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3046 - College Degree Structure Policy

Basic Policy Statement

In order to promote the development of associate degree programs that have clearly defined purposes and align with standard degree programs accepted at most colleges and universities, Washtenaw Community College will establish a three-tiered degree structure for associate's degree level programs. Assignment of a degree title will be based on the program's purpose, and the minimum level of prescribed general education requirements.

Effective as of the academic year beginning in Fall 2000, the College will adopt the following three associate's degree titles:

  1. The Associate in Arts (A.A.) is a university parallel, transfer degree, used by all humanities and social science programs.
  2. The Associate in Science (A.S.) is primarily a university parallel, transfer degree, used by programs carrying large math and science requirements. Additionally, some transfer programs in health, technology, and business would use the A.S. degree title.
  3. The Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) is the standard career entry degree. It is used for career entry programs in health, business and technology. This degree has dual use for some programs that are primarily career entry but transfer as a secondary purpose to specified four-year college or university programs.

Policy Criteria
Effective Fall 2010, the College will adopt the following credit requirements:
Associate in Arts Degree

  1. Is limited to a minimum of 60 credits and maximum of 66 credits.
  2. Requires a minimum of 15 residence credits (Washtenaw Community College credits) toward completion of the degree. Credit for prior learning, including credit by exam and transfer credit, may not be used as residence credit.
  3. Requires completion of a minimum of 31 credits in General Education as specified in the General Education Policy (3045). This requirement may be waived for students who have earned a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited U.S. college or university.
  4. Requires a minimum of 15 credits in a concentration or major.
  5. Courses numbered below 100 do not count toward completion of the A.A. degree.

Associate in Science Degree

  1. Is limited to a minimum of 60 credits.
  2. Requires a minimum of 15 residence credits (Washtenaw Community College credits) toward completion of the degree. Credit for prior learning, including credit by exam and transfer credit, may not be used as residence credit.
  3. Requires completion of a minimum of 31 credits in General Education as specified in the General Education Policy (3045). This requirement may be waived for students who have earned a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited U.S. college or university.
  4. Requires a minimum of 15 credits in a concentration or major.
  5. Courses numbered below 100 do not count toward completion of the A.S. degree.

Associate in Applied Science Degree

  1. Is limited to a minimum of 60 credits and maximum of 72 credits.
  2. Requires a minimum of 15 residence credits (WCC credits) toward completion of the degree. Credit for prior learning, including credit by exam and transfer credit, may not be used as residence credit.
  3. Requires completion of a minimum of 21 credits in General Education as specified in the General Education Policy (3045). This requirement may be waived for students who have earned a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited U.S. college or university.
  4. Requires a minimum of 24 credits in a concentration or major.
  5. Courses numbered below 100 do not count toward completion of the A.A.S. degree.

Outcomes

By adopting this structure of three widely recognized degrees, WCC will promote the development and maintenance of associate's degree programs with clearly defined purposes that meet students' needs for both transfer and career-entry.

Adopted: October 22, 1991
Revised: May 23, 2000
Administrative Review: May 2002
Revised: April 13, 2010
(3046)

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