Suffolk County Community College offers a variety of two-year curricula leading to the associate degree as well as several certificate programs. There are three different associate degrees, each having a specific purpose and differing credit distributions.
A.A. Degree (Associate in Arts)
This is a liberal arts-based degree for which the objective is preparation for transfer to a baccalaureate degree program, generally in a liberal arts major (i.e., English, history, philosophy, psychology, sociology, etc.).
A.S. Degree (Associate in Science)
This is a liberal arts and science-based degree for which the objective is preparation for transfer to a baccalaureate degree program, generally in a professional field of endeavor (i.e., chemistry, engineering, computer science, etc.).
A.A.S. Degree (Associate in Applied Science)
This is an occupationally-based degree for which the primary objective is preparation for job entry immediately upon completion of the degree program (i.e., occupational therapy assistant, paralegal, etc.). While the emphasis is on providing particular occupational skills, each curriculum includes courses in the humanities, social sciences and mathematics.
Some graduates of these programs may also transfer to four-year colleges. The acceptance of courses for transfer are subject to the discretion of the receiving baccalaureate institution.
A certificate may include some liberal arts courses, but are designed to provide students with practical knowledge and skills that lead to employment. Certificates vary in length but can generally be completed in one calendar year. Many of the certificate programs can be used as the first stage in an educational program leading eventually to an associate or bachelor's degree.