25 Most Affordable Online Associate’s in Human Resources for 2021



human resources associate's degree online

Working adults who want a career change into human resources may find they don’t have the time to go back to school. But today, many schools now offer associate’s degrees in human resources online. Whether it comes from a local community college, a well-known national online school, or some other provider, the best human resources associate’s degree online programs help working adults create new opportunities. 

Fortunately, associate degree in human resources jobs offer a person an opportunity to learn the field and grow. Plus, a person can choose between associates degree in human resources jobs and continue to work. After a person finds one of the human resources associate jobs, he or she can continue to work and learn firsthand. While earning a wage with one of the associates in human resources jobs, a person can go back to school and earn a bachelor’s degree online to further his or her wage. 

How We Ranked the Best Online Associate’s Degrees in Human Resources

For the Value Colleges ranking of the best values in online human resources associate’s programs, VC editors focused on trusted, accredited colleges. Our ranking is based on our definition of value, using data from IPEDS and Niche about tuition, student satisfaction, and potential salary. 

1. American Public University

American Public University’s School of Business offers an associates degree in human resources online in Management that allows for up to 77% of required credits to be transferred from eligible schools. APU’s online associates degree in human resources requires the completion of 60 semester credits in classes that cover 8 week formats. American Public University’s human resources online associates degree has received accreditation from the ACBSP and choose a concentration in retail management or human resources. American Public University’s human resources associates degree online includes classes in ethics fundamentals, human relations, and organizational fundamentals, to name a few.

American Public University (APU) is a private higher learning institution that is a part of the American Public University system. The school serves more than 45,900 students on its Charles Town campus and online. More than one-half of the students at American Public University have a military background.

Degree: AA in Management 

2. Penn State World Campus

Penn State World Campus offers a human resources online associates degree with a specialty track of Labor and Human Resources (LHR). Penn State WC’s associates degree in human resources online program requires the completion of 60 semester units and prepares degree candidates for careers as payroll specialists,  labor relations administrators, union representatives, and human resources assistants, to name a few. Coursework for Penn State WC’s online associates degree in human resources includes employment relationship, labor and employment relations, and research methods in labor/employment, among others. The human resources associates degree online offered by World Campus requires degree candidates to finish with a grade of ‘C’ or better to graduate.

Penn State World Campus (Penn State WC) was founded in 1998 as the distance learning extension of Pennsylvania State University. More than 14,100 students attend online classes offered by Penn State World Campus. Pennsylvania State University has been a pioneer in distance learning, providing coursework since 1892.

Degree: AS in Labor and Human Resources

3. Northcentral Technical College

Northcentral Technical College offers a human resources associates degree online program that requires the completion of 60 to 61 credit units, depending on the exact curriculum path chosen by the student. NTC’s online associates degree in human resources is not only available entirely online but at a number of NTC’s campuses. Students enrolled in NTC’s associates degree in human resources online program explore classes in payroll accounting, human resource analytics, employment law, and employment recruitment, plus a capstone project in human resources. The human resources online associates degree prepares degree candidates for careers in staffing, payroll, and benefits, labor relations, or training, among others.

Northcentral Technical College (NTC) was established in 1912. NTC serves a number of counties in Wisconsin with a student enrollment that exceeds 5,600 students studying both part-time and full-time. NTC operates regional satellite facilities in Wittenberg, Antigo, Spencer, Medford, Phills, and Merrill.

Degree: Associate’s in Human Resources

4. Chippewa Valley Technical College

Chippewa Valley Technical College offers human resources online associates degree that is available on the Eau Claire campus or entirely online. Degree candidates studying for their online associates degree in human resources are required to finish 60 semester credits. Students graduate from this associates degree in human resources online program and enter the workforce as client relations specialists, area recruiters, employment specialists, or staff consultants, among others. Chippewa Valley’s human resources associates degree online program offers students two start dates each year – one in August and the other in January.

