How Do I Get an Associate's Degree in Biology?

B. Miller
B. Miller
An associate's degree in biology generally takes two years to complete at a community college.
An associate's degree in biology generally takes two years to complete at a community college.

In order to get an associate's degree in biology, it will first be necessary to earn a high school diploma or a GED. The next step is to apply to a community college that offers this type of degree, and complete all of the required coursework with a sufficient passing grade. An associate's degree in biology usually takes about two years to complete, and many schools will have a minimum grade point average (GPA) that must be maintained in order to earn the actual degree without having to repeat classes. An associate's degree is the most basic type of college degree that is possible to earn, and can lead to entry-level jobs in a chosen field.

The best biology schools offer students a lot of opportunity for hands-on training.
The best biology schools offer students a lot of opportunity for hands-on training.

The first step to getting an associate's degree in biology is to earn a high school diploma. College-bound students should work to earn the best grades they can in high school, but even students with middling grades can often be accepted to community colleges. In lieu of a high school diploma, a GED may be an acceptable alternative for some colleges.

It will then be necessary to research institutions that offer an associate's degree in biology, and fill out an application. Traditional in-residence schools and online schools both offer this type of degree. You will probably need to submit transcripts from your previous high school education so admissions counselors can check your grades. An application fee will likely be required, and then you will have to pay a deposit if you are accepted. You may then be administratively registered for your first classes, or may need to select them yourself.

You will then need to spend the next couple of years taking all the required courses in order to earn an associate's degree in biology. Most people take two years to complete this degree if they are taking courses full-time, but if you are taking classes part-time it may take longer. The classes will probably be a mixture of theory as well as hands-on field and lab work to provide a variety of knowledge and skills.

Most schools will require a minimum GPA to be maintained throughout the class work in order to be a student in good standing, and to graduate with the degree. Students who do not pass courses with an acceptable grade may need to repeat them. If you earn an associate's degree in biology successfully, you may then be eligible for entry-level technician positions, or you may choose to transfer to a four-year degree program in order to complete the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

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    • An associate's degree in biology generally takes two years to complete at a community college.
      By: Elnur
      An associate's degree in biology generally takes two years to complete at a community college.
    • The best biology schools offer students a lot of opportunity for hands-on training.
      By: markos86
      The best biology schools offer students a lot of opportunity for hands-on training.