Academic Catalog

General Academic Policies for Associate Degrees Designed for University Transfer

Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) 2023-2024

General Academic Policies for Associate Degrees Designed for University Transfer

The following academic policies govern the associate degrees designed for university transfer Associate in Arts (AA); Associate in Arts, Elementary Education (AAEE); Associate in Arts, Fine Arts (AAFA); Associate in Business-General Requirements (ABUS-GR); Associate in Business-Special Requirements (ABUS-SR); and Associate in Science (AS).

Note that academic policies that govern the Associate in General Studies (AGS) and Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degrees are listed separately, with the requirements for each of those degrees.

  • The graduation policies within the general catalog must be satisfied (administrative regulation 2.3.9). First Year Experience required (FYE101 or FYE103)
  • Minimum semester credits for completion vary slightly by degree and specific emphasis (when applicable). Refer to the Program (Degree) Search at for credit minimums for individual degree programs.
  • Credits completed toward these minimums must be in courses numbered 100 or above with a grade of “C” or better. These credits must include a minimum of 351 in satisfaction of the requirements of the Arizona General Education Curriculum (AGEC) along with a maximum of 6 credits towards MCCCD’s Additional Requirements.
  • Detailed degree requirements are maintained by the Center for Curriculum and Transfer Articulation (CCTA); refer to the program search at

General Education Requirements

The AGEC requirements include a designated number of courses approved for each of the following areas:

  • First Year Composition [FYC],
  • Mathematical Applications [MA], Computer/Statistics/Quantitative Applications [CS] (CS not required for Associate in Science),
  • Literacy and Critical Inquiry [L],
  • Humanities, Arts and Design [HU],
  • Social-Behavioral Sciences [SB], and
  • Natural Sciences (Science Quantitative [SQ], Science General [SG])
  • Awareness Area: Cultural Diversity in the U.S. [C]
  • Awareness Area: Global [G] or Historical [H] Awareness
  • Note that there are three different AGECs each aligning with a different subset of associate degrees—AGEC-A for the AA, AAEE, and AAFA degrees, AGEC-B for the ABUS-GR and ABUS-SR degrees, and AGEC-S for the AS degree. For some types of AGECs/Associate degrees, students are allowed to choose from a broad list of courses; for others the courses are more restricted or even specified.
  • A single course can simultaneously count toward one or more areas in the following. Awareness Areas of [C]; and/or  [H]/[G] may be shared with AGEC requirements. MCCCD Additional Requirements e.g. Oral Communication and Critical Reading may be shared with other AGEC requirements. For example, CRE101 may be used to satisfy both the MCCCD Reading Requirement and [L] in the AGEC core. For some degree types, other lower division courses can be used to meet the degree requirements.
  • While multiple requirements can be met with a single course, the credits are only counted one time toward the required minimum for the degree. Except for the AGEC-S, a single course cannot be used to satisfy more than one AGEC core requirement, with the exception of Awareness Areas. For example, a course cannot be used to satisfy [HU] and [SB], but a course can be used to meet [HU] and [C], [G] and/or [H].
  • The AGEC-A and AGEC-B require a minimum of 35 credits1 and the AGEC-S requires a minimum of 36 credits1, however, the AGEC credit count within the total credits for a degree may be under these minimums if  courses are also applied toward Required Courses or Restricted Electives and the credits are counted in those areas. Awareness Areas and MCCCD’s Additional Requirements may also be shared with AGEC Core Areas.  Optimizing credits in this way is often recommended because some programs and universities limit transferable credits at 64.
  • All MCCCD courses applied to the AGEC must be completed with a grade of “C” or better. All MCCCD courses applied to the AGEC must be accepted for transfer credit as a direct equivalent, departmental elective, or general elective credit at ASU, NAU, and UAZ according to the Course Equivalency Guide for the academic year in which the course was taken. Courses applied exclusively to the Bachelor of Applied Science are ineligible for inclusion in the AGEC.

Credit minimums may be lower if students have transfer credit from ASU, NAU or UAZ for a single course that meets First Year Composition in full. See notes on individual degree policies.

