By Cooper Nelson
If you're undecided about your future or looking for a way to save money on your education, an associate degree may be the right choice. An associate degree is an entry-level undergraduate degree usually earned at a community college, a university that serves working adults, a junior college or some trade schools. Earning one provides a higher level of academic achievement than a high school diploma or General Educational Development (GED®) test but less than a bachelor’s degree.
An associate degree can provide many of the foundational skills that are essential to a diverse number of career paths. It is possible to earn an associate degree online in as little as two years, and what you can do with it may surprise you. Read on to learn more about the benefits, continuing education opportunities and career options of an associate degree.
An associate degree is a foundational college degree aimed at helping students earn credits that can be transferred into a bachelor’s degree or provide the education and skills that help prepare students to enter the workforce. Often, an associate degree can be a stepping-stone for a bachelor’s degree or a career path. It can also help individuals get started on their educational journey as they figure out where their career may go.
As a result, pursuing this option can be a good entry point for first-time college students. These degrees usually can be earned faster and at a lower cost and time commitment than a bachelor’s degree.
Here are some of the top reasons to consider an associate degree:
There are options for even more savings. University of Phoenix offers a 3+1 transfer pathway that allows students at participating community colleges to complete approximately 75% of their course requirements at the community college before transferring into a bachelor’s degree program. This means the student can earn both an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree in four years with the majority of courses completed at the community college rate.
The BLS Projected Growth for 2020-2030 is published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This data reflects the BLS’ projections of national (not local) conditions. These data points are not specific to University of Phoenix students or graduates.
Earning an associate degree can be a great way to enhance your education and career.
Now that you know a little more about the benefits of an associate degree, you may be wondering if you should pursue one or even use it as a stepping-stone to a bachelor's degree. Here are a few things to consider when making your decision:
If an associate degree seems to be checking all the boxes, it’s time to look for the right program and school to meet your needs. Do your research. If you find a school you like, talk to an enrollment advisor or representative and look for information on the school’s website.
When looking for the right associate degree program, here are some things to keep in mind:
After you complete your associate degree, you may decide to continue your education, such as completing a bachelor's degree. If you go this route, here are a few things to keep in mind.
According to BLS, about half of all occupations require some level of college education. The majority typically require a bachelor’s or master’s degree, but some career options require an associate degree at minimum for entry. Here are some of the career paths you can pursue with an associate degree:
Please note that University of Phoenix only attests to the career outcomes listed on individual degree program pages. Explore degree program pages to learn more about the career outcomes for each.
Salary ranges are not specific to students or graduates of University of Phoenix. Actual outcomes vary based on multiple factors, including prior work experience, geographic location and other factors specific to the individual. University of Phoenix does not guarantee employment, salary level or career advancement. BLS data is geographically based. Information for a specific state/city can be researched on the BLS website.
While this is just a short list of jobs an associate degree may prepare you for, there are many other opportunities to consider. Whether you're interested in obtaining an Associate of Arts in Criminal Justice or an Associate of Science in Cybersecurity, there's an online program for you.
If you have decided that an associate degree is the right educational pursuit to help reach your goals, University of Phoenix (UOPX) can help. UOPX offers online associate degree programs in business; criminal justice and security; and technology. Classes are taught by faculty with an average of more than 28 years of professional experience in their field. Other benefits include locked-in tuition and 17 opportunities to start your degree throughout the year, so you can ensure that earning an education fits your schedule. There’s no application fee or testing requirements, and the University will even request transcripts for you.
Below is a list of just some of the associate degrees offered at University of Phoenix.
Depending on your career path, an associate degree can be the starting point toward pursuing a bachelor's degree, a master's degree or even a doctoral degree. Whether you're considering an associate degree or weighing the merits of pursuing a bachelor's degree, taking your education to the next level can help you prepare for your career goals.
Looking to start your associate degree? Find your degree program at UOPX and explore the many options available to you.
About University of Phoenix
As pioneers in online higher education since 1989, University of Phoenix is an accredited online university for working adults. We are proud to offer quality educational pathways through flexible, career-focused online degrees, certificates and professional development courses that fit into your life and options to save you time and money. Our students are supported every step of the way, including career services for life.
Let us help you take the most direct path to your future career goals. We’re ready when you are.
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