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Associate Degree Programs

An associate degree is an important first step in preparing you for the future by completing the foundational courses needed for any degree. Through these courses you’ll find your passion and determine your major. It’s the best way to figure out exactly what you’d like to do with your life. 

An Important First Step

Earning an associate degree will show your employer that you’re serious about your education – it’s a nice addition to your resume. Whether you’re starting from the beginning or you have college credits to transfer, UMass Global can be the answer.

Each level of education you complete offers an opportunity to develop skills, gives you access to higher paying occupations, and demonstrates that you’re able to follow through on important tasks. With an AA degree, you’ll have seamless transferability into a bachelor’s degree program.

  • If you don't have any transfer credits, don't worry! You simply need a high school diploma or GED to get started. From there, passing the math and English entrance tests are the next step.
  • If you've already earned 12 or more credits that you'd like to transfer, all you need do is submit your transcripts for review. It's an efficient way to earn credit for your prior coursework.
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Interested in an associate or bachelor’s degree program? Review the requirements for your specific program, fill out the online admissions application, and request and submit your transcripts.

Financial aid is available for undergraduates enrolled in degree programs and teacher credential programs in the form of need-based and non-need based grants, loans and outside scholarships.

Find Your Associate Degree Program

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about earning an associate degree and how it can help you move forward in your education and career.

What is an associate degree good for?

An AA is the building block for post-secondary learning. It teaches you the foundations of key skills valued by employers. The diverse curricula of these programs cover topics such as communication, critical thinking and quantitative analysis. Students can also specialize in a topic like business, which can increase job prospects in their chosen field.

How long does it take to get an associate degree?

It typically takes two years to complete the required 60 units for an associate degree. UMass Global offers two 100% online options for earning your AA. One is a traditional, session-based general education path, where your instructor leads your online lectures and coursework and sets deadlines. The other is our UMass Global MyPath AA in General Business. This is completely self-paced, where you work at your own speed, finishing one section of your online coursework before moving on to the next. For areas where you already have knowledge, this can allow you to accelerate your degree path.

Is an associate degree the same as a bachelor's degree?

No. Although they are both undergraduate degrees that are earned after high school graduation, they are different. An associate degree builds a foundation of general knowledge; it also can be used as the first two years toward a four-year bachelor's degree. A bachelor's degree builds off the general education gained with an associate degree and then focuses on a "major." Courses build knowledge in that area of expertise. That is why bachelor's degrees, unlike like AA degrees, have a title, such as a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology or a Bachelor of Business Administration.

Do I have to get an associate degree before a bachelor's?

No. An AA can be earned before a bachelor’s degree, but it is not required to complete these separately. Some students prefer to take it step-by-step, while others may choose to enter straight into their bachelor’s once they begin college since the associate-level is already embedded in the curriculum.

What jobs can I get with an associate degree?

An associate degree can open doors to job entry-level opportunities in many industries. Some examples of potential job titles include executive assistant, veterinary technician, paralegal, human resources assistant, computer network support specialist and respiratory therapist. Consider your unique skills and interests when evaluating your job and industry options.

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