As with other degree levels, different subjects and majors can have different impacts on your post-graduate earning potential. In general, associate degrees in healthcare, technology, and engineering have the highest return on investment and lead to the highest-paying jobs. According to PayScale.com, professionals with an associate degree in management information systems, construction management, and economics can earn over $70,000 a year.
eCollegeFinder is an organization dedicated to distance learning, online education and learning technology. The Education Innovator Award was created to recognize the top resources on the Internet that parallel the same goals of promoting the expansion of learning into new and innovative formats. The following websites have shown commitment to the advancement of education and... Read More »
For some, when they think about college, an immediate thought is large lecture halls where students get little one-on-one attention. For online counseling programs, a small class size increases intimacy and learning opportunities. When doing your research, ask counseling programs what their instructor-to-student ratio is. Classes with 15 or less students may increase your one-on-one learning while also developing professional and academic hearty relationships with your online counseling peers.
It is important to know exactly what your career goals are and what you want to get out of a graduate degree before you begin applying to online master's programs. Most people who earn online master's degrees do so with the goal of getting a higher-paying job. If you fall into this category, it's important to have a solid understanding of the job market in your industry. For some fields, like social work or psychology, a graduate degree is required for even entry-level jobs. In other fields, like business, online master's programs and MBAs can prepare you for significant salary increases or senior leadership roles. Finally, in fields like education, a master's degree can automatically qualify you for a higher salary, and choosing one of the best online master's programs can allow you to earn that degree while you work full-time. Graduate school may not be the best choice for all career paths. For example, the typical salary of a worker with a master's degree in petroleum engineering is only $5,000 more per year than the salary of a worker with only a bachelor's degree in the same subject.
One of the most positive experiences of my online program has been connecting with people in similar situations taking courses from all over the world. In my last class, I connected with an army wife who was stationed in Germany at the time. I think that this is a unique experience. Secondly, I enjoy the flexibility online classes offer. While they are not self-paced in theory, I am able to spend more or less time on a topic within the outlined time frame based on my needs.

The institution's catalog of graduate degrees are extensive, covering fields such as education, public health, human capital development, sports management, and nutrition and food systems. The business administration program (MBA) offers a concentration in sport security events management, combining a business core foundation with hands-on security experience. The executive master of public health in health policy and administration helps experienced healthcare professionals learn to apply best practices and business principles in the delivery of healthcare services. Several graduate certificate programs are offered online such as business foundations, archives and special collections, TESOL, and sports security management. As on of the best online schools in the nation, the University of Southern Mississippi offers support services for online learners such as tutoring, workshops, and 24/7 tech support.


Our guides to online college programs discuss key considerations for students, such as researching school accreditation, paying for tuition, and determining a major field of study. We also provide directories that allow prospective learners to browse online undergraduate and graduate programs in different fields. Read on to learn more about online college opportunities.
Pursuing an online degree requires more personal responsibility from students as they learn material and complete assignments and group work based on their own schedule. Online learners therefore need to be prepared to effectively manage their time. And though communication with instructors and students is possible through electronic means, prospective students should weigh whether they want to sacrifice face-to-face interaction for the flexibility online education provides.
University of Florida Distance Learning offers over 250 undergraduate and graduate online degree programs leading to bachelor’s, bachelor’s completion, master’s, specialist, and doctoral degrees. The University of Florida ranks among the Top 10 Online Colleges in over 40 of our degree-specific rankings, including the #1 rank on our list of Best ROI Online Colleges.
The Southwestern Assemblies of God University was established when three Bible schools merged into one. The school now administers 70 undergraduate and graduate degree programs, including several delivered entirely online. Students seeking to earn a baccalaureate degree from the Texas-based institution can do so in fields like Bible and theory, communication studies, history, and social studies. The school also has several undergraduate business degrees. Students ages 22 and over can enroll in the fully online bachelor's in accounting, where they explore business law, advanced accounting, finance, or international business. Students focus on management communication, project management, operations management, venture management, and organizational behavior.

The professionals who work through BetterHelp are licensed and credentialed therapists who were certified by their state's board to provide therapy and counseling. However, while the service may have similar benefits, it's not capable of substituting for traditional face-to-face therapy in every case. Please note that your provider won't be able to make any official diagnosis, to fulfill any court order or prescribe medication.


If you have a creative bent, then you know that it can be more difficult to find online programs that match your interests. The Savannah College of Art and Design—a private, nonprofit university— has addressed this need by offering high-quality online programs tailored to meet the needs of nontraditional students. And their programs, offered at the undergraduate and graduate level—have found their way to national rankings.  
Online courses at Creighton University make use of real-time web-conferencing, audio-visual learning materials, discussion boards, and other technologies to ensure that students are engaged in the learning process. Most courses are asynchronous—but not self-paced—combining flexibility for your busy schedule with the structure of assignment due dates.  And you’ll have access to student supports like online tutoring and library services.

The 120-credit BS in business administration gives students a broad business foundation. Students take courses in areas such as accounting, commercial law, human resources, and international business and have the option of a finance concentration. The 120-credit BA in natural science and mathematics requires 30 credits in mathematics and liberal arts courses; students with 60+ credits may complete the degree in less than two years.


Payscale provides the valuable statistic of Mid-Career Pay. For our purposes, this number is rounded either up or down to the nearest thousand in order to allow for an easier mathematical ranking formula. While pursuing a career that they are passionate about is important for students, it’s never a bad idea to find out which schools have the largest average pay to go along with that career.
With nearly 52,000 students during the 2015-16 academic year, ASU is currently the sixth largest university in the U.S. by total enrollment. The Tempe institution also took first place in the 2016 'Most Innovative National Universities' ranking published by U.S. News & World Report. This recognition is largely due to ASU's groundbreaking distance learning program; currently the university offers more than 100 fully online degree programs.
Considered the largest and oldest public university in the state of Alabama, UA first opened its doors in 1820 and today boasts an enrollment of more than 37,000 students. The school's Bama by Distance program features a wide selection of degree and certificate programs delivered in fully online and hybrid formats. The university also strives to make online education more accessible through the GoArmyEd program aimed at military personnel re-entering civilian life, as well as the Back to Bama and New College LifeTrack programs geared toward adults who have completed college courses in the past without earning a degree.
Is the psychologist licensed in the state you live? Licenses are granted by each state with their own laws and rules, much like each state determines what residents must know to earn a driver’s license. But unlike driver’s licenses, which allow you to legally operate a car in all states, a health care provider is limited to providing services in the state in which they are licensed. The provider must be licensed in the jurisdiction where you are located, and making that determination may be difficult to do if you don’t know where he or she is physically located.
Located in Waltham, Massachusetts is Bentley University, a private university which has a focus on business education. The university was founded by Harry C. Bentley in 1917 as the Bentley School of Accounting and Finance. The school was originally located in Boston and moved to its current location in 1968. There are more than 5,000 students enrolled at Bentley.
It is important to know exactly what your career goals are and what you want to get out of a graduate degree before you begin applying to online master's programs. Most people who earn online master's degrees do so with the goal of getting a higher-paying job. If you fall into this category, it's important to have a solid understanding of the job market in your industry. For some fields, like social work or psychology, a graduate degree is required for even entry-level jobs. In other fields, like business, online master's programs and MBAs can prepare you for significant salary increases or senior leadership roles. Finally, in fields like education, a master's degree can automatically qualify you for a higher salary, and choosing one of the best online master's programs can allow you to earn that degree while you work full-time. Graduate school may not be the best choice for all career paths. For example, the typical salary of a worker with a master's degree in petroleum engineering is only $5,000 more per year than the salary of a worker with only a bachelor's degree in the same subject.
Established as an extension center in 1936, the University of Alabama at Birmingham has added a robust virtual college internationally recognized for academic excellence, research, and innovation. The school offers a comprehensive catalog of fully online and hybrid degree and certificate programs. With working adults in mind, the virtual college offers students flexible learning options. Bachelor’s degrees offered fully online include programs in accounting, criminal justice, marketing, information systems, and finance. The school’s Department of Human Studies offers a BS in community health and human services, a program that prepares students for a career as a community coordinator, outreach specialist, or drug abuse counselor. The BS in industrial distribution has two tracks: engineering and medical equipment and supplies.
Bachelor's degrees are delivered asynchronously and can be earned online in fields like Africana studies, business administration, economy and industry, geographic information systems, meteorology, informatics, and sustainable built environments. Among other notable programs is the BAS in intelligence studies, a 2+2 program in which students transfer an AAS into the program and complete the last two years at Arizona. The program provides students with a historical, political, social, and cultural understanding of national and international intelligence agencies. The BAS in cyber operations is also a transfer-only program and immerses students in hands-on study of offensive and defensive cyber security techniques they practice within the institution's Cyber Virtual Learning Environment.
eNSU's current selection features a total of 16 online bachelor's degrees. These options include a B.S. in unified public safety administration with four available concentrations: law enforcement administration; fire and emergency medical service administration; emergency management; and public facilities management. Psychology majors can also select prevention specialist or substance abuse concentrations for their online bachelor's studies. A hybrid RN to BSN pathway offered for registered nurses features online coursework supplemented with onsite clinical training, and a similar transitional program is available for radiologic technologists seeking a B.S. in radiologic science. Additional healthcare-related options include online degrees in allied health and addiction studies. Students pursuing a liberal arts education may choose from degrees in fields like criminal justice, history, psychology and social work. eNSU also features a blended Bachelor of Applied Science degree in resource management with two possible concentrations, culinary science or environmental science.
CSU-Global Campus has worked hard to earn a reputation as one of the best online schools for working professionals. The school is constantly pushing innovation in teaching methods, making online learning both rigorous and engaging. And CSU-Global emphasizes individualized support for students from registration to graduation, with a wide range of student resources—from tutoring to tech support. Top online degrees include:
Penn State's online bachelor's degree programs cover a wide range of academic fields, from core subjects to less traditional areas of study. Students can pursue bachelor's degrees in more than a dozen business-related fields, including accounting, agribusiness management, finance, marketing and security and risk analysis. Registered nurses can also complete their four-year education through the World Campus's RN to BSN online degree program. Eco-minded undergrads can also earn online bachelor's in biobehavioral health, energy and sustainability policy or turfgrass science. Online degrees in four different fields are available as either a B.A. or B.S.: economics, labor and employment relations; organizational leadership; political science; and psychology. In addition to degree fields of study, a total of 18 online minors are available. These include nine minors in business-related fields and six in liberal arts subjects. Seventeen online undergraduate certificates are also offered, including three nursing options.
To meet this challenge—and thereby provide you with the most useful and insightful educational rankings on the Internet — TheBestSchools.org formulates our rankings based on five informational categories (six, when considering online schools). The major metrics and qualities for which we rank are these (with expanded, detailed considerations and weights listed):

The University of Maryland notable alumni are plentiful and diverse. Sergey Brin, co-founder of Google and President of Alphabet Inc; Connie Chung, American Journalist; Jim Henson, Puppeteer famous for Muppets; Larry David, comedian, writer, actor, and producer; and many other talented people who have excelled in their chosen field are among those who have attended UMD.

You can find Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Named for its original location in Wake Forest, the school is a private, independent, nonsectarian institution which was founded in 1834. The university moved to its current location in 1956 and since then has continued to grow and maintain a reputation for excellence in higher education.
The mission of Bellevue University is to enable students to compete in a connected world, with an emphasis on making it possible for busy, working adult learners to earn a degree. Bellevue University offers more than 50 online bachelor’s degrees that focus on career advancing areas like: business administration, computer information systems, cybersecurity, emergency management, criminal justice, business analytics, IT operations management, healthcare management, health communication, nursing, legal studies, marketing, supply chain and logistics management, and non-profit management.
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.
Located in Virginia Beach, VA, Regent University is a private, Christian research university that is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to online programs. The school has invested heavily in its online offerings and currently offers 128 online degrees at the undergraduate through doctoral levels—many of which have found their way onto national rankings like U.S. News and World Report.
Choosing the best online degree from among the many colleges offering them will require taking many things into consideration. For example, a person’s ultimate career goal will primarily dictate the area of study they choose. Then, the student’s potential time commitment will decide what kind of class format the student can take. For instance, if a student has a full-time job or significant financial responsibilities, they will probably need to enroll in an online program that offers asynchronous learning. Finally, the student must confirm the program is accredited.
The history of the New Mexico State University-Main Campus dates back to 1888 when Las Cruces College was established in the territory of New Mexico. Home to the first honors program in the state, the university today serves 6,428 students that hail from across the US and more than 70 countries. Students take courses from the major colleges: Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences; Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering; Health and Social Services; and Honors. New Mexico State University is nationally-ranked for its online graduate nursing programs. NMSU Distance Education offers online bachelor degree-completion programs, masters and doctorate programs, and graduate certificates. Teachers can pursue their online New Mexico K-12 educator licensure and endorsements.

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. 
Today the university serves nearly 45,000 students. With 6 undergraduate colleges, 7 professional schools, and 4 professional health science schools, UCLA offers students a wide variety of disciplines. It’s also no surprise to find that online courses are also available at UCLA, from summer sessions online to courses offered through UCLA Extension.
One of the best online schools in the nation, the University of Nebraska at Omaha offers several graduate degree programs in criminology and criminal justice, critical and creative writing, political science, public administration, special education, and writing. The 36-credit MA in social gerontology gives students in-depth knowledge of the aging process and the needs of the elderly. Online undergraduate and graduate certificate programs can also be earned in fields such as gerontology, information assurance, systems development, and American government. The school has a long history of serving military-affiliated students with support services like the writing center and the math-science learning center.
All online courses at UCF are led by the same professors and faculty members that teach the same subjects on campus. A total of 18 fully online bachelor's degrees are available for undergraduate distance learners. These include Bachelor of Arts degrees in core subjects like history, English and political science, as well as niche fields like communication and conflict and Latin American studies. A BSN program is also offered for prospective nurses. In addition to full degrees, online undergrads can also choose from 29 minors in five academic areas: arts and humanities; education and human performance; health and public affairs; hospitality management; and sciences. All of these options are available as '2+2 baccalaureate completion' programs for students who have completed some college in the past without earning a four-year degree. As an extra perk, UCF Online students are not charged administrative fees for resources exclusively used by brick-and-mortar students.
Undergraduates enrolled at Champlain can choose from a list of 11 online bachelor's degree programs. Some of these programs are highly specialized, and concentrated in cutting-edge fields of study. Degrees in cybersecurity and computer forensics focus on strategies for investigating and preventing digital crimes, while a degree in economic crime investigation covers fraud, identity theft and other crimes that result in financial losses. Other tech-related options for undergrads include online bachelor's degrees in computer and information systems, management information systems, software development and web design/development. Champlain also offers online bachelor's programs in accounting, business management, integrated studies and health care administration. All of the college's online bachelor's tracks are 120 credits in length, and standard courses are 15 weeks in length; choosing the accelerated seven-week option when available can allow students to complete their bachelor's requirements in as little as two to three years. A total of 27 online undergraduate certificates are also available, including 14 in technology/computer science and nine in business-related fields.
A member of the ten-school Concordia University System, Concordia University-Saint Paul is a private, nationally ranked, Christian (Lutheran) university.  Concordia Saint Paul (CSP) offers numerous degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate level to over 1000 enrolled online students. And U.S. News & World Report ranks many of their online program among the best of their kind.
Online degree programs are typically stereotyped as boring, unengaging, and unmotivating. Watch a video, take a test, check your grades, rinse, repeat. However, the innovative and immersive online learning environment has become the hallmark of programs offered by universities. These programs allow virtual interaction with classmates and instructors from all over the country and world, easy access to knowledgeable advisors and campus resources, and incomparable networking opportunities.
Through Bachelor of Arts completion programs and self-paced graduate programs, students will experience a customizable education experience with career-focused content. DU’s philosophy is to embrace technology to improve and accelerate learning for busy adults. Online classes present the same content and are driven by the same academic outcomes as campus-based classes but in a flexible, accessible, and affordable format.
For some, when they think about college, an immediate thought is large lecture halls where students get little one-on-one attention. For online counseling programs, a small class size increases intimacy and learning opportunities. When doing your research, ask counseling programs what their instructor-to-student ratio is. Classes with 15 or less students may increase your one-on-one learning while also developing professional and academic hearty relationships with your online counseling peers.
There are more than 50,000 students enrolled at NYU which offers more than 230 areas of study, making it easier for students to find the right path to their career of choice. NYU offers students two undergraduate programs online: a BA in Social Sciences with a concentration in Organizational Behavior and Change and a BS in Leadership and Management Studies. Graduate students are offered online programs for an MS in Human Resource Management and Development, MS in Management and Systems (STEM), MS in Professional Writing, and MS in Translation.
Essential to Bellevue University’s commitment to serving adult learners is acceptance of prior learning that students bring. Bellevue University considers many forms of previously earned college credit for transfer into its degree programs, including associate degrees, previous college classes, military and corporate training, and for-credit exams like CLEP and DSST. This helps accelerate completion, while keeping it affordable.

Dipping a toe in the water through an online program, even if it’s just a class or two, can help you gauge fit with your would-be future colleagues, says Elizabeth Malson, President of Amslee Institute, a licensed online diploma and certification program for Professional Nannies. “If you are unsure of the job opportunities available, the starting salary, or whether you are going to enjoy the work, then you’ve skipped an important step. I would recommend you find an internship or shadow someone in the career field before enrolling in a post-secondary training program. A few months delay before enrolling to be confident about your career path is worthwhile before you invest a significant amount of time and money.”
Located in Odessa, TX, the University of Texas of the Permian Basin offers students a choice of 35 undergraduate and 18 graduate programs. The university is one of the best online colleges in the region. Its current 250 teaching faculty members serve more than 7,000 students who attend campus-based courses or study online. UTPB is part of the University of Texas system of nine universities and six health institutions in the Lone Star State. The distance degree program was named among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs for 2016 by U.S. News and World Report. Online students can complete one of 18 bachelor degrees, 10 master's programs, and five online education certificates. Many of the bachelor-level courses are offered in 8-week semester formats, and some online courses are offered through University of Texas Online consortium (UTOC).
Webster has a full roster of graduate teacher/administrator preparation programs in areas such as special education, communication arts, educational leadership, and superintendency and leadership. The school also offers two dual degree options online: the 48-credit MBA/MS in finance and the 45-credit MBA/MS in science management and leadership. Transfer students into Webster University can expect a generous transfer policy and a course equivalency database. Webster University charges one tuition regardless of in-state or out-of-state residency, and those in the military receive reduced tuition.
Online undergraduate students seeking a bachelor's degree can choose from several B.S. options. Five bachelor's programs are grounded in aviation-related fields: aeronautics; aviation business administration; aviation maintenance; aviation security; and unmanned systems (or drone) applications. Those interested in business studies can pursue bachelor's degrees in logistics and supply chain management, project management or technical management. Other options for bachelor's-seekers include degrees in communication, emergency management, engineering technology and homeland security. Embry-Riddle offers online 4+1 bachelor's to master's degree tracks in aeronautics, technical management and project management. Additionally, 22 online bachelor's degree minors are available; these include nine minors in business-related fields, eight in aviation and transportation and two in security. Recently, Embry-Riddle partnered with Microsoft to create the Microsoft Software and Systems Academy; this bachelor's in technical management degree program focuses on Microsoft's proprietary designs, and is geared toward military personnel who are transitioning to civilian life.
You may be able to fulfill some elective, interdisciplinary and/or general education courses by going through the Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) process. To be eligible for PLA credits, you must be an undergraduate student who has already been accepted into University of Phoenix. In addition, you must have submitted any transcripts to the University, and you must have remaining general education or elective credits required to earn your degree.
The university is composed of 17 schools and colleges and offers baccalaureate degrees in 143 fields. There are also graduate programs, including doctoral programs, in well over 100 fields as well as Professional degrees in law, pharmacy, and veterinary medicine. UGA offers a strong commitment to keeping its students inspired as they not only absorb knowledge but are able to participate in global research and hands-on experiential learning. There are currently 2 undergraduate programs available online and 16 graduate programs and a number of graduate certificates. Individual courses are also taught online.

Specific requirements vary by program, but most online students log into their school's learning management system (LMS) to participate in course lectures. Asynchronous programs allow students to view lecture recordings on their own time. Alternatively, synchronous programs may require students to watch live-streaming lectures. In some cases, synchronous courses feature video conferencing components that allow students to ask questions and interact with their professors and fellow students.
Located in Odessa, TX, the University of Texas of the Permian Basin offers students a choice of 35 undergraduate and 18 graduate programs. The university is one of the best online colleges in the region. Its current 250 teaching faculty members serve more than 7,000 students who attend campus-based courses or study online. UTPB is part of the University of Texas system of nine universities and six health institutions in the Lone Star State. The distance degree program was named among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs for 2016 by U.S. News and World Report. Online students can complete one of 18 bachelor degrees, 10 master's programs, and five online education certificates. Many of the bachelor-level courses are offered in 8-week semester formats, and some online courses are offered through University of Texas Online consortium (UTOC).
Though they used machine-readable media, Babbage's engines, player pianos, jacquard looms and many other early calculating machines were themselves analog computers, with physical, mechanical parts. The first truly digital media came into existence with the rise of digital computers.[6] Digital computers use binary code and Boolean logic to store and process information, allowing one machine in one configuration to perform many different tasks. The first modern, programmable, digital computers, the Manchester Mark 1 and the EDSAC, were independently invented between 1948 and 1949.[6][7] Though different in many ways from modern computers, these machines had digital software controlling their logical operations. They were encoded in binary, a system of ones and zeroes that are combined to make hundreds of characters. The 1s and 0s of binary are the "digits" of digital media.[8]
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