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I am thinking about doing an online degree at Open University located in the UK. The reason being is that I will be working a full time job as a software engineer, and would like to get a degree in physics at the same time. The only caveat with a BSc (Honors) is that they only take typically 3 years full time and 6 years part time to complete.

How do american employers view a BSc compared to a BS degree where the BS degree took 4 years to complete? On a brighter note the BSc (Honors) seems to be more focused on the subject, whereas a BS degree contains a lot of fluff classes; that is, classes that aren't relevant to the subject.

  • Keep in mind that in the majority of job markets in the US, your degree matters less and less as you get more experience. In many cases, by the time you have a few years of work experience, no one really cares what the degree was or where it came from, and if you've got many years of experience, no one will likely care if you even have a degree at all. Focus on making sure you actually learn skills that will be useful in a real world environment and don't get hung up on the letters or names involved. – dwizum Sep 4 at 13:10
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Undergraduate degrees are generally viewed equivalently, irrespective of whether you study in the US or UK.

Companies that are exposed to international education systems appreciate that the duration of undergraduate degrees vary depending on the country where you're based. It is also possible to graduate in the US with a BS degree in 3 years (with AP high school classes, advanced classes, etc.). The relative quality of the institution is clearly important, irrespective of the location.

It comes down (for your first job out of undergraduate studies) to whether you have performed well, shown competence in the foundational areas that are required in the job, etc. In your case, since you will be working full time and gaining experience in software development while getting your degree, you should be in great shape, especially if you choose to stay in the same field post graduation.

Good luck!

  • This overlooks that the institution granting the degree matters a lot to perception as well. – Chris Stratton Sep 4 at 4:43
  • Good point. Made the edit. – Pchandrasekar Sep 4 at 5:05
  • @ChrisStratton Think the OU is sufficiently well-known... – Solar Mike Sep 4 at 8:13
  • On this site I have an American ask if the OU was a diploma mill. – DJClayworth Sep 4 at 21:25

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