Main Difference – MD vs. PhD
MD and PhD are two abbreviations that refer to a terminal degree or highest levels of degrees in the relevant fields. The abbreviation, MD stands for Doctor of Medicine while PhD stands for Doctor of Philosophy. The main difference between MD and PhD can be noted in their fields or areas of the subject. MD is a degree in medicine whereas PhD can refer to a degree in various fields such as arts and sciences.
What is MD
MD is an abbreviation that stands for Doctor of Medicine. However, it is important to notice that the meaning of MD can differ according to the country you are studying. In the United States and countries that follow US tradition, MD is the first professional degree awarded by the medical students. In United Kingdom, Ireland and some Commonwealth countries MD is a doctorate that is studied by those who have already completed their first medical degree MBBS (Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Surgery)
MD involves both theory and practice. In the first years, the students will be engaged in lectures and lab work in advanced science subjects. In the latter years, the students will be expected to deal with more clinical practice. Thus, this degree deals with both theoretical and practical aspects.
What is a PhD
The initialism, PhD stands for Doctor of Philosophy. This degree is the highest academic degree you can earn on any subject. A PhD can be obtained in a variety of subjects such as literature, law, education, psychology, music, management, etc.
This is awarded to students who have completed both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in the relevant fields. The Ph.D. ends in dissertation writing; a PhD student has to write, present as well as defend his dissertation. It is important to notice that Ph.D. gives a special place for research, and the Ph.D. student is expected to contribute new theory and knowledge to the field with his research. PhDs are usually obtained by individuals who are pursuing or interested in pursuing a career in academia.
Difference Between MD and PhD
MD refers to Doctor of Medicine.
PhD refers to Doctor of Philosophy.
MD is a degree in medicine.
PhD can refer to a degree in various fields such as arts and sciences.
MD is a professional degree.
PhD is an academic degree.
MD involves more clinical practice.
PhD involves more research work.
Theory and Knowledge
MD students learn to apply the existing theories and knowledge practically.
PhD students are expected to introduce new knowledge and theories.
MD was first introduced in the medieval Arabian universities.
PhD was first introduced in the medieval European universities.
A Medical Doctor (MD) can prescribe medicine and examine patients.
A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) cannot prescribe medicine and examine patients.
“Phdposing” by Alex Zozulya – Own work. (Public Domain) via Commons
“Doctor examines patient” by the National Cancer Institute (ID 4521) (Public Domain) via Commons