Biblical Studies A.A. [Online]

Built on a strong Bible curriculum, the Associate in Biblical Studies degree prepares students with a foundation of scripture and theology, while also giving a broad and wide-ranging general education, appropriate for further undergraduate study or for a career.


Credit Hours


Years (Avg.)

Next Start Date

March 13, 2023

Class Type
100% Online,  7-Week Terms, Asynchronous




Associate of Biblical Studies

Study the Bible and Prepare for Christian Ministry

When you earn your Associate in Biblical Studies from Cairn University, you’ll be equipped with a strong foundation to study the Scriptures and apply biblical truth to your life and ministry, resulting in spiritual growth and maturity. You’ll learn to integrate the truths of God’s Word into your life, while developing the skills needed to succeed in an academic setting. With practical training from our expert faculty, you’ll gain competency in your understanding of the Bible, biblical theology, church history, evangelism, and discipleship.

Building a foundation of understanding in multiple disciplines—especially Bible and theology— an associate’s degree is a great educational route for (1) those who are still deciding the correct higher education path for them or (2) those who know what they want to do and know they don’t need a four-year degree to get there. Of course, one of the best things about an associate’s degree is the low-cost compared to a four-year program and it results in an in-hand diploma after just two years of study.

If you choose to remain at Cairn for further study, this program integrates seamlessly with the B.S. in Biblical Studies program and with most other bachelor’s programs.

Why an Associate in Biblical Studies Degree from Cairn University?

Faith and Truth Do Matter

Receive a foundational education in Bible and theology, including a survey of the entire Old Testament and the Gospels where all instruction is grounded in the timeless Truth of God’s Word. No matter what your intended career path or field of study, Cairn is committed to helping professionals think about their current and future work through a biblical worldview.

Flexibility to Learn From Anywhere

Complete coursework from anywhere through our asynchronous course design, reinforced by substantive faculty engagement and weekly course requirements.

An Education That Has Value

Cairn University students earn more than a professional credential – you develop a solid foundation for all of life and learning. Wherever you go after you graduate from Cairn, you go prepared and ready to make a difference in your workplace, your community, your church, and around the world. And our competitive tuition rates and financial aid packages help to keep your education costs reasonable.

Committed Faculty Mentors

Our online courses are taught by faculty who not only have successful in ministry but also are committed to your professional and spiritual growth. You don’t just have professors, you have mentors who invest in you throughout the program and often remain connected long after graduation.

Learning Should Inspire Serving

The Cairn mission statement begins with education and ends with character because we believe that education should change not only what you know, but who you are and what you do. Faculty mem­bers understand that education involves more than the transfer of ideas, but also the giving of themselves to teach, train, and inspire their students both in and out of class.

Connected With a Global Community of Learners

Effective learning happens in a community. Participate in interactive learning activities with peers around the globe who have chosen to walk a different path for Christ.

Seamless Integration with Other B.S. Online Programs

If you choose to remain at Cairn for further study, this program integrates seamlessly into the B.S. in Biblical Studies and with most other online bachelor’s degree programs.

Career Opportunities

  • Ministry director
  • Ministry assistant
  • Camp counselor
  • Minister
  • Parachurch teacher
  • Prison ministry teacher
  • Program supervisor
  • Teacher
  • Women’s ministry teacher


Simple, flat $425* per credit rate or ~12K per year. Why spend 30K+ per year when you can complete your degree for much less while you work?

*Applies to undergraduate online programs for the 2022–2024 academic years.

Financial Aid

Scholarships, veterans benefits, federal grants and loans, and discounts are available to Cairn Online students. Please refer to this page for details.

Program Curriculum

The A.A. in Biblical Studies program has been designed with input from our expert faculty in the School of Divinity, ensuring you graduate with the in-demand skills and knowledge that will strengthen your relationship with Jesus Christ and your ministry for Him. The program requires 39 credits from the core curriculum courses, 12 credits from the program requirements, and 9 credits from other electives. View a sample curriculum sheet for a snapshot of the courses you will take.

BIB 202 – Narrative of Redemption (3 credits)
An overview of the unfolding of God’s redemptive story from creation to new creation with a focus on the fall into sin, the plan of redemption through Christ Jesus, and the effective communication of the message.
BIB 203 – The Pentateuch (3 credits)
A study of the five books of Moses as the foundational text to the Old and New Testaments.
BIB 204 – The Old Testament (3 credits)
A study of the Old Testament, building upon the foundation of the Pentateuch. Attention is given to the Old Testament as the context for the New Testament.
BIB 303 – The Gospels (3 credits)
A study of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and their unique contribution to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Attention is given to the relationships between the Old Testament text and each Gospel.
COM 111 – Introduction to Communications (3 credits)
A course designed to develop effective, professional oral and written communication for a variety of settings.
INT 010 – Life Management Seminar (0 credits)
An introduction to topics relevant to the first year college student including wellness, time management, and personal finance.
ENG 101 – English Composition (3 credits)
A course that examines the principles and practices of clear, concise, and literate writing, focusing on the content, style, organization, and mechanics of academic writing. This course provides the skills necessary for critical thinking, research-based writing, and correct documentation.
HUM 211 – Literature and Arts in Historical Context I (3 credits)
A course that introduces literature and the arts in historical context from the ancient world through the 16th Century.
HUM 212 – Literature and Arts in Historical Context II (3 credits)
A course that introduces literature and the arts in historical context from the 16th Century to the present.
THE 111 – Life and Calling (3 credits)
An introduction to living faithfully as servants of God, with particular emphasis on the calling of the student. The course engages students in the biblical and theological rationale for biblical education and Christian discipleship.
POL 101 – US Government and Civics (3 credits)
An examination of the founding, structure, and operations of the United States government and the corresponding political processes and dynamics, with special emphasis on the rights and responsibilities of US citizens and residents.
THE 100 – Introduction to Christian Theology (3 credits)
An introduction to major doctrines of Christianity and to theological method: biblical, systematic, and historical theology. The relevance of the truths of these doctrines to life is explored
SCI 211 – Mathematical and Scientific Reasoning (3 credits)
A study of selected mathematical and scientific topics that expand a student’s understanding of the nature and scope of mathematics, engage a student in an evaluation of the philosophical foundation of science, and compel a student to think biblically about science and mathematics.
SOC 202 – Sociocultural Studies (3 credits)
A study of culture, social structure, anthropology, and human interaction through the social institutions of society. Special attention is given to the family, government, economy, education, and religion.
BIB 261 – Biblical Hermeneutics (3 credits)
A study and application of the principles and practice of interpreting the Bible.

