25 Online Colleges Ranked

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March 20th, 2009 in Rankings

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More and more working adults are turning to online higher education programs to obtain degrees and further their career opportunities. Distance learning has created opportunities for adults who need more schedule flexibility in their degree programs than is afforded with a traditional college or university. Where once schedules and time limitations have precluded individuals from being able to pursue educational goals, online programs have opened doors allowing people from all stages of life to successfully complete degree programs which would have been impossible otherwise to achieve. Recognizing a societal need, schools began to offer distance learning courses. Some colleges began as completely online institutions while other already established schools expanded their programs to include programs achievable completely through online learning. The evolution of the distance learning programs has created opportunities for both individual students and the schools. As more and more students turn to online schools for their higher education needs, it is becoming increasingly important to rank the best online colleges so that students can make wise decisions. For that reason we took a look at all the well-developed and reputable online degree programs available today and chose as the top schools the ones offering the most thorough and marketable education. The schools below comprise our rankings for the 25 top online colleges.

1. University of Phoenix


The University of Phoenix offers quality education in over 100 campus locations and through their online portal. Working adults or individuals with time constraints will find University of Phoenix an ideal choice because of their wide array of online degree options at various degree levels.

2. Kaplan University


Kaplan University is committed to helping students achieve their educational goals and career dreams. As a leading provider of lifelong education, Kaplan is ideal for students seeking all types of degree levels.

3. American InterContinental University (AIU) Online


AIU is the results-focused University that accommodates you and your lifestyle with quality undergraduate and graduate degree programs that offer you value, flexibility, a generous transfer-in policy and customizable learning technology that adapts to your preferences.

4. Ashford University


Ashford University offers high-quality degree programs in a variety of fields that are currently in high-demand. The university’s programs are affordable, accelerated, and convenient, making them an ideal educational institution for working adults.Ashford University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association (www.ncahlc.org). Certain program restrictions may apply to residents of Arkansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, and non-US residents.

5. Western International University


Western International University provides a broad educational foundation, including a focus on business and technology, designed to prepare students for leadership positions in a dynamic, global marketplace.Tailored for the working adult, Western International University meets an important need in the current economy.

6. Post University


Post University’s experienced instructors combine theory and practice in their curriculum in order to better prepare students for the real-world. Students could earn a bachelor’s degree in as little as 18 months and be on their way to a new and exciting career.

7. Colorado Christian University


Colorado Christian University offers certificate, associate, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs specifically designed to meet the needs of adult learners.

8. Liberty University Online


Liberty University Online is committed to helping students achieve their educational goals. With more than 45 accredited degree programs online, Liberty University has an option that can meet a number of students’ needs.

9. Saint Leo University Online


Saint Leo University Online has a diverse student population and is continuing to grow today. They have provided students with a solid continuing education for over 25 years.

10. DeVry University


Devry University offers several online degree programs that will help students lead successful lives. Their programs could be completed entirely online, on-campus, or a mix between the two options.

11. Virginia College

Virginia College offers several online degree programs that will help students lead successful lives. Their programs could be completed entirely online, on-campus, or a mix between the two options.

12. Colorado Technical University

Colorado Technical University fosters a rich academic community and highly experienced faculty. Students interested in online education will benefit from CTU’s technologically advanced Virtual Campus and online learning experience.

13. Penn Foster Career School

Penn Foster Career School’s online programs are designed to allow students to learn independently, but with advisors readily available when needed. Students could complete coursework and exams completely online, saving themselves from commuting.

14. Everest University

Everest University provides career-focused education in order to help students gain an advantage in their professional lives. Instructors have professional and academic expertise that will give students an insight into real-world scenarios.

15. Penn Foster College

Penn Foster College offers a wide range of degrees in today’s fastest growing fields to help students get on their feet and start a rewarding career. Their programs are designed to keep up with the most current trends in every field of study.

16. Capella University

Capella University offers online programs that have been nationally recognized and awarded for excellence. The university’s programs are developed based on professional standards in order to deliver what individuals need to succeed in their desired careers.

17. Ivy Bridge College of Tiffin University

Ivy Bridge College of Tiffin University provides dynamic, discussion-oriented online courses in order to foster interaction amongst peers and instructors. The college offers all the resources found on a traditional college campus, helping students find the right path to their future.

18. Jones International University

Jones International University is one of the first virtual institutions to earn regional accreditation and recognition in the US. Their cutting-edge curriculum is kept up-to-date with current trends and methods used in the world today.

19. Western Governors University

Western Governors University offers a myriad of superior degrees and programs which are completely available online. Their unique approach to education will leave students with a greater sense of fulfillment and satisfaction when pursuing their future careers.

20. Walden University

Walden University integrates academic theory and practice in order to help students gain the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the thriving workplace. They offer a great number of online graduate degrees that allow students to work while obtaining a higher degree to enrich their lives.

21. South University

South University’s online programs are designed to cater to students’ differing needs. Their programs are available night or day, and on any day of the week, giving them the freedom to learn at their convenience.

22. The George Washington University

The George Washington University offers an interactive online learning experience through their virtual community. Graduate students could now change the way they learn by choosing times they work for them.

23. Herzing University

Herzing University makes earning a degree in today’s chaotic world possible through their flexible and convenient online programs. They offer personalized attention to students, setting them apart from many other online institutions.

24. Strayer University

Strayer University offers a multitude of online programs that are easily accessible through any computer and internet connection. Tutoring is made available for students who need extra help in any course matter.

25. International Academy of Design and Technology

International Academy of Design and Technology is an online college dedicated to helping creative minds prosper and develop into useful skills needed in the real-world. Individuals at the university could complete their degrees at any place and time convenient to them.

26. San Joaquin Valley College

San Joaquin Valley College offers accelerated Associate’s programs, giving students the opportunity to earn a degree in as little as 14 months. Individuals will receive the practical skills and knowledge needed to pursue a rewarding career.

27. Boston University

Boston University provides students with the tools needed to achieve management and leadership positions in their workplace. Their online programs are ideal for working adults or those with time constraints.

28. Northeastern University

Northeastern University adopts an experiential learning approach to education that has made them an ideal university to individuals all around the world. They offer a range of online graduate programs that will provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to advance in their careers.

29. Keiser University

Keiser University offers valuable education in a flexible fashion, which allows students to attend classes during the day, evening, or online. They provide a different approach to learning by allowing students to focus on one class at a time before moving onto another class or subject.

30. Baker College

Baker College offers flexible online degrees that can fit within any schedule. They offer a variety of programs for students seeking to advance in their careers or enter a new one.

31. Colorado State University

Colorado State University gives students the opportunity to explore their interests to pursue a career that they will truly enjoy. The university offers online programs that are truly flexible, allowing students to learn around their schedules.

32. Grand Canyon University

Grand Canyon University offers distinctive online degree programs for students seeking a better future. Their online courses are individually tailored to meet students’ specific needs.

33. Arizona State University

Arizona State University’s online programs are designed to engage students and professors in a significant manner. Upon graduation, students will have attained the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the real-world.

34. Ohio University

Ohio University’s online programs are designed to improve students’ potential for promotion and advancement. Students will have the opportunity to learn from home and continue working while earning their online degree.

35. Champlain College

Champlain College is a nationally recognized online school with a variety of degree offerings for students of all ages. Some online programs could be completed in as little as 7 weeks, allowing students to enter the workplace more quickly.

36. Robert Morris University

Robert Morris University offers financial aid and student support for first-time undergraduates or working professionals seeking to advance in their careers. They are dedicated to helping students place into their desired careers upon graduation.

37. Norwich University

Norwich University offers a rigorous academic environment that will challenge students and prepare them for the competitive workplace. Their goal is to create tomorrow’s leaders by developing students as a whole.

38. New England College

New England College provides personalized attention to students that result in a positive impact on their learning experience. The college’s online portal is easily accessible from any computer at any time.

39. Abilene Christian University

Abilene Christian University. Dedicated to educating students for Christian service and leadership, Abilene Christian University offers online degrees that are of the same quality and prestige as their on-campus programs. Students could earn their degree completely from the comfort of their own home.

40. Rasmussen College

Rasmussen College proudly offers undergraduate degrees in the most demanding fields today. Students will gain the skills, knowledge, and training needed to successfully enter their desired fields and continually grow.

41. Kent State University

Kent State University adds new online degree programs and courses every semester to expand options available to students. Their quality programs are accredited by a national accrediting body, proving that they provide a high level of excellence in education.

42. Argosy University

Argosy University supports one of the largest graduate student communities in the nation, and is highly recognized for their wide variety of online programs. Their professors are compiled of educational leaders who have ample experience in the field.

43. Rochester Institute of Technology

Rochester Institute of Technology uses a quarterly system, which allows students’ entry into college four times a year. Their courses are taught by experienced and respected instructors that deliver the campus programs as well.

44. Bryant and Stratton College

Bryant and Stratton College offers a vast number of online undergraduate degrees in popular fields. The online experience offered by the college provides students with the same amount of support, interaction, and education as those offered on-campus.

45. Full Sail University

Full Sail University is dedicated in helping students foster their creative minds and turn in into a rewarding career. Students will become a part of one of the most unique educational communities in the nation.

46. Westwood College

Westwood College creates an effective online learning environment by providing students with all the same resources offered at a traditional campus. Their programs are taught by highly recognized instructors with real-world experience and knowledge in their field of expertise.

47. LA College International

LA College International prepares students for success in demanding industries with their accredited online degree programs. Students will acquire relevant knowledge and experience that will set them apart from their peers.

48. Washington State University

Washington State University brings world-class education directly to students through their online education programs. Their responsive technical support and extensive library services offer students great resources while obtaining a higher degree.

49. Benedictine University

Benedictine University is one of the most diversified campuses in the US and continues to foster a dynamic learning environment. Their online programs gives students maximum flexibility and mobility.

50. Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University offers advanced degrees in a number of growing fields and professions. They are constantly increasing their resources and faculty to provide better service to their students.

51. St. Joseph’s University

St. Joseph’s University offers popular programs in a variety of fields including business, criminal justice, and healthcare. Their curriculum is designed to meet the educational needs of students seeking to pursue higher positions in their organizations.

52. Concord Law School

Concord Law School gives working individuals the opportunity to study law at a time and place convenient for them. Concord offers demanding, rigorous, and challenging programs that will prepare students for an exciting career upon graduation.

53. Brandeis University

Brandeis University has been offering academic excellence since 1948. Professors from Brandeis University provides students with current knowledge and practices that they have gained from the field.

54. Indiana State University

Indiana State University offers a RN to BS in Nursing degree that is available completely online, which allows students to continue working at their current healthcare institutions while obtaining a higher degree. With this degree, students could obtain leadership positions in a variety of healthcare settings.

  • 1

    Nicole Brown States

    January 27th, 2010 at 1:57 am

    I need to find a University to transfer my credits from Univesity of Phoenix Online for the School of Criminology

  • 2

    ryan States

    January 28th, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    You should check out University of Maryland. They have a large selection of majors, one of which is Criminal Justice –all available online; however, it follows a typical semester pattern vs. the accelerated model I’ve seen with many private universities. Best of luck.

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