Associate in Arts (AA) - General Transfer
The Associate in Arts (AA) degree is designed for students planning to transfer to a four-year institution to pursue a bachelor’s degree program. The degree, in most cases, meets the first two (2) years of general education requirements at the senior institution. There are exceptions; please check with the transfer institution for additional information. Most students transferring with the AA degree will be granted junior standing upon entry to the senior institution.
The standard Associate in Arts degree is also known as a Direct Transfer Agreement (DTA) Associate degree. The AA-DTA is a statewide agreement between the Washington State community and technical colleges and Washington State public universities as well as some private colleges and universities. The agreement outlines transferability of coursework and standing; in most cases students who have completed an AA-DTA will also have satisfied general education requirements at the baccalaureate institution and will have junior standing. Students should review their baccalaureate institution to see if they are part of the DTA in Washington State.
AA – DTA Degree Options
Students are advised to carefully examine the differences in the degree requirements where there is more than one choice within a major field and be sure that their transfer intent is in line with the degree chosen.
Transfer of Grades
The grades assigned in transferable courses by the sending institution shall not be altered by the receiving institution. They also are not used in calculating students’ Clark GPA. Courses completed with a grade of ‘D’ or above shall normally be accepted in transfer (except at The Evergreen State College, where a minimum of 2.0 or ‘C’ is required for transfer). Nontraditional grading practices require special handling, depending on the nature and circumstances of the program from which and to which a student is transferring, but receiving institutions shall take steps to assure all students equitable treatment.
General Requirements for All Associate in Arts Degrees
- Complete a minimum of ninety (90) college-level credits.
- Maintain a minimum cumulative college-level GPA of 2.00 or higher.
- Thirty (30) credits minimum must be completed at Clark College to meet Academic Residency.
- Submit a graduation application by the appropriate deadline.
General Credit Restrictions
- Credit by Department: Ten (10) credits maximum from any single department can be used to fulfill Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences distribution requirements.
- World Language: Five (5) credits maximum in 100-level world language can be used to fulfill Humanities distribution requirements. Additional 100-level world language coursework can be used to meet Specified or General Elective requirements.
- Physical Education Activity: Three (3) credits maximum in PE activity can apply toward the degree.
Other Applicable Credit Options
- Advanced Placement (AP) and/or International Baccalaureate (IB): A maximum of sixty (60) credits from AP, IB or a combination of both, can be applied to a degree.
- College Level Examination Program (CLEP): Students may request up to fifteen (15) CLEP credits to be applied to a degree. Credits will be used to fulfill general elective requirements only.
- Course Challenge: Students may use credits earned from successful course challenges toward 25% of the degree or certificate. Credit by course challenge will meet academic residency requirements.
- Tech Prep/Direct Credit: Tech Prep/Direct Credit courses that are part of a professional program and fall into the restricted area in the DTA degree are limited to 15 credits. If Tech Prep/Direct Credit courses apply to a professional technical degree or certificate, there is no limit to the number of credits that can be applied.
- Cooperative Work Experience: No more than fifteen (15) credits may be applied to the associate degree.
- Special Projects: No more than fifteen (15) credits in Special Projects will be allowed toward the Associate in Arts degree.
- Military Experience: Credits may earned by previous military experience. Please contact the Veterans Affairs Office at Clark College for further information. Credit awarded for military experience may be granted for up to 25% of the degree and/or certificate.
- Pass/Fail Grading Option: Sixty (60) credits maximum in courses with Pass/Fail grading option can apply toward the degree, with the exception of the AA Nursing degree which exceeds this limit because of clinical requirements.
- A course can apply toward only one (1) distribution requirement (i.e., Communication Skills, Quantitative Skills/Symbolic Reasoning Skills, Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences). The exception is for Oral Communications, which is a local degree requirement. When meeting the Oral Communications requirement, the same course can be applied to the degree requirement and to the distribution area.
- Excess credits earned in distribution areas (i.e., Communication Skills, Quantitative Skills/Symbolic Reasoning Skills, Humanities, Social Sciences and Natural Sciences) can be used to fulfill the Elective requirements.
- Credit by Challenge coursework will meet academic residency requirements.