Your College Degree Options - COLLEGEdata - Explore Colleges
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed the college from your Data Locker.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed the scholarship from your Data Locker.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to start your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to start your College List.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed SAT or ACT scores from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed application details from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed activities and awards from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed your weighted GPA from your Admissions Profile.
Points for this activity were reversed because you removed data to complete your Admissions Profile.

Your College Degree Options

What's the main goal of going to college? To graduate with a degree. Here are your degree options.

Once you start planning for college, you'll quickly discover there's more to it than declaring your major. You'll need to think about what type of degree you'll get.

Undergraduates Usually Earn a "Bachelor's" Degree

When people say they graduated from college, it usually means that they received their bachelor's degree. (Sometimes called a "baccalaureate" degree.) The main types of bachelor's degrees in the U.S. are the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and the Bachelor of Science (B.S.).

  • The B.A. degree focuses on the "liberal arts"—but it's not about politics or artistic expression. "Liberal" in this context means "broad." "Arts" is an age-old term for the essential knowledge an educated person should possess. Liberal arts fields include literature, history, social sciences, music, mathematics, fine arts, and laboratory sciences. Students broadly study these fields and then choose a major related to one of them.
  • The B.S. degree focuses on the mastery of knowledge in technical and scientific fields. It includes disciplines such as nursing, pharmacy, economics, engineering, and computer science. Some highly specialized B.S. programs take five years to complete.

Specialty bachelor's degrees focus on business, fine arts, and religion.

How Your Degree Choice Affects Your College Choices

If a B.A. degree is a good fit for you, then looking at colleges that have a strong program in the liberal arts would make sense. If a B.S. degree is a better fit, then technical institutes and universities might be good places to start.

The Path to Getting Your Degree

To get your bachelor's degree you will need to fulfill general education requirements defined by the college. You'll also need to choose a major and meet the requirements of that major.

If You Plan to Pursue a Graduate Degree or Professional License

If you plan to continue your studies after graduation, either a B.A. or B.S. can help prepare you. For example, some future lawyers major in science or technology while some future doctors study psychology or history. Of course, you will still need to satisfy the prerequisite courses required to get into graduate school.

Combined Degree Options

Many colleges offer combined degrees, which allow you to get two degrees at once.

  • An accelerated degree lets you earn a bachelor's degree and a graduate degree in less time than it would take to pursue the degrees separately. Students pursuing this type of degree take a rigorous course load during the sophomore and junior years and begin graduate school or professional training during their senior year.
  • Dual degree programs usually include two bachelor's degrees. Typically, these combine a liberal arts degree and a career-oriented degree. These programs are not accelerated and often require a fifth year of college.

What's Next?

For Students Age 18 and Older

Have you received a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit card?

Learn how to qualify for a Personal Invitation to apply for a Student Credit Card


1st Financial Bank believes students who pick colleges wisely will also want to learn how to use credit cards wisely.

College MatchFind the right colleges for you!
College ChancesWill you get in? Find out!
Admissions TrackerSee who got in where, who's applying & how you compare!
Financial Aid TrackerSee who's getting financial aid, how much & how you stack up.
Scholarship FinderFind money for college!
EFC CalculatorCalculate your Expected Family Contribution.
College Net Price CalculatorSee your true out-of-pocket cost to attend any college.
Compare Financial Aid AwardsFind out which college is offering you the best deal.
cd$ My Data Locker

You must be logged in to view your Data Locker Dashboard

Log in to see all of your saved colleges, scholarships, articles, profiles and searches in one place. Access your Dashboard from any page.

COLLEGEdata Dollars are
points you earn by
completing certain
COLLEGEdata activities

Ways to earn
COLLEGEdata Dollars:

  • Complete your Admissions Profile.
  • Add colleges to your College Choices.
  • Update your Admissions Statuses.
  • Use the College Match tool.

What are COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$)?

COLLEGEdata Dollars (CD$) are points you earn by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. The maximum number of CD$ you can redeem is 5000. Once you have earned at least 2500 CD$, you can redeem them for $25, which will be provided to you on a Loyalty Card, and once you earn another 2500 CD$, you can redeem those CD$ for a second $25, which will also be provided to you on a Loyalty Card.

Earn points and redeem them for
U.S. Dollars

Complete certain COLLEGEdata activities (for example, signing up, starting your Admissions Profile, searching for colleges, calculating your chances for admission, searching for scholarships, updating your Profile with your admission decisions). Each activity is worth a specific amount of points (CD$). You can redeem the points you earn for U.S. Dollars that will be issued to you in the form of a 1st Financial Bank USA Loyalty Mastercard®.

How do I earn COLLEGEdata Dollars?

You can earn CD$ by completing certain COLLEGEdata activities. As soon as you sign up and activate your COLLEGEdata account, explore COLLEGEdata and begin completing COLLEGEdata activities to earn points.

Here is a full list of COLLEGEdata activities for which you may earn CD$ and the number of CD$ you can earn by completing each activity.*

Activity
CD$
×
Congratulations!
+ CD$
You just earned COLLEGEdata Dollars!
Check your CD$ Dashboard at the bottom of the page to view your CD$ balance, find other activities that you can complete to earn CD$, and redeem the CD$ you have earned for U.S. Dollars.