Technology and the internet have made higher education more accessible than ever, with ever-increasing numbers of colleges and universities offering digital learning. In fact, according to Babson Survey Research Group, 70% of education leaders say that online learning will be a critical factor in their institutions' long-term growth.

An associate degree online is a great place to start your academic journey, even if your ultimate goal is to get a bachelor's or master's degree. These programs are usually much more affordable than the typical four-year school, and they also offer the flexibility you need to take classes and complete assignments on your own schedule.

Thanks to credit transfer agreements, high-quality instruction, and the efficiency that comes with online learning, it's no surprise that it has become such an attractive option for students across the country and around the world.

Rank School Cost Graduation Rate Description Toggle
1

Southern Regional Technical College

Thomasville, GA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 41%

Southern Regional Technical College, founded in 1947, provides quality accredited degrees, diplomas, and technical certificates through its on-campus and online programs. As a member of the Georgia Virtual Technical Connection, the school provides an array of practical online associate degrees for southwest Georgia residents and out-of-state learners.

The SRTC catalog of online associate degrees includes majors in marketing management, criminal justice technology, and accounting. Most programs take five or six semesters to complete, and some may require learners to complete an internship or externship. Candidates for the criminal justice technology associate degree who hold basic peace officer certification can receive nine credits to fulfill the program’s introductory coursework. SRTC makes asynchronous coursework available through the Blackboard learning management system.

Online students at SRTC can take advantage of the school’s career counseling resources, which includes the Virtual Job Shadow career planning simulator, the FOCUS 2 Explore college selection tool, and the Purple Briefcase online job board. SRTC also helps online students with tuition through its Nontraditional Student Scholarship that offers tuition assistance to students majoring in fields with low representation for their gender. For instance, male majors in the school’s online accounting associate qualify for the scholarship.

Prior to acceptance to an online program, all students without an associate degree or higher must submit results from a state-approved assessment, such as ACCUPLACER, COMPANION, or ACT exams. SRTC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $89/credit in-state; $178/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 20-67 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (888) 205-3449
Email: manderson@southernregional.edu; mavera@southernregional.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

2

Lanier Technical College

Oakwood, GA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 32%

Part of the Technical College System of Georgia, LTC offers over 50 online degrees, diplomas, and certificates. These career-focused programs make Lanier one of the best online community colleges for candidates seeking positions in growing industries like business technology and emergency management.

Most associate degrees feature 60-68 credits and take 5-6 semesters to graduate. Students enjoy a variety of program options, including degrees in applied technical management, business technology, and fire science technology. While some associate-level programs prepare students to enter the workforce immediately after graduation, many LTC students choose to transfer their credits toward a bachelor's degree at a four-year college or university. LTC's online courses include some synchronous components, and learners may be required to participate in class discussions and take exams at specific times.

The college also offers diploma and certificate programs, which equip students with specialized professional skills. Diplomas may require anywhere from 47-55 credits and last four semesters. Alternatively, distance learners can earn a certificate in only one semester. Students unsure whether they should pursue a degree, certificate, or diploma can schedule a meeting with an adviser by phone.

Applicants should submit their high school transcripts or GED scores, along with official ACCUPLACER, ACT, or SAT scores. Applicants who have previously completed at least 30 credits of college-level coursework may apply as transfer students. The Lanier Tech Foundation offers need-based and merit-based scholarship opportunities to candidates who reside in one of seven Georgia counties. LTC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $89/credit in-state; $178/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 14-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER, GED, ACT, SAT, or PSAT

Contact
Phone: (770) 533-7000
Email: admissions_office@laniertech.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

3

Coastal Pines Technical College

Waycross, GA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 57%

CPTC was founded when Altamaha Technical College and Okefenokee Technical College merged in 2014. Based in Waycross, Georgia, the school is a member of the Technical College System of Georgia and operates six additional campuses throughout the state. CPTC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and offers over 130 associate degrees, technical certificates, and continuing education programs on campus and online.

In addition to online general education courses, CPTC offers five web-based programs in accounting, business technology, criminal justice, early childcare and education, and marketing management. Each program includes a degree, diploma, or certificate option. All three-credit online courses use a synchronous format, requiring students to log in and participate in class discussions at specific times. Candidates are also expected to maintain contact with instructors for the duration of each course. Most distance learners spend about 15 hours per week on each online class.

Online students gain access to counseling and career services. CPTC's career placement and development coordinator also offers job search and resume assistance and placement services.

Prospective students must possess a high school diploma or GED. Applicants with some higher education experience should have earned a "C" or higher in the majority of their college-level coursework. Out-of-state applicants must also submit ACT or SAT scores. Georgia residents pay a flat, per-credit tuition rate, and nonresident students pay twice as much.


Program Overview
Tuition: $89/credit in-state; $178/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 16-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (877) 332-8682
Email: info@coastalpines.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

4

Southwest Mississippi Community College

Summit, MS Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 40%

Located in the small town of Summit, SMCC provides four different Mississippi counties with workforce development, technical, and associate-level programs. SMCC also offers distance learning courses and degrees through the Mississippi Virtual Community College -- an online consortium made up of representatives from 15 community and technical colleges across the state.

Presented through the Canvas learning management system, each 62-credit associate degree combines general education and major courses. Students work with academic advisers to select a program of study and determine whether they can complete their degree exclusively through online community college courses. SMCC uses the READI assessment program to evaluate an applicant's aptitude for online study. Some courses may require learners to complete proctored exams in person.

Distance learners receive access to many helpful resources, including an online library system that syncs with the Bookshelf and Cengage applications, allowing candidates to check out books, highlight texts, and make notes. Students may also request extra assistance through SMCC’s NetTutor program.

Prospective students should possess a high school diploma or GED. Although SMCC does not base admissions decisions on ACT or SAT scores, the school does use test scores to ascertain incoming students’ placement for general education courses and determine scholarship eligibility. Learners who meet GPA requirements may apply for additional institutional scholarships. Mississippi residents and out-of-state students pay the same semesterly tuition rates, and all distance learners pay a per-class online course fee. SMCC is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $130/credit in-state; $250/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (601) 276-2000
Email: admissions@smcc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook

5

Rappahannock Community College

Glenns, VA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 36%

Students at RCC can choose from a variety of applied science degrees, career studies certificates, and certificate programs. They can also take advantage of the college’s transfer program, which allows learners to earn two-year degrees at RCC before transferring to a four-year bachelor's program at one of 41 partner universities. These institutions provide guaranteed admission for RCC graduates. In addition to RCC’s five campuses in eastern Virginia, the college maintains a distance learning program that offers online, hybrid, and interactive video courses.

RCC students can earn a transfer-friendly associate in arts and sciences entirely online, completing the 61-credit program in four semesters. Distance learners select from seven specializations: business administration, criminal justice, health-STEM, pre-nursing, pre-engineering, psychology and social work, sustainable science, and teacher education. While some students pursue an associate degree to gain specific professional skills, many use their specialization to get a head start on bachelor's-level coursework.

Although students complete all required coursework online, they must attend an on-campus distance learning orientation at the beginning of their first semester. In addition, all learners need to sit for two proctored tests each semester at designated testing centers.

Prospective students should submit their high school transcripts and complete the FAFSA. Online students are not required to hold a minimum GPA or provide ACT or SAT scores. RCC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $154/credit in-state; $331/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 33-66 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: Virginia Placement Test

Contact
Phone: (800) 836-9381
Email: cbaetz@rappahannock.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

6

Surry Community College

Dobson, NC Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 31%

Based in Dobson, North Carolina, SCC has provided career-focused programming for over half a century. Nearly three-fourths of SCC’s student body are part-time learners pursuing degrees, certificates, diplomas, or professional certifications. Distance students can pursue six online certificates and eight degrees in subjects like business administration, computer programming and development, and early childhood administration.

Each online degree consists of 67-72 credits, while certificates require 16-18 credits. Most degrees include general education courses like the college success class, which presents strategies and skills for making the most of higher education. Online course instructors track student participation in chat rooms, discussion boards, quizzes, and group projects. Distance learners must participate in at least 85% of class activities. Candidates must also complete an orientation session before enrolling in their first class. Online students can access many resources, including academic advising and free online tutoring.

SCC maintains reciprocity agreements with most states, although out-of-state candidates pay significantly higher tuition rates than North Carolina residents. After completing a residency determination interview, applicants submit their official high school transcripts or GED certificate and take a mandatory placement test. The Surry Community College Foundation offers many institutional scholarships. The college also participates in employer tuition reimbursement agreements that allow nonresidents to pay in-state tuition rates. SCC holds regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $76/credit in-state; $268/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 17-67 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (336) 386-8121
Email: admissions@surry.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

7

Palo Alto College

San Antonio, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 26%

A member of the Alamo Colleges District, PAC serves over 9,000 students and offers 71 degrees and programs. The San Antonio-based institution emphasizes educational accessibility and strives to provide convenient, affordable options for first-generation college students, adult learners, and busy individuals seeking to balance school with professional and personal obligations. In keeping with its mission, PAC offers many web-based degrees along with traditional on-campus programs.

Along with a variety of certificate programs, the college offers six web-based associate degrees: administrative assistant, business management, computer support specialist, information security and assurance, logistics and supply chain management, and network adviser. Most associate programs require 60 credits and take six semesters to complete.

PAC also offers two associate-level teaching degrees in grades 7-12 and special education. Both programs were developed for students intending to transfer to four-year public universities in Texas and pursue state teaching certification.

Prospective students should submit their high school transcripts or a copy of their GED certificate along with an online application. PAC offers up to $2,500 in funding for students going into STEM or health fields who also demonstrate a minimum 3.0 GPA in high school math and science coursework. The college holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $202/credit in-state; $453/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 15-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Texas Success Initiative Assessment

Contact
Phone: (210) 486-3000
Email: pac-pres@alamo.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

8

Shoreline Community College

Shoreline, WA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 31%

Roughly half of Shoreline’s 10,000 students are part-time learners pursuing their education at least partially online through the school's virtual campus. The college offers 25 web-based associate degrees, certificates of proficiency, and certificates of completion.

Associate degree seekers enjoy many program options, including degrees in accounting, business, criminal justice, and purchasing and supply chain management. Requiring up to 96 quarter credits, these career-focused programs introduce the professional skills and fundamental concepts needed to take on entry-level positions after graduation.

Distance learners may also pursue degrees that provide a direct transfer pathway to one of Washington’s four-year colleges and universities. This option allows candidates to study subjects such as English literature or nutrition and food science before earning bachelor's degrees in a related field.

Prospective online students complete a SmarterMeasure survey before enrolling in web-based courses. These survey results allow Shoreline to determine a student's readiness for distance education and better address any academic challenges or strengths. Once admitted, learners receive access to online tutoring, live librarian assistance, and success coaching. Distance learners who live more than 50 miles from campus may rent laptops.

Interested individuals can apply to Shoreline through the Washington State Community and Technical Colleges online web admissions center. Applicants must hold either a high school diploma or GED certificate. Out-of-state candidates are welcome to apply and may be eligible to receive out-of-state tuition waivers.


Program Overview
Tuition: $120/credit
Credit Requirements: 20-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (206) 546-4101
Email: sccadmis@shoreline.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

9

Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas

De Queen, AR Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 41%

UA Cossatot provides residents of southwestern Alabama with adult education opportunities, workforce development programs, and apprenticeship initiatives. The school also offers flexible online technical certificate and degree programs. The college maintains partnerships with four-year universities in Alabama and beyond, making it easier for associate degree seekers to transfer their credits toward a bachelor's program after graduation.

Online associate degree options include business, accounting, administrative assistantship, criminal justice, and psychology. Students who complete a general education curriculum can also earn an associate of arts or an associate of general studies. While curriculum requirements vary by major, most distance learners complete around 60 credits, including 35 core general education credits.

Distance learners may also earn technical certificates in health professions, medical assisting, accounting, and administrative assistant. Most online technical certificate programs consist of 27-44 credits.

UA Cossatot supports online students through its educational resource center, which provides textbook rental services, library research assistance, and free virtual tutoring sessions. Distance learners can also search for local employment opportunities on the college’s web-based job board.

Prospective students apply for admission and scholarships with a single online application. Applicants should possess a high school diploma or GED certificate. Although UA Cossatot does not require applicants to take ACT or SAT exams, students who score well on either test may be able to bypass some required general education coursework. UA Cossatot holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $90/credit
Credit Requirements: 27-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (870) 584-4471
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

10

Frontier Community College

Fairfield, IL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 62%

Located in Fairfield, Illinois, FCC is a member of the Illinois Eastern Community Colleges system and educates about 2,000 students. FCC offers both hybrid and online community college classes to help students fit higher education into their busy schedules. FCC's online learning programs include two associate-level degrees: an accounting and computing degree and a medical office assistant degree.

Distance learners may also enroll in one of three online transfer programs and earn an associate in science and arts, general studies, or science before transferring to a four-year university or college. FCC maintains a partnership with Franklin University, allowing online learners to spend their first three years at FCC before completing an online bachelor's degree through Franklin.

Distance learners may also enroll in online medical transcription, sales, or paraprofessional education certificate programs. These programs consist of 31-35 credits and take approximately one year to complete.

Most web-based courses are presented in an asynchronous format and last 16 weeks during the fall and spring or eight weeks during the summer. Distance learners can arrange to take proctored exams at a location near their home.

Prospective students can apply to FCC through the Illinois Eastern Community Colleges standardized online application portal. The community college maintains an open admissions policy, encouraging any candidate with a high school degree or GED certificate to apply.


Program Overview
Tuition: $120/credit
Credit Requirements: 28-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (877) 464-3687
Email: lossa@iecc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook

11

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College

Shell Lake, WI Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 54%

Founded in 1912 as the Industrial, Commercial, Continuing Education School, WITC has expanded over the past century to include multiple campuses across northwestern Wisconsin. The school also oversees a popular distance learning division. The college boasts accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and serves over 5,000 credit-earning students and 15,000 learners enrolled in noncredit courses.

Along with a variety of free webinars and educational programs, WITC offers 24 web-based degrees and certificates. Distance learners can earn associate degrees in areas like health information technology, accounting, and nonprofit leadership. The college’s unique E-CHiLD degree is an early childhood education program that includes both web-based courses and community-based student teaching components. The curriculum for each associate degree includes 60-61 credits and typically takes two years to complete.

Some degree pathways also prepare students for industry certification. Health information technology candidates, for example, can sit for the American Health Information Management Association’s registered health information technician exam.

Students can also pursue online technical diplomas or career pathway certificates to boost their professional skills more quickly. Requiring anywhere from 8-30 credits, these programs take up to one year to complete. All diplomas and certificates focus on a specific job or position, such as the medical billing specialist technical diploma or the tax preparer assistant pathway certificate.

Applicants should possess a high school diploma or GED and may need to complete ACCUPLACER assessments before enrolling in courses.


Program Overview
Tuition: $158/credit in-state; $258/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 20-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (800) 243-9482
Email: ashland.admissions@witc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

12

Waubonsee Community College

Sugar Grove, IL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 31%

Based primarily in Sugar Grove, Illinois, Waubonsee Community College was founded in 1966 and offers over 14,000 credit students quality education at an affordable price. Both in-state and out-of-state distance learners can take advantage of the school's fully online technical and generalized associate degrees.

WCC’s fully online degrees include two technical associate in applied science degrees in human resources management and business administration, as well as many generalized associate of arts, science, and general studies degrees. Learners in WCC’s business administration associate in applied science program can choose a concentration in management or marketing. The AAS degree includes coursework in technical writing and business communications, and electives in mathematics and economics.

The generalized associate degrees prepare students to transfer to a bachelor’s program in their chosen concentration. Students in WCC’s online associate of arts degree can select concentrations such as criminal justice, psychology, and music. The school also offers a diverse set of general education courses, including humanities and fine arts topics like Japanese, film studies, and American Sign Language.

WCC delivers its online courses asynchronously through the Blackboard learning management system. Students can access live, in-demand online tutoring and an online writing lab through the mywcc portal. Online programs generally comprise 60 credits and take around four semesters to complete.

Students must maintain a 2.0 minimum GPA to graduate. WCC holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $372/credit in-state; $403/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 27-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (630) 466-7900
Email: admissions@waubonsee.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

13

Moraine Park Technical College

Fond du Lac, WI Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 58%

Founded in 1912, Moraine Park Technical College is among the best online community colleges. Along with a variety of online diplomas and certificates, the Wisconsin-based school offers a dozen online associate degrees in majors such as business management, accounting, and paralegal studies. MPTC also features a unique 63-credit associate in water quality management degree that prepares graduates for work as water quality technicians in environmental, field service, and waste services industries.

All associate degree candidates complete 18-30 credits of general education coursework; this includes six credits in communications, three credits in math or science, three credits in social science, three credits in behavioral science, and 3-15 credits in other general education topics. MPTC also requires all students to take three credits in credit basic college preparation and computer literacy courses.

Students pursuing the associate in applied science degree can earn up to 75% of the required credits towards their degree through the school’s generous prior learning assessment and credit transfer policies. Students can gain prior learning credit through assessment by exam, skill demonstration, or portfolio. MPTC also provides associate degree candidates and graduates with free job search assistance services that include an internship fair and internship draft day, cover letter and resume reviews, and professional apparel available through the career clothes closet.

Students must attain a minimum GPA of 2.0 to successfully graduate. MPTC publishes a Dean’s List each semester, which requires a 3.5 minimum GPA, enrollment in at least six credits of undergraduate coursework, and otherwise good academic standing.


Program Overview
Tuition: $135/credit in-state; $338/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 15-66 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (800) 472-4554
Email: admissions@morainepark.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

14

Georgia Piedmont Technical College

Clarkston, GA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 40%

Established in 1961 in Clarkston, GA, Georgia Piedmont Technical College features generous articulation agreements and affordable tuition. The school currently hosts over 4,500 credit students and boasts a 99.9% job placement rate among graduates. GPTC’s course offerings include several flexible online associate degrees.

Students can pursue majors in areas such as accounting, design and media production technology, and computer support. Students interested in multimedia production can select the design and media production technology degree, which offers diverse optional concentrations in printing operations, web interface design, and motion graphics. Many associate degree programs at the school follow a blended learning model that combines classroom-based learning with online tools.

Online students access courses through the Blackboard learning management system. The system records student attendance weekly by monitoring for active student participation, which can include posting in online discussions, communicating with the professor, and completing class assignments or tests and quizzes.

GPTC’s articulation agreements with regional and out-of-state schools such as Georgia Military College, Herzing University, and Middle Georgia State College make it easier for online learners to transfer credits to a bachelor’s program after graduating with their associate degree.

The school requires students to maintain a 2.0 minimum GPA and complete at least 25% of their degree through GPTC to graduate. GPTC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $89/credit in-state; $356/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 12-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (404) 297-9522
Email: admissions@gptc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

15

Lakeshore Technical College

Cleveland, WI Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 49%

Established in 1967, Lakeshore Technical College has earned a reputation as one of the best online community colleges in the Wisconsin Technical College System. LTC has expanded its online course offerings in recent years to serve the needs of distance learners. Busy working professionals can choose from nine fully online associate degrees along with an array of online technical diplomas.

LTC’s fully online associate degrees include majors such as supply chain management, accounting, and human resource administration. The school also offers an innovative online associate degree in nuclear technology designed for professionals working in the radiation safety industry.

Students can take self-paced online courses part time and graduate with their associate degree in nine semesters. Most associate degree programs at LTC require 60 credits, with students completing 15-25 general education credits of math, science, social sciences, and written and verbal communication coursework. The school allows candidates to transfer up to 75% of the required credits from previous institutions or prior learning assessments, so long as they finish 25% of the required technical coursework through LTC.

Articulation agreements with around 30 different four-year universities, many of which offer online bachelor’s degrees, make it easier for LTC graduates to transfer into a bachelor’s program. Many graduates of LTC transfer to Concordia University Wisconsin, Franklin University, and Lakeland University. LTC holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $134/credit in-state; $201/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 10-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (920) 693-1000
Email: Rhetta.Bajczyk@gotoltc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

16

Northeast Community College

Norfolk, NE Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 55%

Since 1973, Northeast Community College serves students in the midwest with numerous diplomas, certificates, and degrees. The school now offers fully online associate degrees to extend its reach to out-of-state working professionals with limited schedules.

Northeast’s online platform features over a dozen associate degrees in subjects such as behavioral science, elementary education, and business. Online offerings include a practically minded academic transfer associate degree program, which is tailored to students looking to fulfill their general education requirements before transferring to a bachelor’s program. Students in the academic transfer program can choose between an associate of arts or an associate of science, both of which feature 60 credits of coursework in mathematics, oral and written communication, and English language arts.

The school maintains articulation agreements with regional four-year schools, including the University of Nebraska Omaha, Bellevue University, and Wayne State College. This can make it easier for in-state online students to earn credit towards their bachelor’s degree. Several scholarships are available to both in-state and out-of-state online students enrolled at Northeast, including the Business Programs Endowed Scholarship for Sophomores and the Nebraska Open Scholarship for Freshmen and Sophomores.

Northeast delivers its coursework asynchronously through the Canvas learning management system. Academic support services for online students include free distance tutoring conducted through video, telephone conferencing, and email. Northeast holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $96/credit in-state; $135/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 21-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ASSET/COMPASS, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 348-9033
Email: admission@northeast.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

17

Rowan College at Burlington County

Pemberton, NJ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 24%

Founded in 1923 in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, Rowan College at Burlington County serves distance learners with affordable online courses and degrees. Due to RCBC’s commitment to quality online education, the school offers a variety of online certificates and associate degrees and maintains a generous transfer policy to Wilmington University’s online undergraduate programs.

Online students at RCBC can pursue 14 fully online technical associate degrees in fields including business administration, health information technology, and cancer registry management. They can also work towards a generalized associate of arts degree in arts and sciences, which prepares learners to transfer to a bachelor's program upon graduation. Concentrations such as psychology, social work, and communications feature required coursework that prepares students to pursue a four-year degree in those fields.

RCBC’s pragmatic online offerings also include its innovative Rowan Global program, which allows RCBC graduates who hold associate degrees to complete their bachelor’s in a fully online format through its online community college. Graduates can choose either a bachelor’s in construction management or in liberal studies with a concentration in either philosophy/religion or public relations in the workplace. The school’s close relationship with Wilmington University also enables students to transfer up to 90 credits from Rowan Global to several online bachelor’s degrees offered through WilmU.

RCBC delivers its online courses asynchronously through the Blackboard learning management system. RCBC holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $127/credit in-state; $192/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 29-61 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (856) 222-9311
Email: depps@rcbc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

18

Central Community College

Grand Island, NE Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 40%

Established in 1966 as Nebraska’s first county-support community college, Central Community College serves 25 counties in the state with practical degrees, diplomas, continuing education opportunities, and community outreach. The online community college also addresses the needs of out-of-state learners, with several online diplomas, certificates, and transfer programs. Students can also pursue several online technical associate degrees, mostly in computer technology-related fields.

Learners at this online community college can choose from majors in growing fields, including health information, business, and quality technology. These degrees prepare learners for work in the information technology, research analysis, and web development fields, and accommodate students' specialized areas of interest. For example, CCC’s information and technology associate of applied science offers candidates the choice between a concentration in web development, networking, or technical support.

General education coursework at CCC covers practical skill areas, such as communication, critical thinking skills, and information and technology literacy. The school offers many of the same brick-and-mortar courses online, allowing regional learners to take in-person and online courses simultaneously. These online general education courses can also easily transfer to many other in-state schools, thanks to the school’s participation in the Nebraska Transfer Initiative. CCC delivers its coursework asynchronously through the Moodle online learning platform.

Out-of-state students may only take online courses at CCC if they reside in a State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement partner state, which at present excludes California and the Northern Mariana Islands. CCC holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $88/credit in-state; $132/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 60-71 credits
Program Length: 2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT

Contact
Phone: (877) 222-0780
Email: admissions@cccneb.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

19

Bucks County Community College

Newtown, PA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 17%

Since its founding in 1964 in Newton, Pennsylvania, Bucks County Community College has provided recent high school graduates and working professionals in southeastern Pennsylvania with affordable accredited degrees, certificates, and diplomas. County, in-state, and out-of-state learners pursuing a practical education on a budget can take advantage of Bucks' fully online associate degrees and general education courses.

Online learners at Bucks can pursue fully online associate degrees in eighteen areas, including social work, information science, and mathematics. Numerous standalone online courses provide working professionals in the region the chance to earn a hybrid degree by combining online and hybrid coursework. For example, online courses comprise 93% of the school’s health science degree.

Bucks' 10 general education requirement areas cover topics in quantitative literacy, critical thinking, and diversity. These courses offer graduates a blend of scientific methods and analytical skills from the humanities. Some of the school’s fully online offerings, including its associate of arts in emergency management, require additional internship or fieldwork components.

Bucks delivers its online coursework asynchronously through the Canvas learning management system. The school encourages online learners to take advantage of its many online student support services, which include around-the-clock chat support and video guides for Canvas and free online tutoring. Prospective students can also take an online learning readiness assessment through Bucks.

The school accepts up to 30 transfer credits from a postsecondary education and prior learning assessment towards a degree. Bucks holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $330/credit in-state; $495/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (215) 968-8000
Email: info@bucks.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

20

Southeast Technical Institute

Sioux Falls, SD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 46%

Established in 1965 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Southeast Technical Institute provides over 3,000 in-state and regional students with practical diplomas, certificates, continuing education opportunities, and degrees. The school’s features several fully online associate degrees to accommodate working professionals and nontraditional returning students.

Southeast Tech’s catalog of online associate degree majors include computer programming, healthcare leadership, and financial services. Learners pursuing the school’s online associate in marketing can opt for a concentration in either design or sales. The school offers courses in both accelerated and traditional semester formats. Many students at Southeast Tech take advantage of the Build Dakota Scholarship program, which offers full scholarships to students in high-need workforce programs, such as the online computer programming major.

Articulation agreements with a variety of four-year schools allow students to easily complete a bachelor’s degree at regional colleges and universities, such as Bellevue University, the University of Sioux Falls, and the University of South Dakota. The school requires all students with less than nine transfer credits from an accredited institution to take its two-credit student success course.

Applicants to Southeast Tech's online program must complete either an ACT assessment or a Next-Generation Accuplacer assessment. The school does not require students to complete the writing section of the ACT and offers prep courses for taking the Accuplacer assessment.

Students must maintain a 2.0 minimum GPA and complete 25% of coursework through Southeast Tech to graduate. Southeast Tech holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $290/credit
Credit Requirements: 19-66 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (605) 367-6040
Email: admissions@southeasttech.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

21

George C Wallace State Community College-Hanceville

Hanceville, AL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 40%

Founded in 1966, Wallace State Community College provides certificates, associate degrees, and professional training from its main campus in Hanceville, Alabama and a satellite campus in Oneonta. The school’s Hanceville campus offers fully online associate degrees for recent high school graduates and those looking to complete their general education requirements before transferring to a bachelor’s program in the state.

Online learners at Wallace State can choose majors such as child development, health information technology, and internet/networking technology. Many of Wallace State’s other associate degree programs feature numerous course requirements in an online format, providing regional learners the flexibility to earn their degree and work full time. Wallace State’s health information technology online associate degree holds accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education.

The online community college also offers a generalized associate of arts or sciences that can easily transfer to a bachelor’s program at a four-year university. The generalized associate of arts or sciences pathways offer concentrations such as music education, criminal justice, and religious studies.

The school uses the Blackboard learning management system to deliver asynchronous coursework. Students must also install the Tegrity application in order to access lectures from instructors and remotely proctored exams.

Students looking to transfer from Wallace State to a four-year institution can use the Statewide Transfer and Articulation Reporting System to see how their associate credits transfer to in-state bachelor’s programs. Wallace State holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $129/credit in-state; $258/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 16-63 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT (recommended)

Contact
Phone: (256) 352-8000
Email: admissions@wallacestate.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

22

St Philip's College

San Antonio, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 23%

Founded in 1878 and the only college federally designated as both a historically black college and Hispanic-serving institution, Saint Philip’s College serves the San Antonio, Texas area as a member of the Alamo Colleges District. SPC offers more than 15 online associate degrees and several pre-major programs for students planning to transfer to baccalaureate programs.

SPC’s online associate degrees include early childhood and family studies, web and mobile development, and office systems technology. Students can also earn a generalized associate of arts or science with optional concentrations including philosophy, psychology, and mechanical engineering. Several other associate degrees offer at least 50% or more of their requirements in the online format, giving regional learners greater freedom to earn a degree while working part time.

Many students take online coursework in one of SPC’s pre-major programs designed for transfer to a bachelor’s program, such as its 18-credit Mexican American studies pre-major program. The school also holds articulation agreements with partnering institutions, including Capella University and the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Online students complete coursework through the Canvas learning management system, completing a mixture of asynchronous and synchronous coursework. Prior to taking any online courses, online students at SPC take a free, self-paced, non-credit orientation to online learning. The school offers online learners access to free online tutoring through the Brainfuse service. SPC holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Program Overview
Tuition: $215/credit in-state; $466/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Texas Success Initiative Assessment

Contact
Phone: (210) 486-2000
Email: spc-ar@alamo.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

23

Ocean County College

Toms River, NJ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 35%

Ocean County College prepares graduates for entry-level roles and continuing education. Students can take fully online community college courses in areas like finance, human resource management, healthcare, and information technology, allowing them to earn a professional certification or associate degree on their own schedule from the comfort of their home. OCC also offers online education preparation courses and personal enrichment classes, covering subjects like nutrition, healthy pregnancies, and caring for elderly parents.

OCC is an open-enrollment college, meaning anyone 18 years or older can attend. OCC also offers a Jump Start program through which high school juniors and seniors may take college-level courses at a discounted rate. Students 55 years or older also qualify for substantially discounted tuition.

The college boasts several scholarship programs. The 100 Women Campaign covers the full cost of tuition and fees for eligible female students regardless of their field of study. In addition, OCC participates in the New Jersey Educational Opportunity Fund, a state-sponsored program that provides financial assistance to low-income state residents.

Online learners at OCC benefit from the same support services as on-campus students. The college provides free tutoring, research support, and test preparation assistance. Students may also work individually with academic and career advisers to design a course of study or learn more about potential careers. Ocean County College holds regional accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $169/credit in-state; $257/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 24-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (732) 255-0400
Email: occadmissions@ocean.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

24

Harford Community College

Bel Air, MD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 29%

As an open-access institution, Harford Community College allows students of all backgrounds to earn an undergraduate degree. In addition to face-to-face instruction on the college's Bel Air campus in Maryland, students at HCC may take hybrid and fully online community college classes. Distance education classes cover subjects including the principles of accounting, employee training and development, an introduction to internet technologies, and school-age childcare. HCC also provides online access to non-credit courses in areas like English as a second language and CPR/first aid.

Although HCC does not require applicants to hold a high school diploma or GED, prospective students without either of these credentials must take the ACCUPLACER test, a computer adaptive exam that assesses reading, writing, and mathematics skills. This exam helps academic advisers design an appropriate course of study. Harford Community College holds regional accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

HCC ranks highly among the cheapest online community colleges in the nation and provides a variety of tuition discounts and scholarships. Senior citizens and youth in foster care, for instance, may qualify for a waiver of tuition and fees. HCC also offers several dozen institutional scholarships, supporting students with financial needs, exceptional academic potential, or plans to enter a specific field, such as nursing or education. Finally, the HCC Foundation administers transfer scholarships, helping HCC graduates continue their education at a four-year college or university.


Program Overview
Tuition: $226/credit in-state; $319/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 16-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (443) 412-2109
Email: admissions@harford.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

25

Mt San Jacinto Community College District

San Jacinto, CA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 26%

Through more than 100 fully online courses, students at Mt. San Jacinto College explore subjects such as anthropology, computer information systems, kinesiology, and teacher education. In addition to earning a professional certification or associate degree, students may pursue a transfer pathway, earning college-level credit that they can apply towards a bachelor's degree at a four-year college or university.

MSJC admits students who hold a high school diploma or GED, have passed the California High School Proficiency Examination, or are at least 18 years old. Out-of-state students may need to meet additional enrollment criteria. International students may attend MSJC if they currently hold a student or F2 visa and pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language.

California residents benefit the most from MSJC financial aid programs. For example, the California College Promise Grant waives all tuition for certain applicants from California, along with a portion of their parking permit fee should they choose to attend class on campus. The California DREAM Act ensures that children of undocumented immigrants qualify for in-state tuition and state-level aid programs. Online learners and other students from outside of California may apply for federal aid and some competitive scholarships offered by MSJC.

All students at MSJC can access academic tutoring, computer skill development, and career counseling services through the college's learning resource center. Mt. San Jacinto College holds regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $46/credit in-state; $242/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 27-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (951) 487-6752
Email: enrollsvcs@msjc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

26

Southwest Wisconsin Technical College

Fennimore, WI Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 61%

Southwest Wisconsin Technical College allows students to earn an associate degree, technical diploma, or career advancement certificate online. Through 100% online programs in areas like supply chain management, medical coding, tax preparation, and health information technology, students can schedule their coursework around the demands of a full-time job or personal obligations. Online courses run for four, eight, or 16 weeks, and students may enroll in classes on multiple start dates throughout the year.

Southwest Tech provides multiple ways to receive credit for prior learning or experiences, allowing students to expedite graduation. For example, students may take a "challenge exam" to demonstrate that they possess the competencies of a given course. They may also submit a portfolio illustrating how their learning from a professional or volunteer experience applies to a required class. Southwest Tech also awards credit for military training and experience, coursework from other accredited institutions, and national tests, such as the Advanced Placement exam.

Applicants submit high school or GED transcripts along with results from the ACT or ACCUPLACER exam. During the application process, students may apply for a variety of institutional scholarships. Southwest Tech provides funding on the basis of leadership activities and community service, career objectives, and financial need. In 2018-2019, the Southwest Tech Foundation awarded more than $200,000 in scholarships to students. Southwest Wisconsin Technical College holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $137/credit in-state; $205/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 18-66 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (800) 362-3322
Email: admissions@swtc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

27

Dakota County Technical College

Rosemount, MN Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 36%

At Dakota County Technical College, students can take fully online courses in subjects like legal administration, digital marketing, small business entrepreneurship, and early childhood and youth development. Students may also enroll in hybrid or blended courses, combining the convenience of distance education with the structure and support of a traditional classroom experience.

Applicants must hold or be in the process of earning a high school diploma or GED. Applicants must also take the ACCUPLACER exam, though some prospective students may qualify for an exemption if they score high enough on the ACT, SAT, or the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment.

Online students pay the same tuition regardless of residency. Students from Minnesota, however, typically qualify for the most state-level grants and institutional scholarships. For example, state residents pursuing a certificate or degree in manufacturing, healthcare services, or information technology may qualify for up to $2,500 in annual funding through the Minnesota Workforce Development Program.

Through articulation agreements with all of the colleges and universities in the Minnesota State System, DCTC makes it easy to transfer credit form an associate program towards a bachelor's degree. The college's transfer advisers provide guidance to students looking to continue their education at private institutions and universities across the country. Dakota County Technical College holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $202/credit
Credit Requirements: 16-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (877) 937-3282
Email: admissions@dctc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

28

Mitchell Technical Institute

Mitchell, SD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 68%

With distance education programs in advanced medical imaging, small business management, social media, and speech-language pathology, Mitchell Technical Institute is one of the best online community colleges in the country. Students can complete online coursework without visiting campus, and MTI charges the same tuition and fees regardless of residency. Nearly all of the online community college's programs boast a 100% job placement rate.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED, and they must submit scores from the ACT, SAT, or ACCUPLACER exam. Prospective students who have not taken one of these exams may instead sit for the free MTI admissions test. Once accepted, students must pay a matriculation fee.

All students pursuing a diploma or associate degree at the college must complete a series of general education courses to hone their critical-thinking, information-literacy, and problem-solving skills. These courses cover topics such as mathematics, human relations, technology, and communication, laying the foundation for more advanced study.

MTI holds articulation agreements with a variety of four-year colleges and universities, including South Dakota State University and the University of South Dakota. These agreements allow students to seamlessly transfer credits from their associate program towards a bachelor's degree. Mitchell Technical Institute holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $116/credit
Credit Requirements: 39-75 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, SAT, or Mitchell Technical Institute Admissions Test

Contact
Phone: (800) 684-1969
Email: questions@mitchelltech.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

29

Copiah-Lincoln Community College

Wesson, MS Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 45%

Copiah-Lincoln Community College offers 33 fully online associate programs, many of which feature asynchronous instruction. Asynchronous offerings allow students to watch lectures, complete assignments, and take exams on their own schedule. Online learners at Co-Lin can choose from programs in diverse fields of study, including political science, athletic training, international business, and healthcare data technology.

Along with high school or GED transcripts, students applying to Co-Lin must submit results from the ACT or ACCUPLACER exam. Students who have not taken these tests may pay to take an equivalent placement exam at one of the college's campuses in southern Mississippi. Some programs, like the associate degree in nursing, require applicants to take the ACT rather than the ACCUPLACER exam. Outside of fees for required assessments, Co-Lin does not charge application fees.

While Co-Lin charges the same tuition to online and in-person learners, students from outside of Mississippi pay more per credit to enroll in an associate program at the college. State residents also typically receive more in scholarship funding. For example, Co-Lin's Non-Traditional Student Scholarship covers up to half of the cost of tuition for Mississippi residents over the age of 24, while students from other states may only receive an award for up to 25% of their tuition.

Copiah-Lincoln Community College holds regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $140/credit in-state; $240/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 63-65 credits
Program Length: 2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (601) 643-5101
Email: eldinfo@colin.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

30

Minnesota State Community and Technical College

Fergus Falls, MN Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 36%

Minnesota State Community and Technical College features more than a dozen fully online diploma and associate degree programs in areas like computer programming, business marketing, paralegal studies, and plumbing technology. Distance learners also enjoy access to online tutoring, research support, academic advising, and career counseling services.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED. In addition, applicants submit results from the ACCUPLACER exam. Students who received sufficiently high scores on the ACT or SAT may qualify for an exemption from the ACCUPLACER requirement.

M State charges a flat tuition rate for online learning regardless of residency. Students living outside of Minnesota, however, may not qualify for some forms of state-level aid, such as the Alliss Opportunity Grant Program for Adults Returning to College and the Minnesota State Grant.

While online students at M State can complete the majority of their coursework at any time and from any location with an internet connection, some programs require visits to campus or field experiences. For example, pharmacy and radiologic technology students must complete a clinical rotation to earn their degree. Similarly, business management and marketing students must complete an internship to meet their program's graduation requirements. Minnesota State Community and Technical College holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $199/credit
Credit Requirements: 33-69 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (877) 450-3322
Email: sandy.torgusson@minnesota.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

31

Sauk Valley Community College

Dixon, IL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 41%

Sauk Valley Community College offers diverse fully online learning options. Students hoping to begin a career in law enforcement, for example, can earn an associate degree in criminal justice from the comfort of their own home, while business professionals looking for a promotion can earn a certificate in supervisory management online. SVCC also allows students to develop a new skill or discover a new passion through standalone online courses in areas like database management systems, music appreciation, and world religions.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED. Prospective students without ACT or SAT scores must take the SVCC placement exam. This assessment allows academic advisers to determine an appropriate course of study. Prior to enrolling in classes, students must meet with an adviser to discuss their career plans and design a course of study.

Online learners pay the same tuition as on-campus students. Through the SVCC Foundation Scholarship Program, students may apply for financial assistance to reduce the cost of their education. Sauk Valley Community College holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $338/credit in-state; $375/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 28-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Sauk Valley Community College Placement Test

Contact
Phone: (815) 288-5511
Email: admissionsvc@svcc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

32

Sussex County Community College

Newton, NJ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 33%

At Sussex County Community College, students may pursue fully online associate degrees in liberal arts or business administration. The liberal arts program provides a foundation in literature, the social sciences, humanities, and mathematics, preparing students to pursue a bachelor's. The business administration program features coursework in accounting, business law, and marketing, making it ideal preparation for entry-level roles in the public and private sectors.

While these programs require some live participation in class discussions and exams, students can watch the majority of lectures and complete most of their assignments on their own schedule. Prospective students may meet Sussex's admission requirements in one of several ways. Students with a cumulative high school GPA of 3.0 or higher automatically earn admission, as do applicants who score higher than 450 on the SAT or 23 on the ACT. If students do not meet these standards, they may instead sit for the ACCUPLACER exam or share transcripts from another accredited postsecondary institution.

While Sussex does not offer any institutional scholarships, New Jersey residents may apply for the state's Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship. This scholarship program covers up to five semesters of community college tuition and fees for students who excel academically. Students who plan to continue their education at a four-year college or university may also qualify for additional funding through the program. Sussex County Community College holds regional accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $210/credit in-state; $280/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (973) 300-2100
Email: tpoltersdorf@sussex.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

33

Middlesex Community College

Bedford, MA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 19%

Students attending Middlesex Community College may earn fully online associate degrees in fields like business administration, criminal justice, and hospitality management. Students who plan to continue their education at a four-year college or university may pursue a liberal studies degree. Through coursework in mathematics, psychology, history, and biology, this 60-credit offering meets most of the general education requirements of bachelor's programs at partner schools, like Northeastern University and New England College.

In the Middlesex Accelerated Program (MAP), students may earn their associate degree in as few as 13 months. Classes in this program move roughly three times faster than traditional courses at MXCC, and the college makes approximately 95% of MAP courses available online.

In addition to pursuing online associate and certificate programs, students at MXCC may take standalone online courses in areas like managerial accounting, film study and appreciation, and health delivery systems and reimbursement. These courses help students develop new professional skills on their own schedule or supplement on-campus learning.

Applicants submit high school or GED transcripts and results from the ACT, SAT, or ACCUPLACER exam. MXCC does not deny admission because of low scores on these assessments, but it may require some students to take more introductory-level coursework in English and mathematics at the beginning of their studies. Middlesex Community College holds regional accreditation from the New England Commission of Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $215/credit in-state; $463/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 27-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 818-3434
Email: middlesex@middlesex.mass.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

34

Citrus College

Glendora, CA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 38%

In addition to attending classes on the Glendora campus in southern California, students at Citrus College may pursue some classes entirely online. Available through the Canvas Learning Management System, online courses at Citrus cover subjects including architecture, emergency management, developmental psychology, and real estate.

Unlike many other online community colleges, Citrus does not require prospective students to take a placement exam. Instead, students submit high school or GED transcripts, and academic coordinators place them in appropriate math and English courses. Applicants do not need a high school diploma or GED to attend Citrus College, but students without one of these credentials may not qualify for federal aid.

All California residents receive free tuition at Citrus college, though they must pay a small per-credit enrollment fee. In addition, the California DREAM Act allows undocumented children to receive in-state tuition provided they graduated from a California high school. All other students must pay out-of-state tuition.

Citrus College provides several dozen institutional scholarships. The Dr. Robert D. and Helen Haugh Memorial Scholarship provides $2,500 in funding to students pursuing a degree in the fine or performing arts, while the Dr. Robert D. Haugh Award of Distinction offers financial support to future teachers who excel academically. Citrus College holds regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $46/credit in-state; $269/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 60-64 credits
Program Length: 2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (626) 963-0323
Email: gsequeira@citruscollege.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

35

Northland Community and Technical College

Thief River Falls, MN Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 47%

Northland Community and Technical College offers 23 fully online associate and certificate programs in fields like geospatial intelligence analysis, sales marketing and management, practical nursing, and welding technology. Along with these career preparation programs, online learners at NCTC may also pursue an associate degree in the liberal arts, paving the way for continued study at a four-year college or university. Although some courses require campus visits or synchronous participation, online students can complete most of their coursework anytime and anywhere with an internet connection.

NCTC provides specialized support to students in its distance education programs. Online advisers answer questions, connect learners with digital and in-person resources, help design courses of study, and guide students through the online education experience. NCTC is a member of Quality Matters, a consortium of educational institutions that works to ensure the rigor and quality of online offerings.

Applicants submit high school, GED, or college transcripts. NCTC requires all incoming students to take the ACCUPLACER exam, though students may qualify for a waiver with a high score on the ACT or SAT.

All online students, regardless of residency, pay the same tuition. The NCTC Foundation offers roughly 40 scholarships to lower the cost of education, including an award specifically for distance education students. Northland Community and Technical College holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $199/credit
Credit Requirements: 16-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 657-3930
Email: nicki.carlson@northlandcollege.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

36

San Antonio College

San Antonio, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 18%

Founded in 1925, San Antonio College (SAC) operates as Texas's oldest public two-year college and enrolls more students than nearly any other community college in the state. In addition to granting associate degrees from its campus overlooking San Pedro Park, SAC offers more than 200 online community college classes, including associate of arts and associate of applied science degrees.

The online degrees at SAC include pre-major or transfer options in communications, mathematics, the natural sciences, humanities, literature, and the social and behavioral sciences. These associate degrees prepare students to transfer into a four-year college or university. SAC also offers fully online associate degrees in criminal justice, corrections, and law enforcement, and their online programs hold accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

SAC's online community college offers a free orientation program to support new students. The program covers topics such as available online resources, campus support programs, and time management tips. The self-paced course benefits first-time online students adjusting to the online learning environment. SAC also offers resources through the Virtual College of Texas (VCT), a consortium of community colleges. VCT enables students enrolled at SAC to enroll in courses offered at the best online community colleges in Texas.

During the admission process, applicants submit an online application and official high school or college transcripts. SAC does not charge an application fee.


Program Overview
Tuition: $215/credit in-state; $466/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Texas Success Initiative Assessment

Contact
Phone: (210) 486-0040
Email: sac-outreach@alamo.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

37

Eastern Wyoming College

Torrington, WY Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 46%

Eastern Wyoming College (EWC) enrolls nearly 2,000 students and offers online community college classes along with several fully online degrees, providing accessible college education in a flexible format. Online students can earn an associate of applied science in business administration, which offers entry-level business skills through coursework in accounting, marketing, and management. The college also offers a flexible associate of arts or associate of science in interdisciplinary studies. The program meets general education requirements for four-year colleges and universities, making it an ideal transfer degree.

EWC's online community college also offers education degrees online, including an associate of arts in early childhood education or an associate of arts in elementary education. Both programs emphasize instructor training, curriculum development, and the promotion of educational development in young learners. Graduates can seamlessly transfer into a four-year teacher training program to earn their teaching license after completing the EWC degree. Students can also choose an associate of arts in criminal justice that includes coursework in criminal law, juvenile justice, and criminology.

Online students benefit from EWC campus services tailored to distance education. The library, for example, offers distance education and outreach services as does the tutoring center. With in-state tuition rates under $100 per credit, EWC ranks as the cheapest online community college in the state. Prospective students submit an online application and provide high school or college transcripts. EWC does not charge an application fee nor require standardized tests.


Program Overview
Tuition: $99/credit in-state; $297/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 32-61 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Contact
Phone: (866) 327-8996
Email: zach.smith@ewc.wy.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

38

Southern Arkansas University Tech

Camden, AR Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 52%

Located in rural Camden, Southern Arkansas University Tech (SAU Tech) offers a postsecondary experience that allows students to build meaningful relationships with peers and engage with professors. SAU Tech gives students access to a quality network where their credits can easily transfer to obtain advanced degrees, with the university's transfer program specializing in general education, business administration, and teacher education. Nontraditional students also benefit from access to online community college courses.

SAU Tech offers seven two-year degrees online, including a teacher education degree that prepares students to transfer to a bachelor's program, an office management degree that focuses on essential software skills, and a computer information technology degree that focuses on installation, maintenance, and repair skills for PCs and server hardware. Another notable option includes an environmental management associate degree that prepares graduates for jobs as managers in water, wastewater, or solid waste facilities.

The fire science management and emergency response associate degree instructs students in how to handle hazardous materials, firefighting techniques, and emergency medical services. SAU Tech retains accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission, along with multiple programmatic accreditations.


Program Overview
Tuition: $108/credit in-state; $156/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 60-62 credits
Program Length: 2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (870) 574-4500
Email: jsanders@sautech.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

39

Eastern Arizona College

Thatcher, AZ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 38%

Eastern Arizona College (EAC), located in Thatcher, provides quality transfer degree programs, associate degrees, and certificate training that qualifies graduates for in-demand jobs, promotes innovation, and establishes meaningful partnerships that lead to opportunities for students. EAC prioritizes the diverse needs of students through online coursework. The same professors who teach on campus teach online, ensuring that distance students receive the same quality instruction.

While students gain access to multiple distance programs, the business program remains one of the top online community college degrees at EAC. This program explores methodologies and cutting-edge technologies that provide graduates with marketable skills. Graduates also gain competency tools, hands-on experience, and the credits required to transfer to a four-year institution.

EAC online courses utilize an asynchronous format, allowing students to complete coursework whenever convenient. Students receive a syllabus at the beginning of the course that outlines all deadlines, and assignments include discussion posts, essays, group work, narrated powerpoint presentations, and exams. Some courses may require proctored exams that students can complete at the school or an approved location, such as a local library.

EAC does not charge an application fee and participates in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, or NC-SARA, that allows out-of-state students in specific areas to complete online coursework at reasonable rates. EAC retains accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $90/credit in-state; $380/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 30-64 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 678-3808
Email: chalene.preston@eac.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

40

Westmoreland County Community College

Youngwood, PA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 16%

Founded in 1970 in Youngwood, Pennsylvania, Westmoreland County Community College (WCCC) offers over 100 associate degree and certificate programs. While graduates can begin working immediately, students with associate degrees also qualify to transfer into bachelor's programs at four-year institutions. WCCC strives to accommodate the individual needs of all students and ranks as the top school in the state for two-year online programs.

While WCCC offers multiple online programs, nearly 50% of students enroll in liberal arts and social sciences programs. The online liberal arts associate transfer program holds particular esteem, and graduates can transfer all coursework to more than 100 bachelor's programs at over 40 universities. This program requires 60 credits, including 24 elective credits and 36 core credits in English, humanities, social science, math, natural science, and computer science. Optional courses include art, philosophy, psychology, and speech communication. Distance learners receive one-on-one support from advisers who help navigate the transfer process. Additionally, students can access the online student center for online tutoring and technical support.

WCCC administers all coursework through the Blackboard online learning management system, and many of the online courses engage students remotely through group projects, interactive discussion boards, exams, and essays. Courses may require proctored exams at the college or other approved location, utilize a synchronous format through web conferencing, or operate as blended courses that require occasional in-person meetings. WCCC retains regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $266/credit in-state; $399/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 18-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (724) 925-4000
Email: infocenter@westmoreland.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

41

Lone Star College System

The Woodlands, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 12%

Based in The Woodlands, Texas, Lone Star College (LSC) offers a diverse suburban feel and provides students access to a vast network and a high-quality education. Due to LSC's commitment to student achievement, the college ranks among the top 10 schools nationwide for associate degrees and remains a leading institution for the Texas Complete and the Texas Reverse Transfer Initiative, which seeks to increase higher education degree completion rates. LSC also strives to accommodate diverse student needs, including access to distance education programs.

While LSC offers multiple community college online courses, many students pursue a liberal arts and science degree. For instance, the online biology associate degree emphasizes the study of living organisms and the life cycle with a curriculum that prepares students to transfer to four-year institutions and earn a bachelor of science. This 60-credit program generally takes students two years to complete. Distinctive courses include social and behavioral science, organic chemistry, physical fitness and wellness, and microbiology. Graduates may transfer to any university in the state. Students have access to six transfer centers where professionals provide one-on-one appointments, but can also collaborate with their advisers.

LSC utilizes an open enrollment system and does not charge an application fee. Admissions requires students to complete a placement test. LSC maintains regional accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $191/credit in-state; $252/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 18-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Texas Success Initiative Assessment

Contact
Phone: (832) 813-6500
Email: Tristyn.Davis@lonestar.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

42

Frederick Community College

Frederick, MD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 31%

Located in Maryland, Frederick Community College (FCC) ranks among the top five community colleges in the state. FCC prioritizes quality, access, and affordability, making higher education more attainable and a better return on investment for students. Furthermore, FCC strives to provide workforce preparation, career development, reputable credentialing, easy credit transfer, and personal enrichment. FCC recognizes the diverse learning needs of students, so nontraditional learners can access flexible instruction through distance learning programs.

While FCC offers multiple online community college programs, their business administration associate degree holds particular esteem. This 54-credit program emphasizes economics, computing, accounting, and statistics with the goal of preparing students to transfer to a four-year institution and earn their bachelor's degrees. Students may immediately enter the workforce after earning their associate, as this degree qualifies graduates for entry-level positions. Notable courses include principles of macroeconomics, accounting, information systems and technology, and introduction to business.

FCC offers online courses through the Blackboard online learning management system. Courses often follow an asynchronous format, providing students optimal flexibility. Students receive a syllabus at the beginning of each course that outlines weekly deadline dates. Some courses may utilize a synchronous learning environment, meaning students must meet online through live video sessions. While students typically complete all coursework online, some courses may require students to complete proctored exams at an approved location.

FCC does not charge an application fee, but admissions requires students to complete a placement test to identify if students need additional skill work. FCC retains regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $294/credit in-state; $389/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 12-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (301) 846-2400
Email: lfreel@fcc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

43

Anne Arundel Community College

Arnold, MD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 20%

Established in Maryland, Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) offers an urban college experience in the Baltimore area. AACC values innovation, equity and inclusion, strategic partnerships, and community involvement. The college also emphasizes student-centered curriculum and high academic standards. AACC has earned the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award for three consecutive years and ranks among the top three community colleges in the area.

Nontraditional students seeking flexible access to coursework can enroll into AACC's Virtual Campus. For instance, the computer science associate degree prepares students to act as the initial defense against issues with technology. Graduates can transfer to a four-year institution to earn their bachelor's degree. This program requires 56-64 credits, including 33-37 general education credits, 12 program requirement credits, and 11-15 concentration credits. Noteworthy coursework includes theories and applications of digital technology, calculus and analytic geometry, introductory object-oriented program analysis and design, and introduction to discrete structures.

AACC utilizes the Canvas learning management system, and courses follow multiple learning environments. Asynchronous courses allow students to work independently on their own time within weekly deadline dates. In contrast, synchronous courses require live interaction through Canvas video sessions. Hybrid courses include both online and face-to-face interaction. Professors typically provide a syllabus that outlines all in-person requirements at the beginning of the course. While students can schedule appointments with their professors during office hours, AACC provides online tutoring through Smarthinking. Career services and technological assistance are also available online. AACC retains regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $219/credit in-state; $381/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 25-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT or ACCUPLACER

Contact
Phone: (410) 777-1999
Email: askaacc@aacc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

44

Merced College

Merced, CA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 25%

Merced College (MC) emerged in California in 1961 with the goal to provide basic skills, transfer degrees, professional certificates, and technical education. Today, MC offers 82 associate degrees, 50 certificate programs, and prioritizes student success and equitable access to higher education. Nontraditional learners can enroll in over 270 online courses that provide optimal flexibility for the working student. Furthermore, MC offers online community college courses that prepare students to transfer to four-year institutions.

While MC offers multiple high-quality degrees, the Department of Psychology offers a rigorous associate degree that explores applied psychological research and theory.

This program requires 60 units, including 19 core units and 41 California State University Breadth or Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum courses. Notable courses include personal and social adjustment, sociocultural anthropology, introduction to statistics in psychology, and introduction to psychological research methods.

The psychology program at MC offers most courses fully online with no in-person requirements through the Canvas learning management system. Distance courses often follow an asynchronous format, allowing students to work independently without sacrificing engagement. For instance, students participate in weekly discussion posts and group projects. Some courses utilize a hybrid format where students must attend in-person sessions throughout the semester. Distance learning professors provide tele-office hours for additional support, and students can also access online Smarthinking tutoring services, online MC tutors, academic advisers, and technology support. MC retains accreditation through the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $46/credit in-state; $307/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 34-66 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: Merced College Placement Questionnaire

Contact
Phone: (209) 384-6000
Email: elms.s@mccd.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook

45

Wake Technical Community College

Raleigh, NC Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 16%

Wake Technical Community College (Wake Tech) offers a suburban two-year college experience in Raleigh, North Carolina. Wake Tech strives to provide accessible education that accommodates diverse student needs. In fact, Wake Tech students have access to 10 locations including the online campus. Among the members of the North Carolina Community College System, Wake Tech is the only member to yield continuous growth.

Wake Tech's online accounting and finance associate degree stands out among more than 200 degree, diploma, and certificate options. This program examines foundational principles, theories, and practices of business law, finance, and economics. Students acquire critical thinking, analytical, and ethical decision-making skills that will qualify them for entry-level positions upon graduation. In contrast, students may also choose to transfer to a four-year institution. Distinctive coursework includes quantitative literacy, accounting software applications, informational systems and internal controls, principles of managerial accounting, and analyzing financial statements.

Wake Tech utilizes the Blackboard online learning management system, and online courses typically follow an asynchronous learning format. However, some courses utilize a hybrid format where professors specify dates when students must attend class in-person. Also, some courses require students to complete exams in-person at an approved e-learning testing center with a proctor.

Wake Tech does not charge an application fee, but students may need to complete entrance exams. The college retains regional accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $76/credit in-state; $268/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 17-68 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (919) 866-5000
Email: admissions@waketech.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

46

Wabash Valley College

Mount Carmel, IL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 55%

Located in Mount Carmel, Illinois, Wabash Valley College offers a small postsecondary experience and prioritizes affordable, high-quality education. In fact, the college ranks as one of the best online community colleges for overall value. Wabash Valley College offers multiple distance learning programs, including an online associate in science that focuses on the foundational knowledge and skills needed to transfer to programs at a four-year college or university. This 64-credit program includes courses such as environmental biology, introductory meteorology, survey of physics, introduction to human genetics, and social problems and trends.

Wabash Valley College uses the Entrata online learning management system to administer distance coursework. Mirroring the same course schedule as on-campus classes, online classes seldom require in-person attendance and utilize an asynchronous format. Assignments include essays, exams, group work, and discussion posts; however, some courses utilize a hybrid format, combining distance and face-to-face classroom instruction while still providing flexibility and hands-on engagement. While professors provide online or tele-office hours, Wabash Valley College also provides student support services, technology assistance, and librarian research support.

Wabash Valley College does not charge an application fee, but admissions may require an entrance exam. Students should also submit SAT or ACT scores and a high school diploma or GED. Wabash Valley College participates in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, or NC-SARA, which provides out-of-state students in certain states access to online courses. The college retains regional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.


Program Overview
Tuition: $92/credit in-district; $342/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 33-68 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (618) 262-8641
Email: cowgert@iecc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

47

College of the Mainland

Texas City, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 21%

College of the Mainland (COM) emerged during the 1960s in Texas with the mission to provide student-centered learning and economic enrichment to local communities. COM values academic excellence, accountability, diversity, innovation, and community involvement. In fact, COM's chapter of the International Community College Honor Society ranks among the top in the world.

Students interested in a career involving law enforcement, judiciary offices, private security, or corrections facilities can pursue an associate of arts in criminal justice at COM. This 60-credit program prepares graduates to transfer to a four-year institution. Notable courses include microcomputer applications, interpersonal communication, U.S. and Texas government, and fundamentals of criminal law. The 14-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio promotes a hands-on learning experience for all students.

Most COM courses follow an asynchronous format that ensures students complete 85-100% of coursework online. Professors provide a syllabus at the beginning of the course outlining all weekly due dates. Students engage in online discussions, essays, and group work and can interact with their professors through online or tele-office hours. Some courses require students to complete exams in person. In contrast, some courses utilize a hybrid format that requires 15-50% in-person attendance. Distance learners also gain access to NetTutor online tutoring, technical assistance, and a writing center.

COM admissions requires students to submit a copy of their high school diploma or GED, proof of Texas residency, and meningitis shots. Some students may also need to complete placement exams. COM retains regional accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $198/credit in-state; $258/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 24-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, SAT, or Texas Success Initiative Assessment

Contact
Phone: (409) 933-8264
Email: kmusick@com.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

48

Raritan Valley Community College

Branchburg, NJ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 26%

Raritan Valley Community College (RVCC) offers a suburban setting in Branchburg, New Jersey, and strives to develop intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, and social responsibility. Diversity, inclusion, and community engagement are at the forefront of RVCC's values, leading to accolades such as the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award (HEED), which recognizes environmental stewardship and service to the community. RVCC also ranks as the top community college in the state and among the best online community colleges in the country.

While RVCC offers multiple high-quality online community college programs, its associate of science in business administration holds particular esteem. RVCC designs its business administration program with transfer students in mind. Students learn pertinent knowledge and skills needed for fast-paced professional environments, and graduates qualify to attend four-year institutions. This 60-credit program includes 51 core credits, three elective business credits, and six general elective credits. Distinctive coursework includes principles of marketing, managerial accounting, macroeconomics, microeconomics, and programming for business majors.

RVCC online courses utilize an asynchronous format that provides students optimal flexibility. Assignments may include weekly reading material, supplemental videos or tutorials, discussion posts, and group collaboration projects in private online chat rooms. Some courses utilize a hybrid format that requires in-person attendance on set dates. While students can contact professors during office hours for additional support, RVCC students also have access to online tutoring, academic advising, and technical support. RVCC retains regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.


Program Overview
Tuition: $202/credit
Credit Requirements: 55-60 credits
Program Length: 2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACT, ACCUPLACER, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (908) 526-1200
Email: carolyn.white@raritanval.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

49

Fox Valley Technical College

Appleton, WI Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 54%

FVTC is a member of the Wisconsin Technical College System, which operates as the largest higher educational system in the state. This Appleton-based technical college offers more than 240 associate-level programs, drawing over 50,000 students each year.

Distance learners at FVTC enjoy 31 online program options, including associate degrees and technical diplomas in business, engineering technology, manufacturing, marketing and sales, and public safety. Most associate degrees consist of 60-63 credits and feature versatile curricula, making the programs appropriate for both prospective bachelor’s degree candidates and individuals planning to enter the workforce immediately after graduation.

Technical diplomas emphasize occupational skills and range from 6-33 credits. These diploma programs prepare candidates to take on specific roles, such as administrative or quality technician positions.

FVTC offers a variety of incentives for adult and nontraditional learners to pursue higher education. For example, students may apply for a $600 AdultStart scholarship, which covers certain fees each term. Candidates can also transfer credits based on previous college coursework or life/work experience towards their associate degree. Incoming students who create a professional experience portfolio, possess industry certification, or pass skills tests may also qualify for prior learning credits.

In addition to online courses, FVTC provides "on demand" training sessions through its National Criminal Justice Center. The center offers free courses for community organizations and paid courses for criminal justice professionals. While training sessions do not confer degrees, they may fulfill continuing education requirements needed to retain professional licensure.


Program Overview
Tuition: $152/credit in-state; $219/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 31-63 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: ACCUPLACER, ACT, or SAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 735-3882
Email: admissions@fvtc.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

50

Cabrillo College

Aptos, CA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 26%

Established in 1959, this Apto, California-based community college educates a student body of about 1,200 individuals. Students at Cabrillo can enroll in individual online courses or one of the school's six web-based programs.

Many distance learners at Cabrillo pursue a general liberal arts and sciences associate degree, with the intention of transferring into a bachelor’s program at a four-year institution. Candidates can also earn online associate degrees in accounting, business, computer networking and system administration, or criminal justice with an emphasis in law enforcement. Each associate program consists of 60 credits. Additionally, Cabrillo offers an online computer networking and system administration certificate program.

Online students can access a variety of learning services to help plan their college experience and achieve success in school. For example, learners enjoy access to virtual tutors, online library support, and advising services.

A member of the California Community Colleges System, Cabrillo participates in the California Virtual Campus. Through the Finish Faster Online program, distance learners can personalize their studies and expand their options by enrolling in online courses at any participating community college in the state.

Prospective students must submit an online application and the FAFSA. First-time college students are also required to complete math and English placement tests before registering for courses. Cabrillo holds accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.


Program Overview
Tuition: $46/credit in-state; $304/credit out-of-state
Credit Requirements: 16-60 credits
Program Length: 1-2 years

Delivery
Format: Online or hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Standardized Tests: Cabrillo College Guided Self-Placement exam

Contact
Phone: (831) 479-6213
Email: kip@cabrillo.edu
Social Media Accounts: Twitter; Facebook

Is it Cheaper to Attend an Online Community College than a Traditional University?

Attending an accredited online community college offers a range of benefits, especially when it comes to saving on expenses. While online programs usually charge the same tuition rates as their on-campus counterparts, they also provide flexibility and freedom that can save you a considerable amount as you work toward your degree. Because you can complete your coursework from anywhere with an internet connection, you may realize savings in the form of reduced childcare and transportation costs, along with fewer academic fees.

The total amount of money you spend on your associate degree online will depend on many different factors, including the type of degree you pursue, your chosen area of study, and your desired career path. These factors also may affect the length of time required to meet your course requirements, especially if your program includes an internship or practicum.

If you need help paying for online community college courses, financial aid is available in the same way as with on-campus schools and programs. As long as your school is accredited, you may qualify for aid based on financial need.

Average Full-time Cost of Community College, 2016-17

Tuition $3,520
Room and Board $8,060
Books and Supplies $1,390
Transportation $1,760
Other Expenses $2,270
TOTAL $17,000

Salary for Associate Degree Graduates

Earning an online associate degree is an investment that can pay incredible dividends, both short and long term. Equipped with a degree, you'll qualify for many jobs unavailable to those with a high school diploma alone. A College Scorecard study found that college graduates typically earn $1 million more than high school graduates over their lifetimes.

If you want to earn more money and provide yourself with greater career opportunities, exploring various online associate degree programs is an important first step. The table below reflects the value an associate degree can provide:

Online Trade Schools, Technical Colleges, and Career Colleges

Trade schools, like community colleges, typically offer students the opportunity to earn a degree in two years or less at relatively low tuition rates. However, trade schools are somewhat different from colleges in that they provide more focused training on specific jobs or industries. Community colleges, meanwhile, tend to offer more generalized degrees.

  • Trade Schools: These schools provide focused study on a broad range of vocations, such as automotive repair, plumbing, and cosmetology. They are typically government backed or approved, and their credits will typically transfer to other accredited institutions. Students usually receive certificates, rather than degrees, upon completing these programs.
  • Technical Colleges: These two-year colleges are similar to trade schools in that they train students for specific careers. However, graduates typically receive associate degrees—rather than certificates—as a result of their coursework. Technology-related programs, such as information technology, are common areas of study.
  • Career Colleges: The term "career college" is usually associated with for-profit schools that are not accredited and therefore not recognized by most reputable two-year or four-year institutions. These programs focus on specific careers, and students often complete them in nine months to a year.

Choose Your Career Path and Major

Before you begin looking at community colleges online, think about your long-term career goals and the vocations that interest you most. Your desired career path will inform your choice of a major and ensure you're working toward a degree that will allow you to enter a specific field. If your potential career requires a bachelor's degree, choose an online community college program that will enable you to transfer your credits to a four-year program later.

Also note that some schools don't offer all types of majors, and so you'll want to avoid enrolling at a college where you cannot pursue the career you want.

Finally, consider your local economy and the industries and employers that seem to be doing the best in your state. Opting for a career in a high-demand field can help ensure you secure a job after graduation.

Get the Facts

Once you've chosen a career path and major, take some time to research potential online associate degree programs. Check to see if each program meets your requirements, and if not, eliminate it from your list of possible schools. Below are several key factors to consider during this search:

Program Cost

When you're on a tight budget (and most college students are), even a small variance in tuition and fees can make a big difference. Make sure you know how much each school charges per term or per credit, and look into any technology and academic fees you may need to cover.

Transfer Policies

At some point, you may wish to transfer to a different institution, especially if you plan on pursuing a bachelor's degree. Try to find schools that have transfer agreements with other institutions. You will want as many credits as possible to transfer.

School Size and Type

Think about the type of academic experience you would like. If you prefer smaller class sizes, look at schools that highlight their small instructor-to-student ratios. Also consider whether you'd prefer a private or public college. Public schools may be less expensive, but private institutions generally offer more personalized instruction.

Program Length

How long will it take you to complete your program if you're attending full time or part time? See if you can find a planning guide for each program and determine how many credits you'll need to take each term to graduate within a certain period of time.

On-campus Requirements

Some online associate degree programs require students to attend class or seminars on campus periodically. If you live close to the campus, this might not be a problem. But if you live far away, an on-campus requirement could be extremely difficult to meet—especially if you have children, a full-time job, or other personal obligations.

Accreditation for Online Community Colleges

Among the most important factors when choosing an online community college is the school's accreditation status. All reputable colleges and universities are either regionally or nationally accredited. Regional accreditation is considered the more prestigious of the two, and there are six regional bodies for institutions across the country. Many online-only schools are nationally accredited. These institutions still offer high-quality programs, and they tend to come with the added benefit of lower tuition. Some programs within schools may be independently accredited, as well.

The nonprofit Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the U.S. Department of Education, a federal agency, oversee accrediting agencies. Both organizations maintain strict standards related to the processes accrediting agencies use when analyzing schools and programs nationwide. This is important, as it ensures that accrediting bodies use standardized, fair procedures when awarding schools with accreditation. Thus, students can rest assured that their programs are providing them with a quality educational experience.

One of the great things about the many community colleges online is that you can attend school in just about any state you wish. This can open up opportunities you might not have considered, giving you an excuse to embark on a new adventure. Conversely, there are so many great options out there that you're likely to find a school that meets your needs close to where you already live.

See the map below to browse online community college programs across the United States:

If you wish to get an associate degree online, you should understand that there are several types of these degrees available. The option you choose may have a long-term impact on your academic career, as it will affect the majors available and the four-year programs into which you can transfer. It could even influence the careers available to you after graduation. Take some time to understand the types of associate degrees and find the best one for you.

  • Associate of Arts (AA): These programs typically focus on general education classes, rather than those concentrated on a specific career or major. This can prepare you well for transferring to a bachelor's of arts program in the future. Courses usually include English, mathematics, social sciences, and laboratory science.
  • Associate of Science (AS): This two-year degree can be a great option if you wish to enroll in a bachelor of science program in the future. In most cases, an AS degree provides a strong academic foundation rather than specific career training. Some AS programs offer concentrations in majors like biology, computer science, physics, and health science.
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS): These programs are usually focused on preparing students to enter specific career fields upon graduation. They may require you to complete a few general education classes, but most of the coursework is concentrated on your chosen major. Examples of AAS programs include computer technology, healthcare systems technology, and hospitality management.
  • Associate of Applied Arts (AAA): This category includes specialized programs that train you for a specific vocation. Unlike AAS degrees, AAA programs tend to focus more on the visual arts, music, and advertising. Students may take some general education classes, along with major-focused coursework like photography, graphic design, and art history.

Common Areas of Study for an Associate Degree

When you select a major for your online associate degree program, you make an important decision concerning the subject areas you will explore during your time in school. In fact, this decision could influence which bachelor's programs you can transfer into once you've completed your two-year degree. And, of course, your major affects the jobs you may qualify for in the future. Below are a few of the most common majors within community college online programs:

Icon - Person Business Administration

This major covers a range of topics related to the business world, including management, sales, marketing, accounting, and organizational structures. Students also learn how to apply their newly acquired skills in a practical setting, while preparing themselves to move seamlessly into a four-year business program.

Healthcare

These programs provide a comprehensive introduction to the healthcare sector for students who typically go on to engage in more focused health services bachelor's degree programs. Students take courses across the sciences, along with those pertaining to research, clinical procedures, and various healthcare professions.

Education

Students in these online associate degree programs learn about theories and practice in teaching and learning, along with basic educational psychology. They also learn how to plan lessons, contribute to the social and academic growth of students, and manage school health and safety issues. Many students later enroll in four-year elementary or secondary education programs.

Social Sciences/History

These are general majors that prepare students for various bachelor-level programs. They may cover a range of subjects, including sociology, ancient and modern history, social issues, and political science. The ultimate goal is to give students a solid foundation of knowledge of social institutions and behaviors.

Psychology

Honing in on the study of the social behaviors of individuals and groups, an associate degree in psychology gives students a base of knowledge that they can use in their future studies. Students learn about various subfields of psychology, how to conduct thorough research, and how to conduct scientific experiments and tests.

Communications

This major explores the multiple facets of communication among people, including in person, in groups, and through different forms of media. Interpersonal, organizational, professional, and intercultural communication are key areas of study.

Typical Curriculum for Online Associate Programs

Most of the online community college courses you'll take will be general education classes. These typically revolve around core subjects like English, the humanities, mathematics, and the sciences. For example, your school could require you to complete two science classes, with the options including astronomy, biology, chemistry and physics. Therefore, you'll have some flexibility as to which classes you take to meet various general education requirements. Some programs may require you to take other types of general education courses, such as those focused on cultural literacy, communication, or foreign languages.

Often, the general education classes you take as part of an associate degree online program are the same as those you'd find in a four-year program. This is why so many students choose to complete this coursework at a less expensive community college before transferring into a bachelor's-level program at a four-year university.

You may also be able to complete some major-focused or upper-division classes through an online community college. This is especially true if you pursue an AAS or AAA degree, which both focus on preparing students to enter the workforce immediately upon graduation.

How do Online Classes Work for Community College?

Most online associate degree programs involve specialized software or digital platforms that allow students to access course materials, take part in class forums, interact with instructors, and complete assignments and exams. These platforms also give students access to technical support and tutoring resources. Ultimately, online programs aim to replicate the in-person educational experience, while making the best use of technology to make the learning process as efficient as possible.

In many courses, you will need to interact with your fellow students. This takes place via online discussion boards and forums, through which you may discuss assignments, ask questions, and provide feedback on the subjects covered in class. Your instructor will also post grades to the platform. If you have any questions or wish to discuss your grade with your instructor, you will have the opportunity to do so online.

When it comes to taking exams, many online community college programs require students to go to a certified testing center. There, professional proctors will issue your exam and ensure you are completing it within the allotted time frame and without the use of textbooks or other course materials, if necessary. In other situations, you may be able to take your exams online, but may have a limited amount of time to complete them.

Once you've found a community college online program that meets your needs, your next step is to apply to that school. You will need to prepare a few documents regarding yourself and your academic history. There may also be an application fee and, for some associate degree programs, an admissions essay. Below is an overview of the most common application requirements:

  • Requirements/Prerequisites: Nearly all associate degree programs require prospective students to have a high school diploma or GED certificate to be eligible for admission. Some may require you to have completed certain prerequisite courses, such as a certain level of English or math. If you don't meet these requirements, you may need to take a remedial class before you can officially begin the program.
  • Application Fee: The application fee varies from college to college, but in general, you can expect to pay between $20 and $50 to apply to your desired program. Some schools don't have application fees, while others may waive the fees for applicants who can demonstrate financial need.
  • Application Materials: In addition to paying an application fee and providing your high school transcripts/GED certificate, you may need to submit a resume, one or more letters of recommendation, and a personal statement or essay. These materials give you an opportunity to make your case for why you deserve to be accepted to your desired community college online program.

Many students may wish to transfer into a bachelor's program after they complete their community college studies. Getting an early start can help ensure your online associate degree credits transfer seamlessly into a relevant four-year program.

To transfer credits, you'll work with a transfer counselor at the college or university you'd like to attend. This person informs you which credits will or will not transfer, and how transferred credits will cover various general education requirements. This process typically works best if you've planned ahead and attended a community college that has an established transfer arrangement with the four-year school in question.

Not all schools will accept your online associate degree program credits, and so it's important to do some research and make sure the courses you're taking will help you achieve your academic goals. In general, most transfer students find they can complete a bachelor's degree in about two years if they get an associate degree first.

What are Transfer Agreements?

Many community colleges online have credit transfer or transfer articulation agreements with four-year colleges and universities. These arrangements allow students to first obtain an associate degree and then use the credits they've already earned toward a bachelor's program. This can be incredibly helpful if your long-term goal is to continue your studies, as it ensures you won't waste your time on courses that will not ultimately count toward a more advanced degree.

Contact each of your prospective associate degree online programs to determine if they have credit transfer agreements with other institutions. If so, find out if you might wish to attend any of those institutions in the years to come so that you can plan the most efficient way to achieve your educational and professional goals.

Rankings Archive

Best Online Community Colleges of 2018
Ranking School Location
1 Southwest Mississippi Community College Summit, MS
2 Frontier Community College Fairfield, IL
3 Wabash Valley College Mount Carmel, IL
4 Irvine Valley College Irvine, CA
5 Carl Albert State College Poteau, OK
6 Collin County Community College District McKinney, TX
7 Diablo Valley College Pleasant Hill, CA
8 Coastal Pines Technical College Waycross, GA
9 Harford Community College Bel Air, MD
10 Raritan Valley Community College Branchburg, NJ
11 Mitchell Technical Institute Mitchell, SD
12 Montgomery College Rockville, MD
13 Brookdale Community College Lincroft, NJ
14 Shoreline Community College Shoreline, WA
15 Citrus College Glendora, CA
16 Southwest Wisconsin Technical College Fennimore, WI
17 McHenry County College Crystal Lake, IL
18 Moraine Park Technical College Fond du Lac, WI
19 Sauk Valley Community College Dixon, IL
20 Palo Alto College San Antonio, TX
21 Ocean County College Toms River, NJ
22 Fox Valley Technical College Appleton, WI
23 Waubonsee Community College Sugar Grove, IL
24 Westmoreland County Community College Youngwood, PA
25 Merced College Merced, CA
26 Washtenaw Community College Ann Arbor, MI
27 Frederick Community College Frederick, MD
28 Northwest Mississippi Community College Senatobia, MS
29 Bevill State Community College Jasper, AL
30 Illinois Central College East Peoria, IL
31 Clinton Community College Plattsburgh, NY
32 Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas De Queen, AR
33 Massasoit Community College Brockton, MA
34 Bates Technical College Tacoma, WA
35 Bucks County Community College Newtown, PA
36 Northern Virginia Community College Annandale, VA
37 Pennsylvania Highlands Community College Johnstown, PA
38 Lakeshore Technical College Cleveland, WI
39 Middlesex Community College Bedford, MA
40 College of the Mainland Texas City, TX
41 San Antonio College San Antonio, TX
42 Western Technical College La Crosse, WI
43 Kennebec Valley Community College Fairfield, ME
44 Wake Technical Community College Raleigh, NC
45 Dakota County Technical College Rosemount, MN
46 Surry Community College Dobson, NC
47 Minnesota State Community and Technical College Fergus Falls, MN
48 Flint Hills Technical College Emporia, KS
49 Lone Star College System The Woodlands, TX
50 Suffolk County Community College Selden, NY
Best Online Community Colleges of 2017
Rank School Location
1 Florida Institute of Technology-Online Melbourne, FL
2 Southern New Hampshire University Manchester, NH
3 Minnesota West Community and Technical College Granite Falls, MN
4 Northcentral Technical College Wausau, WI
5 University of Alaska Fairbanks Fairbanks, AK
6 Thomas Edison State University Trenton, NJ
7 Foothill College Los Altos Hills, CA
8 Excelsior College Albany, NY
9 Pennsylvania State University-World Campus University Park, PA
10 Liberty University Lynchburg, VA
11 Wake Technical Community College Raleigh, NC
12 Northwest Iowa Community College Sheldon, IA
13 Bismarck State College Bismarck, ND
14 Shoreline Community College Shoreline, WA
15 Western Wyoming Community College Rock Springs, WY
16 Surry Community College Dobson, NC
17 Southwest Virginia Community College Richlands, VA
18 Hodges University Naples, FL
19 Southwestern Assemblies of God University Waxahachie, TX
20 Tiffin University Tiffin, OH
21 West Kentucky Community and Technical College Paducah, KY
22 Alexandria Technical & Community College Alexandria, MN
23 Hutchinson Community College Hutchinson, KS
24 Gateway Community and Technical College Florence, KY
25 Allen County Community College Iola, KS