Best Online Colleges in Nevada

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Nevada belongs to the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE). This membership allows students to participate in WICHE’s interstate exchange program, which reduces tuition costs for residents seeking admission to a college or university in another WICHE member state. The exchange program is available for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, and has saved Nevada students millions of dollars since the its founding in 1988.

As the demand for online education grows, Nevada’s System of Higher Education (NSHE) is prepared to meet those expectations. In the latest NSHE report on distance learning, Nevada colleges and universities reported having 63 degrees and 18 certificate programs available entirely online, with plans to add 19 in the near future.

Participation in WICHE programs, such as the interstate student exchange, creates an environment where distance learning is more accessible to students across state lines. An additional incentive for Nevada residents and non-residents to pursue a degree through online colleges in Nevada is WICHE’s Internet Course Exchange, which offers students of a member institution access to online courses and programs from other participating institutions.

2016 Online Education Trends Report: Learn how online programs are changing the face of higher education.

Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost Graduation Rate Location Description

University of Nevada – Reno

 2/554.78%Reno, NV


The University of Nevada Reno offers more than 200 courses online, allowing students to earn credits toward a degree without having to regularly attend class on campus.

In addition to individual courses, the university has an online executive master’s program in business administration, and those seeking master’s degrees in education, behavior analytic psychology, and justice management have the option of taking all or most of their courses online. Additional online programs include a graduate certificate in renewable energy and doctorate of nursing practice.

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University of Nevada – Las Vegas

 2/539.14%Las Vegas, NV


Through its Office of Online Education, UNLV serves students with a wide range of diverse needs, working closely with faculty members and the latest technology to seek the best possible learning outcomes. Students are able to earn a bachelor’s degree in social science studies completely online, and they may take undergraduate courses in 48 different disciplines.

Additionally, UNLV has four online master’s and three online doctoral degree programs, along with post-master’s certificates for nurse practitioners, nurse educators, and nuclear safety engineers. In all, the university provides more than 200 courses online for both undergraduate and graduate students.

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Great Basin College

 1/524.04%Elko, NV


Great Basin College offers a variety of courses and degree programs. Students are able to pursue associate and bachelor’s degrees, along with various certificates of achievement.

At Great Basin, students may earn bachelor’s degrees in English, nursing, and applied science completely online, and may choose from 12 different online associate degree programs. They may also pursue professional certificates in areas like medical coding, business administration, human resources and retail management, among others. In all, the college has nearly 4,000 students from throughout the country enrolled in its online classes.

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Sierra Nevada College

 4/545.87%Incline Village, NV


A respected nonprofit institution, Sierra Nevada College has found a way to combine the convenience of online education with a more traditional, one-on-one focus aimed at optimizing learning outcomes. The college offers four-year degree programs, although students are able to select a track of study based on their needs and availability.

SNC operates on a three-semester module system, with fall, spring, and summer terms. Each term includes three six-week modules, which means students may take several weeks off, if needed, to address family or work obligations.

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College of Southern Nevada

 1/59.42%Las Vegas, NV


The College of Southern Nevada offers 17 different associate degrees, including in areas of focus like communication, elementary and secondary education, history, psychology and sociology, among others. There are also associate of applied science degrees in accounting, business management, criminal justice and ophthalmic dispensing tech, along with a four-year bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene. Those looking to advance in their careers may seek certificates of achievement in hotel and casino management, medical transcription and criminal justice.

Overall, CSN’s online program has low student-to-teacher ratios, helping to ensure students get the personal attention they need to get the most out of their educational experience. The program cycles on a three semester system (fall, spring, and summer) and is comprised of two to three six-week modules, depending on the semester.

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More About Online Colleges in Nevada

Popularity of distance learning is on the rise in Nevada. In 2012, 12,038 students attended online higher education programs exclusively. A total of 9,316 of these students attended public, four-year institutions. The state remains committed to the proliferation of online education as evidenced through their involvement with the WICHE State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement through the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. The WICHE is a nationwide initiative of states striving to make distance education more accessible across state lines. Furthermore, if worried about student loans or financial aid, prospective students should consider that in the 2012-2013 academic year, average tuition in Nevada was $4,953, far lower than the national average of $8,070.

Browse our list of the best online colleges in Nevada for more insight into distance learning programs in this state.

NCES Report

  • Of the nearly 123,000 undergraduates in Nevada, nearly 10% completed their degrees fully online in 2012.
  • Just under 20% took at least one online course.
  • A further 9,100 students studied at the postsecondary level, though not seeking a degree or certificate.
  • Of these, 21.4% took all of their classes online, while 9.3% took at least one distance course.