students in robes throw up academic caps and are happy to receive higher education

How Long Does it Take to Get a Bachelor’s Degree?

It depends. One of the reasons it’s difficult to say how long a bachelor’s degree takes is that many individuals pursue their degrees in different ways.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, a bachelor’s degree program takes an average of 52 months to complete from start to finish.

This is about one semester more than a four-year program.

A bachelor’s degree usually takes between four and six years to complete. Because each program and each student’s educational route will differ slightly, these are just averages.

Graduate school kids standing with degree scroll in campus

How to Get a Degree in Less Time

Cheerful graduates outside university

Fortunately, if you are a motivated student, you can complete your degree faster.

Here are a few suggestions for how today’s students might expedite the process.

Credits Can Be Earned in High School

Group of multicultural high school teenage high school students doing homework during school break

If you’re still in high school, you can take advantage of dual enrollment programs to help you get your degree faster. Community colleges frequently offer college-level courses that can be used to fulfill high school requirements.

High school graduates

If you manage your course load carefully, you may be able to finish high school with one or two years of bachelor’s degree credit, usually in the form of core topics.

Online Education Can Be Essential

If you’re trying to cram more classes into each semester in order to earn your degree faster, you can run into scheduling issues.

College student distance learning online group at home using computer.

If two courses you need to take are only available at the same time, you won’t be able to take them both in person. Online bachelor’s degree programs give you more flexibility in your schedule, allowing you to attend more classes.

Take Advantage of Flexible Schedules

Many students today do not follow traditional college timetables, which is recognized by today’s colleges and institutions.

Rewriting timetable

As a result, they provide flexible scheduling, including summer semesters, online programs, and even evening and weekend classes, allowing students to attend classes whenever they want.

Choose an Accelerated Degree Program

Traditional coursework for a bachelor’s degree is consolidated into a shorter time frame in accelerated degree programs.

Focused black teen sitting on floor among scattered documents, using laptop to write coursework

Because these programs do not compromise the quality of the education or its topics, the coursework is highly demanding, so be prepared for a hefty workload within a short amount of time.

Preparing coursework project

Enroll in Summer Classes

Many college students aren’t used to going to school in the summer after graduating from high school, but taking three to four months off can significantly delay graduation.

College classmates walking after classes outdoors, crop

Instead, think of summer as merely another semester and enroll in classes during that time. This may make it easier for you to enroll in classes that don’t fit into your typical timetable.

Don’t Change Your Major

One of the most common reasons students take so long to finish their bachelor’s degree is that they change majors halfway through their schooling.

Interesting subject

This arises because many college freshman aren’t sure where they want to go with their careers.

Changing your major, on the other hand, may need taking new core classes, and it may also mean that the classes you previously completed in your major field are no longer applicable toward your new degree.

Students discussing academic work

While you’re still deciding on a major, talk to an academic counselor about the best general education classes to take. As you progress through your degree, you’ll feel more comfortable choosing a major that you’ll stick with all the way to graduation.


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