The 13 Best Online Associate in Liberal Studies in 2023

A liberal arts degree prepares students not only for a career but also for a meaningful life. An online associate in Liberal Studies emphasizes nurturing diverse skills like self-expression, critical thinking, communication, and lifelong learning, all of which help you live better and land a more remarkable career. Through this education, you can decipher and improve the human experience better.

Best Online Associate in Liberal Studies - fact

By exploring aspects of humanities, visual arts, and social sciences, you can answer questions regarding the origins of people, how humans deal with emotions and responsibilities, and how power and influence in society impact one’s life. Liberal arts degree covers so many studies that make up the human experience.

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The Lowdown:

In addition to literature and humanities, Liberal Studies also encompasses history, philosophy, and science. The Liberal Studies program equips students with the skills to think critically and creatively in almost any field of study, conduct research, and communicate effectively. It also helps students form reason and analyze more clearly, and express themselves creatively and critically, while connecting across other academic disciplines.


Featured Programs

Interested in a Liberal Studies degree? A simple school search takes you to a wealth of choices, but we make the process easier! We help evaluate the best options for you with our list of the best associate in Liberal Studies programs offered online by top-rated schools across the country.

These features characterize the academically impressive Liberal Studies Associate degree programs you should be attending:

  • 100% online or partially online associate degree program for a convenient learning experience,
  • A Liberal Arts curriculum that highlights the many facets of the discipline, including the social sciences involving human behavior, natural sciences, environmental science, public speaking, fine arts, and the arts in general that shape cultures and societies,
  • Online coursework that, similar to traditional programs, emphasizes the importance of problem-solving skills, career skills, and similar practical skills that Liberal Arts offer,
  • Liberal Studies online professors with the credentials, skills, and experience required for students to truly learn from the program,
  • Cutting-edge online learning system and platform that provides easy access to the tools and resources for online learners,
  • Student support services, technical assistance, and career guidance services to assist online students,
  • Student financial aid in the form of federal grants and student loans for qualified online students,
  • Proper school and program accreditation.

Check out our Methodology page for in-depth information on our ranking process.

13 Best Online Associate Liberal Studies Degree Programs

Saint Leo University

Saint Leo University Logo

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts

Founded in the 1,500-year-old Benedictine order tradition, Saint Leo University, the oldest Catholic university in Florida, offers affordable and practical degree programs.

Students put their critical thinking and analytical skills to the test in Saint Leo’s online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts program, delivered as a fully remote curriculum or a hybrid learning program.

Students in this liberal arts associate degree program are required to take courses in academic writing and college mathematics. There are a total of 60 credits needed.

Guided electives are chosen based on majors such as human adventure, science in a changing world, contemplative life, and spirituality. Candidates fulfill the rest of their remaining credit requirements by finding other electives. 

Applications at Saint Leo are accepted on a rolling basis, with six-year start dates, making it accessible for any distance learner to join. You can earn credit for coursework and professional experience that you have already completed.

Marshall Town Community College

Marshall Town Community College

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts

The school considers the Associate of Arts degree (A.A.) in Liberal Arts as one of their best transferrable degrees.

Since Marshalltown Community College has partnered with other learning institutions for transfer purposes, you have the choice to enroll in the University of Northern Iowa, Iowa State University, or the University of Iowa if you wish to pursue a bachelor’s degree or follow other paths. However, course requirements will depend on the major you’re taking. 

You can use this A.A. degree to transfer your credits to a university later when you plan to complete a bachelor’s degree. If a student is interested in transferring to a particular major, they can select electives that focus on that major’s coursework.

If a student wants to complete an A.A. degree within two years, they should enroll per semester or earn additional credits during winter or summer vacations. This associate degree is available entirely online, perfect for busy working students.

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University - Logo

Online Associate Degree in Liberal Arts

An online associate degree in Liberal Arts from Southern New Hampshire University can enhance your communication and critical-thinking skills.

Earning a liberal arts degree could put you in a position to excel and advance in your career if you are looking for entry-level employment in business, social services, administration, or management. Additionally, it can serve as a step toward a bachelor’s degree or a launching pad for career advancement.

The A.A. in Liberal Arts boasts an experienced faculty that can provide more value to your educational experience online. By completing this degree, you’ll gain skills to analyze issues, formulate reasoned conclusions, and effectively communicate your analysis.

