Best Online Associate in General Studies

Find top-ranked online associate in general studies degree programs to prepare students for a number of entry-level jobs ranging including customer service, retail management, research assistance, and more. This degree is also a great starting point for those who will go on to pursue a four-year undergraduate degree in a wide variety of disciplines.

Best Online Associate in General Studies

Frequently Asked Questions About General Studies Degrees

Why get an associate in general studies?

Earning an associate degree in general studies can help students explore a variety of disciplines and career paths while also working toward a versatile degree.

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How long does it take to get an associate in general studies?

In about two years, students can complete the required 60 credits either online or in person.

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What kind of courses are required to get an associate in general studies?

During their studies, students will take courses in math, computer science, fine arts, social science, and humanities. Many programs will also require you to earn credits through elective courses in areas like marketing, business, criminal justice, and education, all to the end of gaining a well-rounded educational experience.

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What can I do with an associate in general studies?

Graduates will be prepared for a number of entry-level jobs ranging including customer service, retail management, research assistance, and more. The associate degree in general studies is also a great starting point for those who will go on to pursue a four-year undergraduate degree in a wide variety of disciplines.

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Best Online Associate in General Studies Degree Programs

How do we determine the best online general studies associate degree programs?

Methodology

Pursing your degree online doesn’t mean you need to settle for a inferior school. Today, most universities and colleges offer online degrees, and many respected schools are seeing significant growth in their numbers of online students.

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. This is why influence — i.e., the academic impact of faculty and alumni associated with a school — gets at the heart of what is truly best in education. The combined influence score of a college or university’s top academic influencers is the best indicator of academic excellence. For our online degree rankings, we focus on the academic influence of faculty and alumni in the specific disciplines we’re ranking.

If you are serious about finding the best online colleges, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching, and whether their graduates themselves are advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence. Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Influence, as measured by our InfluenceRanking engine, provides a ranking that is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.

Best Online Associate in General Studies Degree Programs

  1. #1

    Pace University

    #683 institution's historical influence
    #854 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $48K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    59%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1140/24

    New York, NY

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies

    Concentrations

    • Degree Completion
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
    AA in General Studies Degree Completion
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  2. #2

    Providence College

    #912 institution's historical influence
    #1192 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $54K

    Acceptance

    54%

    Graduation

    85%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1280/29

    Providence, RI

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  3. #3

    Arkansas State University

    #1337 institution's historical influence
    #1472 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1116/24

    Jonesboro, AR

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    Online Degrees

    AGS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  4. #4

    Northern Michigan University

    #1297 institution's historical influence
    #1215 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/23

    Marquette, MI

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
    AS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  5. #5

    Golden Gate University

    #1171 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Student body

    1K

    San Francisco, CA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
  6. #6

    Andrews University

    #876 institution's historical influence
    #241 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    49%

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1210/25

    Berrien Springs, MI

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 62
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    AS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  7. #7

    Anne Arundel Community College

    #3102 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    27%

    Student body

    7K

    Arnold, MD

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  8. #8

    Hampton University

    #675 institution's historical influence
    #666 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $29K

    Acceptance

    36%

    Graduation

    57%

    Student body

    4K

    Hampton, VA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  9. #9

    Eastern Kentucky University

    #1707 institution's historical influence
    #888 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    98%

    Graduation

    45%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/23

    Richmond, KY

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    Online Degrees

    Associate in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  10. #10

    Regent University

    #1722 institution's historical influence
    #554 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $19K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1105/22

    Virginia Beach, VA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 3 years
    • Format: Online
  11. #11

    Franklin Pierce University

    #3290 institution's historical influence
    #925 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $41K

    Acceptance

    85%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    2K

    Rindge, NH

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    Online Degrees

    AS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  12. #12

    Montgomery College

    #2678 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    14K

    Rockville, MD

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies

    Concentrations

    • Technology
    • Communication And Languages
    • Humanities
    • Arts
    • Social Sciences
    • Administration And Health
    • Engineering And Math
    • Science
    • Technology
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  13. #13

    New England College

    #2185 institution's historical influence
    #1273 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $27K

    Acceptance

    96%

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    4K

    Henniker, NH

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  14. #14

    Murray State University

    #1786 institution's historical influence
    #410 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    8K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1142/24

    Murray, KY

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 39-43
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  15. #15

    University of the Incarnate Word

    #2938 institution's historical influence
    #507 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    97%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1055/20

    San Antonio, TX

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  16. #16

    Columbia College

    #4960 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    7K

    Columbia, MO

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    Online Degrees

    Associate in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  17. #17

    Arkansas Tech University

    #3324 institution's historical influence
    #1227 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    98%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    9K

    Russellville, AR

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    Online Degrees

    AS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO
  18. #18

    Kutztown University of Pennsylvania

    #3010 institution's historical influence
    #521 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    52%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1055/21

    Kutztown, PA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  19. #19

    Northwest Nazarene University

    #4008 institution's historical influence
    #1168 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    62%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1090/23

    Nampa, ID

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 63
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  20. #20

    Millersville University of Pennsylvania

    #2961 institution's historical influence
    #805 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    85%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    7K

    Millersville, PA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  21. #21

    San Diego Christian College

    #4073 institution's historical influence
    #1426 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $24K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    55%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/20

    Santee, CA

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 64
    • Completion time: 2-3 years
    • Format: Online
  22. #22

    Northern Virginia Community College

    #3535 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    29%

    Student body

    30K

    Annandale, VA

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    Online Degrees

    AS in General Studies

    Concentrations

    • Health Science
    • Required Credits: 60-62
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  23. #23