Coursework Beyond General Education

  • For some degree types, the additional coursework required to complete the degree is specified while others offer the student more latitude.  See degree checksheets for more complete description.  Consultation with an academic advisor about course selection is always recommended.
  • Oral Communication and Critical Reading are MCCCD Additional Requirements required for Associate in Arts, Associate in Arts, Elementary Education, Associate in Arts, Fine Arts and Associate in Science degrees. Refer to the Program (Degree) Search at for acceptable options to meet these requirements for individual degree programs.
  • Within the Restricted Electives, course recommendations are made for specific transfer institutions. Students should select a transfer plan (group of courses) based on their intended transfer institution. However, not all transfer institutions are reflected in these recommendations. Therefore, students may instead meet the minimum number of Restricted Elective credits using a combination of courses from the transfer plans listed. Restricted Electives should be selected in consultation with an academic, faculty, or program advisor.
  • Note that some majors require up to a 4th semester proficiency (202-course level) in a non-English language. Students should consult with an academic advisor to discuss options to complete these requirements.
  • General Electives may need to be selected to meet the minimum total credits required for the degree. Maricopa courses and external courses evaluated as Maricopa equivalents, departmental electives, (e.g., HISELC for a history elective), or general electives (GENELC) that are numbered 100 level or higher, and completed with a grade of "C" or higher, may be applied in the elective area, regardless of potential transferability to other institutions. It is recommended, however, that students planning to transfer to a baccalaureate-granting institution meet these general elective requirements with courses that are transferable and applicable to their intended university degree. Transfer advisement information is accessible on the following websites:,, as well as those of individual universities. For appropriate course selection, students should consult with an academic advisor.
  • Any course cross-referenced under another prefix(es) (for example ENH291/EDU291 Children's Literature) covers identical content and its credits can only be counted once toward requirements.

Transfer Credit from Institutions Outside of MCCCD

  • Credits transferred from outside of MCCCD must be at a grade of “C” (2.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better. Transfer credit graded pass/fail or pass/no credit may be used to satisfy AGEC requirements if documentation collected by the community college indicates that this was the only grading option available and that the Pass grade (“P”) is equivalent to a “C” or better.
  • External courses evaluated either as equivalent to an MCCCD course or as elective credit may be applied toward the minimum credits for degree completion.
  • The AGEC (Arizona General Education Curriculum) designations of courses completed at other Arizona public colleges or universities will be applied as listed on AZTransfer's Course Equivalency Guide (CEG) for the semester(s) in which the course(s) were completed. If a transcript evaluation determines there is no MCCCD direct equivalency to a course from another Arizona public college or university, applicability to AGEC and/or associate degree requirements will be based on the source institution's AGEC designation for the semester in which the course was completed.
  • Courses from private, out-of-state, and/or online institutions (i.e., outside of the Arizona Transfer System comprised of Arizona's public community colleges, tribal colleges and universities) will be applied toward AGEC and/or associate degree requirements based on the courses’ evaluated MCCCD equivalence. If courses are not directly equivalent, the credit may be articulated as a departmental elective, and if deemed appropriate, may have a general education designation applied to the course.
  • Credit awarded at a Maricopa Community College  through prior learning assessment is transferable to the other colleges in the district but is not necessarily transferable to other colleges and universities. No more than 20 such assessed semester credit hours may be applied toward AGEC, and no more than 30 credits (including up to 20 toward AGEC) may be applied toward a degree.

Completion and Transfer

  • Completion of the AGEC with a minimum Grade Point Average of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale for Arizona residents and 2.50 for non-residents meets Arizona public university general admission requirements. It does not ensure admission to specific university majors or programs with selective admission processes and/or limited enrollment.
  • While MCCCD’s associate degrees are designed to facilitate a seamless transfer to other Arizona institutions, courses may be transferable and/or meet associate degree requirements, but may not necessarily meet the specific requirements of a particular degree, major, or area of emphasis at another institution.

    Students planning to transfer to another college or university are urged to refer to university requirements and academic advisors from both institutions to be certain that all their selected coursework is applicable to the requirements of their intended transfer degree and within their allowed transferable credit limit. For some majors, the statewide Common Course matrix and AZTransfer Major Guides at and/or university transfer guides can also provide some guidance. For appropriate course selection, students should consult with an academic advisor.

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