According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there are over 4 million students enrolled in technical and community college programs in the US, and while those programs provide in-depth knowledge of a specific field, much of the technical and applied science coursework does not easily transfer toward a four-year degree which most management positions require.
Technical degrees focus on the science and technology of a particular topic, providing a more complete understanding than basic knowledge of the subject. The most common technical degrees include:
The most common Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees are in fields such as:
Although technical and applied science degrees provide the skills needed to create innovative products or services that can help businesses succeed, graduates of technical or applied science programs who wish to obtain a bachelor’s degree often find very few courses are applicable to the higher degree curriculum. However, without a four-year degree many management positions are unreachable. These students are faced with starting over academically. This is where a Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences (BAAS) can bridge the gap from technical expertise to management.
The primary advantage of a BAAS degree is its interdisciplinarity, which enables students to meld together concepts and knowledge from different areas of study. By studying a variety of disciplines, students of a BAAS program gain a uniquely holistic view of the world, enabling them to better understand and interact with the many different aspects of business and society. Additionally, a BAAS degree opens up a variety of career opportunities, providing graduates with a strong foundation to pursue their career goals.
The online Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences degree in the College of Business at Louisiana State University of Alexandria will accept up to 60 credit hours from a technical or applied science program toward a four-year degree. In addition to completing the general education requirements, students will focus on an interdisciplinary core consisting of courses in management, psychology, communications, and cultural diversity.
Upon completing a bachelor’s degree, students often find a significant difference in salary. The salary difference between an associate and bachelor’s degree can vary widely depending on the field of study and the work experience of the individual. Generally, those with a bachelor's degree will have a higher salary than those with an associate's degree. According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the median starting salary for those with a bachelor's degree is $55,000 compared to $41,000 for those with an associate's degree.
Dr. Randall Dupont is a Professor of Management at Louisiana State University of Alexandria, where he serves as Dean of the College of Business and holds the LSUA Alumni and Friends Endowed Chair. Dr. Dupont has 30-plus conference presentations to his credit in addition to several published articles and book reviews. His primary areas of research are employment and occupational dynamics. Currently, he publishes the LSUA CENLA Economic Dashboard, a monthly publication that monitors the economic pulse of central Louisiana and is distributed to 3,000 local business and community leaders, and leads Leadership CenLA, a joint leadership development program sponsored by the Central Louisiana Regional Chamber of Commerce and LSU Alexandria.
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