2021 Best Dual Masters Degree Programs Online
Dual master’s degree programs online can allow you to pursue two academic areas that you’re interested in and earn two masters degrees simultaneously.
Dual degree programs not only offer greater diversity in career opportunities but may also lead to higher earning potential and greater job growth over time.
With options ranging across various academic disciplines, there may be a dual degree program option that is a good fit for you and your professional goals.
Online Dual Masters Degree Programs
With dual master’s degree programs, you have the chance to complete two different masters degrees in varying areas of study at the same time. These combined degree program options can be offered in both online and on-campus formats, varying from one school to the next.
You may choose to enroll in a dual master’s degree program in order to develop expertise in two distinct but complementary areas of study. Earning joint graduate degrees may come with the opportunity to increase your career options and enhance your earning potential.
Master of Business Administration & Master of Public Health (MBA/MPH)
Pursuing a Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Health (MBA/MPH) dual degree program may prepare you for leadership or advanced positions in public health as well as other industries.
Business administration and public health skill sets are applicable in a variety of positions in this field. These positions include health information manager, chief executive officer, chief operations officer, epidemiologists, and health educator.
Course topics typically include financial reporting, marketing management, business law, ethical leadership, business analytics, and communication for leadership. Other courses may include quantitative research methods in public health, health policy and law, biostatistics, population health, and global health.
Master of Social Work & Juris Doctorate (MSW/JD)
Earning a Master of Social Work and Juris Doctor (MSW/JD) dual degree may allow you to pursue a rewarding career in social policy and law. An MSW/JD dual degree can offer a unique perspective on a number of issues related to the law, including equity, child welfare, social policy, poverty, and mental health.
This educational pathway is applicable to roles such as social worker, lawyer, nonprofit administrator, victim advocate, policy analyst, social and community services manager, and arbitrator or mediator, along with various c-suite positions.
MSW coursework may include history and philosophy of social work and social welfare, human behavior in the social environment, American racism and social work practice, and foundations of social work practice.
Juris Doctor courses can include civil procedures, criminal law, property law, legal research and writing practices, and torts law.
Many authorities consider the JD to be a doctorate degree, and many universities offer combined masters and JD programs. Another combined masters and doctorate, for example, is the dual masters and PsyD programs that some universities offer.
Master of Science in Criminal Justice & Master of Public Administration (CJ/MPA)
Pursuing an MS in Criminal Justice and Master of Public Administration (CJ/MPA) dual degree program may lead you toward a career where criminal justice and public administration intersect.
Positions related to these areas of study include policy analyst, political scientist, law enforcement officer, correctional treatment specialist, and survey researcher. Other positions may include leadership roles in nonprofit, government, and private business, particularly as they relate to criminal justice and social welfare.
You criminal justice coursework may cover topics like criminology, victimology, gender and crime, violent crime, law and society, and policy analysis in criminal justice. Public administration courses can include principles of nonprofit management, public finance, human resources management, law and public policy, and ethics in the public sector.
Master of Science in Nursing & Master of Business Administration (MSN/MBA)
Earning a dual Master of Science in Nursing and Master of Business Administration (MSN/MBA) degree may help prepare you for advanced positions in nursing and leadership, such as hospital administration.
Professionals in the field also work as nurse practitioners, nurse educators, clinical managers, nurse administrators, and chief nursing officers.
As part of your joint degree education, you might take courses on population health, biostatistics, nursing informatics, legal and ethical accountability in nursing, financial reporting, business law, human resources management, and leadership communication.
Masters in Management Information Systems & Master in Business Administration (MIS/MBA)
Earning a Masters in Management Information Systems and Master in Business Administration (MIS/MBA) dual degree is intended to prepare you for management and leadership roles specifically related to information technology.
IT business administration roles can include chief executive officer, chief technology officer, information technology manager, and computer and information research scientist. While pursuing an MIS/MBA joint degree, you’ll complete a variety of courses.
Course topics can include information systems strategy, system analysis, modeling and design, data management, financial management and budgeting, team organization and management, and business ethics.