Chippewa Valley Technical College (Chippewa Valley) refers to three related campuses in Eau Claire – West, Clairemont, and Gateway. In addition, Chippewa Valley Technical College operates several regional academic service facilities in River Falls, Menomonie, Chippewa Falls, and Neillsville. More than 14,000 students attend continuing classes offered by Chippewa Valley Technical College.

Degree: Associate’s in Human Resources

5. Northeast Wisconsin Technical College

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College offers a human resources associates degree online program that has received accreditation from the ACBSP. Northeast Wisconsin Technical College’s associates degree in human resources online program prepares degree candidates for rewarding careers as hiring coordinators, payroll coordinators, compensation specialists, training advisors, and human resources assistants, to name a few.  NWTC’s online associates degree in human resources includes classes in human resource management, labor relations, HR organization metrics, and intro to diversity studies, among others. This human resources online associates degree requires the completion of 63 semester credits to meet program requirements.

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) was established in 1912. NWTC serves nine counties in the state, with a  student enrollment that exceeds 40,400 students. Northeast Wisconsin Technical College offers nearly 200 programs at various degree levels and technical diplomas.

Degree: Associate’s in Human Resources

6. Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College offers a human resources online associates degree with a management emphasis. WITC’s online associates degree in human resources is completed in about two years, with the completion of 61 semester credits. Students enrolled in this associates degree in human resources online program have the option to combine some learning on-campus. WITC’s human resources associates degree online program includes classes in introduction to payroll, human resource management, employment law, business skills, recruitment, and orientation/training and benefits, to name a few. Students graduate from Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College AA degree in human resources and find rewarding work as employment specialists, payroll analysts, labor relations specialists, and human resource coordinators, to name a few.

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College references several Wisconsin based campuses in Superior, New Richmond, Ashland, and Rice Lake. Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College offers more than 100 diploma and degree programs, including the outreach centers in Hayward, Balsam Lake, and Ladysmith.

Degree: Associate’s in Human Resource Management

7. South Texas College

The South Texas College School of Business & Technology offers a human resources online associates degree (AAS degree) that can be completed 100% online. South Texas College’s online associates degree in human resources includes coursework in human resource law, organizational behavior, employment practices, human resources information systems, and business conduct, to name a few. This associates degree in human resources online program requires degree candidates to complete 60 credit units, typically over two years. Students graduate from South Texas College’s human resources associates degree online program and enter the workforce in human resources as a specialist, administrative assistant, or a coordinator, among others.

South Texas College (South Texas) was established in 1993 by the enactment of law in the state’s senate. The college’s campuses in Rio Grande Valley and McAllen serves more than 30,800 students. South Texas operates five campuses (McAllen (3), Rio Grande City, Weslaco), plus a distance learning platform.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources Specialist

8. Lake Washington Institute of Technology

Lake Washington Institute of Technology offers a human resources associates degree online program focused on management that has received approval as a provider from the HR Certification Institute. Additionally, LW Tech’s associates degree in human resources online program is recognized by the Society for HR Management. LW Tech’s College’s online associates degree in human resources requires the completion of 44 credit units to meet program requirements. Classes included in this human resources online associates degree include strategic HR management, employee and labor relations, HR ethics and diversity, and employment law, to name a few.

Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LW Tech) was established in 1949. Lake Washington Institute of Technology boasts one of the highest rates of completion in the state of Washington. Lake Washington Institute of Technology also acts as an alternative high school for qualifying students.

Degree: AAS in Human Resource Management (hybrid) 

9. Tarrant County College

Tarrant County College offers a human resources online associates degree program (AAS degree) that can be completed entirely online. This online associates degree in human resources from TCC requires the completion of 60 semester units over a two year period. TCC’s associates degree in human resources online program includes coursework in basic mediator training, business ethics, human resources training and development, and employee relations, to name a few. This human resources associates degree online program prepares students for work in employee relations, training and development, mediation, and labor relations, to name a few.

