SWCC is the place for you!

Degree Options

Arts and Sciences (College Transfer)

Talk with an admissions representative to see which degree best fits your major and career goals.

The Associate of Arts (AA) Degree totals 64 credits of general education courses. Classes will be from the following academic areas: communication, humanities, math, science, social sciences, and electives.

The Associate of Science (AS) Degree totals 64 credits of general education from the following academic areas: communication, humanities/social sciences, math, science, and electives–with an emphasis in math or science.

Career & Technical Education

97% Career and technical education grads employed after graduation based on the SWCC Graduate Placement Report

Career and technical education programs are designed to prepare you for immediate entry into the workplace. If you want to receive hands-on training and head into a specific career after earning a one- or two-year diploma or degree, this is the route for you!

The Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree or the Associate of Applied Arts degree (AAA) is awarded for completion of specific two-year programs. Many of the career and technical education programs also offer certificate or diploma options, which are credentials showing completion of a select group of courses that focus on job skills preparation. These programs may be used toward completion of an AAS degree.

agricultural students talking to ag instructor in a tractor nursing students and instructor examining a nursing mannequin male student smiling at a computer in a computer lab student welding on a large frame on the ground female student in class smiling with other students and the instructor in the background student working on vehicle engine with instructor observing while holding a work light carpenty instructor pointing to blueprints while students watch student spraying paint onto a car fender criminal justice instructor pointing to various parts of a simulated crime scene student in hard hat working on electrial panel graphic design students working in a computer lab students working on an electrical panels female student working on an openned computer music students perfoming on stage with microphones

College Transfer

If your academic goal is to transfer to a four-year college or university and earn a bachelor's degree, the arts and sciences college transfer program is designed for you. While earning your associate degree at SWCC, you will take courses to meet the requirements of the first two years of college.

Student-to-teacher ratio
Graduates with AA or AS degrees transferring to four-year institutions
Average general class size
16-week semesters in an academic year
Five-week optional summer terms

Partnership Programs

SWCC has partnership programs with many colleges and universities to ensure a seamless transfer to the college of your choice. SWCC partnership program institutions include:

  • Buena Vista University
  • Graceland University
  • Iowa State University
  • Northwest Missouri State University
  • University of Iowa - 2+2
  • University of Iowa - Online
  • University of Northern Iowa

Partnership Benefits

  • Assignment of an academic advisor at the four-year school.
  • A student ID from the partner school while attending SWCC.
  • Access to college services such as library access and use of career services and recreational facilities.
  • Opportunities to access tickets for athletic and cultural events at the four-year college at student prices.

Beyond our partner schools, SWCC has articulation agreements with many other colleges and universities.

With a SWCC degree, transfer opportunities are endless. No matter where you decide to transfer, start planning early and meet regularly with your academic advisor.

Partnership Programs

Online Offerings

Whether you’re thinking about taking one course or completing a degree online, these courses offer complete flexibility for committed students juggling busy schedules. Online courses are offered in eight-week, 12-week, and 16-week terms.

Southwestern offers the following degrees completely online:

  • Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree for transfer
  • Early childhood education emphasis (AA degree)
  • Accounting (AAS degree)
  • Agricultural business (AAS degree)
  • Business administration (AAS degree)

How much can you $ave by going to SWCC

The cost of college is a huge concern for a lot of students. You can save a lot of money and have much less college debt by choosing to start your college education at SWCC.

Financial Aid

A college education is a very important investment and there are resources available to help you achieve your goals! Follow these steps to apply for federal and state financial aid:

  • Complete the SWCC online application for admission at www.swcciowa.edu/apply.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov. Indicate SWCC’s school code: 001857.
  • SWCC’s financial aid department will send you an award letter via your SWCC email when all documentation has been received.
of SWCC students receive some type of financial aid
Cost of 1 year @ SWCC logo
Cost of 1 year @ 4-Year Public College or University
Cost of 1 year @ 4-Year Private College or University
*Based on yearly averages from four-year Iowa college/university cost. See the Cost Calculator for more details and comparisons.


Scholarships can be a huge help when it comes time for you to pay for college! At SWCC, scholarships are provided through the college’s Education Foundation. Definitely apply, because scholarships are based on many criteria such as academics, financial need, community involvement, program/major, etc.

