How to List an Associate Degree on Resume

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Sep 8, 2022 6 min read

Quick Answer:
An associate degree is a 2-3 year undergraduate degree. To include it in your resume, first, check its relevance to the job

If you are reading that, you probably have an associate degree.

Which is pretty great.

Associate degrees can be of great help to your resume.

And hiring managers would definitely be happy to see one in your Education Section.

But how can you use your associate degree to boost up your resume?

In a few short paragraphs, we are going to show you everything you need to know to do that.

In this article, we are going to explore the questions:

  • What is an Associate Degree
  • Should You Put Your Associate Degree on Your Resume?
  • How to Put Your Associate Degree on Your Resume?

And we are going to leave you off with some great tips and tricks and a great example of everything we talked about.

If you want to get some more general improvements on your resume, we can show you How to Make Your Resume Stand Out.

But if you are ready to learn all about including associate degree on your resume, stick around.

What is an Associate Degree

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Before we go deeper in the topic of associate degrees, we need to understand what exactly are they.

An associate degree is an undergraduate degree, awarded after post-secondary study.

It usually lasts for two to three years and is a middle ground between a high school diploma and a bachelor’s degree.

Even though associate degrees are considered lower than bachelor’s degrees, they are often considered as equals.

Their main purpose is to enable graduates for an early entry into the job market or to become entrepreneurs.

And that’s because they are really skill-oriented.

Should You Put Your Associate Degree on Your Resume?

Now that you know what an associate degree is, you need to think about its importance on your resume.

Or, in other words – should you put your associate degree on your resume?

Simply put – yes.

But only under specific circumstances.

First of all, consider its relevance to the position you are applying for.

You should only list your associate degree if it is relevant, otherwise it wouldn’t work in your favor.

Including it relevant associate degree on your resume shows your potential employer that you are really interested in that particular field of study.

Furthermore, you are so interested, that you are willing to go an extra mile to earn a diploma.

And if your associate degree is the highest degree you have earned – that’s great.

But what should you do if you have also earned a bachelor’s or a master’s degree?

In that case, you should consider leaving your associate degree out of your relevant, as you have already earned a higher educational accomplishment.

But after all, it’s entirely up to you.

Your potential employer would value any effort on your part.

And earning an associate, or any other kind of degree, can really boost up your resume.

How to Put Your Associate Degree on Your Resume?

So far, so good.

But now we have reached the most difficult part.

You can already guess that your associate degree should be placed in your Education Section.

But how to do that correctly?

In a few short paragraphs, you would be ready to do it like a pro.

First of all, if your associate degree is the highest education you have, make sure you put it on top of your Education Section.

If you have a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree, you should put them first.

But if associate degree is as good as it gets in your Education Section, make sure you put in on top and bold it, as it is the most important part of your education.

Once you do that placement, you need to specify the institution you attended.

So make sure you list the school’s name and its location right beneath the associate degree.

Unless you are a recent graduate, or still in school, you don’t need to list your year of graduation and GPA.

But if you don't have much work experience, make sure you do.

Another thing you might want to consider is using an abbreviation for your associate degree.

Here is a list of commonly used associate degree abbreviations:

  • AA (Associate of Arts)
  • AAB (Associate of Applied Business)
  • AAS (Associate of Applied Science)
  • AAT (Associate of Arts in Teaching)
  • ABA (Associate of Business Administration)
  • AEET (Associate of Electrical Engineering Technology)
  • AF (Associate of Forestry)
  • AGS (Associate of General Studies)
  • AN (Associate of Nursing)
  • AOS (Associate of Occupational Studies)
  • APT (Associate of Physical Therapy)
  • AS (Associate of Science)

Another significant thing we need to note here is the placement of your Education Section.

That depends mostly on the amount of work experience you have

If you are a recent graduate, or you are still in school, your Education Section should be the focus of your resume.

That means that it needs to be right beneath your Contact Information and Resume Summary.

What should come after your Education Section should be your Work Experience Section, Skills Section, Coursework, and Volunteer Work.

In this case it is also acceptable to include your graduation date and GPA, if it is impressive, as that shines some more light on who you are.

Another reason for that order of your resume sections is if you are changing your career path.

If your work experience is not relevant to the new field you are applying for, but your education is, you should put your Education Section first.

In any other case, it is safer to put your Education Section under your Work Experience Section, but above Skills Section, Volunteer Work and Certifications.

Once you gain more than a few years of work experience, your Education Section becomes less relevant.

Tips and Tricks

Great, we are almost done.

But we wouldn’t let you go without giving you some important tips and tricks.

First of all, make sure you use the correct preposition.

“Associate in” and “Associate of” are both correct preposition for the job.

The thing is, different colleges use different prepositions to describe associate degrees.

To do it right, you can always check out your college’s style guide.

But the safer path to take for using the correct preposition is simply checking your diploma.

The other thing you need to keep an eye on is spelling it correctly.

Unlike Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree, there are no apostrophes in the Associate degree.

And last but not least, make sure you list your relevant courses, skills, honors & awards, in case you are a recent graduate and don't have much work experience.

It is a great way to boost up your resume and present yourself in the best light.

Example of Associate Degree on Resume

Now you are all set to put your associate degree on your resume.

But, as promised, we have an example you can take into account in your writing.

So check it out.

A.S. in Biology | 2015 - 2017

College of New Caledonia, Prince George BC

  • GPA 3.9/4.0
  • Dean’s List 2017

Takeaways: How to List Associate Degree on Resume

We are all done.

Now you know how to list your associate degree on your resume.

You are now ready to impress your potential employer with your interest in their field.

Don’t forget – choose the placement of your Education Section according to the amount of work experience you have.

Check out our tips and examples once again and make your associate degree get you your next interview in no time.

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Kal Dimitrov
Kal is a resume expert @ Enhancv. He frequently publishes blog posts around resume writing, cover letters & job applications. Kal also runs a Career Accelerator Bootcamp for young graduates.
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