Which Is Right for You: Associate Degree in Arts or Science?

There are many post-secondary education options. For students who have decided that an associate degree is right for them, their next decision becomes which type of degree they should set their sights on. Two popular options are an associate degree in arts and an associate degree in science. Both degrees have similar elements and requirements; however, they set graduates on very different career paths.

What Are the Similarities Between the Two?

Both associate programs are two-year degree programs that typically include general education courses, such as English Composition, Introduction to Fine Arts, Contemporary Mathematics, General Biology and Computer Literacy. These degrees both allow students to earn credits that will likely transfer to a bachelor’s degree program at the same or another institution.

What Are the Differences Between the Two?

Generally-speaking, both degrees give students a taste of arts or science so they can gain perspectives on the field before committing to further study. A major difference between the two, however, is that an Associate of Science degree will often place graduates into a specific occupation, while the Associate of Arts degree tends to leave students open for a variety of careers.

Course Requirements

Although they are both two-year degree programs, depending on the institution, an Associate of Science degree may require more sophomore-level classes than an Associate of arts.

Who Should Consider an Associate of Arts Degree? (And Why?)

When deciding between an associate degree in arts or science, students may want to begin by considering their long-term employment goals. This means looking at the types of careers the degree makes available and then enrolling in the two-year degree program that matches those opportunities. A student pursuing an Associate of Arts will begin to earn the qualifications to enter a career in management, sales, marketing, teaching, consulting or law.

Who Should Consider an Associate of Science Degree? (And Why?)

Prospective students in an Associate of Science degree program may be looking for different career paths. Potential positions with an associate in science include engineer technician, diagnostic medical sonographer, computer network support specialist, web developer, physical therapy assistant or dental hygienist.

Students who have decided to pursue an associate degree can choose from a wide variety of schools and institutions. Many associate degrees are very specific and usher students straight into a particular occupation, while others, including associate degrees in arts and science, are more general, allowing students the freedom to explore their interests while earning credits toward further studies.

Learn more about the LSUA online associate programs.



eHow: What Jobs Can You Get With an Associate of Arts Degree?

eHow: What Is an Associate Degree in Science?

eHow: Types of Associates Degrees

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