Whether you’ve already taken some college courses in the past or planning to pursue further education later, this associate degree can be perfect for you. General education courses and elective courses make up most of this associate degree. This program can maximize your transfer credit and earn your degree faster.

You can improve your career prospects and stay within your budget range by earning an online associate degree in liberal studies.

California University of Pennsylvania

CAL-U - Logo

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Studies

By earning an associate’s degree in liberal studies, you will gain expansive knowledge and skills in demand in a wide variety of careers. A liberal studies program at the California University of Pennsylvania can be taken entirely online, allowing you to build a concrete foundation from wherever you are.

With a range of humanities, social, and sciences courses, Cal U’s accredited associate degree in liberal studies is designed for students whose interests span liberal arts boundaries.

The online liberal studies degree at California University is a flexible degree option if you won’t be able to complete a conventional degree program. Indeed, a college degree can be completed on a schedule that works for you if you take online courses.

You can customize and modify your own curriculum. From humanities to social sciences, you can choose from a wide variety of topics in liberal arts to suit your personal and professional interests, whether you are interested in arts, computer science, or science.

If you plan to pursue other careers like business, sales, marketing, accounting, consulting, or advertising, an associate degree in liberal arts will help you pave your career too. You can expect to land a job in different agencies in the government, educational sectors, or social working organizations.

Syracuse University

Syracuse University

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts

Syracuse is a student-focused, global research university known for academic rigor and a richly diverse educational experience. Syracuse University’s online A.A. in Liberal Arts degree program will help you reach your goals, whether you want an interim degree on your way to a bachelor’s or an entry credential for the workplace. 

You can benefit from Syracuse University when enrolling in an online associate degree in liberal arts. You can have strong educational background and experience provided by their renowned faculty. You’ll also be able to gain experience and knowledge that you can apply to your career or apply to a four-year degree program.

Brescia University

Brescia University

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts

Liberal Arts associate degrees online provide a wide range of knowledge in:

  • communication,
  • religion,
  • humanities,
  • language,
  • literature,
  • philosophy,
  • natural sciences,
  • mathematics,
  • fine arts,
  • and social and behavioral sciences.

With an AA in Liberal Arts online degree, students can complete General Education Requirements as well as various significant requirements required to achieve this degree.

Obtaining an Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts paves the way for future study leading to advanced degrees, particularly for further study at the bachelor’s level. The online bachelor’s degrees offered through BUonline are compatible with Liberal Arts associate degree credits earned.

Employers in any industry value the sought-after skills developed by Liberal Arts graduates at Brescia University.

Excelsior College

Excelsior College Logo

Online Associate in Science in Liberal Arts

A student who graduates from Excelsior College with a degree in Liberal Arts gains the classic skills reflective of a solid foundational education. 

Excelsior’s fully online Associate in Science in Liberal Arts program, the school can help you combine your life experience and educational goals by offering you credit for your previous college courses, military training, and on-the-job experience. 

The courses cover such diverse topics as:

  • literature,
  • fine arts,
  • philosophy,
  • economics,
  • politics,
  • biology,
  • and social sciences.

Take advantage of their flexible, affordable options to fulfill your academic requirements. 

Excelsior College UExcel exams allow you to earn credit toward your degree while testing what you know. Enjoy the convenience of studying and learning on your own schedule from the comfort of your home or favorite place. 

Ocean County College

Ocean County College

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts

The Associate in Arts (AA) program in Liberal Arts at Ocean County College requires at least 64 credits, including 45 credits from General Education courses.

A student must choose General Education courses from an approved list. Electives can be chosen according to student interests. No more than six credits of business courses can be included in the Liberal Arts degree.

Students can earn an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science Degree as part of their coursework before transferring to a four-year university to pursue a bachelor’s degree.

While providing students with a credential beyond a high school diploma, the curriculum provides the knowledge and skills needed to pursue various career paths. OCC faculty and Career Services strongly encourage students to consult with them during the career exploration process.

Brenau University

Brenau University

Online Associate of Arts Liberal Studies

Students completing this liberal studies degree program will be well-prepared to move on to a wide range of bachelor’s degree programs. It comes with 20 courses to be completed.

There are four areas of study that comprise the A.A. Curriculum:

  • World Understanding,
  • Scientific & Analytical Curiosity,
  • Artistic & Creative Imagination,
  • and Communication & Language Fluency Learning Portals.

Brenau University offers a two-year Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Studies that provides a broad education in various subject areas.

