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#1 jc0481

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 23:28

Hello all,

I need your help. I'm in the middle of picking the right schools online. My hectic work schedule, the location where my wife and I live, our son to be born in a few months and a few other issues are the reasons I am going to school online.

It has been years since I have been in high school. Also when I was in high school I was not the best student I skipped classes a lot. I was immature back then. Big mistake I know. I want to provide for my family and want my wife to stay home and watch our son and future children.

So I'm not sure if I should which degree I should study for. What do you recommend?


#2 ACTIONpack

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 01:16

Bachelor is always better than a Associate but it really comes down to the career you want.

#3 Colin McGregor

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 01:23

As stated above bachelor is better, and if one of each apply to a job the bachelor will get first dibs. My friend went to college I went to University. We both applied to the same job, I was hired he wasn't.

#4 OP jc0481

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 03:57

Thank you both for the replies. My major is Accounting by the way. Right now just working a warehouse job. My plan was to get my Associate's in Accounting then tranfer my credits over to get my Bachelor's in Accounting. The only reason I wanted to do that is that I can get a better paying job and provide financial stability for my family. Stick with this plan or still go straight to my Bachelor's?

#5 shockz

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 04:05

As stated above bachelor is better, and if one of each apply to a job the bachelor will get first dibs. My friend went to college I went to University. We both applied to the same job, I was hired he wasn't.


Not necessarily true... back before I had my bachelors I beat out someone who did because I had more experience and certs. Having a bachelors is good, but at least from what I've seen isn't the deciding factor for getting a job. It does however get you a lot better pay.

#6 Colin McGregor

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 04:23

Thank you both for the replies. My major is Accounting by the way. Right now just working a warehouse job. My plan was to get my Associate's in Accounting then tranfer my credits over to get my Bachelor's in Accounting. The only reason I wanted to do that is that I can get a better paying job and provide financial stability for my family. Stick with this plan or still go straight to my Bachelor's?


Whatever works for you. Bachelors for me was a lot of work but I managed just fine cause im single with no kids and my parents let me stay with them rent free while I did it so I can focus 100% on it so im not really one for that advice lol. Find out the length of time and how long bachelor will take if you transfer, and if everything does transfer. If you do your assoc and only half of the work transfers it seems better to do bachelor only. Again its all depending on your time and how long you want to be studying.

#7 pickypg

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 05:56

Thank you both for the replies. My major is Accounting by the way. Right now just working a warehouse job. My plan was to get my Associate's in Accounting then tranfer my credits over to get my Bachelor's in Accounting. The only reason I wanted to do that is that I can get a better paying job and provide financial stability for my family. Stick with this plan or still go straight to my Bachelor's?


In the US, the major difference is the level that you want to work at. In accounting, I suspect that most serious accounting jobs will not strongly consider an applicant with only an Associate's, but it is not my field, so I cannot really say for sure. However, I can say that I know two Tax Accountants, and both of them have Master's degrees in Accounting (one specifically in Tax Accounting, and also a CPA). Tax Accounting can be very different from ordinary Accounting.

The real benefit to an Associate's degree, when it does not serve as "enough" to get a job in the field, is to provide a cheaper route to a complete Bachelor's degree. In most states, the community colleges have agreements with the full time colleges and universities (largely no real difference in the US), so long as you maintain a certain minimum GPA, which varies. For example, in Virginia (I don't know about Utah, sorry), most community colleges have a program to enable students to transfer to any participating state university, and for those students to pay the same rates that they did in community college, which provides massive savings, and then to still graduate with a complete Bachelor's degree from the full time school.

There is no shame in getting an Associate's degree whatsoever. It's less expensive, frequently more accessible (local), and it regularly provides a convenient way to avoid taking the more annoying electives while paying the full time school's price (e.g., degrees have seemingly odd requirements that have nothing to do with the degree, like art for accounting). Every same-state school should also accept an Associate's degree as transfer credit to make you an instant Junior, which means that you are starting where you left off, but you really need to verify this with both institutions (that the community college promises it, and the full time school you intend to go to lives up to their end of the bargain). Schools love to dodge transfer credit whenever they can because it generally means that you will need to pay them more money to graduate, so--as long as you are serious about it--you need to be vigilant about this aspect of it because you will otherwise end up wasting your money, but also your time. For those schools that do live up to the bargain, it generally means that you can skip all-or-most of your electives, and your core freshman/sophomore classes.

As a would-be Accountant in the US, I would definitely suggest a Bachelor's degree, at least. The real question about the Associate's comes down to accessibility. That means, if you have a full ride to Harvard, then you likely should skip the Associate's. If you live next to a full time college, but you live over an hour away from a community college, then the price difference might actually not be worth more than your time that could be spent studying, or spent with your wife and future child.

And do not kid yourself because you will need to study. It will take a lot of your time, and it will take more than you estimate. Being out of school, you now have the best resume material anyone can ever want: experience. It might not help you get a job as an Accountant, but it will always help you know what it is that you are working for: a better experience, both for you and your family. Don't slack. Get great--not just good--grades, and get yourself scholarships. That's money you can then spend on your family. If you can graduate with a Bachelor's degree as ###### laude (3.5+ GPA), then you will have a much better shot at getting a higher paying job. Frankly, getting a GPA below 3.0 means that you need to revisit your priorities.

To keep making a long post longer, I also suggest that you do not take any breaks during school. It's so much easier to not go, and taking a break will only remind you of that. I did this in my undergrad, which I despised because I generally hate academics, particularly those that lack the experience that I actually had in the real world. I transfered to get away from the pompous academics--after taking a year and a half off to work full time--and found out that it really is not so different anywhere, and I regret not simply finishing at the first school. I did my Master's degree part time, with professors that worked full time in the field (Computer Science), which brought academics and real experience to an awesome combination (or, synergy as the marketers like to say).

Finally, I never once took an online class that I could not find myself bored, nor did I take one that held my attention when it should have. For me, particularly because I worked throughout my undergraduate and graduate courses, I always could find better things to do when taking online courses, so I avoided them.

(Any wild grammar errors are likely due to my current recovery from the flu)

#8 Gotenks98

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 15:07

Bachelors definitely, thats the one mistake I made in school I didnt go for the that degree until later and things are so much harder now and more expensive. I had to go back because the Associates is worthless. What I plan on doing is getting a masters online so it will be easier.

#9 Growled

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 02:24

The more education you can get in any field the better.

#10 Xilo

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 20:07

Associate's is a worthless degree and a waste of time.

Just go straight for Bachelor's.

#11 bdsams

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 20:11

Please please please check out the accreditations of the online schools...and then research the accreditations. Just because it sounds good, something like "nationally accredited" does not mean squat. There are a lot of "for profit" online schools who accreditations are nothing more than a fancy sticker and the credits will not transfer that are designed to look official…make sure it’s a reputable school, none of this Full Sail or Devry FUD.

#12 1941

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 20:14

I got an A.A in EE and one prof explained to me that if you get a job in two years you can go part time and finsih your BS degree and you will be better off financially by doing this rather than going 4 straight years. But this was back in 1981.

#13 1941

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 20:19

Associate's is a worthless degree and a waste of time.

Just go straight for Bachelor's.


I made lots of money with mine.

#14 threetonesun

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 20:46

I made lots of money with mine.


In 1981.

Although, FWIW, I've seen more postings lately that have been AS + experience which were previously BA + experience, so who knows, maybe entry level job requirements are returning to a semi-sane level.