ATU to Offer BAS degree in Response to Industry Requests

Arkansas Tech University will offer a new opportunity this fall for those who have completed an Associate of Applied Science degree to take the next step in their education. The need for the degree was recognized after a fall 2016 survey of 32 Arkansas industrial, manufacturing and technical companies.

Through that survey, employers identified 40 individual positions which would benefit from having access to a bachelor’s degree or currently require a bachelor’s degree. Representative positions included front line supervisors, plant manager, human resources, sales manager, production manager, farm manager, project manager, maintenance manager, fleet supervisor, team leaders, platform leaders and buyers.

An additional survey cited in the letter of notification found that 83.7 percent of ATU-Ozark Campus students would be interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Applied Science degree online if it provided a seamless transition from the Associate of Applied Science degree.

Associate of Applied Science graduates entering the Bachelor of Applied Science degree program may transfer 54 hours of credits. Students will complete an additional 66 hours in pursuit of the bachelor’s degree, including 26 hours of required general education courses and 40 hours of upper-division hours.

“The Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.) degree provides students who have earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in any discipline a seamless transition to the online B.A.S. degree,” wrote Dr. Jeff Aulgur, head of the Department of Professional Studies, in the letter of notification. “This stackable education sequence enhances an individual’s academic qualifications and increases potential career upward mobility.”

The Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board (AHECB) approved a letter of notification stating Arkansas Tech’s intention to offer an online Bachelor of Applied Science degree beginning with the fall 2017 semester.

Dr. Mohamed Abdelrahman, vice president for academic affairs at ATU, wrote in a memorandum presented to the ATU Board of Trustees that the Bachelor of Applied Science degree program will allow students to “gain skills identified as being essential by many employers,” including communication, writing, strategic thinking, leadership and organizational skills.

Individuals seeking more information about the online ATU Bachelor of Applied Science degree may call (479) 968-0318 or send an e-mail to ps@atu.edu.

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