ERIC Number: ED367408
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Jun-8
Reference Count: N/A
The Associate of Arts and Science Degree: A New Opportunity.
Discussions about whether to implement associate degrees in British Columbia (Canada) date back to the mid-1970's, with the debate focusing on transfer arrangements and the viability of community college diplomas. One of the first acts of the British Columbia Council on Admissions and Transfer, created in 1988, was the recommendation to create an associate degree. As a first step, the Council sponsored a provincial workshop on the purpose, benefits, and problems of establishing an associate degree. Subsequently, the Council created a Provincial Task Force to recommend a two-year curriculum leading to an associate "credential," thereby side-stepping the most controversial part of the Council's original proposal--the term "degree." In evaluating various approaches, the Task Force agreed on three general criteria: academic standards, simplicity, and transfer, with transfer being the most difficult to achieve. General degree requirements were established as 60 semester credits of first- and second-year courses, a minimum of "C" required in each course counting toward the degree, and 30 semester credits completed at the degree-granting institution. Specific requirements were also developed for associate in arts and associate in science degrees. The recommendations were circulated across the province and gained support from the Council and the government. In July 1992, the legislation was passed that currently enables the colleges to offer associate degrees. The availability of the degrees has implications for promotion, college planning, university entrance requirements, grade point average requirements, and the number of degree-granting institutions. Future considerations include the need to create associate degrees for university programs, the possibility of creating an associate of general studies degree, and the desirability of extending the degree concept to career programs. (AC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: British Columbia
Note: Paper presented at "Connections: Campus and Community," the Annual Conference of the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, June 6-9, 1993).