Our rankings of the best online colleges and universities are a jumping off point to help you build your own list of prospective programs that meet your needs. Remember, many factors that contribute to the quality of a degree program are intangible. You won't find data points here or elsewhere that fully capture the level of faculty support, peer networking or academic and professional stimulation found in one program versus another. Please contact your schools directly for more information.
Founded in 1890, Oklahoma State University-Main Campus serves more than 35,000 at its main campus in Stillwater, online through OCampus, at campus locations in Tulsa, Oklahoma City, and the OSU Institute of Technology in Okmulgee. Popular majors include agriculture operations; business (management and marketing); biological and biomedical sciences; and engineering. OSU also serves distance students as one of the best online colleges in the region, with more than 32 online degree programs leading to baccalaureate and master's degrees through OCampus. Certificate students can select among 10 online programs in the fields of business, engineering, finance, and online teaching.
Although enrollment in online degree programs has continued to tick upwards during the past decade, it has recently slowed in the past few years. However, both public and private not-for-profit colleges and universities continue to experience respectable increases. From 2012 – 2013, research from the Babson Institute shows that enrollment in online classes rose nearly 5 percent at public institutions and almost 13 percent for private nonprofits. Here’s a closer look at the growth numbers by volume for online learners by institution type in 2013.
The university’s online courses feature the same curriculum, lectures, and deadlines as their on-campus counterparts. University of North Dakota offers students two types of courses: self-paced, independent study, which allows students to enroll at any time while providing up to nine months for completion of each course; and semester-based courses, which follow the university’s standard schedule.
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UMKC Online makes the educational process both collaborative and supportive. As an online student, you’ll be able to take advantage of a wide range of student supports like online tutoring, academic advising, and disability services. And all faculty who teach online at UMKC must complete UMKC Online Teaching Certification, so you know that not only are your instructors experts in their area of specialization but are specifically trained to teach in an online environment. Top online degree programs at UMKC include:

"I was in a panic when I joined online counseling because I needed someone to talk to me and tell me they are there. Few minutes later, Mary came through. I typed out my worries and problems and we got right to it. Mary offered a lot of insight and hit the nail on the head as what was going on. Mary has helped me see things that my anxiety wasn't letting me. I'm thankful for Mary and the time she takes to answer my questions and encourages me to keep moving forward. I don't regret joining better help."


Nearly all online programs are offered nearly 100% online. Only one bachelor's program requires a one week, on-campus class, and that is the B.S. in social work; the remaining bachelor's degree programs are delivered fully online, and are designed to be completed in four years or less. Liberty’s Online programs bachelor's programs span 16 academic departments, and tout tuition that is considerably lower than the on-campus degree programs at $9,360 instead of the traditional $20,300. The online bachelor's degree programs also have no additional fees, and are completely free to apply.
At the University of Central Florida, online courses combine an outstanding learning experience with personalized convenience and flexibility. With top online degrees in areas like Criminal Justice and Graduate Nursing, UCF is establishing a reputation for excellent online programming for working professionals. Not content to rest on their laurels, UCF ranks among the top 25 most innovative schools in the country (U.S. News and World Report). Top online degrees include:
Compared to traditional in-person therapy, it can sometimes appear less expensive. Some apps will advertise pricing that provides unlimited use for a weekly or monthly fee. Or the online session may seem significantly lower than in-office visits. If you’re not interested in using health insurance for psychotherapy, this can be a benefit. More about insurance and online therapy is discussed in the next section.
There are a large number of people who have excelled in their fields after attending Yale. Yale University notable alumni include the U.S. Presidents William Howard Taft, Gerald Ford, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush as well as several other heads of state outside the country in addition to public officials, writers, scholars, athletes, entertainers, and businessmen.
At the master's level, online business students can choose two MBA specializations: business analytics or organizational leadership. Aspiring teachers also have multiple options; these include a master's in education with two specialization tracks (Adult or K-12), as well as degrees in art education, school counseling and English as a Second Language (ESL). And like OSU's online bachelor's programs, the master's list includes three environment-oriented degrees: natural resources, environmental sciences and fisheries/wildlife administration. Other online master's tracks include degrees in industrial engineering, radiation health physics, data analytics and public policy. A total of 11 online graduate certificates are offered, as well; seven are focused on environmental subjects.
Columbia Southern University offers 28 online undergraduate degrees and 12 online graduate degrees. CSU also partners with over 2,500 organizations to offer a 10% tuition discount for working professionals. The recommendation rate for this university is 80% by the 158 students who review their experiences there. Columbia Southern University offers two track schedules to give students flexibility in when they begin their coursework. Track A and Track B dates overlap but have different start and end dates for more flexibility. CSU also offers a program called LifePace Learning that offers even more flexibility where students can either complete a course in four weeks or extend up to 18 weeks. Tuition is an affordable $6,600 per year or $225 per credit hour for undergraduates and $300 per credit hour for graduate courses. Textbooks are included in these tuition costs for online students.

