Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Considering an online degree? Learn more about the best online colleges in Colorado, including scholarships and career opportunities.
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Updated on October 20, 2023
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Colorado is home to the Mile High City, four national parks, and over 30 colleges. But what if you want to earn a degree online? Many of Colorado’s top colleges also offer online degrees. And you may qualify for tuition discounts and scholarships to help make your degree more affordable.

Interested in an online degree? Learn more about the best online colleges in Colorado, along with data on the fastest-growing careers and Colorado scholarships.

The Best Online Colleges in Colorado

How We Rank Schools

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

We use trusted sources like Peterson's Data and the National Center for Education Statistics to inform the data for these schools. BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site. from our partners appear among these rankings and are indicated as such.

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#1 Best Online Colleges in Colorado Best Value

Colorado State University-Global Campus

  • Aurora, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online

Based in Aurora, Colorado State University Global launched in 2007 as an online state university. CSU Global now enrolls 18,000 students across general education courses, bachelor’s degree programs, and master’s degrees.

CSU Global offers online bachelor’s degrees in 13 areas, including business management, criminal justice, healthcare administration, and project management. Additionally, a bachelor’s in interdisciplinary professional studies focuses on soft skills for working students. The school also offers 13 online master’s degrees in fields such as data analytics, international management, and organizational leadership. To support online learning, CSU Global provides 24/7 access to an online library featuring scholarly databases, online help from a librarian, and writing tutorials.

GSU Global grants admission to first-year students with an ACT score of 18 or SAT score of 980, a minimum 2.8 GPA, and rigorous high school coursework. The school charges flat per-credit tuition rates for graduate and undergraduate courses. CSU Global holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$8,400
Out-of-state
$8,400
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,000
Out-of-state
$9,000
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: High

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
High
Retention Rate
47%
Acceptance Rate
98%
Students Enrolled
12,578
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#2 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Regis University

  • Denver, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

A Jesuit Catholic university founded in 1877, Regis University operates four campuses in Denver, Colorado Springs, and Thornton. The university’s five colleges serve more than 10,000 students and offer 184 degrees, including 22 online undergraduate programs and 36 online graduate degrees. Many Regis degrees feature accelerated options.

Undergraduate degrees offered at Regis include bachelor’s programs in business, computer science, education, and nursing. Business students may select from nine online program options, including marketing and finance. Unique graduate programs include online master’s degrees in development practice, enterprising systems engineering, health informatics, and neonatal nurse practitioner. Regis offers online doctoral programs in nursing and occupational therapy.

Regis applicants must submit official transcripts, a personal statement, and a resume. Online degree candidates may transfer up to 90 credits. Regis University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$38,208
Out-of-state
$38,208
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$14,322
Out-of-state
$14,322
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
73%
Acceptance Rate
78%
Students Enrolled
6,310
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
66% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#3 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

University of Denver

  • Denver, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Founded in 1864 as a Methodist seminary, the University of Denver is a private liberal arts school with approximately 12,000 undergraduate, graduate, and online students. The university’s 10 colleges include University College, home to the school’s online programs designed for working adults.

University College offers six online bachelor’s completion programs, including degrees in global commerce, healthcare administration, and leadership. These programs feature 10-week hybrid or asynchronous online courses on a quarter system. Learners can also choose master's degrees or graduate certificates in 13 graduate fields, including environmental policy and management, global community engagement, professional creative writing, and security management.

The university does not require University College applicants to submit test scores. The school charges flat per-credit rates for undergraduate and graduate online classes. The University of Denver holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$52,596
Out-of-state
$52,596
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$52,596
Out-of-state
$52,596
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
84%
Acceptance Rate
61%
Students Enrolled
13,856
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
89% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#4 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Colorado State University

  • Fort Collins, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

A public research university located in Fort Collins, Colorado State University serves more than 33,000 students. CSU’s eight colleges offer degrees in agriculture, business, health and human services, engineering, liberal arts, veterinary medicine, natural and biomedical sciences, and natural resources. CSU Online -- or the Division of Continuing Education -- offers more than 40 degrees in addition to online courses, certificates, badges, and MOOCs.

CSU undergraduates may select from a dozen online bachelor’s degrees, including agricultural business, fire and emergency services management, horticulture, and natural resource tourism. Online master’s degree options include arts and music, business, computer science, education, engineering, and natural resources. Some programs require some on-campus attendance in the summer. CSU also offers online doctorates in higher education leadership and systems engineering.

CSU charges online students a flat per-credit rate, regardless of residency. The university holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$9,426
Out-of-state
$28,147
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$10,520
Out-of-state
$25,791
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
85%
Acceptance Rate
84%
Students Enrolled
32,428
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
85% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#5 Best Online Colleges in Colorado Best Value

University of Colorado Boulder

  • Boulder, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The largest of the four campuses in the University of Colorado system, the University of Colorado Boulder is a public institution with more than 34,000 students. Set in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, CU Boulder offers 236 degree programs in 119 areas of study. The university boasts an emphasis on research.

Students at CU Boulder can pursue an online bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies designed to accommodate transfer credits and student interests. At the graduate level, the university features courses, certificates, and master’s degrees in online and hybrid formats. Areas of study include engineering, education, computer science, and telecommunications. In engineering, CU offers online master’s degrees in aerospace, electrical, and water engineering, as well as engineering management.

Graduate school applicants must possess a minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.75 -- or 3.0 for engineering. CU Boulder holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$10,728
Out-of-state
$34,930
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$11,826
Out-of-state
$31,284
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: High

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
High
Retention Rate
85%
Acceptance Rate
84%
Students Enrolled
37,437
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
91% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#6 Best Online Colleges in Colorado Best Value

University of Colorado Denver

  • Denver, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The University of Colorado Denver serves nearly 20,000 students. The school also features an academic health center located in Aurora -- the ​University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus -- that boasts health professional schools, health science centers and institutes, and two nationally ranked hospitals. CU provides online programs for both CU Denver and the medical campus through CU Online.

CU Online offers 12 online bachelor’s degrees in subjects such as ethnic studies, psychology, sociology, nursing, criminal justice, and accounting. Students can also choose from 22 online master’s degrees, including education, clinical pharmacy, nursing, and media forensics. Doctoral candidates may pursue online degrees in pharmacy, educational equity, and nursing. CU also offers a variety of graduate certificates online.

Online tuition rates vary by program and remain higher for out-of-state residents, especially those not from Western states. CU Denver holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$7,920
Out-of-state
$24,408
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$6,786
Out-of-state
$22,590
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: High

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
High
Retention Rate
73%
Acceptance Rate
66%
Students Enrolled
24,723
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
76% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#7 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Metropolitan State University of Denver

  • Denver, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Metropolitan State University of Denver opened in 1965 as a public institution. MSU Denver’s four colleges offer more than 100 bachelor's programs in business, liberal arts and sciences, professional studies, and education, as well as eight graduate programs and 34 certificates.

MSU Denver offers online bachelor’s degrees in anthropology, family studies, nursing, and technical communication taught by the same instructors as on-campus programs. Students can also pursue online minors in human development, psychology, and political science, and an online master’s degree in social work. MSU’s online courses never require students to visit campus, although they may require proctored exams taken locally.

When evaluating first-time applicants, MSU considers academic records, courses taken, and ACT or SAT scores. Admissions staff may ask those on the low end of admissions criteria to submit additional items. MSU Denver holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$7,236
Out-of-state
$22,510
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,054
Out-of-state
$12,561
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
61%
Acceptance Rate
83%
Students Enrolled
19,086
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#8 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Colorado Christian University

  • Lakewood, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

An interdenominational Christian school founded in 1914, Colorado Christian University offers more than 50 undergraduate degrees and 80 graduate degrees taught from a Christian perspective. Located in Lakewood, CCU serves approximately 8,500 students, more than 5,600 of whom are adult undergraduates.

CCU’s College of Adult and Graduate Studies offers degree programs specifically designed for adult learners. CCU makes most courses available online every five weeks and offers accelerated degree completion options. The school also freezes tuition rates for up to six years for adults completing at least one course per year. Areas of study include applied psychology, business, education, and management.

Adult applicants must provide a copy of a state-issued driver’s license and submit documentation of high school completion. Out-of-state residents should check the school’s state exclusions to see if they can enroll in a CCU online program. CCU holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$24,160
Out-of-state
$24,160
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$13,474
Out-of-state
$13,474
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
82%
Acceptance Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
7,839
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
57% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#9 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

University of Northern Colorado

  • Greeley, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Set between the Rocky Mountains and high plains in Greely, the University of Northern Colorado provides public education to 13,000 students. UNC’s five colleges offer more than 100 undergraduate programs and 120 graduate programs.

UNC offers online and mostly online degrees through its extended campus program. Online bachelor’s programs include American Sign Language (ASL), counseling, dietetics, and nursing. Some programs, such as those in ASL or nursing, combine online learning with hybrid summer courses or practicums. UNC also offers a variety of certificates, endorsements, and master’s degrees online, including licensure and degree programs in education leadership, an online MBA, and a Chinese teaching endorsement program.

UNC charges a flat per-credit tuition rate for all online students, regardless of residency. Online courses typically follow an asynchronous format with weekly assignments and deadlines. Freshmen may complete the school’s Bear Application or the Common Application. UNC holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$7,596
Out-of-state
$19,854
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$10,867
Out-of-state
$19,620
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
70%
Acceptance Rate
88%
Students Enrolled
11,460
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
83% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission
#10 Best Online Colleges in Colorado

Colorado Mesa University

  • Grand Junction, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Founded in 1925, Colorado Mesa University began as a small junior college. Today, CMU serves more than 11,000 students and offers over 70 undergraduate programs, including open-enrollment associate degrees and technical certificates through its Western Colorado Community College division. From its main campus in Grand Junction, CMU offers six undergraduate degrees and four graduate degrees.

