

A person who has received a degree from a school (high school or college or university)
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Graduate

A measuring instrument for measuring fluid volume; a glass container (cup or cylinder or flask) whose sides are marked with or divided into amounts
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Graduate

Receive an academic degree upon completion of one's studies;
She graduated in 1990
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Graduate

Confer an academic degree upon;
This school graduates 2,000 students each year
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Graduate

Make fine adjustments or divide into marked intervals for optimal measuring;
Calibrate an instrument
Graduate a cylinder
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Graduate

Of or relating to studies beyond a bachelor's degree;
Graduate courses
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Dec 10, 2023

Graduate

An individual who holds a degree from an educational institution.
The graduate program at the university attracts students from around the world.
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Dec 11, 2023

Graduate

A term for students who have finished their course of study.
The university holds a special ceremony to honor its graduates each year.
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Repeatedly Asked Queries

Can a graduate refer to a Masters student?

Yes, a graduate can refer to someone who has completed any degree, including a Masters.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 16, 2023

What is a graduate?

A graduate is someone who has completed a degree program at a college or university.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 16, 2023

What is a Masters degree?

A Masters degree is an advanced academic degree following a bachelor's degree.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 16, 2023

What are the requirements for a Masters degree?

Masters degrees usually require completing advanced coursework and often a thesis.
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Dec 16, 2023

Can you be a graduate without a Masters?

Yes, you can be a graduate with just a bachelor's or associate's degree.
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Dec 16, 2023

How long does it take to complete a Masters?

Typically, a Masters degree takes 1-2 years of full-time study.
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Dec 16, 2023

Is a graduate degree the same as a Masters?

A graduate degree can be a Masters, but it also includes doctoral degrees.
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Dec 16, 2023

How does a graduate differ from an undergraduate?

A graduate has completed a degree program, while an undergraduate is still pursuing it.
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Dec 16, 2023

Can a graduate program lead to a Masters?

Yes, graduate programs can lead to a Masters or doctoral degree.
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Dec 16, 2023

Do all graduates have a Masters degree?

No, not all graduates have a Masters degree; some have bachelor's or doctoral degrees.
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Dec 16, 2023

Are Masters degrees specialized?

Yes, Masters degrees are typically specialized in a specific area of study.
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Dec 16, 2023

Can you become a graduate online?

Yes, you can become a graduate through online degree programs.
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Dec 16, 2023

Are there different types of Masters degrees?

Yes, there are various types, such as MA (Master of Arts) and MS (Master of Science).
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Dec 16, 2023

What fields offer Masters degrees?

Masters degrees are offered in a wide range of fields, from arts to sciences.
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Dec 16, 2023

What career opportunities open up with a Masters?

A Masters degree can lead to advanced professional roles and higher salaries.
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Dec 16, 2023

What is the purpose of a Masters degree?

A Masters degree provides specialized knowledge and skills in a specific field.
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Dec 16, 2023

Is a Masters degree more advanced than a bachelor's?

Yes, a Masters is a more advanced degree than a bachelor's.
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Dec 16, 2023

What is the difference in salary between graduates and Masters holders?

Masters degree holders often earn higher salaries compared to bachelor's degree graduates.
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Dec 16, 2023

Can graduates pursue further education?

Yes, graduates, including those with a Masters, can pursue further education like a PhD.
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Dec 16, 2023

Is a thesis always required for a Masters?

Not always, but many Masters programs require a thesis or capstone project.
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Dec 16, 2023

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
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Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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