You can expect to prepare for a bachelor’s degree by building a solid academic foundation. This will help you improve your critical thinking skills too. Several options are available to help you pay for your degree, including loans, scholarships, federal aid, and state grants.

Elgin Community College

Elgin Community College - Logo

Online Associate in Arts in Liberal Studies

In this highly individualized degree program, liberal arts and sciences courses are combined with occupational education courses. Students with broad life or educational experiences will benefit especially from it since it provides a greater element of freedom.

As this degree is highly individualized, all students pursuing it should discuss their educational plans and any transfer implications with an advisor. All students must have a study plan approved by the associate dean of advising, transfer, and career development services or the dean of student services and development.

To fulfill the prerequisite, course, and/or degree requirements, students with prior academic, career, and/or life experiences can apply for proficiency credit. Some of the courses you’ll learn in this associate program are:

  • Applied Physical Science,
  • Astronomy,
  • Principles of Biology,
  • and Preparatory Chemistry.

Lake Superior College

Lake Superior College

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences

In order to earn a bachelor’s degree, students need to complete a 60-credit Associate in Arts degree at Lake Superior College. Colleges and universities offer various majors and programs that can be completed through an A.A. degree.

As a general liberal arts degree, the A.A. degree does not have a specific major associated with it. In preparation for a future bachelor’s program at a college or university, many LSC students choose to concentrate on one or more fields of study.

Specific majors can be seamlessly transferred to your chosen Minnesota State university through Minnesota State Transfer Pathways. The associate degrees at Lake Superior College allow you to earn a bachelor’s degree without needing additional classes as long as credits are transferrable.

Notre Dame College

Notre Dame College - Online

Online Associate of Arts in Liberal Studies

You can pursue various academic and professional opportunities with the Associate of Arts in Liberal Studies degree from Notre Dame College Online. You can explore various professional topics and study materials relevant to your career field through a fully online classroom and a choice of diverse courses in this associate in the liberal arts program.

Learn English, mathematics, public speaking, and more with this online liberal arts degree. They offer courses through their liberal studies program taught by educators with years of experience working in their fields.

By completing the associate of liberal arts program, you will be equipped with the credentials you need to earn an entry-level job or continue your education by transferring your credits to a bachelor’s degree with the help of your educators and interactive tools.

The associate of liberal arts program at Notre Dame College Online requires 37 credit hours of general education courses. You can take these courses to prepare for a career in any field and build a solid academic foundation. A total of 26-29 credit hours can also be selected based on your interests and educational and professional goals. You can customize your degree by taking these courses to gain skills in topics that interest you.

Excelsior College

Excelsior College

Online Associate in Science in Liberal Arts

Upon graduating with an Associate of Science in Liberal Arts from Excelsior, students possess the classic components of a solid foundational education: abstract thinking, critical analysis, clear communication, historical awareness, and a sense of the value of art and science.

Courses include:

  • political science,
  • art appreciation,
  • philosophy,
  • criminal justice,
  • literature,
  • economics,
  • and biology.

Students learn a subject in depth through their liberal arts degree program, preparing them for a new career or graduate-level work in a particular field. You’ll have a solid foundation to build on and a nimble future to look forward to.

Also, Excelsior’s Associate of Science in Liberal Arts online program combines life experience with education. The college allows transfer credits for college courses, military training, and on-the-job experience.

liberal studies students

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of a Liberal Arts Education?

You probably have some essential questions when considering a liberal arts degree. What are the most significant benefits, and what are your employment prospects after graduation if you pursue this degree? After all, a degree that won’t provide long-term benefits and opportunities for a successful career isn’t worth the time and money. 

Regardless of what job you want to pursue, a liberal arts education will provide you with the essential skills of critical thinking and deductive reasoning, and effective business communication, allowing you to break into a wide range of jobs.

As a result of your liberal arts curriculum’s many topics, approaches, and areas, you become more flexible, interdisciplinary, and versatile. After the 2-year associate degree, you’re free to shift your expertise and pursue a different field or significant. After all, it may take some time to discover your professional purpose.

A liberal arts degree is a fail-proof educational preparation to help you build your career early and surely. Because you are trained in a variety of transferrable skills, as opposed to just one specific skill set, you can keep your career options diverse and comprehensive. Take advantage of this adaptability to make your broad skillset seem valuable to employers.

