Associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees in human resource management are available, and they cover a wide range of topics in general business and human resources. Students can work in a specific subfield of human resource management or become generalists with these degrees, which prepare them to select, interview, train, and manage employees in a variety of industries. Although associate’s degrees may lead to entry-level positions as human resource assistants, potential managers will almost certainly require a bachelor’s degree and relevant experience. A master’s degree in human resource management can lead to higher-level management positions in large corporations and is also a viable option for career changers.
A human resources associate’s degree is an entry-level degree that teaches students the fundamentals of business and human resource management. Human resource courses in this program are typically general in nature, introducing students to personnel selection, labor laws, employee training, and benefit systems. Typically, introductory management, business law, business statistics, economics, and management classes are included as well. Although many employers prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree for management positions, an associate’s degree may be sufficient for an entry-level position in human resources.
A bachelor’s degree in human resource management or a general business management degree with a concentration in human resource management are the two most common bachelor’s degrees in human resource management. Bachelor’s degrees in human resource management go deeper with advanced business classes and more focused human resource courses. Advanced courses teach students how to recruit and retain employees, provide benefit packages, use various training techniques, follow human resource management laws, and manage human resources at the enterprise level. Marketing, business ethics, finance, international business, change leadership, and project management are examples of general business classes. An internship, final exam, or capstone project are usually required to complete these human resource management degrees.
At the graduate level, there are several human resource management degrees available, including a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in human resources and a master’s degree in human resource management. Many of the classes offered in undergraduate programs are included in both degrees, but they usually require more research and in-depth study. An MBA program typically consists of more general business courses than human resource management courses, whereas a master’s in human resource management consists primarily of human resource management courses. An internship, final project, comprehensive exam, or a combination of these are usually required in either program.