Program Areas for Still-Deciding Students

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As a new Still-Deciding (or general Liberal Arts) student at Kirkwood, you'll need to pick a major/program or choose one of our general Program Areas before you register for New Student Orientation.

Below you’ll find information on Kirkwood’s 140+ majors/programs – organized into eight general Program Areas. From this list, you can navigate to specific program web pages to find helpful information like sample classes, career opportunities, academic requirements, and much more.

Once you've chosen the best program or Program Area for you, just follow the steps in the “Made Your Decision?” section.

Program Areas are collections of Kirkwood’s academic program options organized by similar career/interest categories. Program Areas are designed to help you choose a general direction to pursue based on your interests, knowledge, skills, and abilities.

Once you’ve decided on a Program Area, you’ll narrow your focus by picking a program and begin developing a plan you feel confident about completing, saving you time, money, and keeping you on track to finish faster. 

Following each program name, you’ll see an indicator. Use this guide to see what each stands for:

  • (CE): Continuing Education
    Short-term certificates created due to workforce needs of employers in the region. Tuition assistance may be available, but students are not eligible for financial aid.
  • (Certificate)
    Certificates typically take nine to 12 months to complete and provide entry-level skills to begin a chosen career.
  • (Diploma)
    Diplomas typically take nine to 12 months to complete and provide entry-level skills to begin a chosen career.
  • (AA): Associate of Arts degree and
    (AS): Associate of Science degree

    A.A. and A.S. degrees are generally considered "transfer level" degrees and take 2 years to complete. Most students earning these degrees transfer to a 4-year college or university and continue their studies. Requirements differ among colleges, so work closely with your transfer institutions and Kirkwood advisors to choose classes that meet your needs.
  • (AAS): Associate of Applied Science degree
    Students who earn A.A.S. degrees typically enter the workforce after 2 years; however, some Applied Science and Technology programs also have transfer agreements with 4-year institutions. Work with an advisor to determine which degree program best suits your goals.
  • (TM): Transfer Major
    Transfer majors have courses aligned with a 4-year degree program at one of Iowa’s public universities (Iowa, Iowa State, UNI). They transfer directly so you don’t have to repeat any courses.
  • (FF): FlexFORWARD
    Self-paced online learning for adult students who want to complete classes anytime and anywhere.
  • (Online): Programs offered online
    Kirkwood offers complete degrees and certificates, as well as a variety of individual courses, online or via WebLive (live virtual classes at a scheduled time).

Program Areas

Do you enjoy managing projects and deadlines, solving complex problems, and/or motivating teams of people? Exploring a future in Business might be right for you!

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CAREERS: Accountant, business administrator, consultant, economist, entrepreneur, hospitality professional, human relations specialist, marketing strategist, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Leadership, organization, planning, problem-solving, puzzles, serving others, technology

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Critical thinking, data analysis, math, technology, writing

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

 

Do you like making or baking food, caring for and cultivating plants, taking care of farm animals or the land? Whether your focus is animal and crop production, landscaping, culinary arts or ag technology, we’ll get you on the right track to a great career!

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CAREERS: Animal scientist, chef, environmentalist, farm management, food service, golf course manager, heavy diesel technician, landscaper, park ranger, vet technician, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Animals, cooking, gardening, golf, mechanics, nature, outdoor activities, sports

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Technology, science, finance, math

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FACILITIES: Campus features a 400-acre working farm, 6,000 square feet of greenhouse space, farrow-to-finish swine education center, cow-calf operation, sports turf labs, The Class Act Restaurant, and Precision Agriculture learning center

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Do you like to work with your hands? Do you have an interest in operating and/or repairing industrial and manufacturing equipment? Do you enjoy using your mind to problem-solve, build, repair and invent? Turn your interests into an incredibly rewarding career!

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CAREERS: Carpenter, contractor, electrician, manufacturer, mechanic, plumber, welder, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Computers, DIY, mechanics, robotics, woodworking

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Technology and math

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FACILITIES: Campus features state-of-the-art lab space, including a training center that’s one of only 18 certificated centers in the nation thanks to a partnership with Snap-on tools, and a 2.5 megawatt wind turbine

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Do you have a desire to focus on the health of people, physically and mentally? Meet the growing need for healthcare professionals while forging a path that will lead to long-term career success!

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CAREERS: Dental assistant, dental hygienist, nurse, medical office manager, occupational therapy assistant, paramedic, physical therapist assistant, respiratory therapist, surgical technologist, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Health and fitness, mental wellness, public speaking, self-care

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Anatomy, biology, math, psychology, physiology, science

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FACILITIES: Campus features the Katz Family Healthcare Simulation Center, plus you’ll get real world clinical training from local major health care institutions

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Nearly everything in our lives is touched by science, technology, engineering, or mathematics. Now is your time to explore the world and human body, and prepare for a career that makes an impact on both.

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CAREERS: Doctor, biologist, computer software developer, mathematician, network systems administrator, engineer, web designer, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Computers, coding, critical thinking, electronics, technology, virtual reality

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, math, physics, science

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PARTNERSHIPS: Kirkwood is part of the Iowa Illinois Nebraska STEM Partnership for Innovation in Research and Education

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Do you have an active imagination and like to express yourself? Embrace your creativity and prepare for careers in the fine arts.

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CAREERS: Artist, actor, architect, graphic designer, interior decorator, musician, photographer, singer, stage manager, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Art, design, drama, fashion, music, theater, public speaking, visiting museums

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Art, computers, design, music

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FACILITIES: Campus features art studios, classrooms, and labs filled with the latest equipment and supplies, as well as Ballantyne Auditorium, a 364-seat Performing Arts facility

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Do you enjoy helping others? Learn how to serve people of any age as a teacher, firefighter, criminal justice professional, and more in our Social services, Safety, and Education Program Area.

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CAREERS: Teacher, early childhood educator, firefighter, police officer, paralegal, politician, social worker, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Community organization, true crime, mysteries, politics, problem solving, public speaking, volunteerism, child care

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: Political science, psychology, sociology

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PARTNERSHIPS: Kirkwood’s connections to local community agencies offer real-world, hands-on experience and special observation opportunities

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years Finish in 1 year

 

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

Are you curious about human behavior, culture and identity? Do you want to explore communities, relationships, and cultures? Start learning more about the world and your place in it today!

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CAREERS: English teacher, historian, journalist, psychologist, sociologist, writer, anthropologist, and more

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INTERESTS/HOBBIES: Curiosity, public speaking, reading, research, working with others, writing

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ACADEMIC STRENGTHS: History, psychology, religious studies, sociology

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AFTER 1-2 YEARS: Continue your studies at a four-year school or enter the workforce

 

Explore Your Options 

Finish in 2 years

Don’t see your program listed?
You can customize any of the above to meet your transfer needs.

 


Made Your Decision?

Once you’ve decided on specific major/program or general Program Area, please contact Jacki Delaney, Admissions department assistant, to update your record. She can be reached at:

jacki.delaney@kirkwood.edu
319-398-5899 ext. 4339


Still Need Help?

View and explore all of Kirkwood's available programs, here.

Kirkwood’s Career Services department can provide all kinds of ways for you to get the help you need to choose a Program Area or specific major/program.

View our Career Services resources or contact the department directly at careerservices@kirkwood.edu or 319-398-5540

Career Services