The University of Missouri–Columbia is a member of the Association of American Universities (an association of excellent North American research universities). The University of Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International) provides programmatic accreditation to University of Missouri’s Robert J. Trulaske Sr. College of Business.
Online graduate students enrolled at Northeastern can choose from 37 master's degree pathways. These include nine degrees in business- and management-related fields, seven in health and human services and five in education. The university also offers several highly specialized programs for online master's students, including tracks in energy systems, geographic information technology, homeland security, security and resilience studies and two degrees concentrated in regulatory affairs. Doctorates in education and transitional physical therapy are also available in a primarily online format. Additionally, two undergraduate certificates and 30 graduate certificates can be earned entirely online within one year of full-time study.

As widespread acceptance of online education surges among nonprofit institutions, we predict that the number of accredited online colleges – and their quality – will increase. This rapid growth can make choosing an online college feel intimidating. To develop a short list of options that make sense for you and your goals, you need to compare a wide range of components, such as accreditation, tuition and fees, support services, faculty, and career preparation.

To a certain degree, online degrees have had a persistent stigma—a reputation that they are not on-par with those earned on-campus. However, the tide seems to be shifting because non-profit colleges (both private and public) have created online programs that rival those traditional degrees. In fact, a recent study shows that 76 percent of academic leaders agree that degrees taught online are equal to their on-campus counterparts.
The University of Maine was founded in 1865 along the Stillwater River in Orono, ME. Current enrollment includes 9,279 undergraduates and 1,961 graduate students. The university offers 90 undergraduate programs, 85 master's degree programs, and 35 doctorates at its flagship campus and online. It was ranked among the 50 Green Colleges by The Princeton Review and hosts one of the best online schools in Maine. In fact, UMaine Online offers two undergraduate degrees, 16 master's and doctoral degrees, and 15 graduate certificate programs. There are eight education graduate degrees online, along with in-demand MBA and social work master's programs. Online doctorates are available in biomedicine (engineering and science).
Students seeking to transfer into Concordia from one of its partner institutions may be eligible for a $2,000 scholarship to go toward a baccalaureate degree. Because students can transfer credits seamlessly, many distance learners can complete the bachelor's degree in two years or less. One feature that makes Concordia one of the top online schools in the nation is the identical tuition rates for online learners regardless of in-state or out-of-state residency. Likewise, active duty service members are eligible for discounted tuition rates, and all students can expect no change in tuition throughout their time school.

The University of Virginia, also known as UVA or sometimes simply as Virginia, is located in Charlottesville, Virginia. Charlottesville is a gateway to the Shenandoah National Park, which stretches into West Virginia and other surrounding areas. UVA is the public flagship university of the Commonwealth of Virginia and was founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819.
Examples of digital media include software, digital images, digital video, video games, web pages and websites, including social media, data and databases, digital audio, such as MP3 and electronic books. Digital media often contrasts with print media, such as printed books, newspapers and magazines, and other traditional or analog media, such as images, movies or audio tapes. Digital media has a significant broad and complex impact on society and culture. Combined with the Internet and personal computing, digital media has caused disruptive innovation in publishing, journalism, public relations, entertainment, education, commerce and politics. Digital media has also posed new challenges to copyright and intellectual property laws, fostering an open content movement in which content creators voluntarily give up some or all of their legal rights to their work. The ubiquity of digital media and its effects on society suggest that we are at the start of a new era in industrial history, called the Information Age, perhaps leading to a paperless society in which all media are produced and consumed on computers.[2] However, challenges to a digital transition remain, including outdated copyright laws, censorship, the digital divide, and the spectre of a digital dark age, in which older media becomes inaccessible to new or upgraded information systems.[3] Digital media has a significant, wide-ranging and complex impact on society and culture.[2]
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