Through a liberal arts program, you will be able to satisfy your curiosity, explore your interests, solve complex problems, and be challenged to express yourself creatively. In contrast to classes that focus on developing specific technical skills, liberal arts classes typically offer insight into how a particular subject or approach impacts individuals and societies, which can be applied in various careers.

What factors must prospective students consider in an online associate degree in Liberal Arts?
What factors must prospective students consider in an online associate degree in Liberal Arts?
  • Accreditation

Upon choosing any higher education, it’s essential to consider their national or regional accreditation. To be recognized regionally, an organization must be accredited by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Schools with regional accreditation are often accredited by other schools as well, which makes it ideal for you to transfer credits. This is beneficial if you want to move to a different school or take up another program.

  • Student Support Services

Even when studying for an associate degree online, it’s still essential to ensure that your school comes with concrete and reliable student support services. Most schools offer student support services. Their inclusions can vary depending on schools but the standard services offered are mentorships, career advising, academic advising, research centers, online chat services, tutoring, and internship programs.

  • Distance Learning Format

Asynchronous or synchronous programs should be considered. The lectures will be available at specific times if the program is synchronous. On the other hand, you can listen to recordings at your convenience with asynchronous programs. Choose which setup works best for you. Also, consider whether the program is part-time or full-time, as accelerated programs can help you finish quickly.

  • Tuition

Some programs and schools offer financial aid and other financial support options. Ensure to check the all-inclusive program rate before enrolling, as some might not include additional fees yet. Check whether they have different rates for in-state and out-of-state students, and choose one that’s most practical for you. Most online programs offer in-state tuition, so you don’t have to worry about this.

What can you do with an online associate degree in Liberal Arts?
What can you do with an online associate degree in Liberal Arts?

Liberal Arts majors are qualified for clerical and administrative assistant positions due to their extensive skills. They can succeed in a variety of fields with the right experience. Some of the jobs you can land are information clerks, daycare teachers, preschool teachers, social and human service assistants, sales associates, administrative assistants, human resources assistants, freelance writers, office managers, tutors, and many other job opportunities in different industries.

What are the admission requirements needed to enroll in an online associate degree in Liberal Arts?

Applying for an online associate degree in liberal arts is not as difficult as you think. Besides the application and application fee, your high school transcripts must also be requested. GED certificates must be accompanied by proof. There may be a minimum GPA requirement or a minimum score on a college entrance exam, depending on the school. Schools also often require recommendation letters.

What is the employment outlook for the online associate degree in Liberal Studies graduates?

Since liberal arts can allow you to land diverse job roles, their outlooks will also vary and depend on the industry that you’re working for. Since liberal studies associate degree graduates can land jobs such as business administration specialists, administrative assistants, sales agents, and daycare teachers, we can check their outlook in these instances. 

Sales agents and real estate brokers will have a growing demand of 5% from 2021-2031. They earn $48,770 per year. 

As for daycare teachers, their median pay is $30,210 as of May 2021. 

When can I finish an online Liberal Arts degree at the associate level?

Some schools offer accelerated programs that are completed in less time than most associate degree programs take. However, the average duration of an online associate degree in liberal studies is two years. A student may need to take more credits per semester or take summer classes in accelerated programs.

How much does an online associate in liberal arts cost?

An online liberal arts degree has a variety of costs. Since most colleges and universities charge higher tuition to out-of-state students, state residency is an important consideration. Online students, however, typically pay a flat fee no matter where they live. 

One key factor is the technology fee; students online are often subject to these fees but not their counterparts in brick-and-mortar settings. Typically, the cost of an online liberal arts associate degree ranges from $320 to $565 per credit. And the overall tuition costs range from $19,000 to $34,000.

Is an Associate in Liberal Arts offered online worth the investment?

It is usually worthwhile to earn a degree if it will help the graduate earn a higher salary without being too costly. According to, an associate degree in liberal studies will enable you to earn a salary of $57,000 per year upon graduation. Considering the reasonable price of your tuition fee, this degree is definitely worth it.

Key Takeaways

Education in the liberal arts allows for a broad conceptual grounding in humanistic inquiry. Learn to read critically, write cogently, and think broadly by exploring issues, ideas, and methods across the arts and humanities and the natural and social sciences. For students who want to learn about various liberal arts and sciences, the Associate in Liberal Arts curriculum is ideal.

In general, a liberal arts degree prepares students for various career paths rather than a specific career path. This results in more liberty and flexibility for you to customize and design your academic and professional plans.

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