How Many Credits To Graduate College? (Everything You Need To Know…)

How Many Credits To Graduate College?

I remember searching how many credits I needed to graduate college my Freshman year. It was all so confusing at first!

I found out quickly the number of credits I need to graduate college depends greatly on the degree I want to earn. So, I have done my research and broken it down easily so you can skip the headaches and know exactly how many credits you will need to graduate!

How Many Credits To Graduate College?

To graduate college you need 60 credits for an Associate Degree and 120 credits for a Bachelor’s Degree. The number of credits needed for a masters degree varies depending on the program.

Want to learn more about college credits and how many you need to graduate on time? Keep reading..

How Many Credits To Graduate College?

How Many Credits Do You Need For An Associate Degree?

To graduate with Associate Degree you typically need 60 credits, which is around 20 courses. An Associate Degree takes about two years to complete and is the first stepping stone many students take before going after their Bachelors degree.

An Associate Degree is typically required for most entry-level jobs. There are a lot of associate degree programs that are tailored for specific jobs and career fields.

A guidance counselor would be able to help you greatly in choosing the right program for you.

Regardless of whether it’s a career-specific Associates degree or a general-studies program, you will need around 60 credits to graduate.

How Many Credits for a Bachelor’s Degree?

A Bachelor’s Degree is what most students aim for and it is the next step up from an Associates Degree. To graduate with a Bachelors degree you need 120 credit, which is around 40 courses.

A Bachelor’s Degree takes most students 4 years to achieve. This varies greatly depending on whether the student took AP classes in high school or is a part-time vs. full-time student.

Bachelors degrees are more specific than Associates degrees and prepare students to enter a particular field upon graduating.

A lot of Bachelors programs offer students the opportunity to study a specific concentration within a field of study. Adding a concentration to your Bachelors degree gives you. step up once you enter the job market.

For example, if you are studying Psychology, you can take some specific courses on child and adolescent development. If applying for a position at a school or children’s hospital, you’ll have a leg up on the competition.

How Many Credits for a Master’s Degree?

A Masters degree is very different from an Associates or Bachelors. A Masters degree can easily skyrocket your career options and make you extremely desirable for recruiters.

It is so desirable that some employers will even offer to pay part of the tuition cost.

The credits required for a Master Degree vary greatly though. Each programs has different rules, guidelines, and minimum requirements.

A Masters Degree typically takes between 1-2 years of full-time study to complete. The number of credits required varies between 30-60 for most programs.

How Many Hours Is 3 Credits?

In a 14 week program, one credit is a minimum of 3 hours of student engagement per week. Thus, 3 credits is 9 hours of student engagement (in a 14-week program.)

These hours aren’t all class time, they include discussions, readings, lectures, and assignments.

Most courses are 3 credits.

Do College Credits Expire?

No, typically college credits don’t expire. Many credits can be transferred or applied to a new degree program.

A lot of students take time away from college but they won’t lose the credits they have already taken.

Just note, if you leave college for a couple of years, your credits will still be available but you’ll most likely have to reapply to the college and be accepted to finish the program.

However, some course credits within the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields expire within 10 years after the time they were earned. This makes sense as the field is changing rapidly.

Enjoyed this post about graduation? Check out these related articles as well o what happens if you fail a class 3 times in college and how to establish credit as a college student


In order to graduate with your Bachelor’s Degree you’ll need 120 credits. For an Associates Degree you’ll need 60 credits.

It takes students 2 years to graduate with an Associates degree and 4 years for a Bachelors.

Credits don’t expire and can be transferred for a new program. However, if you are in a science, technology, or engineering field and have been away from school for over 10 years, it’s likely you’ll need to retake some credits to be able to graduate.

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