people doing multiple kinds of jobs, nursing, teaching, dental hygiene, construction and working at computers

Pierce College’s professional/technical degrees provide students with technical and related skills needed for successful employment. These degrees emphasize practical, work-related skills that translate to effectiveness and expertise in the workplace.

Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS)

To keep up — and stay ahead — in the ever-changing workplace, education and skills training is a lifelong pursuit. Get the skills to go further in your career with a bachelor's degree from Pierce College. An applied bachelor's degree builds on the education and training from a two-year technical associate degree.

Associate of Applied Science (AAS)

Students who complete the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in one of Pierce College’s specific professional/technical programs will receive a degree titled with that program specialty. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 90-quarter credits or their equivalent, including all specific requirements of an approved professional/technical program. The purpose of these degrees are to provide immediate employment.

Associate of Applied Science — Transfer (AAS-T)

Built upon the technical courses required for job preparation, but also includes a college-level general education component, common in structure for all such degrees and is intended for the dual purpose of immediate employment and as preparation for the junior year at 4-year institutions in which Pierce College has agreements for a bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree. In preparation for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree, check with your advisor to see which components of these degrees are generally accepted.

Associate in Technology — General

A graduate of any approved occupational/vocational program from an accredited college, military school, vocational/technical institute, technical college, licensed private college, vocational school, industry, apprentice-based training or university may apply up to 65-quarter credits toward the Associate in Technology – General degree. The remainder of the student’s program shall include a minimum of 18 credits of related instruction. A minimum of three credits is required in each of the following areas: communications, computation and human relations. All related instruction courses must be numbered 100 or above. 90-quarter credits are required.


Certificate programs emphasize basic, practical skills needed for entry-level employment. Often, in a short period these certificates prepare a student with beginning job skills or providing knowledge and skills needed for advancement in a specific professional/technical area.

Degree Requirements

  1. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 90-quarter credits or their equivalent, exclusive of physical education activity courses, including all specific requirements of an approved professional/technical program.
  2. A minimum college cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or higher is required.
  3. Earn the lesser of (at least) 20 college-level credits or 25% of the credits applicable to the degree or certificate at Pierce College.
  4. A minimum of 18 credits in related instruction is required.

Related Instruction (18 credits minimum)

The following list is courses satisfying the Related Instruction components of professional/technical programs.

Related Instruction Suggested Course List

  • Communications * — Any AA-DTA Communication Skill course; or BTECA 115, BTECA 116
  • Computation * — Any AA-DTA Quantitative/Symbolic Reasoning Skills course; or BTECA 117
  • Human Relations * — BUS 240, MNGT 130, PSYC& 100, PSYC 201, PSYC 210, SOC& 101, SOC 211

* Minimum of three credits