Understanding Online Associate Degrees

Understanding Online Associate Degrees

Online associate degrees are becoming increasingly popular as alternatives to more expensive Bachelor’s degree programs for students on a budget these days. Many individuals also like associate degrees because it gives them a good education and training and puts them in the work force more quickly than other types of advanced degrees; however, some people aren’t sure what type of Associates program they should be looking into and are confused by the different types offered.

There are three different types of online associates degrees commonly offered. Associate of sciences, associate of applied sciences, and associate of arts.

Associate of Sciences (AS): This is a program that focuses primarily on the physical sciences, such as health care programs, computer sciences and graphic design combined with a core college curriculum of liberal arts classes.

Associate of Applied Sciences (AAS): Similar to an AS, but with the focus on specific vocational training rather than physical sciences built around the core curriculum. These degrees tend to be more “hands on” in nature with fewer theoretical classes. Some examples would be massage therapy, crime scene investigation, paralegal studies and dental hygiene.

Associate of Arts (AA): The associate of arts is also built around a core liberal arts curriculum, but concentrates on the humanities and social sciences, such as psychology, sociology and the arts. There are a wide range of majors for this degree program as well, including criminal justice, sociology, linguistics and communications.

Online associates degrees can be considered a final goal or a stepping stone. The associate degree is an end in itself for many people; after graduating from high school and moving into the workforce, they’ve realized they can make more money if they have a degree. An associate degree is a wonderful way to increase your income potential without spending too much money. The program typically takes eighteen months to two years and can be completed online, making the cost much more reasonable than attending a typical four year university.

For others, however, continuing education past high school is just the beginning of their educational journey. More students than ever are realizing that getting an associates degree is the perfect stepping stone toward a bachelors degree down the road. There are several reasons for getting an online associates degree first that make sense for students:

1: An online associate degree can be pursued at your own pace and on our own schedule while you work and put away some money toward your education. You are not only saving money on the first two years of your education by getting your core liberal arts course out of the way online, you’re getting a solid foundation in the major of your choice while you’re working.

2: You can raise your income and take a break to work for a few years with your associate degree before going back for your bachelor degree. When you do decide to pursue your bachelor degree, you’ll already by half-way there.

3: The programs are convenient for everyone, no matter where they live or what there schedule is, and traditional colleges now routinely accept transferred associates degree programs from online schools.

4: Students who have served in the military often find they can get credit toward AS and AAS degrees for some of their military training. In fact, active duty military members often find out that if they are studying in programs such as avionics, mechanics or similar programs, they can be as much as half-way through the program based on the instruction they received in the military.

Programs offering online associate degrees have advantages for a great many people. Consider if they are the right fit for you.

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