dcsimg
Table of Contents
Career Planning
Looking for more career information? Follow these links to career pathways, career planning and education:

Associate degrees are a type of undergraduate degree that can be earned after two years of full-time study -- or once 60 semester credit hours are completed. While many people earn an associate degree before moving onto a four-year degree program, others use their two-year degrees to begin careers in a wide range of professional and technical industries.

Subject

Benefits of Online Associate Degrees

Earning an associate degree comes with many benefits. For starters, Associate degrees can be earned on a shorter timeline than four-year degrees, which can mean quicker entry into the workforce. Meanwhile, a growing body of research shows that associate degrees will be in high demand in the future. According to a Georgetown University study on job growth and education requirements through 2020, 30 percent of job openings through 2020 will require candidates to have an associate degree or better. Further, many of the industries where associate degrees dominate -- health care, community services and STEM fields, for example -- are expected to be some of the fastest-growing occupational clusters.

While earning a two-year, associate degree can help students enter the workforce quickly, it can also be more affordable in the long run. According to figures from the College Board, average tuition at a public two-year school was just $3,347 for the 2014-15 school year, while tuition at public, four-year schools averaged out to $9,139. With such a huge disparity in the cost of these programs, it's no wonder that so many students see associate degrees as a faster, more affordable option.

Types of Associate Degree Programs

Students interested in a two-year degree can choose one of the following options:

  • Associate of Arts (A.A.): This degree is designed to transfer to a four-year college or university.
  • Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.): This degree option is designed to prepare graduates for career entry or job advancement after two years of college study.
  • Associate of Science (A.S.): This degree type is designed to transfer to a four-year college or university.
  • Occupational degrees: Also referred to as applied degree programs, this option is designed to prepare students to enter the workforce immediately following graduation.

Financial Considerations

While associate degrees are less expensive than traditional, four-year degrees, it's still important to plan carefully for the cost of college. Potential students should take the following steps when choosing a degree program and preparing for the cost.

  1. Fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA form. This form helps state and federal agencies determine eligibility for financial aid
  2. Compare tuition costs at a few schools that offer your desired degree program. Include the cost of student room and board, if applicable
  3. Consider flexible, online degrees in your desired field and compare costs and other benefits
  4. Ask your school's financial aid office about any institution-based aid that may be available.

Online Associate Degrees Available

WorldWideLearn.com features colleges and universities that offer online associate degree programs in the following disciplines:

Accounting

Art & Design

Building Information Modeling

Business Administration

Communication

Computer Programming

Criminal Investigation

Criminal Justice

Early Childhood Development

Education

Engineering

Graphic Design

Health Sciences

Hospitality Management

Human Resources

Paralegal & Legal Studies

Marketing

Medical Administrative Assistant

Medical Assistant

Medical Billing & Coding

Nursing

Technology & IT

Sources

"Average Public Tuition Undergraduate Charges by Sector, 2014-15," College Board, http://trends.collegeboard.org/college-pricing/figures-tables/average-published-undergraduate-charges-sector-2014-15

"Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/office-and-administrative-support/bookkeeping-accounting-and-auditing-clerks.htm#tab-1

"Bookkeeping, Accounting and Auditing Clerks, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes433031.htm

"Computer Programmers," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes151131.htm

"Computer Programmers," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/computer-programmers.htm#tab-1

"Detectives and Criminal Investigators," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333021.htm

"Drafters," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes173019.htm

"Graphic Designers," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes271024.htm

"Human Resource Assistants, Except Payroll and Timekeeping," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes434161.htm

"Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292061.htm

"Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/licensed-practical-and-licensed-vocational-nurses.htm#tab-1

"Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes131161.htm

"Paralegals and Legal Assistants," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes232011.htm

"Paralegals and Legal Assistants," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/legal/paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm#tab-1

"Preschool Teachers," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/preschool-teachers.htm#tab-1

"Recovery: Job Growth and Educational Requirements through 2020," Georgetown University, https://cew.georgetown.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Recovery2020.ES_.Web_.pdf

"Veterinary Technologists and Technicians," Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/veterinary-technologists-and-technicians.htm#tab-1

Pursue your Major today…

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.

Searching Searching ...

Prefer exploring options talking to our staff?
Call toll free now: 1.855.330.6938
Matching School Ads
5 Program(s) Found
  • Students who qualify may apply for the Opportunity Scholarship, which can help lower education costs.
  • Offers career-focused, degree programs to over 70,000 students at over 140 ITT Technical Institutes in 35 states.
  • Classes are offered year-round, with day and evening course options.
  • Online courses can be accessed from anywhere, 24 hours a day.
  • Nationally accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools.
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid
5 Program(s) Found
  • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
  • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
  • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
  • Michigan's largest independent college.
  • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
  • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
5 Program(s) Found
  • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
  • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
  • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
  • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
5 Program(s) Found
  • Push Your Creativity To The Next Level.
  • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
  • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
  • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
  • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
5 Program(s) Found
  • Flexible Online Learning — Career programs designed for anytime learning.  Study when you have time and test when you feel ready.
  • Accredited and Supported — Regionally and nationally accredited programs with expert instructors available to answer your questions.
  • Affordable Tuition — 0% interest and low monthly payment plans.
  • Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).
  • Founded in 1890 in Scranton, Pennsylvania    
Show more [+]
  • Online Courses
4 Program(s) Found
  • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
  • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
  • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
  • 3 campuses in Southern California.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
Show more [+]
Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
5 Program(s) Found
  • Each year since 2004, The Princeton Review has included California University in its Best in the Northeast listing, recognizing Cal U as one of the best regional universities in the northeastern United States.
  • Ranked #35 in Best Online Graduate Education Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
  • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost.
  • Grants students in its Global Online program the same diploma as graduates from Cal U’s traditional degree programs.
  • Has an student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1.
Show more [+]
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits