Online learning is the new norm, but with so many schools – including the largest and most recognizable in the nation – offering numerous distance learning options, how can you identify the best online colleges? While in the past the question may have been whether or not to pursue a degree online, current students are asking themselves how to find the right online college to attend instead. Prospective students who want to enroll in the best online program should start their journey at the school level. But what earns a school that distinction? Several variables may come into play, many of which depend on the individual student’s academic and financial needs. For many students, picking the best online college starts with accreditation and affordability.
One of the top online colleges in the nation, Arkansas State ensures that its faculty members are trained in the online mode of delivery. Online learners have access to a diverse network of peers and support services, including tutoring and a help-desk. Note that online degrees are only available in some states, so students should check availability.
More than 15,000 students attend Emory University. The university comprises 9 schools and offers over 70 undergraduate choices as well as dozens of options for graduate and professional studies. There are MOOCs offered through the Coursera platform which are open to all students. Emory also offers undergraduate courses online as well as a Bachelor of Medical Science in Medical Imaging (BMSc), Executive MPH, Modular Executive MBA, Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Doctor of Ministry (DMin), and a Juris Master in Health Care Law or Business Law.
To be eligible for most financial aid awards, students must complete the FAFSA, or Free Application for Financial Student Aid. While this application is technically for students applying for federal financial aid, most states and schools that offer their own financial aid packages require students to complete the FAFSA as well. The FAFSA provides a snapshot of a student’s financial situation, which helps states, schools, organizations and others determine how much to award students who seek need-based awards.
Accreditation is regional, national, and programmatic in nature, with 15 accrediting agencies currently recognized by the Department of Education to conduct regional and national accreditation. Specialized accrediting organizations handle subject- and program-based review in areas such as community and social services, healthcare, law, and counseling. Choosing an accredited program of study is important because students receive a level of assurance their institution provides an education that is of value. It also important because it ensures the following:
Originally founded as a junior college in 1963, this Georgia institution's main campus is located roughly 20 miles from downtown Atlanta. Kennesaw State's extensive distance learning program includes a mix of fully-online, hybrid and 'mixed-model' learning formats. Some of the university's courses are 95% online, with a single on-campus requirement (typically an exam or an orientation session); other courses are delivered 100% online.
Online degree programs for graduate students at ASU are also extensive. A total of 47 online master's degrees are available. These options include seven degrees in engineering, six in education and two hybrid MBA/engineering degrees, as well as programs in cutting-edge fields like biomimicry, health innovation and sustainable tourism. Doctorate degrees in education and behavioral health are also offered through ASU Online. In addition to degrees, online students can also choose from 18 undergraduate and graduate certificate programs. Most certificates range between 15 and 20 credit hours, and can be completed in six courses or less.
Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, usually known as simply Cooper Union, is located in Manhattan, New York. Cooper Union is a private college that was established in 1859 by Peter Cooper in order to bring quality higher education to all who qualify regardless of race, sex, religion or social status. Originally the school offered free courses to students, then later admitted students with full-tuition scholarships. However, after 2014, Cooper Union had to change their policy.
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, commonly called Rutgers University or simply Rutgers, has multiple campuses, with the flagship being in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Rutgers was established in 1766 and is the 8th oldest institution of higher learning in the country and one of the nine colonial colleges chartered prior to the American Revolutionary War.
Is the site or app secure? Will the information I provide remain confidential? Psychotherapy works in part because psychologists ensure that clients have a safe, private space to share deeply personal and sometimes difficult stories, thoughts or emotions. What happens and is said in a therapy office stays there, with the exception of a few situations. The site or app you use should, at a minimum, be HIPAA-compliant and have the ability to verify your identity and your therapist’s identity.
Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies is an exciting and rigorously challenging interdisciplinary program that provides students with a unique opportunity to study and integrate concepts from the humanities and arts, the natural sciences, and the social sciences. This is an institution-wide degree leading to a Bachelor of Arts. This major explores the methods, underlying assumptions, and forms of interaction within and between these disciplines. The capacity for critical thinking, comprehensive academic background, and communications skills that our majors develop provide them with the self-confidence that comes from being culturally sensitive, intellectually independent, creative, and well-rounded persons.
One of the country's top public universities, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, enrolls approximately 30,000 students both on-campus and online and is experienced in helping non-traditional learners complete a bachelor's degree. Its renowned University Without Walls (UWW) program was established in 1971 to give non-traditional learners increased access to traditional and online higher education.
Established in 1972, Thomas Edison State University is located in the New Jersey capital of Trenton. In addition to standard online courses delivered through the school's MyEdison portal, distance learners at TESU may also choose to take asynchronous guided study courses utilizing DVDs and streaming video, 'e-pack' self-assessment courses and TESU’s own credit-by-exam program, TECEP exams, aimed at students who wish to prepare for rigorous final exams.
University of Phoenix is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (http://hlcommission.org). Since 1978, University of Phoenix has been continually accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor. University of Phoenix obtained its most recent 10-year Reaffirmation of Accreditation in 2012–13. A comprehensive evaluation is scheduled for 2016–17, and the next Reaffirmation of Accreditation is scheduled for 2022–23.
Since 2006, the University of Alabama—a public research university—has been offering high-quality online programs through Bama by Distance, their distinctive online portal. Bama by Distance currently offers around 60 accredited online degrees and certificates—primarily in the areas of education, engineering, healthcare, and business—at the undergraduate through the doctoral levels.
In developing the ranking for the 100 Best Online Colleges, several pieces of data were collected in order to evaluate the institutions. A list of all colleges offering online degrees or courses was obtained from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). In addition, data and information for online colleges and universities considered for this college ranking was obtained from Payscale, CollegeData, Niche, and individual school websites.
The Bachelor of Science degree program in Psychology focuses on the scientific study of behavior as it is influenced by physical, cognitive, emotional, and environmental factors, and includes the analysis of behavior problems and disorders. This comprehensive program of study emphasizes instruction in the principles of the subfields of psychology which include developmental, abnormal, counseling, personality, measurement, and research methodology in psychology. Students complete a senior empirical research thesis which prepares them for success in graduate programs of their choice. Programs often include social work, public health, business, sports, law, human services, mental health counseling and psychiatric services. A required Field Experience in which they volunteer at local mental health agencies often gives students an advantage in obtaining entry-level employment with the agencies.
Being a high school assistant principal requires devoting many nights and weekends to school functions. With an online program, I can complete my work and interact with my peers at any time as I am not confined to a few hours once a week. Also, my conversations with my peers extend over days and allow both me and my fellow students to interact in authentic and meaningful dialogue. We are able to analyze and evaluate our thoughts before posting them on discussion boards. Sometimes people are not comfortable speaking in front of others or take time to think through their answers; an online platform solves both of these issues. So far, my interactions with my peers have been rich and insightful while also allowing for multiple perspectives.
For those that want to travel as they study, UMC online students can take advantage of extensive study-abroad opportunities. And online learners at UMC have the opportunity to participate in hands-on internships that give you the chance to practice what you’ve learned and make contacts with potential employers. The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program also opens doors to conducting research as an online student.
Substance abuse and addiction counseling online programs are accredited by the National Addictions Studies Accreditation Commission (NASAC). One addictions counseling program from the University of the Cumberlands is accredited only by CACREP. Generally, accreditation by some governing body is important for online counseling programs in order to ensure quality, credibility, and value.
In my online college experience I have been pleasantly surprised at the diverse student body and the variety of academic and practical real-world experience that they bring to the program. In my opinion that adds tremendously to the academic experience as there exists a sharing of knowledge and expertise that enhances the overall value of the program. As many students can relate, grasping knowledge from merely reading a textbook, watching a video, or listening to a professor can be a challenging experience. As such, having the ability to share ideas and knowledge from a wide cross-section of students aids tremendously in the learning process. Moreover, being able to pursue your education on your schedule via online technology is priceless.
While we have ranked the best online therapy services, it’s important to understand that these rankings are very general and thus may not be best suited for you. As we’ve noted above, outcomes and people’s needs vary. Every online therapy service caters to a certain individual and thus it’s important to understand and consider what type of issues you are dealing with:
The University of Louisville is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The university also holds programmatic accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and the Engineering Accreditation Commission of Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).
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.
As an adult learner, your desire to pursue an education comes with a clear destination in sight: a promotion, a better career, the completion of a long-held goal. At Champlain College Online, we understand this, and we're committed to helping you get where you want to go. Offering more than 60 degree and certificate programs, all available fully online, we serve as a bridge between your aspirations and success to help you Accomplish Anything.
Since the beginning of the internet in 1972, several creative people perceived the potential of the internet for the therapeutic communication. In 1972, computers from Stanford and UCLA simulated a psychotherapy session that was considered the very beginning of online counseling. At the time the internet went public, this launch went hand in hand with the development of the first self-help groups on the internet who were, in that time, very popular. In 1995, Martha Ainsworth had a couple of psychological complaints where she wanted to get rid of it, so she began searching for a competent therapist. Because her travel requirements made it difficult for her to consult a face-to-face therapist, she searched for an effective alternative online, but only found a dozen webpages that offered online treatment for psychological complaints. Afterwards, Martha Ainsworth wanted to reach the general public with her experiences and founded a sort of clearinghouse for mental health websites, named Metanoia. This database seemed to be a very efficient store-room and by the year 2000, this clearinghouse contained over 250 websites of private practices, and more than 700 online clinics where a therapist could be contacted.
Undergraduate online students can choose from 63 different bachelor's degree programs. These include 28 B.A. and 26 B.S. degrees, as well as applied science bachelor's degrees in health sciences, Internet and web development and operations management. A total of 22 online minors are available, as well; these include niche fields such as family and human development, global health and sustainability. ASU Online also features 'exploratory' undergraduate degrees in four areas: health and life sciences; humanities, fine arts and design; math, physical sciences, engineering and technology; and social and behavioral sciences. These programs are geared toward students who have an interest in certain academic areas but have not yet chosen a major. In 2015, ASU Online announced a new partnership with EdX titled the 'Global Freshmen Academy'. This program is open to all incoming freshmen; candidates do not need to formally apply for enrollment in GFA, and will only asked to pay for courses that they complete with a passing grade.
At the graduate level, online master's degrees are available in five engineering fields: engineering management, software engineering, electrical engineering, civil engineering and systems engineering. A fully online Georgia MBA program is offered through Kennesaw State's Coles College of Business, and the university also offers an online MSN program for nursing students. Other online master's options include degrees in first-year college studies, information technology, international policy management and quality assurance.
Once students enroll at the college, they are assigned a mentor with whom they develop a personalized degree plan. The mentor can be contacted by phone, email, or web conferencing to ensure competencies are being met and students are given support. The school works to keep education affordable with flat-rate tuition fees made possible by low operation costs and overhead. Students can complete as many courses as they like each term and pay the same price. Western Governors University also has a generous transfer policy for undergraduate programs and maintains transfer agreements with many community colleges across the nation.
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.
Online counseling has a long history. Cornell University, as early as 1986, began providing an online therapy service of sorts when they developed a program called “Dear Uncle Ezra.” With Ezra, students could anonymously write to an anonymous therapist, and receive a prompt written reply. While 1986 sounds early, if one extends the definition of “online” therapy to include any electronic or distance therapy, the Samaritans, based out of Great Britain, created their first telephone crisis helpline almost 30 years earlier—in 1953! So, while today we might think of online therapy as HIPAA-complaint videoconference (like we offer), it reality is a broad category with a rich history, and if you ask five helping professionals for a definition, you might get five somewhat different answers.
According to research from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), more than 80 percent of public universities and at least half of private colleges offer online programs. A 2014 study from the Babson Institute estimated that 71 percent of all public-, degree-granting institutions provide distance learning opportunities to students.
This private, Ivy League research university can be found in New Haven, Connecticut. The roots of Yale University, or simply Yale, can be traced as far back as the 1640s, but the school charter was not officially granted until 1701. In 1718 the school officially became Yale College, naming itself after a Welsh merchant and benefactor named Elihu Yale.
