Associate in Arts (A.A.) Degree
The Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree is designed for the student who plans to transfer to a Florida public university as a junior to complete a Bachelor’s degree. Through the A.A. degree, Valencia offers lower division preparation for almost all of the approximately 200 majors in the State University System of Florida. The A.A. degree provides the courses of study equivalent to those offered in the freshman and sophomore years (lower division) of Florida’s state universities; a student who earns an A.A. degree from Valencia meets the lower division general education requirements of a Florida state university, but does not automatically meet the requirements for a particular major.
The A.A. degree requirements consist of general education requirements and electives to prepare for a Bachelor’s degree. Many majors at the universities require that specific courses be taken as part of the A.A. degree, both within general education and within the electives; known as common prerequisites, these specific courses are to be taken prior to transferring by all students who plan to enter a particular major within the university system. These requirements may be met by completing an A.A. pre-majors at Valencia or by careful selection of courses for the Associate in Arts. The Transfer Plans section of this catalog provides guidance for certain university majors. Catalogs and/or Web sites of the state universities list the courses, including the common prerequisites, that are to be taken at the community college in order to enter the junior year in a particular major at the university.
Valencia’s pre-majors are designed for a student who plans to earn the Associate in Arts degree and transfer to one of the state universities or state colleges in Florida as a junior to complete a Bachelor’s degree in one of the specific majors. Each pre-major includes the courses to satisfy Valencia’s general education requirements for the A.A. degree as well as the statewide common prerequisites for the specific major. Valencia offers a few Articulated pre-majors for transfer to private institutions in Florida. The pre-majors are included at the end of this section of the catalog. Transfer Plans are in a separate section of this catalog.
The Associate in Arts degree requires a minimum of 60 acceptable college-level credit hours, which includes 36 credits of general education and 24 credit hours of electives.
If you plan to transfer to a Florida state university or state college, it is very important that you take the courses at Valencia that are required for admission to your major at the university you plan to attend. These common prerequisite requirements are available electronically through the university Web sites and through the Florida Academic Counseling and Tracking for Students (FACTS) Web site at flvc.org. Not all majors are offered at every university. For assistance in accessing information about majors, you are encouraged to visit a Career Center or the Atlas Access Lab on any campus where you also may complete, through the LifeMap Tools in Atlas, an education plan to prepare you for a specific major(s). Once you have created an education plan through Atlas, you may meet with a Student Services staff member to discuss the requirements for a particular major(s).
The A.A. degree guarantees admission to one of the state universities, but not necessarily admission to a specific major (program) (Florida Statute 1007.23). Certain majors are designated as “restricted-access” or “limited-access” programs, meaning that they have admission requirements in addition to earning the A.A. degree. These requirements may include: the completion of specific courses; a minimum grade point average in specific courses; a minimum grade point average in all course work; an interview, a minimum number of hours of related volunteer work; an audition; the submission of a portfolio; and/or a specified deadline(s). Requirements such as these are given in the university catalogs and Web sites and at flvc.org. It is very important to find out if the major(s) in which you are interested is either “restricted-access” or “limited-access” and, if so, the exact requirements in addition to the A.A. degree.
Although the A.A. degree does not guarantee admission to a private and/or out-of-state institution, you can find out what the lower division course requirements are for the institution and include all, or as many as possible, of the requirements in your A.A. degree. To find out what the requirements are, you may visit any campus Career Center on any campus, review flvc.org, visit the institution’s Web site or contact the institution directly. Although Valencia staff members cannot speak on behalf of other institutions, once you know the requirements, a Student Services staff member will assist you in developing an education plan for your A.A. degree.
In order to have a smooth academic transfer, it is very important that you take the initiative to know all of the requirements for your major at the institution to which you plan to transfer.
Limited-Access Programs at Valencia
Limited-access status occurs when student demand exceeds available resources such as faculty, instructional facilities, equipment, etc. Admission to Valencia does not guarantee acceptance to a limited-access degree in which the number of students who can enroll is limited. Limited-access degrees have specific admission requirements. The A.A. Pre-Major: Dance Performance is the only pre-major with limited-access status.
Your governing catalog is the Valencia College catalog in effect at the time of your initial enrollment in associate or bachelor’s degree credit courses at Valencia. A Valencia catalog is valid for five academic years. If you are applying to a limited access program and the admissions requirements change within your five year catalog time period, you will qualify for a transition plan to the new requirements. Your governing catalog will be updated to the Valencia College catalog in effect at the time of your enrollment in the limited access program. You may officially declare any subsequent catalog as your governing catalog and follow its requirements for your initial degree or certificate program until that catalog expires; however, if you change your degree or certificate program, you are required to choose from the current degree and certificate program offerings and follow the graduation requirements of the current catalog. If your governing catalog has expired, your new governing catalog will be the catalog in effect in your next term of enrollment. Should the District Board of Trustees approve changes in program requirements to be effective within the academic year, the revised requirements will be available in the catalog, academic departments, and Career Program Advisor's offices. Students affected by the change in requirements should contact the appropriate Program Advisor, Program Director, or Academic Dean.
A.A. Program Learning Outcomes
The A.A. Program Learning Outcomes are the General Education outcomes and the following outcome: Students will demonstrate the readiness for transfer to a Bachelor’s degree program.