The annual ranking highlights the expansion of accredited, nonprofit schools offering online degrees with strong student outcomes.

November 29, 2017 (Seattle, WA) -, the leading provider of independent college rankings and higher education research and trend reports, today announced the release of their Best Online Colleges ranking for 2018. The updated ranking features schools who offer affordable, flexible, and quality online degree programs and also serves as a launching point for prospective students to find a school that fits their needs.

Of the over 2,100 nonprofit, accredited colleges and universities nationwide that offer online degree programs, 50 made it to the Best Online Colleges list this year, up from last year's 25. “Over the past few years, we noticed a sharp rise in the number of universities developing their online learning programs into degree programs that provide exceptional academics and put student outcomes first. The expanded ranking ensures we are able to celebrate the work all of these schools are putting in,” said Stephanie Snider, General Manager,

Rising two spots this year, the University of Florida came in as the top college in the nation. The University of Central Florida, Northeastern University, University of Alabama, and Liberty University round out the top five.

The ranking uses a methodology grounded in statistical data compiled from the National Center for Education Statistics. It objectively assesses quality based on academic outcomes, affordability, and the breadth and depth of online learning opportunities. Eligible schools must be an accredited nonprofit institution and must offer at least ten online bachelor's degree programs and three online master's degree programs.

In addition to the ranking of top online schools, also equips prospective students with a guide for how to navigate their college choice, covering the importance of accreditation, career considerations, and the costs and types of online colleges available to them.

View the complete ranking at:

2018 Best Online Colleges (in alphabetical order):

  • Appalachian State University
  • Arizona State University
  • Arkansas State University
  • Bellevue University
  • Brandman University
  • California Baptist University
  • Champlain College
  • Cleary University
  • Colorado State University
  • Concordia University-Saint Paul
  • Dallas Baptist University
  • Drexel University
  • East Carolina University
  • Eastern New Mexico University
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  • Excelsior College
  • Florida International University
  • Indiana University-Bloomington
  • Indiana Wesleyan University
  • Kennesaw State University
  • LeTourneau University
  • Liberty University
  • Midway University
  • Minot State University
  • Missouri State University-Springfield
  • National University
  • Northeastern University
  • Northern Arizona University
  • Northwestern State University of Louisiana
  • Oregon State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Regis University
  • Rutgers University-New Brunswick
  • Southwestern Assemblies of God University
  • Texas Tech University
  • The University of Alabama
  • Thomas Edison University
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • University of Arizona
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Florida-Online
  • University of Illinois at Springfield
  • University of Massachusetts-Amherst
  • University of Massachusetts-Lowell
  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
  • University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • University of Southern Mississippi
  • Washington State University
  • Webster University
  • Western Governors University

About helps prospective students find the school that best meets their needs through proprietary research, user-friendly guides, and hundreds of unique college rankings. They also provide a wide array of college planning, financial aid, and career resources to help all students get the most from their education and prepare them for the world after college.