How many credits do you need for an associate’s degree?

What is an associate’s degree?

An associate’s degree is a post-secondary (undergraduate) degree earned in as little as two (2) years. This can help students achieve academic and professional goals in fewer years than it takes to earn a bachelor’s degree.

You can earn an associate degree from community colleges, technical schools, vocational colleges, and some four-year colleges.

For the last 20 years, students opt for an associate’s degree as it can be completed quicker and can often be the less expensive route when compared to other traditional colleges. 

How many credits for an associate degree?

An associate’s degree is equivalent to 60-semester credit hours (or 90 quarter credits). In other words, 20 college courses. This credit number can vary based on your career path and its academic requirements.

The credits that you earn through an associate degree can be transferred later on to a four-year university as long as the institution you received them from is regionally accredited. Programs that offer a bachelor’s degree as an extension to the associates are often called 2+2 programs. 

The most popular types of associate degrees are Associate of Arts (AA), Associate of Science (AS), an Associate of Applied Science (AAS). Associate degree programs usually have three parts: general education requirements such as math, science, and language, essential requirements that allow you to fulfill your specific major, and electives that will enable you to choose topics of interest to you.