Associate Arts FAQs
What is the difference between an Associate in Arts and an Associate in Science degree?
The required and elective general education courses are generally the same for the Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees. However, the Associate in Science degree requires more semester credit hours in Mathematics and Natural Sciences and fewer semester credit hours in Humanities and Social Behavioral Science. Students pursuing the Associate in Science will likely take more Natural Sciences and/or Mathematics as their pre-major courses.
Should I enroll in the Associate in Arts degree program or the Associate in Science degree program?
That depends on your academic strengths, interests, and expected major after transferring from Johnston Community College. We suggest that you research your expected major at the senior institutions to see the math and science requirements. If your expected major requires two or more levels of math and/or science courses and you feel you can excel in these courses, you may want to consider the Associate in Science degree.
The Comprehensive Articulation Agreement (CAA) (PDF) applies to all fifty-eight North Carolina community colleges and all sixteen constituent institutions of The University of North Carolina. The CAA (PDF) is applicable to all North Carolina community college students who successfully complete a course designated as transferable or graduate with an A.A. or A.S. degree and transfer to a constituent institution of The University of North Carolina. To be eligible for the transfer of credits under the CAA (PDF), the student must graduate from the community college with an Associate in Arts (AA) or Associate in Science (AS) degree and have an overall Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale and a grade of "C" or better in all CAA (PDF) courses. Students who do not complete the degree are eligible to transfer credits on a course-by course basis.
What are the advantages in earning an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree rather than transferring prior to earning an associate degree?
The first is that you will have a higher education credential! Also, if you earn an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree (with a 2.0 GPA or higher) at Johnston Community College and have followed the prescribed pre-major pathway created by the UNC school of your choice, you can enter a UNC institution as a junior. If you do not complete an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree prior to transferring, your course work will be evaluated on a course by course basis.
How can I be sure that I am taking the courses at Johnston Community College that I will need for my four year degree program?
Some colleges and universities have special requirements for some of their degree programs. If you have decided where you plan to transfer, contact or visit the admissions office and request information on the degree program you are interested in. This information can be used in planning your course work at Johnston Community College. When in doubt about specific courses always consult the college to which you are planning to transfer.
How long will it take to complete an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree?
Enrolled as a full-time student taking the recommended course load (15 SCH) each semester, an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree can be completed in four semesters.
Can I complete an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree program at night?
Yes. An Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree can be completed on a part-time basis at night. To complete either of the degrees at night will require a minimum of six semesters.
What are developmental courses?
Developmental courses are offered to provide students an opportunity to remove academic deficiencies as identified by placement testing. The number of courses needed and length of time required to complete the courses will vary. Some students may need only one course, while others may take several semesters to complete a series of courses.
Am I allowed to take courses that are not in my degree program?
Yes. However, courses that are not in your degree program will not count toward your degree. Courses not in your degree program may be taken for personal enrichment or for skill development. Courses not in your degree program may not be eligible for financial aid.