Two Masters Better than A Doctorate?
October 30, 2009 9:20 AM Subscribe
If all goes well, in Spring 2011 I will have finally completed my Masters in Mental Health Counseling. But I want to apply my degree to higher education.
posted by zizzle to Education (3 answers total)
My Masters doesn't grant me all the credits needed for licensure as a Licensed Mental Health Clinician in my state. I would need to do another year to earn the Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study in order to have enough credit hours to sit for the licensure exam. And I am positive that I don't want to do that. Rather, I want to continue working in Higher Ed (I'm currently a lowly assistant in an academic department) and move into a Dean of Students office, Diversity Services office, or a Student Success program.
I am considering, after completing my MS in Counseling on getting a second Masters in Higher Ed administration with a focus on student affairs or a Masters in Student Affairs (same thing, labeled differently). I am wondering though, if an Ed.D. of some sort would be a better for my ultimate goals. I am not questioning the work that would go into an Ed.D and the time to do so --- those are serious considerations that I am weighing in on and I am well aware of all of those associated issues, so I would like this to avoid becoming about the process of a doctorate degrees. I actually turned down doctorate programs in another field a few years ago for a variety of reasons. I'm well aware of what goes into completing a doctorate, and now I'm a different place in my life and far more sure about what I want to do, it is something to consider again. But what I am wondering is if two Masters degrees that I consider interrelated and useful to my career goals would be better or equal to a doctorate in terms of achieving my career goals. Would I be able to be hired as an Assistant Dean of Students, for example, with two masters degrees and a couple of years of administration experience? Or would a doctorate give me a better chance at that?
I would be interested in keeping up with research after finishing a doctorate if that is the route I decide to go, but what's important here is that I want to work in an applied setting most of all. Teaching a couple of classes here and there would be great, but mostly I want to work with students outside of the classroom, work on improving institutional policies and creating a campus environment conducive to student success outside of the classroom and academic components of student life. I'm very much interested in the intersection of a student's academic and personal life, and how the two are often entwined and inseparable for students and what higher ed institutions can do when something personal in a student's life is affecting the academics.
So, AskMe, how would you consider two Masters degree v.s a doctorate for career goals such as mine? Which, in your esteemed opinion, would be the route best for my career goals?