Tarrant County College (TCC) was established as a community/junior college in 1965. Tarrant County College operates five campuses, an administrative office, and a virtual campus in service to students for nearly 100,000 semester hours. Tarrant County College boasts the sixth largest of all student enrollments in the Lone Star State.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources Management

10. Rowan College South Jersey

Rowan College South Jersey offers a human resources associates degree online program (AS) with a focus on management that prepares students for rewarding careers as payroll clerks, hiring specialists, recruiting assistants, and training development assistants, to name a few. The core curriculum for this associates degree in human resources online program includes ethics, human resource management, and organizational behavior, among others. The total credits required for RCSJ’s online associates degree in human resources are 60 credit units.  Rowan College’s human resources online associates degree offers students internship opportunities in the field of their choice.

Rowan College South Jersey (RCSJ) was established in 1966. Nearly 10,000 students attend classes offered at Rowan college South Jersey. The first classes offered at RCSJ were held in local middle and high school classrooms.

Degree: AS in Human Resource Management

11. Lorain County Community College

Lorain County Community College offers a human resources online associates degree (an AAB degree with an emphasis on business) that requires students to complete 60-62 credit units, depending on the exact curriculum path. LCCC’s online associates degree in human resources includes coursework like labor law, labor-management relations, compensation and benefits, and quantitative reasoning, among others. LCCC offers students enrolled in associates degree in human resources online program the opportunity to move onto a four year degree program with their university partnership programs. Graduates of this human resources associates degree online program prepares students for work as human relations specialists, payroll specialists, or training managers, among others.

Lorain County Community College (LCCC) was established in 1963. LCCC operates multiple campuses in and throughout the Elyria area in Lorain and North Ridgeville. Lorain County Community College was honored by two visits from then-President Barack Obama.

Degree: AAB in Human Resources Management

12. Madison Area Technical College

Madison Area Technical College School of Business and Applied Arts offers a human resources associates degree online program with a that prepares students for rewarding careers as payroll clerks, hiring specialists, recruiting assistants, and training development assistants, among others. Madison College’s associates degree in human resources online program requires students to finish 61 semester units. Coursework for this online associates degree in human resources includes payroll accounting, effective staffing, employment law, and meeting facilitation, plus a capstone project, among others. With additional experience, graduates from this human resources online associates degree may find jobs as managers, equal employment opportunity experts, to name a few.

Madison Area Technical College (Madison College) was established in 1912. Madison College’s urban campus serves more than 32,400 students. Madison Area Technical College is a member school (the largest) in the tech college system in the state.

Degree: Human Resource Management Associate’s 

13. Columbus State Community College

Columbus State Community College offers a human resources online associates degree program that has received accreditation from the ACBSP. CSCC’s online associates degree in human resources prepares students for rewarding careers in human resource policy management, compensation/benefits, or HR administration, to name a few. Classes for this associates degree in human resources online program covers relevant topics in labor relations, strategic planning, employee training, and employee record management, among others. Many students enrolled in CSCC’s human resources associates degree online program move on to baccalaureate programs to finish their next degree through CSCC university partnership agreements.

Columbus State Community College (CSCC) was established in 1963 as a tech school. CSCC maintains multiple academic centers and campuses in eleven locations. More than 26,700 students attend classes in the area of human service, technology, business, engineering, and maintenance.

Degree: Human Resources Associate’s 

14. Wake Technical Community College

Wake Technical Community College’s Business Administration Division offers a human resources online associates degree (AAS degree) that can be finished entirely online or on one of Wake Tech’s many campuses. This online associates degree in human resources includes core requirements like employment law, business ethics, organizational behavior, and critical thinking, among others. Wake Tech’s associates degree in human resources online program requires degree candidates to complete 65 semester units to meet program requirements. This management/business-focused human resources associates degree online program offers the option of transfer credits and financial aid, if applicable.

