Associates Degree Defined
An Associates Degree is generally a two-year degree that you can earn at a community, on campus or online college. When you earn an Associates Degree, you are oftentimes able to transfer your credits earned towards a Bachelor’s Degree. If you are able to transfer all two years of your Associates Degree credits, then you typically only have another two years left to complete your Bachelor’s Degree.
The Associates Degree is considered an undergraduate degree from a college or university. Typically, you are required to complete a minimum of 60 credit hours (at most colleges and universities, this would be the system they use.) There are a number of different programs of interests that offer an Associates Degree for those who would like to start a new career or advance within one’s current career. Some of the programs of interests that are available may include Accounting, Business, Criminal Justice, Engineering, Paralegal, Management or Video Game Design. These are just a few of the endless possibilities that exist as an Associates Degree.
While researching the various programs of interest that are offered as Associates Degrees, you may come across different types of Associates Degrees. The program of interest that you are interested in may be offered as an Associate of Arts Degree (A.A.), Associate of Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.), Associate of Science Degree (A.S.) or an Occupational Degree, which is also referred to as an Applied Degree Program. The difference amongst these is generally the program that you are interested in. For instance, an engineering degree will most likely be an Associate of Applied Science because Engineering is an Applied Science. Additionally, an A.S. Degree program typically offers courses so that when you complete this degree, you are able to transfer their credits to a Bachelor’s Degree program of similar interest.
An Associates Degree can be offered as a full-time or part-time degree program. This is to accommodate the students who either have full-time jobs or families to tend to. You can choose to earn your degree at a local community college, technical school, or an online college and university. Earning an Associates Degree may increase your chances of being hired for a job, help you advance in your current field, save you money if you were thinking about attending a four-year college instead, and provide you an opportunity to earn a degree in a shorter period of time than a Bachelor’s Degree. More than half of degrees that are earned online are Associates Degrees, so it is a very popular choice.