Within just the last decade, the availability, as well as the necessity for advanced education, has completely skyrocketed. Today, to be seriously considered for a job, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree, if not an even more advanced degree. Unfortunately, it’s often extremely difficult to attend a college or university in the traditional manner. You may already be working, have to care for a family, or simply live in a more geographically remote area. Luckily, thanks to the increasing towards online colleges, and some of the best value schools in the world it’s easier than ever to earn a degree in something that you love.
Studying online allows you total flexibility. You can study from your own home at any time you choose, structuring your class schedule according to your specific individual needs. Also, as more and more colleges create distance learning opportunities, the quality of education has become equal to that of on-campus programs. The same professional faculty that teaches on-campus often teach the online sections as well, providing you top-level instruction from experts in a flexible format. Talk about the best of both worlds!
Another huge draw of online colleges is their affordability. Online schools often extend in-state rates to online students, if not, even more, discounted tuition rates. Financial aid opportunities are also pretty much equal to those on campus. Also, thanks to the flexible scheduling, you won’t be forced to pay for school while your priorities remain elsewhere. You decide when to put your focus on school and save money accordingly.
So How do I choose the Online College That’s Best for Me?
Choosing the school that best fits your unique needs can be a hugely difficult task. Sorting through hundreds of schooling options can be intimidating or downright overwhelming. That’s why we’ve hand-selected the very best schools based on the factors most important for busy students like you!
We’ve found the best education at the best price, allowing you be certain that you’re maximizing your online schooling experience. Browse through our lists of the best schools determined by total cost, student feedback, program offerings, and a number of other important factors.
With that said, if you’re still unsure of the specific program you’re looking for or just want to get a general idea of schools offering online programs, take a look at our introductory list of the top twenty-five online colleges overall based on total value. Each of these schools is fully accredited and offers at the very least several fully online bachelor’s programs.
Here are the Top 25 Best Value Schools for 2017
1. Harvard University
Harvard is one of the very oldest universities in the entire country, founded back in 1636. Without question, it’s grown to become one of the most well-respected academic institutions in the world. The Boston school has top-level offerings in business, medicine, law, and a variety of other fields. A degree from Harvard almost guarantees you a wide array of opportunities in a professional field. With that said, a degree from Harvard is more affordable than you might think! Harvard comes in at No. 1 on our list thanks not only to its unmatched academic excellence but also its efforts to help students afford such a high-quality degree.
- Total Tuition After Grants: $16,338
- Total Enrollment: 20,324
2. Princeton University
Another historic school on our list is Princeton University, founded in 1746 and located in its namesake Princeton, New Jersey. Two headlining schools at Princeton are its school of public affairs and the school of engineering and applied science. As part of the Ivy league Princeton provides exceptional education as well as top-tier sports programs like perpetually nationally-ranked lacrosse teams.
- Total Tuition After Grants: $16,793
- Total Enrollment: 8,181
3. Yale University
Yale is another university that’s constantly ranked among the best in the nation for overall academic quality. It also makes our list on total value by providing a manageable total tuition cost. Yale was founded in 1701 and is located in New Haven, Connecticut. Some of the best programs at Yale include its management, medicine, art, and nursing programs. Another interesting aspect of this school is its student organizations including the a capella group the Whiffenpoofs and the Yale Dramatic Association.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $18,385
- Total Enrollment: 12,458
4. New Jersey Institute of Technology
The New Jersey Institute of Technology is yet another East Coast school, located in Newark, New Jersey. This public institution was founded in 1881 and now serves a total student population of nearly 12,000. While providing a high-quality education, NJIT also provides a small-college feel, capitalizing on smaller class sizes and the intimate feel of a tight-knit academic community. This school is also widely recognized for providing exceptional career services.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $18,674
- Total Enrollment: 11,317
5. Brigham Young University
Brigham Young University, which was founded in 1875, is nestled in the mountains in Provo, Utah. Supported by the LDS (Mormon) Church, this school places service, faith, and responsibility as top priorities. Of course, the school provides a huge array of exceptional academic offerings. The business and accounting programs at BYU are always among the best in the nation. This university, interestingly, offers courses in over 55 different languages. BYU is also an ideal school for the outdoor recreation lover, with several national parks and limitless hiking and camping venues within a few minutes or hours of campus.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $13,186
- Total Enrollment: 34,240
6. South Texas College
South Texas College offers an online education at a price that’s hard to match. They have one of the best selections of disciplines with more than 30 different degrees and certificates to choose from. With incredibly responsive faculty and flexible coursework, South Texas College provides the ideal online student experience. Some of the best degrees offered at South Texas include bachelor’s in criminal justice, political science, and organizational leadership.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $13,800
- Total Enrollment: 31,000
7. Great Basin College
About 3,800 students are currently enrolled online at Great Basin College studying a variety of subjects. GBC offers flexible coursework that is completely online for an array of bachelor’s degrees. This college also offers some extremely unique courses and programs online including Land Surveying/ Geomatics, Graphic Communications, and Instrumentation.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $20, 052
- Total Enrollment: 3,436
8. Valley City State University
VCSU offers online classes with an emphasis in courses on education to help teachers improve their skill set and abilities. This allows teachers to receive pay increases and promotions. VCSU also offers more traditional degrees and programs for traditional online students like Business Education, Career and Technical Education, Professional Communication, and Music.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $20, 640
- Total Enrollment 1,285
9. Dartmouth College
Located in Hanover, New Hampshire, this Ivy League school allows students the peace and beauty of a more rural setting. Dartmouth thrives on its student involvement. Nearly a quarter of all students participate in one of the College’s Division I varsity sports and over 60% of students take part in Greek life. Dartmouth’s Outing Club is actually the oldest and largest in the entire nation. Dartmouth also offers tremendous academic opportunity in areas like medicine, business, and engineering.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $23,312
- Total Enrollment: 6,409
10. Vanderbilt University
Vanderbilt University, located in Nashville, Tennessee was founded in 1873. Although the university offers great programs in things like human development, management, and nursing, one thing that makes this school unique and attractive is the off-campus entertainment opportunities provided by its location in Nashville. Students can enjoy some of the best music, food, and entertainment found anywhere in the world, all while pursuing a quality education.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $23,323
- Total Enrollment: 12, 587
11. Fort Hays State University
FHSU was ranked the 24th best online Bachelor’s degree program in the nation by U.S. News and World Report in 2016. Fort Hays offers programs that are specifically designed for adult learners in over 40 majors and disciplines. Some of the best degrees offered by Fort Hays State included Business Teacher Licensure, Marketing, and Tourism and Hospitality Management.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $24, 056
- Total Enrollment: 12, 802
12. University of Alaska- Fairbanks
The University of Alaska Fairbanks offers the state’s best online courses and degrees. Their courses are available at any time during the year, which allows ultimate flexibility in planning and scheduling education. This university offers a full range of degree and certificate options ranging from Associate Degree in Applied Business to Bachelor Degrees in Justice, to Graduate Degrees in Online Innovation and Design.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $24,240
- Total Enrollment: 9,330
13. Wake Forest University
Wake Forest University is located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and currently, serves nearly 8,000 students on an annual basis. As members of the ACC, students at Wake Forest can either participate in one of many top-level collegiate athletic programs or support some of the school’s larger and more nationally prominent teams. While doing so, the law, business, and medicine programs are all great options for education.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $24,241
- Total Enrollment: 7,968
14. University of Virginia
Thomas Jefferson actually founded the University of Virginia back in 1819. The Charlottesville school now hosts nearly 24,000 students each year, pursuing an education in a wide variety of areas. Some of the best offerings at Virginia come from its school of business, school of education, and school of medicine. A large majority of students live off campus, and another large group takes advantage of sororities or fraternities, giving students the opportunity to maximize their social experience while attending school.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $28,079
- Total Enrollment: 23,898
15. Saint Louis University
Founded in 1818, Saint Louis University is a private Catholic, Jesuit school. SLU’s on-campus ministry hosts special events and retreats every year and also hosts mass each day at the on-campus church. SLU also offers more than 150 student organizations. Another interesting fact about this school is its satellite campus in Madrid, Spain. Students can study there for a shortened period of time, or their entire collegiate career if desired.
- Total Tuition Cost After Grants: $28,328
- Total Enrollment: 12,280
If you’re looking to begin your college search, or already have firm plans of what you’d like to study, any of these schools would be a great place to start. Each of the colleges listed here provides the best possible student experience either on campus or online.
We know that finding the best school to fit your unique needs is a huge challenge. For that reason, we work hard to develop lists of the best schools based on the characteristics most important for you. Whether that be cost of attendance, student success, resources available, flexibility of schedule, or any other number of important factors, we’ve got you covered. For more information about our ranking process and to find lists of schools based on specific characteristics, check out our methodology page.
If your school isn’t on this list but deserves consideration for an updated version, please contact us today. We’re always looking for the best schools across the country, providing the best online education for students of all walks of life.
Be sure to check out our other resources for online students!