Wake Technical Community College (Wake Tech) was established in 1958. Wake Tech is a member school of the state’s community college system. Wake Technical Community College operates several campuses to serves its student enrollment that exceeds 70,000 students.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources Management

15. Anne Arundel Community College

Anne Arundel Community College offers an online associates degree in human resources program (AAS degree with a business management focus) that offers students experiential learning opportunities with service learning projects and internships. Students graduate from AACC’s associates degree in human resources online program to enter the workforce as HR assistants, payroll specialists, trainers, or benefits consultants, among others. Degree candidates in AACC’s human resources associates degree online program must finish 60 semester credits to meet program requirements. Classes for this human resources online associates degree include business ethics, economics, business law, financial accounting, and principles of management, among others.

Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) was established in 1961. The school’s campuses serve more than 53,000 students. AACC received the honor of community college of the year by the National Biz Alliance and offers camps for kids throughout the summer months.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources

16. Saint Paul College

Saint Paul College offers a human resources online associates degree (AAS degree) that can be completed entirely online, as a hybrid or on-campus course. SPC’s online associates degree in human resources includes the requirement to complete 60 semester credits. Classes for this associates degree in human resources online program include performance management, talent acquisition, digital HR, payroll processing, and accounting, among others. In addition, this human resources associates degree online program requires degree candidates to submit a culminating capstone project in human resources.

Saint Paul College (SPC) was established in 1910 as a male vocational school. Saint Paul College is a member school in the state’s colleges/universities system. Nearly 15,000 students attend classes offered by SPC. Saint Paul College holds the distinction of being the oldest clockmaking/watchmaking program in the nation, operating with a grant from Rolex.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources

17. Fayetteville Technical Community College

Fayetteville Technical Community College’s Business Programs offer an online associates degree in human resources program (AAS degree with a management focus) the requires students to complete 66 semesters credits to graduate. Fay Tech’s associates degree in human resources online program includes classes in management diversity, training/development, quantitative literacy, employment law, and compensation/benefits, among others. Students enrolled in this human resources associates degree online program gain the skills required to help businesses achieve success through talent acquisition and training. Many graduates of Fay Tech’s human resources online associates degree transfer to complete their bachelor’s degree.

Fayetteville Technical Community College (Fay Tech) was established in 1961. Fay Tech is a member campus of the state’s community college system and serves more than 40,800 students. Fayetteville Technical Community College holds the distinction of being one of the largest continuing education campuses.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources Management

18. City College at Montana State University

The City College at Montana State University offers a human resources online associates degree (AS degree) that can be completed entirely online. The City College’s online associates degree in human resources includes employment law, risk management, payroll accounting, and organizational training, among others. The associates degree in human resources online program from City College requires 60 semester credits to graduate. Students wanting to transfer from this human resources associates degree online program to the university’s business school can do so seamlessly.

Montana State University was established in 1927 as a public higher learning institution and teacher’s educational training institute.  The City College at Montana State University is the school’s two-year division that was developed in the late 1960s. The university’s suburban campus in Billings is home to nearly 4,000 students.

Degree: AS in Human Resources

19. Ashworth College

Ashworth College offers an online associates degree in human resources program (AS degree with an administration emphasis and focus) that can be completed in about six months. Ashworth College’s associates degree in human resources online program can be finished in only four semesters, which includes a human resources internship. Students graduating from Ashworth’s human resources associates degree online program to find rewarding work as a benefits assistant, payroll specialist, compliance consultant, or HR clerk, among others. This human resources online associates degree is available entirely online, on-campus, or as a hybrid delivered course.

Ashworth College (Ashworth) was established as a for-profit higher learning institution in 1987. Ashworth College offers only distance education coursework but operates other subsidiary schools. Ashworth College offers online community activities to its online learners.

