A computer science associate degree is the foundation for building computational skills. Computer science is the study of computers and computational theory. From scanning barcodes to monitoring activity and health, computers play an integral role.

CS has an array of traditional and emerging opportunities that include artificial intelligence and cybersecurity. 

Industry professionals are in high demand and may work in research labs, higher education, and government agencies. Graduates may work as web developers, programmers, and support specialists. 

ZDNet has developed a data-driven rankings formula methodized by industry experts, researchers, and scientists. Learn more about prospective programs and ZDNet’s approach for the best online degrees.

The best online computer science associate degrees

ZDNet’s ranking methodology encompasses data and tools from the National Center for Education Statistics’ annual survey. 

Data analysis includes but is not limited to admission rates, conferred certificates and degrees, and graduation rates. Industry experts, researchers, and scientists conduct rigorous reviews of the data collection.

Unless otherwise indicated, data is drawn from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and College Scorecard.

1. Lincoln Land Community College

Springfield, Illinois

About the program: LLCC’s computer science associate degree includes 61-63 credit hours in general education and program related courses such as computer applications and concepts, computer programming concepts, and understanding technology today.

Acceptance rate: 63% part-time and 37% full-time

Graduation rate: 35%

Avg. annual net price: $6,168

Years to completion: Two

SAT range: N/A

Minimum GPA: Not publicly available

Enrollment periods per year: Two

Course delivery method: Asynchronous

Accreditation: Lincoln Land Community College is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

2. South Texas College

McAllen, Texas

About the program: STC’s computer science associate degree includes 60 credit hours in general education and degree specific courses such as programming fundamentals, computer organization, and c programming.

Acceptance rate: 69% part-time and 31% full-time

Graduation rate: 24%

Avg. annual net price: $1,174

Years to completion: Two

SAT range: N/A

Minimum GPA: Not publicly available

Enrollment periods per year: Three

Course delivery method: Asynchronous and synchronous

Accreditation: South Texas College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

3. Laramie County Community College

Cheyenne, Wyoming

About the program: LCCC’s computer science associate degree includes 65 to 66 credit hours in general education, software related coursework, and several traditional specializations in networks, multimedia, and artificial intelligence.

Acceptance rate: 63% part-time and 37% full-time

Graduation rate: 23%

Avg. annual net price: $6,000

Years to completion: Two

SAT range: Not publicly available

Minimum GPA: Not publicly available

Enrollment periods per year: Three

Course delivery method: Asynchronous and synchronous

Accreditation: Laramie County Community College is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

4. Lake Superior State University

Sault Ste Marie, Michigan

About the program: LSSU’s computer science associate degree includes 62 credit hours of general education, degree specific coursework, and a real-world capstone project in web page design, systems programming, or another high interest specialty area.

Acceptance rate: 69%

Graduation rate: 67%

Avg. annual net price: $12,976

Years to completion: Two

SAT range: N/A

Minimum GPA: 2.4

Enrollment periods per year: Three

Course delivery method: Asynchronous and synchronous

Accreditation: Lake Superior State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

5. Seminole State College of Florida

Sanford, Florida

About the program: SSCF’s computer science associate degree includes 60 credit hours of general education and pathway courses such as principles of computer programming, python programming, and web programming.

Acceptance rate: 75%

Graduation rate: 41%

Avg. annual net price: $8,000

Years to completion: Two

SAT range: N/A

Minimum GPA: N/A

Enrollment periods per year: Three

Course delivery method: Asynchronous and synchronous

Accreditation: Seminole State College of Florida is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

What to expect in an online computer science associate degree program

Is computer science hard? Yes. A computer science degree is a major time investment and requires sufficient time management and studying skills.

While learning the steps to complete a computer science degree, inquire about class sizes, practical learning opportunities, and real-world experiences. Contact the department and learn more about what to expect in a computer science degree.

Computer science courses

Explore the computer sciences courses overview for advanced degree courses. Consider your key skills and select a career pathway. Depending on the courses you take, you can prepare for a leading role in artificial intelligence, data science, or software engineering.

Computer science degree levels

There are several computer science certifications and degree levels to explore. If you are looking to add to your technical skills, consider a computer science certification. 

An associate’s degree can prepare working professionals for entry-level positions such as a computer programmer or systems analyst. 

With a bachelor’s level computer science degree, students can acquire advanced training and opportunities for designing innovative technologies. The best computer science master’s and doctorate programs can prepare graduates for senior management and executive careers.

In conclusion

Computer science is embedded in every job sector and institution. From computer systems and networks to bioinformatics and theory of computing, computer scientists are vital to our everyday lives.

If you have a passion for studying computers and computational systems, then consider enrolling in a certification or degree program in computer science. 



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