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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Doctor versus Doctor

USE: This post is helpful for anyone who is young and making a life/career decision and for anyone looking out for general info.

As I am on my way towards a doctoral degree in Electrical Engineering, I have always felt that Doctor of Science (PhD) is not the same as Doctor of Medicine (MD), while in most senses this is correct, from some reading/research and dutiful watching "Grey's Anatomy", I was able to conclude that both have the same value/range of difficulty depending on the path taken.

A general PhD candidate can be broadly classified as Type 1 and 2 as shown below.

Type 1 Type 2
Industry oriented  Academia oriented

The outcomes of both are slightly different. While both lead to becoming a Doctor. Type 2 is more respectful and close to a MD. But although does not pay equivalently to a full-fledged MD.

I would like to chart out the path of both types of Doctors inorder to prove my theory:
Doctor of Medicine Type 1 PhD Type 2 PhD
12 years of schooling 12 years of schooling 12 years of schooling
4 years of Undergrad (medicine
4 years of Undergrad (engg
4 years of Undergrad (engg
4 years of Medical School 2 years of Master's+3-4 years of
PhD (or 5 year dual program)
2 years of Master's+3-4 years of
PhD (or 5 year dual program)
1 year Intern + 2-4 year
Residency at a Hospital
2-3 years Researcher in an Industry 1-2 years of PostDoctoral Research
4 years of Attending
Physician (or) 2-3 years
Specialty Fellowship 
Senior Researcher Assistant Professor
Full-fledged Doctor Principal Scientist Associate Professor

The time frame for some of the positions I have not mentioned as they are completely based on performance and only approximate figures can be made.

While the path to both type of Doctor are strenuous and hard, the rewards vary differently and ofcourse the stress associated with the job are also different. The rewards and stress of a medical doctor is by far very high when compared to a PhD. Due to short of actual figures, I would not like to add approximate salary figures in this post.

As a conclusion, I think both are difficult in their own sense and ofcourse very valuable as people of this degree have a responsibility to the society to continuously work towards the betterment and should not be judged based on the commercial value they finally receive.

[PS: this post compares only the degrees mentioned above and the comments are not applied to any other degree]

Thank you for taking time to read this post and your critical views are always appreciated. 

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