The term ‘business’ covers a wide variety of sectors. However, it is most commonly associated with management, economics, and finance. Therefore, graduates that hold a form of business degree or specialism are in high demand across the globe. This is due to the diverse nature of study and experience gained from these degrees. But what is a business degree, and how do you select the area to study with the number of options available?
If you have an idea of which field you’d like to work in, opt for a specific major that represents this career in the best way. However, if your path is open to different options, check out more generalised degrees that cover a range of topics.
Many universities offer business degrees and specialisms, so there are plenty of options to find the right course for you. They are typically categorised into bachelor’s, master’s, and professional qualifications, so you can work your way through each stage to gain a higher grading.
If you’re looking to study the subject of business and want to find out more, check out this handy guide.
Types of business degrees and specialisms
Many business degrees incorporate a wide variety of topics and specialisms. Some are more focused than others, and some degrees require further professional qualifications for different career options. Typical business degrees include a topic that complements the field of study.
Some examples of degrees include:
- Business and accounting
- Business law
- Business and marketing
- Business management
- Business and economics
Students typically take on a range of lessons when studying at the undergraduate level, which provides a foundation for further study. These basics pave the way to choose a specialism in later research. Specific degrees in business often take shape with a master’s degree or professional qualifications. For example, if you study a business law degree, you will have a good foundation in business and legal aspects, learning IP law, contract law, and consumer law, which can enable you to enter numerous fields, from HR to being a business owner. However, to become a licensed lawyer, you’ll need to study further.
Business degrees offer a good grounding in the practical application of what you learn in the course. This is typically studying through the use of case studies, group work, and theory-applied tasks. Many degrees also offer the opportunity to take the theory into real-world scenarios such as placements and work experience.
Top job opportunities with a business degree
You may be asking, ‘what careers can I do with a business degree?’ and the answer is simple – a vast number! A business degree sets you up for various sectors, and this type of study is sought-after by employers at home and overseas.
There are many careers in which this degree directly correlates, such as management roles, finance jobs, and consultancy style work. Other sectors also love business graduates, including marketing, advertising, sales, and retail.
The versatility of this study opens up a host of job prospects that could take you in different directions throughout your career. If you want to specialise and move into specific roles, many degrees will offer further study options to take this pathway. When looking for degrees like this, opt for business as the major and the specialism as the minor, such as Business and Accounting. When you’ve developed the foundation in both of these areas, jobs in the accounting sector are also viable as you have more knowledge in this area. However, further study may be needed to move fully into the finance and accounting area to move up the profession.
Graduate training schemes after a degree
Many medium to large organisations offer graduate training schemes when a candidate joins. These opportunities give you an insight into the different roles within a company and what area you’d like to move into. After the training scheme, individuals can typically choose a route to pursue. Another benefit is that moving within a company is usually easier once you’ve completed the training. Larger businesses have promotion opportunities and new roles added frequently, so there are plenty of choices depending on your career path.
Other companies, including smaller firms, may have training opportunities too. You could also take the leap and start your own business if you have a brilliant idea!
Salary expectations in the world of business
Much like the range of careers available in business, the level of salary is also variable. Studies indicate that people with degrees are more likely to earn more than those without. Plus, the higher level of degree garners better salary prospects. When entering any career, you can’t expect to achieve a high salary from the outset. However, some graduate positions do offer a good starting wage. But, the chance to make better money as you progress through your career is good, and many experienced professionals make comfortable salaries.
To give you an idea of business management salaries, take a look below:
- Project Manager – $124,609
- Business Analyst – $110,000
- Team Leader – $95,719
The average business management salary in Australia is $114,711, and entry-level jobs start at an average of $92,780.
This salary guide is just a snippet of the potential in this sector, as there are so many roles to consider. It’s also just one slice of the industry as business delves into many other areas, including manufacturing, technology, human resources, and finance.
Transferable skills gained from studying for a business degree
Taking a business degree equips you with a range of knowledge within job roles. However, they also provide a diverse range of transferable skills you can use across the board. While studying, these skills are developed in lessons and throughout the practical application. The beauty of learning these elements is they can be used in everyday life or different career paths. Many people also underestimated just how much they pick up while studying at degree level.
Transferable skills are sought-after by employers and can be used to your advantage during interviews and assessments. In many cases, they come naturally, but other times, they can be learned for effective application.
