Standards for Associate of Science, Associate of Applied Science Degrees, Diplomas, and Technical Certificates of Credit
Associate of Science/Associate of Applied Science Degrees
The Associate of Science (AS) is offered for students who intend to enter the workforce and/or immediately continue their education at the baccalaureate level. The Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree is offered for technical program students who intend to enter the workforce upon graduation. The range of semester credit hours required for graduation with an AS or AAS degree is 60 to 73; some programs may exceed this range. Associate degree programs shall be composed of a minimum of 15 semester credit hours of collegiate-level general education core courses numbered at 1100 or above and a minimum of 40 semester credit hours of courses in technical areas.
Components of the general education core for degree programs must include at least one course from each of the following four areas:
- Language Arts/Communications;
- Social/Behavioral Sciences;
- Natural Sciences/Mathematics;
- Humanities/Fine Arts
Diploma programs are offered for technical program students who intend to enter the workforce upon graduation. The range of semester credit hours required for graduation with a diploma is typically 37 to 59; however, some programs may exceed this range. Only general education courses numbered 1000 or above shall be credited toward diploma requirements. Each diploma program shall require a minimum basic core of 8 semester credit hours in general education courses and a minimum of 28 semester credit hours in occupational courses.
Technical Certificates of Credit
Technical Certificate of Credit programs shall be organized as a coherent set of competencies that correspond to identifiable exit points which match positions in a field of work. The range of semester credit hours required for graduation is generally 9 to 36. The technical certificate may be used to provide programs in areas of specialization that do not require study of sufficient length to award a diploma or degree or to add on areas of specialization after the completion of a diploma or degree. Technical certificates of credit may require any combination of general education and occupational courses, specific occupational courses, or approved elective courses. Only courses numbered 1000 or above shall be credited toward technical certificate requirements.
Expanded Statement of Institutional Purpose: To provide quality technical and academic instruction leading to associate of applied science degrees, associate of science diplomas, and technical certificates of credit.
WGTC Rationale for General Education
General education requirements for degree seeking students must provide the basic and advanced skills that may be required for success in the professional world. A well-rounded general education at the collegiate level in the twenty-first century prepares graduates with an ability to communicate, both orally and in writing, a capacity to understand behavioral science, and an understanding of appropriate mathematical concepts. In addition, the general education requirements for all programs will support success in the workplace and in the society, so as to facilitate the achievement of lifelong learning.
General Education Competencies
Competency 1: Students will demonstrate proficiency in oral and written communication skills.
Competency 2: Students will be able to use critical thinking to analyze readings and solve problems.
Competency 3: Students will be able to comprehend and use mathematical concepts and methods to solve problems effectively.
Competency 4: Students will be able to understand basic human interactions and behaviors.
Competency 5: Students will understand the basics of science and the scientific method.
Competency 6: Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge in humanities or literature.
Program standards, competencies, exit points, and minimum course credit requirements designated for each major code are established by the program-specific standards of the State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia.
Each degree, diploma, and technical certificate of credit program is assigned a statewide major code and utilizes essential standards and competencies designated for that statewide major code. Program components designated for a given degree, diploma, and technical certificate of credit program major code include, but are not limited to:
- essential general education, basic skills, and occupational courses (as applicable); and
- minimum number of total semester credit hours required for graduation.
Methods of Instruction
Definition of a credit hour:
Credit hour, as defined in the U.S. Department of Education guidance to institutions and accrediting agencies regarding a credit hour as defined in the final regulations published on October 29, 2010.
An amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates not less than:
- one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or trimester hour of credit, or ten to twelve weeks for one quarter hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time, or
- At least an equivalent amount of work as required outlined in item 1 above for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.
One distance learning or blended course credit is defined as an equivalent amount of instruction and student work leading to equivalent learning outcomes, as required for a traditional class.
Academic courses are conducted using six basic methods of instruction:
- Classroom Lecture: Instruction in a traditional classroom setting combining instructor lecture, student participation, and testing.
- Laboratory/Industrial: Demonstration by instructors and performance by students in a realistic setting which replicates the workplace to the maximum extent possible.
- Internship/Externship/Apprenticeship: Job performance by the student in an actual workplace with oversight and instruction by WGTC instructors and administrators employed by the company or institution.
- Online Synchronous: Courses taught fully online synchronously with course content, activities and interactions occurring entirely online. This delivery method requires students to be online at specific dates/times during the term. Online synchronous courses may require proctored events.
- Online Asynchronous: Courses taught fully online asynchronously with course content, activities and interactions occurring entirely online. This delivery method does not require students to be online at specific dates/times, and students may participate in class activities and complete course assignments asynchronously. Online asynchronous courses may require proctored events.
- Blended: Blended courses are distance learning courses with the majority of the course content, activities and interactions occurring online (>50% but <100% online) but may require students to come on campus for specific labs, assignments, activities, or events.
Wiregrass Georgia Technical College is part of a state network of colleges called Georgia Virtual Technical Connection (GVTC). Through GVTC, technical colleges throughout the state offer technical certificates, diplomas, and degrees online.
All online courses follow TCSG guidelines regarding curriculum, objectives, and competencies. A complete list of these guidelines, objectives, and competencies can be found on the TCSG web site (www.tcsg.edu).
Programs offered online through the Georgia Virtual Technical Connection have admission, retention, and credential requirements that are qualitatively consistent with those in effect for on-campus programs. In addition, Wiregrass Georgia Technical College’s online classes follow quality assurance criteria standards.
Students registered for online courses should self-enroll in the Distance Education Blackboard Orientation for information regarding beginning an online course and understanding the learning management system, Blackboard.
Questions regarding online instruction may be directed to the WGTC Online Office. The e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Technical College System of Georgia’s eCampus platform allows students from across Georgia to enroll in online courses offered by other Technical College System of Georgia colleges, providing students access to program courses that may not be available during the current term at their home college. Upon completion of an eCampus course, the student will earn credit at their home college. The courses available via the eCampus platform are chosen to prepare students for in-demand career opportunities.
Time Format for Scheduled Class Offerings
Regularly scheduled classes fall into three time-frames: Day, Extended Day, and Evenings.
Day: Generally scheduled from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday
Extended Day: Generally scheduled to begin between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
Evening: Generally scheduled between 5 p.m. and 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Certain courses meet Mondays and Wednesdays and others meet Tuesdays and Thursdays.
A student may not register for more than 18 credit hours without the express written permission of a Dean of Academic Affairs or the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs. A student registering for courses outside his or her declared major may be charged additional tuition and fees in accordance with the published fee schedule.
Full-Time Student Status
A student registered for a minimum of 12 credit hours is considered a full-time student.
General Education courses do not expire. Occupational courses expire after 10 years (120 months).
Notice and Responsibilities Regarding this Catalog
The information in this College Catalog and Student Handbook accurately reflects current policies and procedures at the time of publication. Students are admitted to the College under and are subject to the provisions of the WGTC Catalog and Student Handbooks for the term they initially enroll. Students in all programs are admitted under and are subject to the provisions of the College Catalog and Student Handbook and applicable addendums for the term they are admitted to the program at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College. If for any reason a break in enrollment occurs, students must reapply and satisfy the College Catalog and Student Handbook requirements for the term of their re-entry to any program. The provisions of this catalog are not to be regarded as an irrevocable contract between Wiregrass Georgia Technical College and the student. The College reserves the right to change any provision or requirement at any time.