General Business, A.S.

Program Code: 2GBBC_AS

Program Description

The associate degree major in General Business offers an introduction to several aspects of business. In addition, it provides a foundation that allows those students who qualify for admission to baccalaureate degree programs in business to make a smooth transition into four-year business majors offered at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College. The business coursework required by the major introduces students to basics of accounting, economics, management information systems, quantitative business analysis, business law, the social and ethical environment of business, finance, management, marketing, and supply chain management. To complete the major, students have the option of earning a certificate in Oracle or SAP, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) or Financial Planning. The general education and other requirements of the major provide an opportunity for students to strengthen their skills in oral and written communication and quantitative reasoning which are essential for success in business careers.

What is General Business?

To be successful in any business enterprise, you need foundational education in accounting, economics, management information systems, business analysis, and the legal, ethical, and political environments in which businesses operate. The A.S. in General Business offers you that education.

You Might Like This Program If...

  • You want a university credential but aren’t ready to commit to four years of higher education.
  • You are looking for a two-year associate degree program.
  • You might want to apply the credits earned in the A.S. to a Penn State Behrend bachelor’s degree at some point in the future.

Entrance to Major

Students must have a minimum 2.0 GPA to change to this Associate degree after admission to the University.

Degree Requirements

For the Associate in Science degree in General Business, a minimum of 61 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 21
Electives 0-1
Requirements for the Major 51-52

12 of the 21 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: 6 credits of GWS courses; 3 credits of GQ courses; 3 credits of GS courses.

Requirements for the Major

To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Prescribed Courses
CAS 100Effective Speech3
ECON 102Introductory Microeconomic Analysis and Policy Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 104Introductory Macroeconomic Analysis and Policy Keystone/General Education Course3
ENGL 15Rhetoric and Composition Keystone/General Education Course3
ENGL 202DEffective Writing: Business Writing Keystone/General Education Course3
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
ACCTG 211Financial and Managerial Accounting for Decision Making4
FIN 301Corporation Finance3
MGMT 301Basic Management Concepts3
MIS 204Introduction to Management Information Systems Keystone/General Education Course3
MKTG 301Principles of Marketing3
SCM 301Supply Chain Management3
Additional Courses
BA 241
BA 242
Legal Environment of Business
and Social and Ethical Environment of Business
or BA 243 Social, Legal, and Ethical Environment of Business
SCM 200Introduction to Statistics for Business Keystone/General Education Course4
or STAT 200 Elementary Statistics Keystone/General Education Course
Select one of the following:3-4
College Algebra with Analytic Geometry with Applications I Keystone/General Education Course
College Algebra With Analytic Geometry and Applications II Keystone/General Education Course
Techniques of Calculus I Keystone/General Education Course
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better
Select 6 credits from one of the following supporting course areas:6
General Education (does not require a grade of C or better)
Financial Planning
Oracle Business Suite Certificate
SAP Certificate
Other 300- or 400-level business courses in consultation with a faculty adviser

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all associate degree students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required and Inter-Domain courses do not meet this requirement.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 3 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 3 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 3 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 3 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 3 credits

Note: Up to six credits of Inter-Domain courses may be used for any Knowledge Domain requirement, but when a course may be used to satisfy more than one requirement, the credits from the course can be counted only once.


  • Any General Education course (including GHW and Inter-Domain): 3 credits

University Degree Requirements

Cultures Requirement

3 credits of United States (US) or International (IL) cultures coursework are required and may satisfy other requirements

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 60 degree credits must be earned for a associates degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 60 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

Program Learning Objectives

  • Students will demonstrate the following quantitative business analysis skills:
    • Apply the basic rules of probability to assess likelihood within a population
    • Identify and apply appropriate probability distribution concepts to analyze data
    • Demonstrate an understanding of correlation and regression analysis
  • Students will apply concepts associated with free market operations:
    • Calculate the NPV for three scenarios:
      1. base case,
      2. best case,
      3. and worst case

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university's academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.



Linda Hajec
Associate Teaching Professor of Accounting
281G Burke Center
Erie, PA 16563

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2024-25 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition.

General Business, A.S. at Erie Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
ENGL 15 or 30H‡†3ACCTG 211*4
MATH 21, 22, or 110‡†3-4CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C3
MIS 204*3ECON 102*†3
General Education Course (GA) (US or IL)3SCM 200 or STAT 200*†4
General Education Course (GH)(US or IL)3 
PSU 71 
 16-17 14
Second Year
ECON 104*†3BA 241
BA 242
FIN 301*3ENGL 202D‡† 3
SCM 301*3MKTG 301 or MGMT 301*3
MGMT 301W or MKTG 301W*3General Education or Supporting Business Course1,23
General Education Course (GN)3General Education or Supporting Business Course1,23
 15 16
Total Credits 61-62

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education


Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.


 Please see your academic adviser for approval before scheduling this course.


In order for a course to be eligible for an Approved Elective, the course can not be a lower level ENGL (1-6) or MATH (2-41) OR a GHW designated course. Please see your academic adviser if you have a question on a specific course

Career Paths

An associate degree in General Business might give you the career boost you need. Penn State Behrend has a comprehensive support system to help you identify and achieve your goals for college and beyond. Meet with your academic adviser often and take advantage of the services offered by the Academic and Career Planning Center beginning in your first semester.


General Business is a managerially-oriented program that prepares graduates for careers in all sectors of the economy, including corporate, nonprofit, and government organizations.


Opportunities for Graduate Studies

Admission to a graduate program generally requires completion of a four-year bachelor’s degree. Credits earned in the A.S. in General Business program can be applied to many of Penn State Behrend’s baccalaureate degree programs.


Professional Resources


The Black School of Business is accredited by AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. As the world’s largest business education alliance, AACSB connects educators, students, and business to achieve a common goal: to create the next generation of great leaders. Synonymous with the highest standards of excellence since 1916, AACSB provides quality assurance, business education intelligence, and professional development services to over 1,500 member organizations and more than 785 accredited business schools worldwide. AACSB’s mission is to foster engagement, accelerate innovation, and amplify impact in business education.




281 Jack Burke Research and Economic Development Center
Erie, PA 16563