Bible/Theology Electives: 6 credits

Liberal Arts and Sciences Elective: 3 Credits

Other Electives: 9 Credits

Any undergraduate courses from the School of Divinity that are not already included. See the course catalog for details.

Cairn Online Frequently Asked Questions

The tuition for post-secondary education has become expensive in general. However, Cairn Online programs rank amongst the most affordable online bachelor’s and master’s programs. While the tuition costs vary by program level, the rate is typically $425 per credit or 12K per year for A.A. and B.S. programs and $300-$725 per credit for graduate programs. 

The current tuition rates are available from this page. Scholarships and financial aid are also available. 

Currently there are over 6 million online learners in the United States, and those numbers are growing every day. Online degrees that have regional accreditation are held to the same standards as traditional universities, ensuring that students earn a valuable degree that will prepare them with the skills and credentials for their career. Do research to find an online degree that is accredited and reputable, such as those offered at Cairn University.

Cairn Online courses based on Cairn’s 100+ years tradition of excellence in biblical education. Our on faculty has carefully designed them taking into consideration what works best for the online learner. The modular design and asynchronous delivery enable you to complete your studies while you pursue your career, ministry and spend time with your family.

Courses typically contain seven units and are delivered in 7-week terms*. Each unit contains 5-7 modular activities. Each learning activity includes instructional videos accompanied by reflections, quizzes, discussion forums and other assessments. Courses also utilize adaptive learning technologies such as Cerego for long-term retention of concepts and VoiceThread for enhanced collaboration.

The asynchronous delivery provides flexibility around your daily busy schedule. In most courses, interactive activities are typically due by Wednesday while the rest of the unit’s work is due by Sunday night. The MBA, M.A. in Music and Criminal Justice programs use the 7RD2 process and require the completion of certain activities daily to optimize learning.

Our own Cairn faculty intentionally participate in the course throughout the week to provide you with an incarnational experience.

*Few capstone courses are intentionally offered in 14 weeks to optimize student learning.

A.A. programs usually take 2 years and B.S. and B.A. programs typically take 3-4 years to complete.

Graduate programs vary in length by program. As an example, Cairn’s traditional MBA typically takes 20 months to complete but then there is also the accelerated One-Year MBA that you can complete in 12 months.

If you are looking to complete your program sooner, you can consider taking more 7-week courses at a time. 

All courses are developed by one or more course developers and taught by our own faculty. The instructors are also intentionally involved in the course throughout the week by providing direction in the course activities, participating in the forum discussions, grading the student work and providing substantive feedback. Most courses also offer optional office hours weekly via Zoom or similar video conferencing tools.

Our instructional design team works very closely with the course developers and carefully plans the courses to balance the technology requirements. Most courses use the eLearning platform for hosting the course materials, Panopto for video capture and storage, VoiceThread for enhanced discussion forums, and Cerego for adaptive learning. Zoom is used at times for virtual office hours. These sessions are optional.

Except for the Hebrew and Greek language courses for the B.S. in Biblical Studies program, typically there are no required meeting times for the completing the course activities.  

The course transfer depends on where you are transferring from, and what program you are transferring to. If you are coming to Cairn Online from another institution, it is very likely you will have some credits that will transfer. Because there are so many options, we encourage you to talk to an enrollment counselor. If you are transferring out, Cairn is a regionally accredited school and some credits should transfer with relative ease. Each college sets their own transfer criteria, so be sure to check their policies for specifics.

Cairn Online offers a variety of options for prior learning and experience. You can receive up to 6 credits for prior learning for graduate programs. At the discretion of the program advisor, three to six credits for prior learning (CPL) can be awarded for students with extensive background in areas addressed by specific courses. Additionally, advance standing may be granted for Bible or theology credits earned at an accredited Bible college, Christian liberal arts college or university, or seminary. Credits will be granted on a course by course basis.

Cairn is approved to offer financial aid because of its regional accreditation. There are many options available and typically students qualify for at least one type of federal aid. Many students receive scholarships and grants that make earning their degree even more affordable. Cairn offers a variety of scholarships and discounts in addition to options for loans and grants. Please refer to this page for details. 

The requirements depend on the program you are considering. Please refer to this page for details. 

Program Details

Additional Information

MSCHE logoCairn University is regionally accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

NC-SARA Approved Institution

Cairn Online has been approved to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA), which regionally oversees postsecondary online education.

Additional Accreditation Information