Associate of Science in Science at NVCC

Information for this profile was provided by Dr. Victor Zabielski, Science, Technology and Business, Northern Virginia Community College. Information is also available on the program website. Students in this program are pursuing a associates degree.

Program Design & Assessment


The Associates of Science in Science at Northern Virginia Community College is designed to provide a student with the general education background required for the first two years of a Bachelors Program in a science field, including programs in Geology and Environmental Science.


This Program was designed as an alternative to the first two years at a standard four-year institution.

Program Goals

The goals for the A.S. Science Program are similar to those of the colleges for general studies, including the following:

  • Students will demonstrate the ability to evaluate evidence carefully and apply reasoning to decide what to believe and how to act.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to recognize when information is needed and will have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use if effectively.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to use numerical, geometric, and measurement data and concepts, mathematical skills, and principles of mathematical reasoning to draw logical conclusions and to make well-reasoned decisions and possess the skills and knowledge necessary to apply the use of logic, numbers, and mathematics to deal effectively with common problems and issues.

Alumni Careers

This Geology Discipline in the A.S. Science Program is designed for multiple career paths ranging from pursuit of a bachelors degree, and graduate degrees, to professional work in the field.

All the graduates with whom I have remained in contact have pursued science degrees (Environmental Studies, Geology, Marine Science, etc.) at the bachelors or higher level.

Program Assessment

The college is regularly evaluated for their success rates by Southern Association of Cooleges and Schools (SACS) as well as through our office of Institutional Research (OIR).

Courses and Sequencing

Entry into the program

The introductory courses in Geology are generally the first exposure a student has to Geology. These courses include:
  • Physical Geology
  • Historical Geology

Core courses

Additional Courses that can be taken by students include:
  • Oceanography I & II
  • Paleontology
  • Mineralogy (Physical Geology Prerequisite)
  • Environmental Geology (Physical Geology prerequisite)


Students are required to take only 3 credits of general elective (1 course). There are numerous directed electives within specified fields and six Science courses (with a laboratory) which can be chosen among any science discipline.