Associate programs in teaching are ideal for students seeking a foundation in core classes. General education or general studies cover the basic arts and sciences, such as math, composition, history, and humanities. An associate degree in this area can be used to transition into a bachelor’s degree program or as a credential for those seeking immediate employment. An online associate degree in general education can be achieved relatively quickly if the student is self-motivated.

Why an Associate Degree?

General studies provide the student with a versatile educational backbone. Associate degrees in general education can readily transfer to most baccalaureate programs. To this end, students who have yet to decide on a focus or major can elect to gain their associate in general education before moving on to secure a bachelor’s degree in a more specific subject of interest. They may also use their associate degree as a competitive edge when applying for job positions that only require a high school diploma.

Getting Into an Associate Degree Program

Admission requirements can vary, depending on the college or university in question. However, most programs call for the following associate degree general education requirements:

  • High school diploma or its equivalent
  • Good academic standing at all previous institutions
  • Statement of goals
  • Any relevant transcripts

Inside a Teaching Associate Degree Program

Most teaching associates degree online programs take two years. However, online programs occasionally offer accelerated pathways to earning a degree, assuming the student is committed to completing the work in a timely manner. Students will take courses such as English composition, mathematics, biology and other physical sciences, social sciences, communications, and humanities like art history, world history, and foreign languages. The broad spectrum of classes should give the student a better sense for what they’re interested in pursuing beyond their associate degree.

Online programs in teaching require the student to work remotely, which comes with its advantages and disadvantages. Students who work during the day or have other commitments that prevent them from attending brick and mortar institutions are able to earn their associate degree online with just a stable internet connection and personal drive. It is up to the student to access their coursework online through webinars and video lectures. Students access their course information through an online portal, where they may also connect with their professor and other online students.

What’s Next for Teaching Associate Degree Holders?

Students may take a general studies program for personal enrichment purposes or to bolster their career prospects. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, individuals with associate degrees earned an extra $128 per week in 2001, as compared to those with only a high school diploma. There are many positions in the workforce that can be filled by general education associate degree holders.

However, an associate degree in teaching is best utilized as a path to higher education. The courses taken in general education programs satisfy the core requirements characteristic of most bachelor’s degree programs. Thus, students who have completed their associate degree in general education prior to working toward their bachelor’s degree will be able to progress immediately into more upper-division courses pertaining to their major.