What Is an Associate Degree?

What Is an Associate Degree? Most career options in business require more education, so you’re done with high school but don’t know what to do next? If you live in North America or Australia; you’ve probably heard of associate degrees.

Are you planning to go to college? You will have a couple of paths to choose from, you can earn a diploma, associate degree, or bachelor’s degree, and you’ve probably heard of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees; though perhaps not an associate’s degree.

Do you know what an associate’s degree is and should you get it? Do we have the answer to your question; so you can decide if it is the right option for you? Here is a guide.

What’s Its Objective?

An associate’s degree is a qualifying undergraduate level post-secondary academic program; between a diploma and a bachelor’s degree in which it is awarded to students who have successfully completed their high school studies.

It can be an affordable option and you can stick with various colleges and universitiesm; and students who earn this degree have a higher level of education than people with a high school diploma, however, a lower level of education than those with a bachelor’s degree.

In fact, an associate’s degree provides preparation for a bachelor’s degree; which makes it a natural way to continue your studies.

Therefore; its objective is to give students the basic technical and academic knowledge, and skills they need to obtain a qualification in their own right, helping to improve job prospects or continue studying.

There are several types of associate degrees: Associate of Arts (AA) degree, Associate of Science (AS) degree, Associate of Applied Arts (AAA) degree, Associate of Applied Sciences (AAS) degree; and Associate of Applied Business degree (AAB).

How Long Does it Take to Complete an Associate Degree?

The modules as an Associate’s degree is shorter than that of a Bachelor’s degree; it is a more academic orientation, they are similar to basic degrees in the UK like a Bachelor’s degree.

However, in most associate degree programs it generally takes two to three years to complete an associate degree.

Although there are some accelerated programs that can be completed in just one year, they can shorten the amount of time it takes to earn a degree.

Generally, 60 credit hours must be completed with an associate’s degree, and the credits you earn can also contribute to your bachelor’s degree.

This all depends on your college credit transfer policies, should you decide to continue your education.

How Much Does it Cost?

Tuition fees for associate’s degrees tend to be lower, although the difference in costs will vary by institution.

However, many community colleges offer low-cost associate degree programs.

Therefore, it can be an economical, flexible, and less time-consuming way to follow this type of program. The final cost of your program will vary; depending on factors such as the type of financial aid you receive and the institution you go to.

Lest you go without an answer, we can say that roughly an associate degree you can generally expect to pay two to three times less for a bachelor’s degree.


Admission to associate degree programs can be an alternative for students who do not meet the entry requirements for a bachelor’s degree.

There are many reasons why a student cannot qualify; perhaps because they studied more vocational courses or did not get strong enough grades.

An associate’s degree can be earned at community colleges, four-year colleges and universities, vocational schools, and trade schools, or where you are given the option of attending an on-campus program or earning your degree online.

In fact; Online associate degrees are also becoming more popular, due to their flexibility and affordability, allowing people to work while studying, often at a reduced price.

Their requirements may vary and may have additional requirements, but most programs require applicants to have a high school diploma.

In addition to submitting high school transcripts, an essay, a resume, letters of recommendation, and/or standardized test scores.

Reasons Why You Should Get an Associate’s Degree?

We have good news for you! There are many reasons and benefits to consider earning an associate’s degree.

  • If money is an issue, an associate’s degree may be a good option for most students.
  • An associate’s degree is the best way to finance your college education.
  • Most associate degree programs have reasonable tuition costs.
  • After having your associate degree you can continue your bachelor’s degree when you have a better financial base.
  • It is so financially flexible that it allows you to skip a student loan.
  • An associate’s degree doesn’t cost as much as a bachelor’s degree, it’s a cheaper path to higher education.
  • You can study online, as long as you have a computer with internet access, nothing will stop you.
  • Most credits earned in an associate degree program can be transferred to a bachelor’s program.
  • Continuing with your education is an investment in your professional and financial future.
  • This type of study is a small investment for the benefits it offers.

More Reasons…

  • Studying for a bachelor’s degree is flexible in its duration, you can study it virtually and get it out in 1 to 3 years.
  • If you don’t feel like being in college for almost half a decade, you don’t have to give up on your dream of going to college, you can earn your associate’s degree.
  • You can generate better job prospects by providing the occupational training, you need to enter a specific business field.
  • Employers will prefer to hire applicants who have associate’s degrees rather than applicants; who have high school diplomas.
  • Upon completion, the institution will likely admit you to a bachelor’s program and even transfer you some credits.
  • With an associate degree, you will only need between 1 and 3 years; assuming that your studies will not be canceled at some point.
  • You can earn a higher salary than what can be earned with just a high school diploma.
  • It is a good choice since there are many entry-level jobs in business that need it, you can have a wider range of career options.

Do you want to know more about what an associate degree is? In Becomeopedia; you can get information about all kinds of professional careers

Jamie Willis
Career Specialist at BecomeopediaHi, my name is Jamie Willis, and I have been helping students find their perfect internships and education paths for the last ten years. It is a passion of mine, and there really is nothing better than seeing students of mine succeed with further studies.

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