Degree: AS in Human Resource Administration

20. Colorado Christian University

The College of Adult and Graduate Studies at Colorado Christian University offers a human resources online associates degree (AS degree with a management emphasis) that can be completed entirely online. This online associates degree in human resources requires those enrolled to complete 60 semester credits to graduate. Classes for this associates degree in human resources online program are taken one per semester in five-week blocks. Many students enrolled in CGU’s human resources associates degree online program complete the program in 24 months or less. CGU requires no application fee.

Colorado Christian University (CGU) was established in 1914 as a bible school but operates as an interdenominational higher learning institution. More than 7,900 students attend classes offered by CGU. The Lakewood campus is located at the Rocky Mountain foothills, about ten miles from Denver.

Degree: AS in Human Resource Management

21. Cambridge College

Cambridge College’s College of Business and Finance (NECB) offers an online associates degree in human resources program (ASBA degree with a business and emphasis and focus) that aligns with the SRHM content requirements. Cambridge College’s associates degree in human resources online program includes coursework like intercultural communications, critical thinking, cost accounting, employee relations, compensation & Benefits and financial statements for managers, among others. NE College of Business and Finance’s human resources associates degree online program review transfer credits on a case-by-case basis. The total credits required for NECB’s human resources online associates degree is 61 credit units.

Cambridge College (Cambridge) is a private higher learning institution that was founded in 1971. Cambridge maintains several regional academic centers – 2 in Massachusetts and 1 in California. Nearly 2,700 undergraduate and graduate students attend classes offered at Cambridge College.

Degree: AS Business Administration – Human Resources

22. Waldorf University

Waldorf University offers a human resources online associates degree (AA degree with a management track) that can be completed 100% online. Students enrolled in Waldorf’s online associates degree in human resources program must complete 60 semester units to graduate. Classes for this associates degree in human resources online program include employment & labor law, staffing/recruitment, human resource development, and benefits management, among others. The coursework for this human resources associates degree online program meets the requirements that can be applied to Waldorf University’s bachelor of science in the business administration program. 

Waldorf University (Waldorf) was established in 1903 as a for-profit higher learning institution. The school’s rural campus serves more than 3,900 students and covers more than fifty acres. Waldorf University’s campus was once on the losing end of the hotel war in the early 1900s.

Degree: AA in Human Resource Management

23. Rasmussen College

Rasmussen College offers an online associates degree in human resources program (AS degree with an organizational leadership focus) that aligns with the contents of SRHM. Degree candidates enrolled in Rasmussen’s associates degree in human resources online program can complete the coursework in about 1.5 years. Students take fourteen classes in this human resources associates degree online program that covers organizational leadership, employment benefits & law, and introduction to human resource management, among others. Rasmussen offers students transferring into its human resources online associates degree program a generous transfer credit policy for eligible credits previously earned.

Rasmussen College (Rasmussen) was established as a for-profit institution of higher education in 1900. Rasmussen College operates academic centers in Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Florida, and North Dakota. More than 14,900 students attend classes offered by Rasmussen College.

Degree: Associate’s in Human Resources and Organizational Leadership

24. Beal College

Beal College offers a human resources online associates degree that can be completed in approximately sixteen months of study. Classes included in Beal College’s online associates degree in human resources program include ethics of business, motivational interviewing, employee training, management communications, and employment law, among others. Beal College’s associates degree in human resources online program requires the completion of an internship (160 hours) to meet program requirements. Students enrolled in Beal College’s human resources associates degree online program find rewarding careers as HR specialists, payroll clerks, recruiters, consultants, or employment coordinators, among others.

Beal College (Beal) was established as a private institution of higher education in 1891 dedicated to teaching business. The school’s suburban campus serves about 400 students each year. Beal College operates with six terms (of eight weeks) each year – known as the mod system. 

