What Is The First Degree You Get In College?

Welcome to the exciting world of higher education! Have you ever wondered what degree you’ll earn when you graduate college? Well, you’re in the right place! Today, we’re going to explore the first degree you can obtain in college.

Whether you dream of becoming a doctor, engineer, artist, or entrepreneur, your journey usually starts with a bachelor’s degree. But what exactly is a bachelor’s degree? Let’s dive in and find out!

A bachelor’s degree is an undergraduate degree that you can earn from a college or university. It typically takes about four years of full-time study to complete, and it’s the first academic degree you can pursue after graduating from high school. So, are you ready to embark on this educational adventure and discover the first degree you’ll earn in college? Let’s get started!

What Is the First Degree You Get in College?

What Is the First Degree You Get in College?

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the first degree you can earn in college! Whether you’re a high school student exploring your options or an adult looking to pursue higher education, understanding the types of degrees available is crucial for making informed decisions about your educational journey. In this article, we’ll dive deep into the different types of degrees you can earn as a college student and explore their requirements, benefits, and potential career paths. Let’s get started!

Bachelor’s Degree: A Foundation for Your Future

The most common first degree you can earn in college is a Bachelor’s degree. This undergraduate degree is typically earned within four years of full-time study and is offered by universities and colleges across various fields. A Bachelor’s degree provides a solid foundation for further education or entry-level positions in the job market.

To earn a Bachelor’s degree, you’ll need to complete a specific number of credit hours, usually around 120 credits, which include a combination of general education courses, major-specific courses, and electives. The specific requirements vary based on the institution and the chosen major. Some Bachelor’s degrees may also require completing an internship or capstone project.

Benefits of earning a Bachelor’s degree include increased job opportunities, higher earning potential, and the development of critical thinking and analytical skills. It can also serve as a stepping stone for pursuing advanced degrees, such as a Master’s or a Ph.D.

Associate Degree: A Gateway to Higher Education

If you’re looking for a quicker path to earning a degree or want to explore a specific field before committing to a Bachelor’s degree, an Associate degree might be the first degree for you. An Associate degree is an undergraduate degree typically completed within two years of full-time study or part-time equivalent.

Associate degrees are offered by community colleges, technical schools, and some universities. They are available in a wide range of subjects, including liberal arts, business, healthcare, and technology. An Associate degree provides foundational knowledge and skills that can be directly applied in the workforce or serve as a stepping stone toward a Bachelor’s degree.

To earn an Associate degree, you’ll need to complete around 60 credit hours, which usually include general education courses and introductory courses in your chosen field of study. The requirements may vary based on the institution and program.

Professional Degree: Specialized Education for Specific Careers

Some professions require specialized education beyond a Bachelor’s degree. These degrees, known as professional degrees, provide intensive training and education in areas such as law, medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, and pharmacy. Professional degrees equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in their chosen career paths.

Professional degrees often have unique admission requirements and longer completion times compared to traditional undergraduate degrees. For example, to pursue a professional degree in law, students must first complete a Bachelor’s degree, followed by attending law school for three years. Medical schools typically require applicants to complete a Bachelor’s degree with specific prerequisite courses before entering the program.

While professional degrees may require additional time and effort, they open doors to highly respected and lucrative careers. Graduates with professional degrees often have strong job prospects and the potential to make a significant impact in their fields.

Honors Degree: Recognizing Academic Excellence

For students who excel academically, pursuing an honors degree can be a rewarding experience. Honors degrees are typically available in conjunction with a Bachelor’s degree and provide an opportunity for students to dive deeper into their chosen field of study.

Honors programs often have stricter admission requirements and a more rigorous curriculum compared to traditional Bachelor’s degree programs. Students in honors programs may have access to specialized courses, research opportunities, and closer mentorship from faculty members. The specific requirements for earning an honors degree vary from institution to institution.

Obtaining an honors degree demonstrates a high level of academic achievement and dedication to your field of study. It can enhance your resume, open doors to prestigious graduate programs, and showcase your commitment to excellence to future employers.

Online Degrees: Flexible Learning for the Modern Student

In recent years, the availability of online education has grown significantly, offering students the opportunity to earn their first degree entirely online. Online degrees are a convenient option for individuals who require flexibility in their schedules, whether they’re working adults, parents, or individuals with other commitments. These programs allow students to complete coursework remotely and at their own pace.

Online degrees are offered at various levels, ranging from Associate degrees to Bachelor’s degrees and even advanced degrees such as Master’s programs. They cover a wide range of subjects, allowing students to pursue their educational goals without the need for physical attendance in a traditional classroom setting.

