Two-Year College vs Four-Year College

Many students are choosing a two-year college over a four-year college. There’s no question that when it comes to getting an education, there are a lot of things to figure out. What to study can be a tough decision, but where to study can be just as difficult. After all, there are more things to consider than just geographical location. For instance, should you choose a two-year college or a four-year college? What’s the difference? Since we’re talking about your future career, it’s pretty important to understand what your choices are, and which will put you on the right path. A good place to start is to explore some of the key differences between most two-year and four-year colleges.


Many two-year colleges are community colleges or vocational/technical schools offering specific training for a trade or career that doesn’t require the advanced education coursesthat certain disciplines demand. Sometimes students begin their studies at a two-year college and transfer to a four-year program at a university.Two-year colleges also give you the opportunity to get to know a lot of the student body, and instructors, since classes tend to be smaller. There are often lifestyle differences between students attending two-year and four-year colleges. When attending a two-year college, living at home or on your own is a beneficial factor for some. Many students live on campus, or home if its close enough,when attending a four-year school. If you live far from home, this can be the factor that makes or breaks your decision.

Curriculum and Degrees

Two-year colleges typically include some general education curriculum but are geared toward students who are looking to join the work force and start making money quicker than a traditional four-year university education would allow.Most two-year colleges are specifically designed to offer career-ready training in two years or less and students can expect to receive specialized training in the field or trade they are studying. Many two-year colleges have extensive partnerships with businesses in the community and offer internships and apprenticeships for students to get hands-on training in their chosen field. Students in two-year college programs typically earn an Associate degree upon completion.

Four-year colleges feature largergeneral education requirements and typically don’t delve into a specific career discipline until the last two years. Upon completion of most four-year programs, students will have earned a Bachelors’ degree in their chosen discipline. They may choose to continue on from there and pursue a graduate degree.


Aside from the time frame, tuition cost may be the biggest differentiator between a two-year college and a four-year college.According to a study conducted by the College Board, Annual tuition and fees for a public, two-year college are $3,440, while the cost for a public, four-year college can start at $9,410 for in-state students. Out of state students pay far more than that and tuition for a private four-year college is a whopping $32,410. Keep in mind that none of these numbers cover housing, food, books or other living expenses.

Which is Right for You?

It really depends on which field you decide to pursue. If you’re looking for a career in a professional role such as teaching or law; the longer, more traditional university route is going to be your best option. But for skill-based careers in fields like Audio Engineering, Video Production and Broadcasting, a two-year college can be a great choice that can get you working in your chosen field faster and potentially much less in debt.

It all comes down to what your unique career goals are. But no matter what career path you choose, be sure to do the research to give yourself the best chance for success! If you’d like to learn more about a career in the world of Multimedia Production & Broadcasting, check out the programs atInternational College of Broadcasting. Contact us today for more information or to schedule a campus tour.