Associates in Education Online

An online Associates degree in Education is most often a two-year program. Many programs in this area teach the basics in about 60 credit hours. Through them, students may learn theory and methods of instruction. Or, they may develop the know-how to plan lessons for specific age groups.

What Is an Online Associates Degree in Education?

Applicants to online Associates degree in education programs should possess a high school diploma or GED. As a result, the degree offers students a way to explore the field. Without a commitment to a longer program. At the same time, it leaves the door open to a future education degree.

Learning Outcomes

Associates degree in Education programs may help students grasp some key concepts. First off, some programs help students develop content for their lessons. Second, they may teach hopeful educators how to observe their students. Next, participants are likely to learn how to enforce rules and supervise. Finally, there are general courses and ones that are geared to the actual program.


In online Associates in Teaching programs, students may need complete a field experience. So, while courses may be delivered through web-based tools, this is separate. However, many schools approve local settings where students complete this hands-on component. And, in the end, it gives the student a chance to apply, in real life, what they have learned in the virtual classroom. 


22% of Teacher Assistants have an Associates degree.i

Why Earn an Associates Degree in Education Online?

An online Associates degree in education might be thought of as a non-licensure program with options. Most programs at this level offer several key things. For one, they provide an initial course of study for future teachers. Another, they may help students launch a career where two years of college is required. And finally, they may pave the way for future studies.

What Types of Associates Degrees in Education Are There?

Online colleges may offer two choices at the Associates degree level. These include the Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) in education. Either is designed for use as a transfer degree to a Bachelors program. However, the one you pursue should reflect your interests. The AA may have more general education credits. In contrast, the AS may have more science and math.

Choose a Major

Aside from general education courses, students in an online Associates degree in Education take courses in their major. Here is where your interests come into play. Do you want to help a three-year old to read? Do you see yourself as a Math teacher? Since you may have a few choices, weigh them against what you enjoy. Either way, your program is likely to cover topics that address the major you have chosen. Two common education majors for students in Associates degree paths are listed below.

  • Early Childhood Education
  • General Education

What Is an Online Associates in Early Childhood Education?

An online Associates degree in Early Childhood Education program covers the skills and theory needed to work with children from birth to age 8. Hence, if you see yourself as a future childcare educator, this would be a good place to start. 

Course of Study

Each school that offers an Associates in Early Childhood Education degree may have unique courses on their syllabus. Yet, there may be some common topics. So, review five sample courses below to get a feel for it, but keep in mind these vary.

  • Child growth
  • Health, safety and nutrition
  • How to observe and assess children
  • Lesson plan models in early childhood
  • Literacy

What Is an Online Associates in General Education?

An online Associates degree in General Education cover a wide range of topics. At the same time, they do not require students to commit to one field of study. Due to their broad scope, General Education Associate degree programs may appeal to you if you are unsure of your major. Or, if you want to use their credits to transfer to a Bachelors Degree in Education Online program.

Course of Study

Course topics for an online Associates in General Education depend on your school of choice. Some sample courses are listed below.

  • English
  • History
  • Science
  • Math
  • Humanities

Can You Be a Teacher with an Associates Degree?

An Associates degree in Education may prepare students to pursue support roles. An initial teacher license requires a Bachelors degree. As a result, students who choose to move in that direction continue their studies. To that end, many colleges permit students to transfer their credits into a Bachelors program. Aside from that, your state may have precise rules. Most of all, a period of teacher preparation and supervised field work.

Might I Substitute Teach with an Associates degree?

The standard requisite for substitute teachers in most states is a Bachelors degree. Plus a state-issued license.ii That said, preschool teachers in Head Start programs are required to have at least an Associates degree. iii Hence, it may be up to a state board of education to decide these rules. And they may have useful information and resources to tap into. 

Might I Be a Kindergarten Teacher with an Associates Degree?

Kindergarten teachers are required to have earned a Bachelors degree and state license. ii Due to this, you might get a head start through an online Associates degree in Early Childhood Education.

What Might I Do with an Associates Degree in Education?

If you think of your own studies as a bus ride, an Associates degree may be a stop along the way. Or it may be the end destination. Therefore, it helps to keep in mind career goals as you search for a program. Do you hope to earn a teacher license? Are you drawn to taking care of infants in a day care? 

Aide and Assist

Do you want to play a support role in the classroom? Is so, an Associates degree in Education might prepare you to assistant teach. Teacher assistants need to have completed two years of college courses.iv Also called teacher aids and para-educators, these individuals work under the guidance of a licensed teacher. Furthermore, some aides work with a specific group of learners, such as special needs students. So, while they don't teach a class, they have a chance to learn the ropes. 

Work with Young Children

Are you drawn to the field of preschool education and childcare? If that is your goal, you might consider an Associates degree in Early Childhood Education. Since preschool teachers in Head Start programs need at least an Associates degree, you might start your studies here.ii  As an upshot, you might then transfer into a Bachelors in Early Childhood Education later. And, shorten your time to completion. 

Continue Your Education

Consider a regionally accredited college for your online Associates degree in Education. This is one requisite for most colleges that accept transfer credits. Consequently, a vital one should you choose to pursue a Bachelors Degree in Education Online.

Take the Next Step

An online Associates degree in Education may provide a solid base for any next step you take. Browse paid listings to find a program that matches your goals. Then, use the on-page buttons to contact your school of choice.

[i] |[ii] | [iii] | [iv] |