Earning an online degree requires discipline and self-motivation, as students must manage their time effectively and stay engaged with the course materials. However, online degrees provide flexibility and accessibility, making higher education more attainable for individuals who may have otherwise faced barriers to attending a traditional on-campus program.

Joint Degree Programs: Combining Fields for a Well-Rounded Education

If you have a passion for multiple fields of study, a joint degree program may be an enticing option. Joint degrees, also known as dual degrees or double majors, involve completing the requirements for two separate degree programs simultaneously. This allows students to gain expertise in two distinct areas and can provide a competitive edge in the job market.

Joint degree programs can take different forms depending on the institution. Some programs offer the opportunity to pursue two Bachelor’s degrees in related fields, while others combine a Bachelor’s degree with a professional degree. For example, a joint program may allow you to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Social Work in a shorter timeframe than pursuing each degree separately.

Joint degree programs require careful planning and coordination to ensure that the requirements of both programs are met. However, they can offer a well-rounded education and expand career opportunities by combining complementary disciplines.

Key Takeaways: What Is the First Degree You Get in College?

  • The first degree you get in college is usually a Bachelor’s degree.
  • A Bachelor’s degree typically takes four years of study to complete.
  • There are different types of Bachelor’s degrees, such as a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science.
  • Choosing a Bachelor’s degree depends on your interests and career goals.
  • A Bachelor’s degree is often a prerequisite for higher-level degrees, like a Master’s or a Doctorate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Getting your first degree in college is an exciting milestone. Here are some common questions you might have about it:

1. What are the different types of degrees you can get in college?

In college, you can typically earn three different types of degrees: an associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree, and a master’s degree. An associate’s degree is usually completed in two years and provides a foundation in a specific field. A bachelor’s degree is typically earned in four years and is more in-depth and specialized. A master’s degree is an advanced degree that requires additional years of study and research.

Each degree has its own set of requirements, such as completing specific courses and earning a certain number of credits. The type of degree you pursue will depend on your career goals and interests.

2. What is the first degree most students earn in college?

The first degree that most students earn in college is an associate’s degree. This degree is often seen as a stepping stone to a bachelor’s degree. It is a great option if you want to gain knowledge and skills in a specific field or if you are unsure about committing to a full four-year program right away.

An associate’s degree can open up entry-level job opportunities and provide a solid foundation for further education. Many students choose to transfer their associate’s degree credits to a four-year college or university to complete a bachelor’s degree.

3. How long does it take to earn an associate’s degree?

Earning an associate’s degree typically takes around two years if you are a full-time student. However, the duration can vary depending on your course load and whether you take any breaks. It’s also possible to earn an associate’s degree part-time, which may take longer to complete.

Some students choose to accelerate their studies by taking summer classes or transferring credits from previous coursework. It’s essential to work closely with your academic advisor to create a plan that fits your schedule and goals.

4. Can you get a bachelor’s degree without getting an associate’s degree first?

Yes, it is possible to get a bachelor’s degree without earning an associate’s degree first. Many students enter college directly pursuing a bachelor’s degree program. In these cases, the first degree they earn in college is a bachelor’s degree.

Earning an associate’s degree can be a beneficial pathway if you want to gain foundational knowledge and explore different fields of study before committing to a full bachelor’s degree program. However, it is not a requirement to earn an associate’s degree before pursuing a bachelor’s degree.

5. Is it necessary to earn a higher degree after getting a bachelor’s degree?

There is no strict requirement to earn a higher degree after obtaining a bachelor’s degree. Whether or not you pursue a higher degree depends on your career goals and aspirations. Some professions may require a master’s or doctoral degree for advancement or specialized positions.

However, many individuals find that a bachelor’s degree provides them with the necessary skills and knowledge to enter the workforce or pursue graduate studies. It’s crucial to research your desired career field and determine if a higher degree is necessary or advantageous for your specific goals.

Different Types Of Degrees Explained: (Associates, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate, and Professional)


So, now you know what the first degree you can get in college is! It’s called an associate degree, and it’s kind of like a stepping stone to a higher degree. It usually takes about two years to complete, and you can study lots of different subjects.

In this article, we talked about why an associate degree can be a great option for starting your college journey. We learned that it’s a more affordable choice, and it can also help you figure out what you’re interested in before committing to a longer program. Plus, you can even use your associate degree to get a job right away!

Remember, an associate degree is just the beginning. It’s like opening a door to many other opportunities. Whether you decide to continue your education or begin working, this degree sets you on a path towards success. So, take your time, explore different subjects, and most importantly, enjoy the journey of learning!

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