Degree: Human Resources Associate’s 

25. Bryant & Stratton College

Bryant & Stratton College offers an online associates degree in human resources program (AAS degree with an HR specialist focus) that can be completed 100% online or on one of the school’s many campuses. The associates degree in human resources online program includes core coursework in business principles, recruitment and staffing, workplace math, employment law, compensation and benefits, and business law & ethics, plus an internship or capstone project, among others. Students enroll in BSC’s human resources associates degree online program enter the workforce as human resource assistants, consultants, or specialists, to name a few. Students enrolled in BSC’s human resources online associates degree program earn the same degree as those attending classes on-campus in one of the four states that offer campuses with the degree.

Bryant & Stratton College (BSC) was established in 1854 and operates as a for-profit school dedicated to business education. The school’s campuses serve more than 9900 students vying for associate and baccalaureate degrees. Bryant & Stratton College holds the distinction of being the first school to hold a graduation ceremony online.

Degree: AAS in Human Resources Specialist

What Kind of Degree Do I Need for a Career in Human Resources?

A person may wonder what major is human resources most common or needed to access a position in human resources. While the answer to what major is human resources could be an associate’s degree, most of the time, the best degree for human resources is a bachelor’s degree. In fact, the best degree for human resources is a bachelor’s because many employers require a person to have at least a bachelor’s degree to obtain a position. 

The best degrees for human resources may also include a master’s degree if a person would like to further his or her career, find a more diverse variety of jobs, and obtain a higher salary. In terms of what degree is needed to become a human resource manager, a person needs a bare minimum of a bachelor’s degree. In most cases, what degree is needed to become a human resources manager, a person may need a master’s degree to obtain most positions. 

Keep in mind that the best degree for human resources may be an associate. A person may be able to find a position with this type of best degrees for human resources. As an option for the best degree for human resources career, this option takes the least amount of time and costs the least amount of money. It’s just that some employers want someone who has a more advanced education. Plus, a person can’t become a human resources manager at this degree level, but a person can find a job and still work while completing his or her bachelor’s degree online if he or she wants to finish his or her degree.  

What Can I Do with an Associate’s in Human Resources?

A person may want to know what human resources associate degree jobs are available before he or she chooses to complete this type of degree and decides which level he or she would like to achieve. Some examples of human resources associate degree jobs include an HR assistant or generalist. Associate degree in human resources jobs could also include a compliance specialist, benefits assistant, payroll assistant, HR clerk, or assistant recuiter.  

Sometimes, associates in human resources jobs also allow a person to have an opportunity to work his or her way up. 

How Much Can I Make with an Associate’s in Human Resources?

The amount an associates in human resources salary is varies based on the position he or she takes as well as where he or she lives. For instance, an associates in human resources salary for a human resources assistant is $20.49 per hour, which is the same as $42,620 per hour. The associates in human resources salary for this particular position could be higher. The human resources associate degree salary for this position could be $28.52 per hour or $59,320. 

Keep in mind that a human resources associates degree salary for someone who has is a bachelor’s degree is slightly higher. In fact, this salary could be close to $10,000 higher than the average huma resources associate degree salary. For example, if a person decides that a human resources associate degree salary isn’t enough, a person may want to consider earning a bachelors. A person can earn an average of $61,920 per year if he or she becomes an HR specialist with a bachelor’s degree. While the average human resource associate degree salary may earn a person between $20.00 to around $28.000. In terms of an hourly salary, the human resources associate degree salary is usually close to $30.00 per hour. 

A person should remember that an associate degree in human resources salary can be higher depending on where a person lives. Additionally, the human resource associate degree salary is higher once a person has experience. He or she will make more money as he or she continues with a company or gains experience and obtains a role with another company. The human resource associate degree salary could also be higher if a person chooses positions in certain types of companies. A person should remember that he or she will have options available in employment services. Therefore, a person may earn higher if he or she enters into cerain employment kinds. An individual may even acquire a position in scientific or technological services, which could possibly earn more money than other types of HR. A person may even find a position in health services. 

Related Rankings:

Top 25 Best Value Online Human Resources Master’s Programs

Top 25 Best Value Online Human Resources Bachelor’s Programs