    Wilmington University

    #2943 institution's historical influence

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    11K

    New Castle, DE

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 2 years
    • Format: Online
  24. #24

    King University

    #2416 institution's historical influence
    #1412 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1097/22

    Bristol, TN

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    Online Degrees

    AA in General Studies

    Concentrations

    • General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion time: 20 months
    • Format: Online
  25. #25

    Albertus Magnus College

    #3370 institution's historical influence
    #501 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    49%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    970/19

    New Haven, CT

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    Online Degrees

    AA in Liberal Studies
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    REQUEST INFO

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Online Degree Frequently Asked Questions

If this is your first time taking an online course, the experience may require a time of adjustment. Although you’ll typically learn the same material and take the same exams as your on-campus peers, going online will require greater independence and responsibility than going in person. You’ll be accountable for your own time management, for harnessing the online educational technology that you’ll need to use, and for completing the course requirements, such as listening to lectures, learning lessons, reading texts, and handing in assignments. This means you’ll need to create a suitable workspace for yourself, maintain a realistic schedule, and take the initiative in building relationships with your instructors and classmates. With online college, your goal is to find a balance between independence and engagement.

No. The only part of online education that’s easier than campus-based education is ease of access: all you need is a computer and an internet connection for online education. But even this seeming advantage of online education can be misleading: what’s easier, studying online with your computer and internet connection from your home where you need to cook, clean, pay rent, and maintain a job? Or studying on campus in a dorm where all your living needs are handled by the school, and college staff are there to help you every step of the way?

If you take the commute to campus out of the equation, campus-based education is easier. All the support structures available on campus for students, especially with real people to help you in person, are not there online. The demands on you as an online student will largely be the same as for your campus-based counterpart, but without the same helps.

In general, your online courses will present the same material and test you in the same way as traditional in-person courses. In many cases, you’ll even have the same instructors as your on-campus counterparts. In fact, if you are adjusting to the experience of independent learning with remote educational technology for the first time, online college may be considerably more challenging than campus-based college. For a few insights on how to manage this new online experience, check out our 10 Tips for Adjusting to School Online.

Accreditation is especially important when it comes to online college. This is because the online education landscape is a mix of highly-reputable non-profit institutions on the one end and less-than-reputable for-profit institutions on the other end. Accreditation gives you the power to identify the more reputable actors in online education. Accreditation is a stamp of approval from an independent accrediting agency indicating that a college or university is meeting standards of quality and credibility. School-wide accreditation falls into two major categories: regional and national accreditation. Regional accreditors generally hold jurisdiction only over schools in the states comprising their region, whereas national accreditors hold jurisdiction over schools in all states. Regional accreditation is widely regarded as a more rigorous standard of quality and credibility than national accreditation.

Attending a college or university that is not regionally accredited could limit your opportunities. For students seeking an online education, we strongly recommend that they opt for regionally accredited schools. Regional accreditation ensures eligibility for federal loans and grants, ensures your college credits can be transferred between schools, and ensures that your degree credits can be accepted if you wish to earn an advanced degree. For more on this important topic, check out our What is Accreditation and Why Does It Matter? College & University Accreditation Guide.

As long as your online college degree is regionally accredited (see the previous point), you should have little difficulty transferring most of your credits or credentials to another regionally accredited undergraduate school. Every school carries its own standards and procedures for granting a transfer of credits. In many cases, you will encounter some bureaucratic haggling in which some of your credits will be transferred and others may be refused. However, provided that you have attended an online school with recognized regional accreditation, you should be in good shape in transferring your credits earned online.

In most cases, as long you graduate from a well-regarded, regionally-accredited online college, prospective employers won’t look sideways at your degree. In fact, unless you attend an exclusively online college or university, there will likely be no specific indicator on your degree, transcript, or resumé differentiating your school from its brick-and-mortar counterpart. This means that your employer will likely only differentiate between an online and in-person degree if you mention this distinction.

Some employers may express the concern that because you did your degree online, you may need to transition from an online education experience to in-person workplace experience. But in an age of Covid, that concern seems much diminished. The fact is that much employment these days is remote. And collaboration increasingly happens online over Zoom. Many employers will therefore view your online degree as evidence of valuable 21st century professional skills such as independence, self-motivation, time management, and tech savvy.

If you are a student who thrives on the dynamic energy of in-person discussion, who requires the physical surroundings of a classroom to feel engaged, or who considers the social aspects of education to be of equal importance to the actual content of your courses, online education will be less than ideal for you (though depending on your circumstances, it may also be the only viable option).

While there is much in traditional campus-based education that can be substituted or simulated through the online medium, some students may find that there is nothing that can replace the conversation, collaboration, and motivation that occur in an actual in-person classroom setting. As you transition to online education, one of the biggest challenges you will likely face in getting the most out of your online classes is overcoming this difference between “real reality” and “virtual reality.” Fortunately, we’ve got some great Tips for Online Education Beginners.

The advantages of online classes are many. Above all, online courses give you the freedom and flexibility to attend class from anywhere that works for you, whether you’re at home, in a coffee shop, or in a quiet conference room at work. In many cases, you’ll also enjoy the convenience of asynchronous learning opportunities—educational experiences that you can complete at your own pace and on your own schedule. This may include pre-taped lectures, ongoing chat-board discussions, and 24/7 access to digital materials. And of course, just as there are some learners who prefer the energy of a live classroom, there are those who learn best when working in their own personal space, free from distractions. If this sounds like you, you might find the solitude of online learning to be a major advantage.

Resources for Online College-Bound Students