Sep 24, 2023  
West Shore Community College Catalog 2021-2022 
West Shore Community College Catalog 2021-2022 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Graduation Requirements

Degree and Certificate Graduation Requirements

General Requirements

To earn a degree or certificate from West Shore, students must complete the following:

  1. Complete an Application for Graduation: A degree or certificate will not be awarded unless a student has submitted an Application for Graduation and a grad audit has been performed by the Registrar. Students should apply once registered for their final semester of courses. Degrees are awarded at the end of each semester, even though there is only one Graduation or Commencement ceremony per year.
  2. Complete Program Requirements: Each program has a Program of Study that outlines courses required to complete that degree or certificate. In some cases, course waivers or substitutions may be granted by the division chair and/or Dean.
  3. Earn a minimum of 60 credits: A student cannot earn any Associate degree if less than 60 credits have been earned, regardless of whether all program requirements have been met. Students earning a Certificate must meet all requirements of the certificate.
    1. Students must earn at least 15 credits at WSCC or through Michigan Colleges Online (MCO) for an Associate’s degree, 10 credits for a Certificate.
    2. No more than 12 credits earned through CLEP or AP can apply to a degree or certificate. If a student has been granted more than 12 credits in this manner, additional courses will need to be completed to account for the difference
    3. Courses considered Developmental in nature - such as ENG 054 or ENG 098 - are not applicable to graduation requirements nor are final grades used in GPA calculation.
  4. Maintain a 2.0 GPA: A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required to earn a degree or certificate. Some exceptions apply for programs that consist entirely of Pass/Fail courses. In addition, certain programs, such as Nursing and Criminal Justice, have varying graduation requirements.

Associate of Applied Arts and Sciences Degree (AAAS) Requirements

Students pursuing an AAAS degree are preparing to enter employment. In addition to program-specific courses, students must complete the following general education coursework. Many AAAS programs will require specific courses that meet the categories listed below. Consult the Program of Study for specific information.

Total AAAS General Education: 18-19 credits

Students looking to transfer to a 4-year college or university should also consider pursuing the Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) to facilitate a smoother transfer process, as the AAAS degrees are not designed for transfer.

Competency Exam

In order to receive an Associate’s degree in an occupational program at West Shore Community College, students must take any required exams, such as NOCTI, NCLEX, MTA (Microsoft Technology Associate) and MOS (Microsoft Office Specialist) appropriate to specific fields. These occupational competency tests are designed to measure student gains as a result of training at the postsecondary level at WSCC.

*Diplomas will not be distributed to students who have unpaid financial obligations to the College.

Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) Requirements

Students pursuing an AA or AS degree will also meet MTA requirements and are generally preparing for transfer to a 4-year college or university. Students must complete the following:

Total AA/AS General Education: 30 Credits

Additionally, the AS degree requires 18 additional credits of STEM Electives . With the addition of these credits, students earning an AS have nearly all 60 credits required met through program requirements.


A commencement ceremony is held once each year at the conclusion of the winter semester, typically at the end of April or beginning of May. Students who have earned their degree or certificate after the previous Fall semester or who will graduate after Winter or Summer are invited to participate.

Academic Advising

Students are highly encouraged to meet regularly with an Academic Advisor to ensure they are making progress toward degree completion. To make an appointment, students can contact Student Services at 231-843-5510.