Technical Degrees and Certificates

Students may begin with an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) or they may pursue a career pathway in increments, beginning with an occupational certificate and proceed through levels of certificates of technology. Some technical programs provide education beyond the AAS degree.

All AAS degree plans include one or more courses designed to meet each of the Department of Labor Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS) requirements. Students who successfully complete the curricula requirements of a technical program have passed courses that demonstrate competency in the basic use of computers.

Completion of the semester credit hours for an occupational certificate does not qualify students to participate in the commencement ceremony. For information, students may refer to the Graduation section.

Texas House Bill 1508

Texas House Bill 1508 requires colleges to inform students with a criminal background that a criminal record may preclude them from being licensed for certain professions. Students who have questions about their background and licensure, may speak with a faculty member or the program Department Chair.

Programs with Licensure Requirements Central North South
Air Conditioning Technology X X
Child Development/Early Childhood Development X X
Computed Tomography X
Cosmetology X X X
Criminal Justice X X
Diagnostic Medical Sonography X
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) X X
Eye Care Technology X
Invasive Cardiovascular Technology (IVCT) X
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) X
Mammography X
Maritime Transportation X
Massage Therapy X X
Medical Assisting X
Medical Laboratory Technology X
Medical Radiography X
Mental Health Services X
Occupational Therapy Assistant X
Pharmacy Technician X X
Physical Therapist Assistant X
Real Estate X X X
Registered Nursing (RN) X X X
Respiratory Care X
Surgical Technology X
Teacher Certification/Education X X X
Vocational Nursing (VN) X X

Associate of Applied Science

The College awards an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree to students who complete 60 semester credit hours of technical requirements, including 15 semester credit hours of general education courses. Programs may only exceed 60 SCH with an exemption from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB).

Enhanced Skills Certificate

The Enhanced Skills Certificate is considered to be a continuation of the AAS degree program. Therefore, to qualify for the Enhanced Skills Certificate, the student must complete all of the AAS requirements for the degree as well as at least six and no more than 12 semester credit hours required for the certificate. A course for which credit has been earned may not fulfill a requirement for both the degree and certificate. Each course earned can fulfill only one course requirement in the continuum of courses required, and no single course will count for both degree and certificate purposes. For courses students may repeat multiple times for credit, the course may be utilized, as appropriate, as many times as credit is earned. Substitution for specified courses required in the enhanced skills certificate is not allowed. Completion of an Enhanced Skills Certificate does not qualify students to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Advanced Technical Certificate

An Advanced Technical Certificate is a certificate that has a defined associate or baccalaureate degree as a prerequisite, consisting of at least 16 and no more than 45 semester credit hours. It is focused and clearly related to the prerequisite degree, and meets industry or external agency requirements. An Advanced Technical Certificate is attached to an AAS degree in the same program area as the AAS degree. An AAS degree program provides a shortened track for students who already hold a related degree.

Occupational Certificate

The College awards the Occupational Certificate to students who satisfactorily complete the required technical courses of at least 15-23 semester credit hour (SCH) programs, including credit-by-exam, or credit-by-certification.

Certificate of Technology

The College awards the Certificate of Technology to students who complete the required sequence of technical courses of at least 24 and no more than 42 SCH.

Level 2 Certificate of Technology

A Level 2 Certificate of Technology consists of at least 30 and no more than 51 SCH. Students in all Level 2 certificate areas shall be subject to the requirements of the TSI.