Both Wikipedia and The Big Bang Theory Wiki say that Sheldon Cooper of the Big Bang Theory has a Master of Arts degree. They both cite "The Love Car Displacement" episode as the source for that. But I can't find any mention of that in the episode's script.

Does Sheldon really have a Master of Arts degree? That seems very strange for someone who has devoted his entire life to science, and who has such a strong disdain for anything non-science related (and even certain sciences like geology). If he does have a M.A., what field is it in?

  • 3
    Oxford and Cambridge call (almost all) their undergraduate degrees Bachelor of Arts; presumably, other universities name their degrees similarly. The situation is analogous to Sheldon being a Doctor of Philosophy, despite not having studied philosophy. Commented Dec 27, 2015 at 18:00

1 Answer 1


Sheldon does say it, but he uses the initialism when introducing himself at the start of the lecture they are presenting:

Good morning and welcome to Science and Society. I’m Dr. Sheldon Cooper, BS, MS, MA, PhD, and ScD. OMG, right? Perhaps that joke was a little too hippie-dippy for this crowd. All right then, we’ll begin with opening remarks. Miss Rostenkowski, would you like to start us off by discussing your assessment of science’s responsibility to society?

As Wikipedia notes, this is a common shorthand for Master of Arts:

A Master of Arts (M.A., MA, A.M., or AM) from the Latin Magister Artium, is a type of Master's degree awarded by universities in many countries.

  • Ah, I searched for "Master", "degree", "M.A.", but not "MA". I take it the show has never mentioned what field it's in? Commented Nov 2, 2014 at 21:04
  • 2
    @pacoverflow As I recall he hasn't, but he does know a lot of languages, so it's possible the degree is one of those as language degrees are usually Arts. Though it's equally possible that it's just a throwaway line for the 'joke'. Commented Nov 2, 2014 at 21:06
  • 2
    FWIW "of arts" doesn't mean that the field of the degree is an artistic one. A number of colleges label all their degrees Bachelor of Arts, even for those majoring in a science. I suppose the same could hold for master's degrees.
    – David Z
    Commented Sep 8, 2015 at 6:13
  • 2
    I know of at least one university that had a bug in its undergraduate program that allowed someone to do one course of study, and get both a BS and BA off the credits (they where transitioning from using BA for science degrees to a BS for science degrees). One could imagine Sheldon spotting a similar technical rules, exploiting them, and getting an extra degree as a MA without actually getting an MA.
    – Yakk
    Commented Apr 1, 2016 at 13:44
  • 1
    "One could imagine Sheldon spotting a similar technical rules, exploiting them, and getting an extra degree as a MA without actually getting an MA. – Yakk 19 hours ago". That would be intellectually dishonest, as Sheldon has expressed a disinterest in, in 'The Extract Obliteration'. Although, that episode is later and this show has a significant amount of plot holes...
    – user33026
    Commented Apr 2, 2016 at 9:41

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .