Best Online Colleges in St. Louis

| Staff Writers

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The city of St. Louis is home to almost 40 colleges, many featuring convenient online programs. Specifically, St. Louis houses a variety of public state universities, private institutions, and two-year community colleges. The city's largest schools, including the University of Missouri and Webster University, also offer robust online divisions.

The best online colleges in St. Louis cater to working and returning college students. Many online programs offer set or in-state tuition rates to all students, even those residing out of state. Distance learners can also avoid commuting costs and campus housing fees.

Learn more about the best online colleges in St. Louis below.

What Are the Best Online Colleges in St. Louis? Here Are Our Top 5:

Ranking compiled by the BestColleges Ranking Team

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#1 Saint Louis University Saint Louis, MO
#2 Webster University Saint Louis, MO
#3 University of Missouri-St Louis Saint Louis, MO
#4 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
#5 Missouri Baptist University Saint Louis, MO

How We Rank Schools

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you will make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering school rankings that are transparent, inclusive, and relevant for online students.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our Ranking Methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Why Study in St. Louis?

Colleges in St. Louis provide on-campus and online programs to prepare students for careers in top industries.

As Missouri's second-largest city, St. Louis houses a diverse economy, a bustling university system, and popular sports teams. Many of the best colleges in St. Louis maintain satellite campuses in other metro areas across Missouri. Colleges in St. Louis provide on-campus and online programs to prepare students for careers in top industries.

St. Louis boasts a cost of living 6% lower than the national average, which may appeal to students interested in living in the city while earning their degree online. Some St. Louis schools feature discounted tuition rates and/or special scholarship opportunities for Missouri residents. Many online colleges in St. Louis offer set tuition rates for virtual learners that do not factor in a student's state of residency.

The best online colleges in St. Louis prepare graduates to find jobs in growing local industries, such as food and beverage manufacturing, aviation, and biotechnology. Well-known national brands, including Anheuser-Busch, Emerson Electric, and Panera Bread, maintain headquarters in St. Louis. Additionally, Mercy Hospital St. Louis and Boeing are among the city's largest employers.

St. Louis features one of the nation's most iconic feats of architecture: the Gateway Arch. St. Louis also boasts three major league sports teams, including the beloved St. Louis Cardinals. Distance learners who need to visit the city can take advantage of many attractions and have a memorable trip.

Top Degree Programs in St. Louis

St. Louis Employment Outlook

Graduates of colleges in St. Louis can find careers in many top industries — both in the city and around the country. St. Louis hosts nine out of the 10 Fortune 500 companies located in Missouri. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, occupations in St. Louis with the highest concentration of employees include office and administrative support, food preparation and services, and healthcare practitioners.

The best online colleges in St. Louis prepare students to pursue jobs in the city's major industries, which include trade, transportation, and utilities; education and health services; and professional and business services. Within these sectors, management and legal professionals earn the highest mean hourly wages.

Popular Career Paths in St. Louis

Best Accredited Online Colleges in St. Louis

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Best Online Colleges in St. Louis

  1. Saint Louis University

    Saint Louis, MO

    Saint Louis University's School for Professional Studies provides several different online degrees, minors, and certificates to meet a variety of academic needs.

    At the bachelor's level, popular programs include an RN-to-BSN program, computer information systems, and social work. Master's programs include cybersecurity, leadership and organizational development, and analytics. Students can also select from several accelerated bachelor's-to-master's programs offered fully online.

    Admission requirements vary by degree level. Undergraduate applicants must submit a high school diploma or GED equivalent, official transcripts, and evidence of a minimum 2.5 GPA. Graduate applicants must provide transcripts, references, a professional goals statement, and evidence of a minimum 3.0 GPA. All applicants must have professional experience.

  2. Webster University

    Saint Louis, MO

    A private institution, Webster University operates campuses throughout the world and offers online programs. Learners can select from both bachelor's and master's degree programs in fields like criminal justice, educational leadership and administration, human resources management, and public relations.

    Online students learn from the same professors leading campus-based discussions and engage with a diverse student body. The university delivers online coursework asynchronously, allowing busy degree-seekers the flexibility needed to succeed.

    All learners pay the same tuition regardless of residency, except for active-duty service members, who receive a discount.

  3. University of Missouri-St Louis

    Saint Louis, MO



    Recognized among the best accredited online colleges in St. Louis, the University of Missouri St. Louis offers more than 30 online degrees at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels. Popular fields include business administration, criminology and criminal justice, educational studies, and supply chain management.

    The university waived an supplemental online learning fee due to COVID-19 and has not reinstated it for the following academic year. Residents of Missouri or Illinois receive discounted tuition at UMSL.

    Undergraduate applicants must submit transcripts and ACT or SAT scores. Graduate admission requirements vary by program.

  4. Maryville University of Saint Louis

    Saint Louis, MO

    Offering more than 55 online degrees at every academic level, Maryville University stands out as one of the best online colleges in St. Louis.

    Popular online degrees at Maryville include communication sciences and disorders, human development and family studies, sports business management, and management information systems. The university also provides various online certification programs.

    Prospective students should note that the university does not require any standardized entry exam scores or an application fee. Maryville works with transfer students to ensure they can bring the maximum number of credits with them. Incoming students can choose from several different start dates throughout the academic year.

  5. Missouri Baptist University

    Saint Louis, MO

    Students seeking an online education from a Christian perspective may want to consider Missouri Baptist University. This private institution provides both undergraduate and graduate programs fully online.

    MBU's online programs include organizational leadership, Christian ministry, corporate security leadership, and higher education leadership. Undergraduate learners can also select from 10 different online minors.

    Most classes last eight weeks and are taught asynchronously. Incoming learners can select from many different start dates throughout the year. All of MBU's learners pay the same tuition rate no matter where they live.

Best Online Colleges in Missouri