Master of Science in Marketing & Master of Business Administration
An MS in Marketing and MBA joint program can help you develop key upper management and leadership skills. Advanced marketing and business careers include chief marketing officer, chief executive officer, director of marketing, advertising and sales manager, and market research analyst.
Your dual degree program may include courses that cover managing brand identity, digital advertising strategies, integrated marketing communications, and marketing for social change. Other course topics can include foundations of leadership, microeconomics, management communication, and corporate finance.
Masters in Finance / Masters in Business Analytics
Pursuing a Masters in Finance and Masters in Business Analytics dual degree program can provide you with a unique blend of expertise to tackle roles in finance, risk management, portfolio analysis, and data analysis.
Professionals with advanced education in finance and business analytics may work as financial managers, accountants, chief financial officers, chief data officers, financial analysts, business operations analysts, or management analysts.
Course topics can include financial accounting, statistical analysis, valuation, investment management, multivariate data analysis, and data programming.
Masters in Marketing / Masters in Business Analytics
A marketing masters and business analytics masters dual program blends marketing theory expertise and application with an in-depth understanding of data analysis techniques and methodologies.
Marketing and business analytics occupations can include business intelligence analyst, e-commerce manager, marketing manager, director of advertising and marketing, and chief marketing officer.
Course topics can include business statistics, marketing research, digital marketing principles, data mining practices, simulation modeling, and project management in business analysis.
How to Choose an Online Dual Master’s Degree Program
When choosing between different dual graduate degree programs, there are a number of factors that may impact your final decision, such as:
- Total credit amounts. Dual programs can differ in the total number of credits required in order to complete both degrees.
- Amount of course overlap. When there’s an overlap between courses for each program, you may be able to use the same course credits toward both academic programs.
- Format options. Depending on the program, classes may be online, on campus, or both.
- Thesis or internship options. Some schools require the completion of a thesis or internship as part of either degree plan.
- Attendance requirements. There can be different attendance requirements for each program in terms of full-time and part-time enrollment options.
Additionally, it’s helpful to keep your personal and professional goals in mind when selecting a dual master’s degree program.
Joint Masters Admissions Requirements
Joint masters admission requirements can vary from one school to the next and can depend on the joint program option you’re pursuing. Common requirements across dual degree options include:
- Bachelor’s degree
- Minimum GPA from undergraduate studies
- Resume or CV
- Personal essay
- Letter of recommendation
Depending on the programs you’re interested in, you may also be required to present relevant licenses or work experience as part of your application. For example, an active RN license is often required for a nursing masters dual degree program. In addition, dual programs may require that your undergraduate degree is in a particular area of study.
Regional accreditation is a status given to postsecondary schools whose educational offerings have met a predetermined set of academic quality standards.
The accreditation status of the school and program you’re interested in may impact your ability to transfer credits into another program or enroll in PhD studies down the road. An institution’s accreditation status can also impact your ability to obtain professional licenses and can influence potential employers’ hiring decisions.
For more information on the accreditation status of the schools you’re interested in attending, you can visit the US Department of Education’s website.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
Enrolling in dual degree masters programs may cost more than registering for a single master’s program, but there are a number of financial aid options available to students who qualify. Some financial aid options include:
- Grant and loan programs. These are made available to qualifying students by both the federal and state governments.
- Scholarships. These are often made available by private and public organizations. In some cases, scholarships are geared toward certain areas of study or types of students.
- Employer training or professional development programs. If you’re employed at the time of enrollment, you can check to see if your work offers tuition assistance or work programs.
- Funding options through your prospective school. The school you choose to attend may offer grants and reimbursements.
For more information on financial aid options that may be available to you, you can visit the US Department of Education’s website and fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Can You Get Two Masters Degrees at the Same Time?
It is possible to earn two master degrees at the same time by enrolling in dual degree graduate programs.