Some of the common transferable skills students graduates obtain include:
Excellent communication skills are vital in any job sector. The skills learned at degree level set you up for the world of work and ensure that you have the basics unpinned for higher study options. Communication skills aren’t just about how you talk to people; they also encompass written communication. There is a distinct advantage of learning body language, active listening, and tone of voice to help converse with all levels of people.
This skill is essential in the business world. Critical thinking embodies a range of areas, including analysing, interpreting, and observation. It also captures the need to reflect and evaluate scenarios. These aspects crop up in everyday career situations and allow you to make reasoned judgments based on your information.
Solving problems is a natural part of everyday life and is a common feature throughout the workday. Graduates with this skill have the ability to rationalise and gather data to make decisions. Plus, they also have the initiative to create solutions. Therefore, this transferable skill is sought-after and can be shown to potential employers through degree case studies and group work examples.
Another critical skill learned throughout a degree program is decision-making. This process involves gathering information, processing the data, and assessing possible solutions and alternatives for the best outcome. This concept will be significantly used throughout your career and is often a skill enhanced by practical application.
Presentation and report writing
A major part of any business degree course involves report writing and presentation skills. You will undertake numerous studies and projects that require excellent writing skills that show your ability to communicate effectively to different levels of staff. Throughout the degree, this skill is practised for management reporting and guidance for teams, so learning the basics will enhance your application in the work environment.
Presentation skills are another essential element to have under your belt. A degree program will provide ample opportunity to present to your peers and lecturers on a number of topics.
Key areas of presenting well include:
- Connecting with the audience
- Present to the audience’s knowledge level
- Make eye contact
- Speak clearly
- Allow for questions and conversation
Throughout a career in business, you will see a range of information presented in different formats. Learning how to interpret this is essential. During a degree course, you will have the chance to study ways to decipher data and information in order to analyse and communicate results. Examples of what you’ll translate include diagrams, reports, charts, graphs, and maps, plus many others.
Business degrees incorporate many research opportunities, and this is a skill perfectly transferable to work environments. You’ll learn ways to find reputable sources and relevant data to support your work throughout a course. This enhances your skills to use in work scenarios. Good researching skills also save time when project deadlines are looming. They ensure you can pick precisely what information you need when you need it to improve productivity and accuracy.
Motivation and discipline
Throughout your education and career, motivation and self-discipline will push your further. These characteristics are often natural skills and are enhanced during study. In addition, employers love to see individuals that are determined and passionate about their vocation, and this is reflected in projects and degree assignments.
Business terminology and operations
Whatever business sector you choose to move into, learning terminology and the basics of how industries operate is a great skill to have. You will learn the common terms used for your specialism and put business theories into practice with group work and work experience on a degree course. Another benefit of having this knowledge is that it gives you more understanding of the type of business sector you’d like to go into. By studying the operations and hierarchy of organisations, you can see where your career may take you.
Where can you study for a business degree?
Business degrees are a popular choice of study for many people, and they are available through traditional or online education. The range of courses is vast, and you can choose specialisms depending on the type of career path you take.
In recent years, online study has risen in popularity. This is for a number of reasons. Online study offers a wider selection of courses, including specialist subjects. It’s also often more affordable and can fit around your other commitments and full-time work.
Over the past year, learning online has made it easier for people to gain a qualification despite the pandemic, and this style of study isn’t leave anytime soon. Many establishments are recognised by employers, and you gain the same qualifications as traditional class-based programs.
Ultimately, the place you study for a business degree should be a personal preference. Each has pros and cons, but both offer a gateway to further education and improved career prospects. A great way to find the best course for you is to do thorough research into the different options. Then weigh up the benefits of each to ensure the course has everything you need to make the next steps in your career.
A business degree opens up a wealth of opportunities within your home country and those abroad. Many employers look for people that hold relevant degrees, and choosing a specialism will set you on the right path. There are tons of benefits of studying business and not just the qualification you get at the end. Degree programs offer ample networking opportunities, transferable skills, and practical application of business theories. You can also choose to take work experience alongside study to enhance your understanding and boost your CV.
The possibilities are endless with a degree in business-related subjects. There’s also the chance to pursue further study after graduation. Having this level of qualification also gives you the flexibility to move within sectors and challenge yourself in new ways. Above all, you’ll be a graduate with a well-rounded knowledge of the business world who has experience and skills to offer in a competitive landscape.
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