Key differences between associate degrees and bachelor’s degrees

Picking the right degree is very important for students as it decides the trajectory of their professional careers. By making the right choice, you will be able to gain useful learnings, get a good job and then apply your knowledge for career progression. 

Many students are often indecisive about picking the right program or even a suitable degree. While a bachelor’s degree is often a preferred option for many, others opt for associate degree in Canada that helps them build a strong foundation. 

To be able to choose the right degree program, you have to understand the difference between an associate’s and a bachelor’s degree. Only then will you be able to decide which one is better aligned with your professional and personal goals.

Your objective 

There are various reasons why students choose a particular degree. Some are looking to gain deep knowledge in a subject and select a bachelor’s program in that field. Such students often progress towards a master’s or even a higher degree in the future. 

While there are those who are simply looking to enter the business sector and want to become qualified for an entry-level job. If you are among the latter then an associate degree is a more suitable option as it will make you eligible for a variety of entry-level job roles and help you start your professional journey. Anyone who is simply looking to build work experience will do well with choosing an associate degree. 


A bachelor’s degree is often costly and not many students can afford to invest substantial money early into their education. Though a bachelor’s degree will increase your earning potential but the tuition and fees for the same are costly. If budget is not your problem and you are willing to go for an expensive degree then you can select a bachelor’s program. 

An associate degree on the other hand is way less costly and gives you the chance to build foundational knowledge of all key concepts needed in the business sector. You can easily earn this degree without getting burdened by financial expenditure. 

Program duration 

A bachelor’s degree program gives you in-depth knowledge of key areas and topics and that’s why it requires time and commitment. This degree is completed over four years. So, before selecting a bachelor’s program, you need to ensure that you are willing to spend that amount of time on your education. 

While it will take you four years to complete a bachelor’s degree, an associate degree can be completed in two years. Students who are looking to earn a degree in a short period and become job-ready can opt for an associate degree. 

Professional objective 

The main purpose of choosing a degree is to get a suitable job. If you are already well aware of the business landscape and know which sector is suitable for you then you can always go for a business degree. For example, someone with a flair for finance can choose a bachelor’s in finance but if you are unsure of the sector and are apprehensive about making a decision so early on then an associate degree works best for you. 

During the two years of learning, you will become better acquainted with the sector and the market. You will also become more aware of your strengths and skills. 

Huynh Nguyen

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