There are a number of different program options available that may allow you to earn two master’s degrees at the same time. The specific offerings available will vary from one school to the next. Some common dual degree options include:
- Master of Social Work and Juris Doctorate (MSW/JD)
- MS in Criminal Justice and Master of Public Administration (MSCJ/MPA)
- MS in Nursing and Master of Business Administration (MSN/MBA)
Other dual master programs may cover academic areas such as management information systems, marketing, finance, and business analytics.
Are Two Master’s Degrees Equivalent to a PhD?
Earning two masters degrees is not equivalent to earning a PhD. Whether you earn one, two, three, or more masters degrees, your education remains at the masters level.
In order to obtain doctorate-level education, it’s necessary to complete a Ph.D. or professional doctorate program. It is possible to earn a PhD without first completing a masters, and there are also joint masters/PhD programs on the market.
What Is a Dual Degree Program?
A dual degree program is an educational program that allows you to earn two degrees at one time.
Dual masters programs are offered as pre-defined, stand-alone programs at various institutions. They can help you develop a concrete foundation and level of expertise in two distinct academic areas.
Each stream of study that comprises a dual degree program comes with its own required credits and makeup of coursework. The two disciplines commonly overlap in certain areas, which can allow you to use some credits toward both degrees.
What Can You Do with a Combined Masters?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a combined masters degree program can help you qualify for a variety of advanced positions, including those in leadership and management.
Career options that commonly require graduate-level education include top executive, lawyer, human resources manager, epidemiologist, arbitrator, policy analyst, survey researcher, health educator, social worker, social and community services manager, and nurse practitioner.
It’s important to note that the positions you may qualify for will vary greatly depending on the type of joint-degree program you attend.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Double Masters Degree Online?
Dual masters programs typically take 2 to 3 years to complete, depending on the university and your chosen specialty. There are a number of factors that may impact the total length of time required to earn your degrees, such as whether you enroll on a part-time or full-time basis.
Additional factors that can impact your completion time include your chosen degree combination and whether you’re required to complete a thesis or internship as part of one or both degree programs.
The number of credits that you may be eligible to use towards both programs can also play a role in the total length of time it will take you to graduate with your degrees.
Does a Dual Degree Program Cost More?
Completing a dual degree masters program may end up costing you more than enrolling in a traditional, single degree masters program. A dual degree option can offer you savings, though, when compared to completing two masters degrees separately.
Other factors can also impact the cost of your degree, such as whether you attend online instead of on-campus. On-campus programs may include additional fees and expenses, such as housing or parking costs. Another consideration that may impact your total costs is whether or not you’re attending a school as an out-of-state student.
What’s the Difference Between a Dual Degree vs. Double Major?
Dual degree programs offer a very different outcome than double majors.
|Dual Degree||Double Major|
The most distinct difference between the two options is that a dual degree program allows you to walk away with two degrees in separate but often complementary areas of study.
Are Dual Masters Degrees Worth It?
Yes, dual masters degrees are worth it for many professionals. Earning a dual degree from the various masters program options available may allow you to benefit from increased employment opportunities and increased earning potential.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that management occupations in general will experience 5% job growth over the next ten years, which is faster than the average growth for all jobs. A number of graduate-level careers are expected to experience positive job growth as well.
Some of these positions include top executive (4% job growth), lawyer (4%), epidemiologist (5%), arbitrator or mediator (8%), health educator (13%), social worker (13%), social and community services manager (17%), and nurse practitioner (52%).
Universities Offering Dual Masters Degree Programs
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online, campus, or in a hybrid format.
Benedictine University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Dallas Baptist University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Drexel University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
Union College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Chicago is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.
UNM is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Oklahoma is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Texas at Austin is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Walsh is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.
Earning Your Dual Masters Degree Online
Enrolling in a dual masters degree program online, or, in the case of a combined masters/JD, dual masters and doctorate degree programs online, requires hard work and dedication, but it can also offer you the opportunity to develop expertise in two distinct but complementary areas of study.
There are a variety of degree combinations and numerous opportunities available to you that can help you advance your qualifications and work toward your professional goals. If you’re wanting to find the joint degree combination that best fits your interests, you can start by exploring online dual masters degrees from accredited schools.