It’s often difficult to know if now it is the right time to get an associate’s degree. Sometimes, with all that is going on in our lives, it just seems like there isn’t enough time for the classes, coursework, and studying that goes along with getting an associate’s degree. Once you get busy with a job, career, or family especially, it might seem that even though you know it is important, getting an education just falls too low on the priority list to make it worthwhile or feasible. To help you decide if now is the right time for you to get your associate’s degree, here are some thoughts for you to ponder and information to help you make your decision.

YOUR CURRENT SITUATION
There could be a variety of reasons as to why you might want to consider getting your associate’s degree. Maybe you’re not happy with your current job. It could be that you’re stuck in a rut, just spinning your wheels and going nowhere. Maybe you’re pay is too low, or worse you’ve lost you’re job. While these might seem like hardships or reasons that might detract from your being able to pursue a degree, you might instead want to view them as opportunities to further you education and possibly redirect or refocus your career path. Having lost a job or not being able to find a job could leave you with the time available to direct your attention toward getting an associate’s degree.

UNDERSTANDING AND CHOOSING A PROGRAM
Deciding what type of program is right for you, may depend on several factors. Your interests and career aspirations may affect what type of associate’s degree you decide to pursue, but it can also determine where or how you choose to pursue your education. If you don’t have a campus-based program located in your vicinity and your situation won’t allow you to move closer to such a campus, it might be easier to obtain your associate’s degree from an online program. You might also find that a campus close to your home doesn’t offer a degree program that matches your particular needs, also making an online degree program more viable. It is important to determine if an online program is accredited before you make any commitments to ensure that the program is recognized and reputable.

No matter where or how you decide to pursue your associate’s degree, it is critical to conduct your due diligence before making a commitment. Search for information online about particular programs, look for and read reviews, or ask people who may have attended the institution for their feedback. Just because a particular program is accredited or has a good reputation, doesn’t necessarily it will fit your needs.

TIME COMMITMENT
If you are thinking of getting an associate’s degree just because it will be quicker and easier than a bachelor’s degree, it is important to understand that even an associate’s degree will require a certain time commitment and effort. It is important to be realistic about timeframes and the amount of work you will need to apply to obtain any reputable degree. Just because you are paying tuition, doesn’t mean you are entitled you to pass your classes without doing the work. Most associate’s degrees require about two years of time to complete although this timeframe can vary depending on any previous coursework you might already have under your belt and whether you can commit to a full course load.

CAREER PLANS, ASPIRATIONS, & SECURITY
If you aren’t currently meeting your goals and career aspirations, it might be time to consider getting your associate’s degree. Being bypassed for a promotion can happen to the best of us, but if it is becoming a regular occurrence in your life, it might mean you need to supplement your education, and an associate’s degree could be a great way to do just that.

It might be that you are completely happy with your job right now and are meeting your goals just fine. This doesn’t mean that it would hurt to prepare yourself for the future though. You don’t necessarily want to wait until it’s too late to realize that you’ve fallen behind the curve. By the time you discover that you aren’t where you need to be education wise, there could be a gaggle of fresh blood waiting to take your place. So just because things are good at the moment, it doesn’t mean that they will stay that way, and preparing yourself with an associate’s degree can be a great way to buffer yourself against the unknown.