10 High Paying Jobs You Can Get with an Associate Degree

These are the Top 10 High Paying Jobs offer to make an above average salary in the United States with an Associate Degree that typically takes less time and money than a Normal bachelor’s degree.

While it is true that many jobs require a bachelor’s or master’s degree, but the reality is that an associate’s degree can open up many job opportunities for you as well.

In fact, earning an associate degree can be your good investment, especially for those individuals who want the benefits of earning a college degree without the time and money it usually requires.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment was projected to increase by 11 percent for occupations requiring associate degrees or professional certificates between 2016 and 2026 . Furthermore, associate degree holders have been found to make an average of $140 more per week than those with only a high school diploma, for a weekly average salary of $890.

10 High Paying Jobs You Can Get with an Associate Degree
10 High Paying Jobs You Can Get with an Associate Degree

In this article, you will read about 10 High Paying Jobs that pay more than the median salary in the United States that also have significant job growth.

Read: What is an Associate Degree? Need, Cost, and More

What Jobs You Can Get With an Associate’s Degree?

There are so many well paying jobs that you can get with an associate degree.

The list given below was created using data from the BLS and includes a wide range of jobs that not only provide annual earnings above the national average but are also projected to grow over the next decade.

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10 High Paying Jobs with an associate degree are given below:

Job TitleMedian Annual Salary
Web Developer$82,171
Dental Hygienist$92,328
Registered Nurse$93,180
Radiographers & MRI Technologist$73,875
Respiratory Therapist$125,690
Diagnostic Imaging Worker$53,963
Computer Network Support Specialist$56,520
Occupational Therapy Assistant$73,964
Paralegal & Legal Assistant$49,408
Real Estate Agents$94,549
*All data sourced from the Indeed.com (January 2023) unless otherwise stated

1. Web Developer:- A web developer (often called as programmer) is a person who specializes in the development of applications and services for the World Wide Web. They use a variety of programming languages and technologies to create websites, web applications, and other web services.

In Order to become a web developer, you don’t always need a degree if you have the right skills, but employers may prefer to hire those with associate’s or bachelor’s degrees. If you’re taking the associate degree route, you may consider obtaining an Associate of Science (AS) in computer science, information technology or a related field. Whichever path you choose, taking additional web development courses online or offline can be a wise way to hone your skill set.

  • Web Developer Salary in USA: $82,171
  • Projected employment growth rate: 13 percent (faster than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: HS diploma, associate degree, bachelor’s degree

2. Dental Hygienist:-

A dentist focuses on the prevention and treatment of oral diseases in both children and adults. Often, they are also responsible for assisting with general office operations. A dental hygienist’s day usually begins with taking exams and screening patients.

To become a dental hygienist, you’ll need to earn an associate’s degree in dental hygiene, which is available at many universities, community colleges and technical school. If you’re looking for a program, the Commission on Dental Accreditation accredits hundreds of dental hygienist programs in the United States, and take about three years to complete. Dental hygienists must obtain licensed in their state.

  • Dental Hygienist Salary in USA: $92,328
  • Projected employment growth rate: 11 percent (faster than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree in dental hygiene

3. Registered Nurse

A registered nurse (RN) is generally a licensed nurse who works as part of a team with doctors and physicians to provide patient care. Registered nurses supervise licensed practical nurses (LPNs), certified nursing assistants (CNAs).

Generally, there are three ways to become a registered nurse: first a bachelor’s degree program in nursing, second an associate degree program in nursing, or third a diploma from an accredited nursing program. RNs must also obtain a nursing license in their state.

  • Registered Nurse Salary in USA: $93,180
  • Projected employment growth rate: 9 percent (as fast as average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree, bachelor’s degree, or a diploma from an approved nursing program

4. Radiographers & MRI Technologist

An MRI technologist is the one who operates a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner to create 3D images of organs and body parts inside a patient that are easily accessible non-invasive using radiography. As an MRI technologist, you will work closely with a radiologist and take X-rays or perform CAT scans but the diagnosis is in the hands of the radiologist.

To become a radiographer or MRI technologist, you will need at least an associate degree in a related field of study and be state licensed. Often you must have prior experience working as a radiographer before being hired as an MRI technologist.

  • Radiographers & MRI Technologist Salary in USA: $73,875
  • Projected employment growth rate: 9 percent (as fast as average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree & certification

5. Respiratory Therapist

Respiratory therapists interview and examine patients with breathing or cardiopulmonary disorders. Respiratory therapists look after patients who have trouble breathing – for example, due to conditions such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

To become a respiratory therapist, you’ll need at least an associate’s degree, but some employers may prefer those with bachelor’s degrees. In addition, you will need to obtain national licensure and certification through the National Board for Respiratory Care.

  • Respiratory Therapist Salary in USA: $125,690
  • Projected employment growth rate: 23 percent (much faster than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree and state licensure

6. Diagnostic Imaging Worker

Diagnostic imaging allows doctors to look inside your body for clues about a medical condition. A variety of machines and techniques can create pictures of structures and activities inside your body.

To become a diagnostic imaging worker, you will need to earn an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in sonography or cardiovascular technology. Common areas of study include health care, biology, and science technologies. Many employers will also prefer that diagnostic imaging employees be certified through an accredited program.

  • Diagnostic Imaging Worker Salary in USA: $53,963
  • Projected Employment growth rate: 14 percent (faster than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree or postsecondary certificate and accredited certification

7. Computer Network Support Specialist

Computer Network Support Specialists are trained experts and are extremely helpful in computer networking of an organization. They provide support and guidance to system users and businesses. Systems specialists either support computer networks or they provide technical support directly to computer users.

To become a computer network support specialist (or a technical support specialist), you’ll typically need at least an associate’s degree, but some employers may prefer applicants with bachelor’s degrees.

  • Computer Network Support Specialist Salary in USA: $56,520
  • Projected Employment growth rate: 9 percent (as fast as average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree

8. Occupational Therapy Assistant

Occupational therapy assistants and aides help patients develop, recover, improve as well as maintain the skills they need for daily living and work.

To become an occupational therapy assistant, you’ll need an associate’s degree from an accredited program, usually offered at community colleges and technical schools. Often, occupational therapy assistants will need certification for CPR and basic life support.

  • Occupational Therapy Assistant Salary in USA: $73,964
  • Projected Employment growth rate: 34 percent (much faster than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: Associate degree and certification

9. Paralegal & Legal Assistant

Paralegals and legal assistants help attorneys prepare for hearings, trials and corporate meetings. Paralegals use technology and computer software to manage and organize the ever-increasing amount of documents and data collected during the course of a case.

In order to become a Paralegal & Legal Assistant you should have an associate’s degree in paralegal studies, although some employers may require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree. Those with a bachelor’s degree must earn a certificate in paralegal studies from a program approved by the American Bar Association.

  • Paralegal & Legal Assistant salary in USA: $49,408
  • Projected employment growth rate: 12 percent (faster than average)
  • Common qualification includes: Associate degree or certificate in paralegal studies

10. Real Estate Agents

A real estate agent is a licensed professional who arranges real estate transactions, putting together buyers and sellers and acting as their representative in negotiations.

It is possible for you to become a real estate agent with only a high school diploma, but you must be licensed by your state. Some community colleges offer an associate degree in real estate management or real estate studies.

  • Real Estate Agents salary in USA: $94,549
  • Projected employment growth rate: 4 percent (slower than average)
  • Common qualifications includes: High school diploma or equivalent, associate degree, or bachelor’s degree, plus state license

Read:- Associate Degree Vs Bachelors Degree. Which is Better?

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