An associate degree can be earned in two years by attending school full-time. It’s the halfway point to earning a bachelor’s, with a typical associate program requiring at least 60 credits, while a bachelor’s degree is earned with 120 credits or more over four years of full-time schooling.
Undoubtedly, having an associate degree in nursing or an associate degree of any type can usually get you farther than you would with just a high school diploma. The latest statistics show that more than a million students earned theirs in the U.S. over the 2018/19 academic year. They’re likely to see many benefits, too, including these.
Better Job Opportunities
An associate degree will open up many more job opportunities than having only a high school diploma. Many will prepare you to enter the workplace rather than focusing only on education, allowing you to gain valuable skills for many different types of jobs, including specific skills necessary for your field of choice.
Even when it’s not required to land the job, having your degree will show prospective employers that you were disciplined and motivated enough to earn it, helping you stand out above the rest.
More Affordable Tuition
The rising costs of a college education have been in the headlines frequently in recent years. In fact, they’ve risen more than 25 percent over the last decade. An associate degree is a great way to get a college education without having a mountain of debt. They typically cost much less than what you’d pay intuition for a bachelor’s or a master’s degree.
It also allows you to begin working in your field sooner and build your career faster, which means you’ll earn money quickly without having to pay tuition costs. Instead, you can start saving your money sooner rather than spending years trying to pay off your education.
Flexibility to Work and Go to School
If you attend a bachelor’s degree program at a four-year college or university, you’re unlikely to have much time to spare for a job. It’s a full-time focus on education, which means you’ll probably have to be able to support yourself or have parents who will.
When working toward an associate degree, you’ll have the ability to get a part- or full-time job thanks to more flexible class schedules and even night class options. That flexibility makes it easier for those who have to support themselves or their families, allowing them to continue working while studying.
A Stepping Stone
An associate degree can be a stepping stone to earning a more advanced higher education degree, and you don’t have to stop there. Many people earn an associate’s and then transfer credits to start a bachelor’s degree program elsewhere to cut the high costs. More doors will open for your professional career and settle in your life earlier.
Most people with an associate degree earn more than those with just a high school diploma. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median weekly salary of a high school graduate is $712.
Those with an associate degree have median weekly earnings of $836, or $6,448 more per year. While the specific salary varies based on the type of work and the area of the country you live in, you can expect to have higher earning potential with an associate degree.
Many students struggle to choose between an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree. If you have less time and a tight budget, pursuing an associate degree is a better option as it has several advantages that I have listed in this article. The associate degree courses are available for Arts, Science, Applied Science, and Applied Business like traditional degree courses. So, don’t hesitate to earn your associate degree and lead your career in a bright direction.