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Florida College System

Academics

Florida’s 28 state and community colleges offer a wide range of academic opportunities for students throughout the state. Whether you are beginning your college career or looking to return to continue your education, Florida College System (FCS) institutions are here to assist you in completing your educational goals. At FCS institutions, students are able to complete degree programs including Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Applied Science, Associate of Arts, Associate in Science, Associate in Applied Science and career and technical certificate programs outlined below.

We are confident you can find the right program at one of Florida’s state and community colleges. Please explore the opportunities below and contact your local college for more information. Each college provides academic advising support to assist students in exploring their interests, skills, and long-term goals and connecting those to the right educational pathway.

Exploring Programs

You can learn more about each college’s program offerings by looking at their institutional websites. The full list of all 28 colleges, and their website links, can be found on the Colleges webpage. Once on the college’s website, you can find their Programs of Study, as well as admissions and prerequisite information. The Florida Shines Discover Programs site also provides a searchable list of certificate and degree programs offered by each college.

Baccalaureate Degree (BS or BAS)

Florida colleges have been granted authorization from the Florida Legislature to offer baccalaureate degree programs to meet local and regional workforce need and demand. Florida’s state and community colleges offer baccalaureate programs in a wide range of disciplines, including but not limited to nursing, education, business, and information technology.

Associate of Arts (AA)

The Associate of Arts degree (AA) is designed for students who plan to transfer as a junior to a baccalaureate degree program, either at a Florida public college or university. The Statewide Articulation Agreement, known as 2+2, states students who earn an AA degree at a state college are guaranteed admission into one of the state's 12 universities to complete a four-year baccalaureate degree.

The AA degree requirements consist of 60 total credit hours - 36 credit hours of general education and 24 credit hours of electives. Students should choose elective courses required for admission to their intended program of study/major at the desired college or university. The Common Prerequisites Manual lists all baccalaureate programs offered by Florida public colleges and universities, including the prerequisites for each program. Students are encouraged to discuss their intended program of study with an academic advisor at their college to ensure they are meeting all requirements to transfer upon completing their AA degree.

Associate in Science (AS) & Associate of Applied Science (AAS)

The Associate in Science (AS) and Associate of Applied Science (AAS) are two-year degrees offered by the FCS designed to prepare students for direct entry into high-demand and fast-growing occupations. Some programs also offer transfer options into related bachelor’s degree programs after completion of the AS or AAS degree. Students are encouraged to meet with an academic advisor at their college to discuss their academic and career goals and options for pursuing a baccalaureate degree.

Career & Technical Programs (CTE)

Career and technical instruction is designed to prepare students for entry into employment. Upon satisfactory completion of a planned program of instruction, a career and technical certificate is awarded. Florida colleges offer different types of certificate programs, such as:

  • Advanced Technical Certificate (ATC): Generally designed for individuals who have already completed a two-year AS degree and are seeking advanced, specialized preparation in a particular career field to supplement their degree.
  • Applied Technology Diplomas (ATD): A non-college credit course of study that is part of an AS or AAS program, is less than sixty (60) credit hours, and leads to employment in a specific occupation. Examples include Dental Assisting and Emergency Medical Technician.
  • Career Certificate: A series of vocational courses that prepare students for entry-level employment in specific career fields. The programs vary in length from 40 hours to more than 1,500 hours. Examples of Career Certificates include Correctional Probation Officer, Cosmetology, Culinary Operations, Fire Fighter, Medical Assistant, and Practical Nursing. Graduates may choose to continue their education into an AS degree program with ease due to many articulation agreements, which may be found here.
  • Certificate of Professional Preparation (CPP): – Consists of not less than nine (9) and not more than thirty (30) credit hours of courses and course equivalent modules to prepare baccalaureate degree holders for licensure, certification, credentialing, examinations, or other demonstrations of competency necessary for entry into a professional occupation. An example is the Certificate of Professional Preparation in Project Management.
  • College Credit Certificate (CCC): Similar to a Career Certificate, however, this must be part of an AS or AAS degree. These certificates can generally be completed in one year or less. Examples include Drafting, Information Technology Technician, Office Specialist, Entrepreneurship, Computer Programming, or Educational Assisting.

Additional Information

Relevant Florida Statutes

  • 1007.01 - Articulation; legislative intent; purpose; role of the State Board of Education and the Board of Governors; Articulation Coordinating Committee
  • 1007.22 - Students with disabilities; definition
  • 1007.233 - Career pathways agreements
  • 1007.23 – Statewide Articulation Agreement (2+2) 
  • 1007.24 - Statewide course numbering system
  • 1007.25 – Articulation and Access
  • 1007.262 - Foreign language competence; equivalence determinations.
  • 1007.263 – Florida College System institutions; admissions of students
  • 1007.27 - Articulated acceleration mechanisms.
  • 1007.33 – Site-determined baccalaureate degree access
  • 1004.91 – Requirements for career education program basic skills
  • 288.8175 - Linkage institutes between postsecondary institutions in this state and foreign countries.

Relevant Florida State Board of Education Rules

  • 6A-14.095 – Site Determined Baccalaureate Access
  • 6A-14.0301 - Withdrawal and Forgiveness
  • 6A-14.0303 - General Education Core Course Options
  • 6A-14.030 - Postsecondary Instructional Unit Definitions and Awards in Florida College System Institutions
  • 6A-14.065 - Meta-Major Academic Pathways
  • 6A-10.02412 - Foreign Language Competence and Equivalence
  • 6A-10.02413 - Civic Literacy Competency

Contact the Division of Florida Colleges

FCSInfo@fldoe.org