Associate of Arts Degree overview

The Associate of Arts Degree is a two-year undergraduate degree offered by many institutions in the province of British Columbia and beyond. The Associate Degree program is designed to provide broad-based knowledge and experiences in preparation for entering the workforce, or as a foundation for further undergraduate study.

Students within the Associate of Arts Degree program will gain multi-disciplinary knowledge in the faculties of arts, humanities, and social sciences, and develop their critical thinking and research skills. The program provides a comprehensive learning experience that also allows students to customize their coursework in order to focus on an area of personal interest.

The Associate of Arts Degree is a foundational degree consisting of 60 credits in total, typically completed over a two-year period. Program requirements include a minimum of 36 credits in arts, including 18 credits in arts at the second-year level taken in two or more subject areas, such as psychology, economics, Asian studies, philosophy, history, and sociology.

Upon completion of the Associate of Arts Degree program, students may choose to enter the workforce or to continue their undergraduate studies. An Associate of Arts Degree may be transferrable to the third year of a four-year bachelor’s degree program at a university. Some BC universities also admit Associate Degree graduates at a reduced GPA requirement. For more information on the option of transferring to a university upon completion of an Associate of Arts Degree, please consult the BC Transfer Guide or see an Academic Advisor.

International students completing the Associate of Arts Degree program at Alexander College are also eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit.

The Associate of Arts degree program develops academic skills in the following areas:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Written and oral communication
  • Mathematical and scientific reasoning
  • Computer and technological literacy
  • Research and evaluative skills
  • Analysis, synthesis, and integration of knowledge
  • Critical thinking and problem solving
  • Application of theoretical understanding to practice
  • Collaborative and team-based experience

In addition, the Associate of Arts degree program provides experience and aptitudes in the following areas:

  • Natural curiosity about the world
  • Understanding of the global context
  • Appreciation of intellectual thought and human creativity
  • Openness to a variety of different viewpoints
  • Capacity for and interest in self-directed life-long learning
  • Social consciousness and responsibility.

Associate of Arts Degree requirements

The Associate of Arts degree program consists of the following course requirements, which must be completed with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or greater.

I.    6 credits in first-year English
II.   9 credits in science which shall include at least:

  • 3 credits in mathematics, computer science or statistics (statistics courses taught in subject areas of commerce and psychology may also be used)
  • 3 credits in a laboratory science

III. 36 credits in arts which shall include:

  • 6 credits in the social sciences
  • 6 credits in humanities other than English
  • 24 additional credits in arts, 18 of which must be taken at the second-year level in two or more subject areas

IV.   9 credits in arts, science, or other areas

 

Associate of Arts Degree Requirements

 

Career opportunities upon completion of an Associate of Arts Degree

Arts education provides students with the flexibility to explore a range of academic interests, and makes possible a variety of career opportunities. The degree can also qualify graduates for positions that demand greater responsibility than those achievable with a high school diploma.

With an Associate of Arts Degree, students can seek entry-level employment in business, education, not-for-profit, or government services. Examples of positions in these sectors include, but are not limited to:

  • Administrative assistant
  • Assistant retail manager
  • Bank teller
  • Customer service representative
  • Customer support representative
  • Marketing assistant
  • Sales associate