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Associate degrees in marketing aim to teach students about the numerous ways in which companies communicate with consumers about their products and services. Coursework is typically oriented toward understanding the foundations of various mass communication strategies and gaining the necessary mathematical skills to analyze economic data and create an effective, budget-appropriate marketing plan.

Path to an associate degree in marketing

Associate Degree in MarketingAn online associate degree in marketing may be offered as an Associate of Arts (AA), Associate of Science (AS), or Associate of Applied Science (AAS), and the time required to complete the program depends on the program and the student's schedule. Some marketing associate degree programs can be completed in around two years at a moderate pace of full-time study, though longer-term, part-time programs or accelerated degree plans with heavy semesters or summer courses can be found as well.

Here are a few of the subjects students may study as part of the curriculum for a marketing associate degree:

  • Consumer behavior
  • Information literacy
  • Web marketing
  • Search engine optimization
  • Macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics
  • Marketing research
  • Advertising principles
  • Business statistics

Some marketing careers require more education than a typical associate degree can provide. For example, working as a market researcher tends to require at least a bachelor's degree in marketing. One of the advantages of an associate degree in marketing, however, is that it can serve as ample training for a range of entry-level careers and also get someone started towards the four-year bachelor's degree.

What can I do with an associate degree in marketing?

While no degree program can guarantee a particular career or salary, hiring managers in the sales and marketing industry often prefer applicants who've completed some sort of formal education. Here are a few of the careers that candidates with traditional or online associate degrees in marketing may find open to them after graduation:

Discipline2014 median annual income2012-2022 job growth projection
Advertising sales agent $47,890 Employment for ad agents is expected to remain flat from 2012 to 2022 owing to a decline in the newspaper industry combined with the continued growth of display advertising on digital formats.
Buyers and purchasing agent $60,980 The BLS projects 4 percent growth between 2012 and 2022.
Insurance sales agent $47,860 2012-2022 job growth is slated to remain at 10 percent, near the national average for all occupations.
Real estate agent $40,990 The BLS projects 11 percent job growth from 2012 to 2022 on account of continued buying and selling activity on the real estate market.
Wholesale and manufacturing sales representative $5,020 Employment in 2012-2022 is expected to grow by 9 percent, according to the BLS, matching wider economic currents. A certain degree is stability is expected on account of outside (face to face) sales relying on personal interaction, decreasing the chances of outsourcing.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2014

These are only some of the positions that may be available to graduates with associate degrees in marketing. Graduates from associate degree programs may choose to go on to pursue a bachelor's degree, which is a qualification for positions such as market research analyst. Students who plan on this path should meet with an adviser early on, to find out how they can best prepare to continue their education. Interested individuals can find more details about courses in the Guide to College Majors in Marketing.



"Associate of Science Degree in Marketing," Ashworth College, October 9, 2014, http://www.ashworthcollege.edu/associate-degrees/marketing/objectives

"Purchasing Managers, Buyers and Purchasing Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/purchasing-managers-buyers-and-purchasing-agents.htm

"Advertising Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/sales/advertising-sales-agents.htm

"Insurance Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014http://www.bls.gov/ooh/sales/insurance-sales-agents.htm

"Real Estate Brokers and Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/sales/real-estate-brokers-and-sales-agents.htm

"Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representatives," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/sales/wholesale-and-manufacturing-sales-representatives.htm

"Marketing: Associate in Science," Southern New Hampshire University, October 9, 2014, http://www.snhu.edu/online-degrees/undergraduate-degrees/marketing-AS-online.asp

"Associate Degree in Internet Marketing," Globe University, October 9, 2014, http://www.globeuniversity.edu/business-degree/internet-marketing/associates

"Online Marketing Degree," Penn Foster College, October 9, 2014 http://www.pennfoster.edu/programs-and-degrees/marketing-and-public-relations/marketing-associate-degree.aspx

"41-3011 Advertising Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes413011.htm

"13-1023 Purchasing Agents, Except Wholesales, Retail, and Farm Products," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes131023.htm

"41-3021 Insurance Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes413021.htm

"41-9022 Real Estate Sales Agents," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 9, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes419022.htm

"41-4012 Sales Representatives, Wholesales and Manufacturing, Except Technical and Scientific Products," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes414012.htm

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