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Is associate's degree program in computer science worth nowadays?

I will mention most important courses of this particular curriculum.

Introduction to Programming (C), Programming Techniques (C++), Data Structures and Algorithms, Software Development (Java), Software verification and validation, Frontend development, Backend development, Databases, Computer architectures, Networks, Information Systems, Logic in Computer Science, Discrete Mathematics, Linear Algebra, Probability and Statistics.

Internship is part of curriculum and university is required to find suitable company.

What are your honest thoughts about this degree program compared to Bachelor's or Master's degrees? Will someone with these degree be considered as worth candidate?

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  • That's a lot of courses! That's twice as many courses as in the CS associate's program where I teach, and we're at the maximum credits permitted for a program by the university. Commented Apr 7 at 19:38

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What are your honest thoughts about this degree program compared to Bachelor's or Master's degrees?

Both BSc and MSc teach a lot of topics that are completely worthless to any normal company. University courses teach science. But companies don't need scientists, they need workers. Knowledge workers nowadays, but companies don't care if something is scientifically sound, well sourced, properly cited, they only care if it makes them money and doesn't break existing laws.

Many, many things you you learn at university, that seem important then, are things you will never use again in the real world. 99% of software developers have mundane jobs. They are not at the forefront of technology. They aren't developing the hottest and latest breaking tech, they are developing a web shop or internal configuration software making someone money.

Many companies are looking for BSc candidates, because that is the lowest common denominator. It exists almost everywhere in the world and is roughly comparable.

If you look at it this way, this assosciates degree seems to me like it would be ideal for companies that look for software developers. It teaches what they need and leave out what 99% of companies do not need.

Will someone with these degree be considered as worth candidate?

Well, the problem is, there is no valid scale to measure that with. Should it be enough in the average company with an informed leadership? Absolutely.

But what if the leadership is crap and they pointlessly insist on having a masters degree to craft their 27th web shop? What if in your region there is only companies that handle delicate science tasks and actually need scientists? What if you live right next to a huge university that churns out hundreds of bachelors per year and in your region you are the odd one out with a lower degree?

The only way to find out is to look at what companies you would want to apply for are looking for. Find out if they would employ people with an Associates degree. That is the only measurement you can really go by, because it doesn't matter what your title should enable you to do later, if in reality, it doesn't.

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    Good point: "Many companies are looking for BSc candidates, because that is the lowest common denominator" Commented Apr 8 at 6:41
  • thank you very much for detailed answer and help
    – codproe
    Commented Apr 9 at 2:16
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When does Masters help? It helps for: For people that desire a highly specialized career path.

Associates are good for starter jobs in more general paths.

Bachleor's - IMHO - tend to be more of a crapshoot depending on the school and the program.

My view is NOT from a FAANG company. I have a company with 25 people. We look for how much someone wants to learn than what paper they have.

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