What Are the Different Types of Safety Degree Programs?

Andrew Kirmayer
Andrew Kirmayer
Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

A career in safety can entail working as a consultant to a business that wants to protect its employees, or as an official for a public agency. Education in the appropriate field is usually necessary. There are several types of safety degree programs, which include associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s level degrees. From universities to training centers, the options for pursuing a safety degree are numerous, while many of these programs are available through the Internet.

Many safety degree programs focus on labor and employment. These often provide an education on laws pertaining to workplace safety, as well as regional regulations that are in place. Issues such as worker’s compensation, unions, and employee rights can be covered as well. Master’s degree programs are typically more focused on solving problems from a management perspective. Students usually participate in field work such as auditing and inspecting workplaces, and assisting with creating emergency response plans.

Occupational safety is a common topic of safety degree programs. Students can get a background in the field with an associate’s degree, and typically prepare for a role in assisting with the implementation of safety programs. As with a master’s program, bachelor’s safety degree programs often help guide students toward a management role. These programs can also provide skills regarding safety in testing machinery and preventing fires, for example.

Even safety degree programs at the graduate level are sometimes offered online. These include occupation safety programs as well as those dealing with public safety. Some programs incorporate courses on disaster preparation, crisis management, as well as hazardous material handling. Courses in how to coordinate an emergency response to a disaster can be included, while students may also learn about the communications technology aspect of security responses. The programs sometimes train one how to best assess a terrorist situation and respond to it.

Individual schools may provide different types of safety education. Some educational institutions focus safety degree programs on criminal justice or leadership, while a few are focused on the prevention of fires and how to best approach safety when they do occur. There are also programs that concentrate on the engineering of tools and other items in the workplace which are safe to use. While individual programs can focus on disaster safety, others can cover toxicology, general human health, or construction. Some are tailored to educational advancement, while a safety certificate can be beneficial as well.

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