Associate of Arts Programs

General Students

Associate of Arts Programs General Info

The Associate of Arts degree may be a path for you if you plan to transfer to a four-year college or university or are uncertain of your future academic plans. The Arts and Sciences transfer program will provide you with the cross-disciplinary knowledge and skills necessary to successfully complete upper-division courses at four-year colleges or universities.

This degree is also a great way to begin if a student wants to “try” college, even without having decided on a major area of study. Courses in this degree teach strong communication skills, cultural knowledge, critical thinking, and problem-solving strategies. These skills prepare any student, transfer or otherwise, to be competitive in the workforce. Because the degree requires study in different areas, it acquaints students with many fields of study and can help students choose a major.

After completion of the Associate of Arts degree, most students are prepared to enter a baccalaureate program as juniors. Over the years, NCC students have had excellent success transferring college credit courses to four-year institutions (and perform well when they transfer). The College has established articulation agreements with many colleges and universities, and these agreements smooth the transition from the associate degree to a baccalaureate course of study. Advisors can help discuss transfer options with students.
NCC offers transfer courses in Business, Communications, Computer Literacy, Education, Health, Human Resources, Humanities, Journalism, Math, Physical Education, Science, and Social Science in a variety of settings with flexible schedules.

Entrance Expectations
You may be required to take a placement exam before registering for your first Math or Communications course at NCC.

Choosing Your Classes
You need to plan your course of study carefully to ensure that you meet entrance and major requirements of the four-year institution you plan to attend. To avoid any problems you should:

1. Check the course requirements for the transfer institution. Some majors leave little room for electives. Students in these majors should take courses that fulfill these requirements.

2. Check the transferability of classes. Generally, NCC classes transfer to four year institutions, but requirements may vary. Many institutions require a grade of “C” or better for transfer purposes.

3. Check the total number of credit hours necessary to graduate from your chosen college or university. Work closely with the Registrar at your transfer institution to determine how many credits you need to graduate.

If you have not decided upon a major and/or transfer institution, you are strongly encouraged to pursue career counseling or devote time to exploring various majors with your advisor.

It is important that you contact the four-year college or university you plan to attend to assure that the courses you take at NCC will transfer appropriately into your major.

Graduation Requirements

1. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00

2. A minimum of 60 semester credits

3. A minimum of 45 semester credits of general education

• Communications                                 9 credits

• Mathematics/Science                          9 credits
(a minimum of one 3-credit course in each area and a science course with a lab required)

• Social Sciences                                   9 credits

• Humanities                                          9 credits

• Electives from the above disciplines    9 credits
OR Computer Literacy(CSC110-A)

• General education credit must be selected from courses ending in an “A” suffix

4. A minimum of 15 additional semester credits from any area.

5. SDV108-A                                         1 credit
All degree seeking AA students must complete “The College Experience” course.


• Transfer students who have successfully completed at least 24 credits at another college and have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above, as documented on official transcripts

• Students enrolled in the NCC dual credit program who have applied for graduation from NCC for an AA or AS degree prior to graduating from high school
• Students who wish to appeal the requirements must submit a letter to the Associate Dean of Students Services/Registrar.

    — The letter and official transcript (s) must be received no later than 14 calendar days before the start of the semester.

     — The request will be reviewed, and a response will be sent to the student prior to the start of the semester.

6. A minimum of 15 semester credits must be completed through NCC.

NOTE:  Satisfactory assessment scores and/or prerequisites are required for some courses.

Want to learn more about our Associate of Arts Programs program?

Request your free information packet now


  • Associate of Arts Degree


  • Four semesters
  • Full or part-time students may begin at any time

Program Location

  • This program may be completed fully on campus, fully online, or through a combination of on campus and online courses.

Contact Admissions

Student Story Josseline Castillo

"The flexibility of online classes was really important to me. I am able to work part-time and get my homework done on my schedule."

Josseline Castillo, Online Associate of Arts student
Sioux Center, IA

Josseline Castillo


9 Credits Communication

Recommended Courses

Composition I
Composition II
Public Speaking

9 Credits Math & Science

Recommended Courses

Math for Liberal Arts
Human Biology & Lab

9 Credits Humanities 

Recommended Courses

Introduction to Literature
Western Civilization: Ancient to Early Modern
Western Civilization: Early Modern to Present

9 Credits Social Science

Recommended Courses

Introduction to Psychology
Introduction to Sociology
Developmental Psychology

9 Additional Credits from the previous areas

Recommended Courses

Introduction to Ethics
Introduction to Philosophy

15–20 additional credits

Financial Aid

The Financial Aid Office will work with you to reach the goal of attending college. Federal and state programs, scholarships and other funding sources, may be available to help you to afford college. We know there are a lot of questions and stress planning to pay for a college education. The Financial Aid Office staff administers aid programs and counsels students in planning individual methods of meeting college costs. Contact the Financial Aid Office for answers to any questions regarding financial aid. What are you waiting for? Let’s get started! Northwest Iowa Community College follows a nationally accepted philosophy in administering financial aid programs.

Your Instructors

Amy Jurrens

Brian Albrecht

Brad Gill

Adam Thiner

Karla Harris

Kaylyn Pick

Kaylyn Pick

Tadd Knobloch

Tadd Knobloch

Godfrey Twinamatsiko

Godfrey Twinamatsiko

Shante Whalen

Shante Whalen

Brad Gill

Adam Thiner

Karla Harris