Remember: You are the consumer. You are buying a service. If you don’t want to immediately schedule another appointment, that is just fine! If you feel you need to contemplate the experience before making another appointment, trust your gut and do so. You don’t have to purchase a car simply because you take it out for a test drive, and you don’t have to continue with a counselor just because you had a session with them.
Working up the courage to get counseling for private problems, depression, identity issues, familial memories, cultural expectations, sexual issues etc. can be hard. With online counseling, you get the help you need fast and in anonymity. Your counselor doesn't have to know what you look like, or even your name. It's all up to you how much you want to disclose. This anonymity helps clients feel safe and truly explore even the most difficult situations. Online counseling is on-demand. You need help right now? You get the help right now. This can be very important when you go through traumatic experiences, or experiences and feelings that are too powerful, or just need attention right this second. Because sometimes something happens and triggers powerful emotions inside. This starts a "process" - an opportunity to be able to undo old habits, reach an old belief, or a buried memory. The process is the seed – if we can water it in that moment by talking to a counselor, we may be able to grow a flower. Finally.
Courses are taught asynchronously, some with varying start dates throughout the year. Many of the school’s online degree programs give students the option to complete their degree in an accelerated timeframe. Additionally, the school allows students to transfer up to 90 credits from a regionally accredited institution. Support services include free tutoring through Smarthinking, a writing center, and academic success workshops. Whether studying on campus or online, students at Regis University are taught by faculty who incorporate real-world experience into the classroom curriculum.
Pace University has a long history of providing access to excellent education and career preparation. The school utilizes Blackboard—a learning management system which provides easy access to online class resources as well as keeping students in touch with instructors and other students. And online courses at Pace offer an affordability that their campus-based counterparts can’t compete with. Top degree programs include:
Concordia University Saint Paul offers the benefits of a liberal arts education immersed in an online program. Online programs at CSP are designed to give students highly marketable job skills and knowledge. And CSP’s commitment to experiential learning means that online students apply academic concepts to real-world settings, developing practical knowledge and abilities. Top online degree programs at CSP include:
We offer undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degree programs in many high-demand fields, including business, education, nursing and technology. You can complete your degree online from anywhere or on-campus, depending upon your location. The University also offers certificate programs, as well as individual, test-preparation and non-credit professional development courses.
Georgia Tech is organized into six colleges with more than 30 departments. As the school name suggests, there is a strong emphasis on science and technology and is recognized for college degree programs in the sciences, engineering, computing, business administration, as well as graphic design, and liberal arts. As a leader in technology, it’s no surprise that Georgia Tech offers online courses as well as full programs for students who prefer the flexibility of online education.
Texas Tech University began administering distance learning with "flying professors" who, in 1966, brought education to students spread across Texas. In the school's modern iteration of distance learning, students all around the country and the world are now a part of a learning community with more than 100 degree programs available fully online and through regional teaching sites.
The traditional pitch for online degree programs is that they’re great for busy working professionals, and/or parents who need to study outside of regular hours, after the kids are in bed. But that’s limiting. Online degree programs are great for their flexibility. They don’t just fit the lifestyle of busy working professionals; they fit your lifestyle, whatever that may be. Maybe you work nights and sleep during traditional class times, or have an irregular travel schedule. Maybe you are a tornado chaser and need to head out to the Great Plains at a moment’s notice. Or maybe you’re caring for an ailing relative and need to be available to them at a moment’s notice. Not to say online degree programs aren’t great for the child-rearing and day job set, just that other lifestyles often get ignored in the online marketing materials.
The online Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Management prepares students for managerial and technical careers in the field of information systems. The online Bachelors of Science in Information System Management Program is designed for students interested in pursuing a career as an information technology professional who can apply accepted standards and best practices to effectively plan, design, implement, and manage the various aspects of an organization. The program emphasizes the acquisition of sound theoretical concepts and research experience in the area of information systems.
This 2019 comprehensive list of accredited online schools and colleges covers over 28,191 fully online degrees at the associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral and certificate levels. All schools are accredited by agencies recognized by the Department of Education, and they have an average annual tuition of just $24,494. All degrees were provided by the schools themselves or manually researched and verified using the colleges’ official websites. Our recommend rate is based on feedback from former students through our partner site and the largest database of independent online college reviews, GradReports.com. In addition to this comprehensive list, we provide rankings of the best online colleges for 2019.