The Education Foundation scholarship application deadlines:

  • March 15 — Fall semester deadline
  • December 1 — Spring/summer semester deadline

In addition to Education Foundation scholarships, the following academic scholarships are available at SWCC:

  • Collegiate Scholarship — Available to high school graduates who rank in the top 15 percent of their class or have a composite score of 25 or higher on the ACT exam.
  • Trustee Award Scholarship — Awarded to high school valedictorians and salutatorians.
  • Last Dollar Scholarship Program — These scholarships are designed to cover remaining gaps between federal and state grants or scholarships and tuition and qualified fees. At SWCC, there are 16 eligible Last-Dollar Scholarship Programs.
  • Bright Scholars of Iowa Scholarship — The Bright Scholars of Iowa award is available to Iowa high school seniors who are strong academically but may lack the financial means to enable them to earn a college degree. Students must maintain full-time enrollment in an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science program with the intent to transfer to a four-year Regent institution in the state of Iowa.

For complete scholarship criteria, eligibility information, scholarship applications, and outside scholarship opportunities please visit: View Scholarships.

Life @ SWCC

Whether you choose to live on-campus, off-campus, or commute from home, be active on campus and find your niche. Get involved!

welding club Phi Theta Kappa memebers drama club members standing on stage in costume Student Ambassadors


Intercollegiate athletics are a big part of student life at SWCC! And your student ID will get you in Free to home events. Get ready to be a lifetime member of #SpartanNation!

Dance team members dancing Male golfer swinging club on course Women's track team members running around indoor track Men's baseball team getting ready to hit Men's basketball team NJCAA DII championship team women's basketball player dribbling up the court men's sprinter on the track during race softball team huddle female golfer swinging club women's volleyball player jumping to spike the ball sports shooting team shooting at clay targets

Student Housing

College is all about the experience! If you’re thinking about living on campus while attending Southwestern, you may choose from traditional or apartment-style housing.

Residence Hall Amenities

  • Internet access
  • A Roku stick is provided in each room
  • Utilities included
  • Southern Prairie Family Fitness Center membership
  • Coin-operated washer and dryer facilities in each building
  • Beds may be bunked, lofted, or used separately
  • Smoke-free and alcohol-free environment
  • Outdoor basketball and tennis courts, as well as a disc golf course
  • Storm shelter
Students living on campus


Spartan Court, Spartan Hall, and Spartan Suites are co-ed, apartment-style residence halls.

Spartan Court and Spartan Suites offer lounge areas for students.

Each apartment features:

  • Four private bedrooms — furnished with bed, chest of drawers, desk and chair, and closet
  • Two bathrooms — layout differs depending on your residence hall
  • Living room
  • Kitchen area with a full-size refrigerator, stove, and microwave
Student sitting on bed in bedroom two female students in kitchen area, cooking and studying three male students in living room sitting playing some video games


  • West Hall is a traditional dormitory
  • Rooms designed for double occupancy
  • Furnished with two beds, chests of drawers, desks and chairs, and separate closets
  • Student lounge for relaxing with friends or group studying activities
famale student studying in her room male student using laptop in a chair

Spartan Café

The Caf’, as the Spartan Café is known to SWCC students, is located in the Student Center.

The Spartan Café features the following:

  • Food court with burgers, deli sandwiches and wraps, pasta, stir fry, comfort food/home cooking, wood-oven pizza, and a full soup and salad bar.
  • Made-to-order items are prepared with fresh ingredients you select.
  • Soft serve ice cream machine and coffee bar.
  • Meal plan as part of student housing contract.
  • Paying at the register is also an option at the Spartan Café.
students eating and studing at a table in the cafe

Students who live off-campus may purchase Café Cash on their student IDs through the SWCC business office.

Southern Prairie Family Fitness Center

If you live on campus, you will receive a Free membership to the fitness center, which is on SWCC's campus, adjacent to student housing.

  • weight room
  • cardio room
  • basketball courts
  • indoor swimming pool
  • racquetball court
  • walking track
Students living off-campus may purchase a SWCC student membership to the fitness center for $30 per semester. Students may pay for their memberships at the SWCC business office.
students running around the indoor track students lifting int he weight room students walking on treadmills students swimming laps in the pool

Let's Get Started

Apply Online

Complete and submit your application for admission:



Complete the ACCUPLACER test. Your academic advisor will use the results to determine which courses you will take. This test may be waived if you have achieved an ACT composite score of 19 or higher. To schedule a testing appointment, contact SWCC’s Assessment Center in Creston at 641.782.1320. Testing may also be completed at the Red Oak and Osceola Centers.


Submit final high school transcripts or High School Equivalency Diploma (HSED) scores to SWCC. Submit official college or university transcript(s) from each institution you have attended.

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