Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Associate of Arts

The Associate of Arts program provides you with a broad academic education to prepare you for upper-level university study and the workforce.

What Can You Do With This Credential?

Use the credits you gain in this program toward your completion of a degree, increase your employability, or simply enjoy the experience of university.

 Program Requirements

Some program requirements may be met with credits earned through prior learning assessment and recognition (PLAR).

Admission Requirements

Open admission

Please include the Program Admission Form with your application.

Residency Requirements

A minimum of 9 TRU credits (distance or on-campus)

Degree Requirements

60 credits total of first- and second-year (lower-level) courses and some upper-level courses, with a grade point average (GPA) of 2.00 or higher over all courses required for this credential, as follows:

6 credits in English (university-level composition and literature), excluding technical and business writing courses

18 credits in first-year Arts other than English, including 6 credits in social sciences and 6 in humanities (including creative and performing arts but not including studio courses), with no more than 6 credits in any one subject area

18 credits of second-year Arts in two or more subject areas

6 credits in natural science (anthropology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, physics, physical geography), including 3 credits in a laboratory science

3 credits in mathematics, statistics or computer science

9 credits of first- and second-year courses


Some interdisciplinary areas of studies may be allocated to more than one of the subject areas, depending on course content.

The first-year science requirement includes a 1-credit, hands-on lab component  that accompanies the 3-credit course; for example, BIOL 1113/ BIOL 1115, BIOL 1213/ BIOL 1215, GEOG 1221, GEOL 1111, PHYS 1103/ PHYS 1105, PHYS 1203/ PHYS 1205.

Additional credits (if any) earned in first-year lab courses do not count toward the 60 credits required.

No course may be used to meet more than one of the specific requirements.

Transfer and Credit Options

Courses used to complete the Associate of Arts program must have transfer credit to one other BC university, including Simon Fraser University (SFU), University of British Columbia (UBC), University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC), and University of Victoria (UVic).

Student Responsibility

Consult with your Program Advisor to ensure that the courses you select can be applied toward the program requirements of your chosen credential.

Also, before you register in a course not listed on the OL website, you must apply for a letter of permission. Otherwise, you may find that either course credits cannot be applied to your program or you must pay a transcript reassessment fee.


Please see Tuition and Fees for estimated costs.

 Contact Us

Please contact us to speak with us about how to apply to the Associate of Arts program.