The workplace is changing. Digital media and data are everywhere. The world is social. If you’re no longer in your twenties but want to get into a digital role, you may find it hard to find peers to interact with at traditional schools. That’s where an online degree program can be particularly helpful. In a virtual setting, you’re more likely to be valued for your contribution, and not judged on age or other less relevant qualities. “Older students are able to attend school with more of their peers and have interaction with students and instructors that are related to their experience,” says Leatherwood.
A: Oddly enough, no. (Laughs). I prefer face-to-face conversations and being able to read body language and hear someone’s tone. That’s why when I receive a complaint over social media, I read the complaint over and over and over. I’m really trying to “hear” what the person is saying, so I can respond appropriately and give them the answers they need.
Video therapy, also known as online or distance therapy, has become a viable alternative for anyone with a computer, tablet, or iPhone. Just as physicians began to do with patients in the medical community, more and more therapists now practice distance therapy, treating people seeking help in areas where mental health professionals are scarce. With increased availability and ease of use, the internet now may be a go-to method of receiving therapy for a person who travels with work, has a schedule that makes it difficult or impossible to visit an actual office, and/or may be fearful of facing a therapist in person.
But full or part-time employment is not the only hurdle to completing higher education; nearly 34% of respondents say they chose online classes due to flexibility surrounding their family's scheduling demands. In fact, 33% of those surveyed had dependent children living with them when they took courses, offering some insight into what types of external factors students may have to consider when selecting a learning format, such as childcare arrangements.
One thing you should expect from online counseling, and counseling in general, is that results are not instant. It may take months for your counseling to be effective. Also, it's often up to you. The therapist online that you work with can't force you to do anything but instead offers suggestions and strategies. If you don't take their advice, don't be surprised if life doesn't improve.
Park University was founded on 700 acres along shore of the Mississippi River in Parkville, MO, in 1875. The university today enrolls 16,933 students at its main campus, at 41 campus centers, and online. Undergraduate students can complete one of 38 bachelor and eight associate degrees. Graduate students have a selection of eight master's degrees. There are also 27 undergraduate and graduate-level certificate programs. Park University is one of the best online colleges in the region, offering 63 online degrees. Park Universities' business and management programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).
Online learning benefits each student differently. Some students may need the time flexibility, where they can hop online and submit materials after hours or early in the morning before work. Others gravitate toward the location flexibility, being able to work from home, a coffee shop or anywhere else that fits into their lifestyle. And for those who need a hands-on element to their education, many online programs have the best of both worlds, allowing for remote coursework but including campus-based or other on-site laboratory experiences.
Our goal is to both inform everyone on the latest developments, as well as make accessible a therapist finding tool that allows for immediate connection between therapists and potential clients. As communication technology becomes more accessible to everyone, the way therapists and their clients connect will move more into online communication platforms. We want to make sure that therapists and clients can connect easily with tools that help everyone in finding the right therapist for the right client. Therapists can list their practice on The Online Counselling Directory, and clients can search therapists all over the world who have signed up to our service with our advanced therapist finding tool.
Most of the online master's programs available through FIU Online are fully online, and many are available in accelerated formats that allow students to earn their degree in 12 to 18 months. Options for business students include corporate and healthcare MBA tracks, as well as master's degrees in hospitality management, human resources management and international business. The university also features master's degrees for teachers in curriculum/instruction and special education. Additional online master's options include degrees in construction management, computer engineering/network security, forensic science, music education and real estate.
The impact of the digital revolution can also be assessed by exploring the amount of worldwide mobile smart device users there are. This can be split into 2 categories smart phone users and smart tablet users. Worldwide there are currently 2.32 billion smartphone users across the world. This figure is to exceed 2.87 billion by 2020. Smart tablet users reached a total of 1 billion in 2015, 15% of the world’s population. The first mobile phone was released in 1973 by a senior engineer in Motorola  and was only affordable by the incredibly wealthy. The fact that such a large proportion of the world’s population own smart devices demonstrates the rapid level of growth achieved throughout the digital revolution.