In addition to an associate degree with a social science emphasis, CMU offers fully online bachelor’s degrees in elementary education, nursing, radiology, sports management, and business. Nurses may continue their education online through master’s and doctoral degree options. CMU also offers online master’s degrees in sport management and business.

CMU operates a rolling admissions process with no application deadline. The school considers first-time students with a higher education index of 92 for bachelor’s programs. First-time applicants must submit ACT or SAT scores and high school transcripts. CMU holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$7,787
Out-of-state
$21,336
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$9,000
Out-of-state
$13,500
ROI Score

ROI Value Score: Medium

We’ve reviewed hundreds of schools to find the ones that give you the best bang for your buck.

We compared how much you could earn in 10 years with a degree from this school versus only having a high school diploma. Then we compared that amount against school costs and financial aid opportunities. A higher return for your investment results in a higher score for this school.

Our Methodology
Medium
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
75%
Students Enrolled
9,110
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
62% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

How Much Is Online College in Colorado?

College is expensive. But costs vary widely. In Colorado, tuition and fees range from $9,000 to over $30,000 per year. If you’re a Colorado resident, in-state tuition discounts mean your most affordable option is a public college. You might also qualify for free tuition at Colorado colleges.

The cost of online college is often less than on-campus programs. That’s because you can save money on transportation, living expenses, and other costs. Financial aid can also lower the cost of earning an online degree.

Cost of College in Colorado (2020-21)
Institution Type Average Tuition & Required Fees
Public, Four-Year (In-state) $9,269
Public, Four-Year (Out-of-state) $30,930
Private, Four-Year $23,128
Source: NCES
Featured Online Bachelor's Programs

Scholarships for Colorado Students

Worried about the cost of college? College scholarships make earning a degree more affordable. But finding scholarships can be a challenge. Here are four scholarships open to Colorado college students.

Daniels Scholarship Program

This generous scholarship covers the full cost of attendance at over 10 Colorado colleges. High school seniors in Colorado can apply for the scholarship with a minimum 3.0 GPA. You’ll also need to show a household income of below $100,000. The scholarship deadline is in October.

Women's Transportation Seminar (WTS) Colorado Chapter Scholarships

Women considering careers in transportation can apply for a $4,000 undergraduate scholarship. Applicants need a minimum 3.0 GPA while pursuing a transportation-related degree. Students attending Colorado colleges and those living in Colorado qualify. The scholarship’s deadline is in October.

Infinitus Dream Scholarship Fund

Colorado college students can apply for this scholarship, which provides $3,000 toward tuition costs. You’ll need at least 24 college-level credits to qualify, and you’ll need to be a full-time student at a Colorado college to receive the award. The deadline is in October.

David L. Holliman African-American Community Service Award

Colorado residents can apply for this $500 scholarship. You’ll need to be of African American descent and enrolled at an accredited college. The scholarship also requires a minimum 2.5 GPA and a record of community service. The deadline is in December.

10 Fastest-Growing Jobs in Colorado That Require a Bachelor's Degree

Colorado is one of the best states to start a career in. Earning an online bachelor’s degree can prepare you for high-paying, in-demand careers in Colorado and beyond. In fact, many of Colorado’s fastest-growing careers require a college degree and report six-figure median wages.

By choosing one of the most in-demand majors, you’ll qualify for many job opportunities. As the list below shows, jobs in tech and management report high demand in Colorado.

Note: For this table, we only considered occupations that require a bachelor's degree and had employment numbers of at least 1,000 positions in 2022.

Fastest-Growing Careers in Colorado
Job Projected Growth Rate (2022-2032) Median Annual Wage (2022)
Information Security Analysts 51.1% $112,000
Data Scientists 47% $103,500
Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers 44.2% $148,900
Web Developers 41.1% $80,730
Software Developers 39% $127,260
Medical and Health Services Managers 38.3% $104,830
Logisticians 37.7% $77,520
Operations Research Analysts 35.2% $85,720
Interpreters and Translators 35% $53,640
Software Quality Assurance Analysts and Testers 29% $99,620
Source: Colorado Department of Labor and Employment
Featured Online Bachelor's Programs

Frequently Asked Questions About Online Colleges in Colorado

What is the easiest online college to get into in Colorado?

Several online colleges in Colorado report high acceptance rates, including Colorado State University Global and Metropolitan State University of Denver. CSU Global admits 97% of applicants, meaning you’ve got a good chance of getting in.

MSU Denver reports a 98% acceptance rate, so it’s also one of the easiest colleges to get into if you want to earn your degree online.

Do I need to live in Colorado to attend an online college in Colorado?

No, you don’t need to live in Colorado to enroll in an online college in Colorado. You can enroll in online programs offered at Colorado colleges even if you live out-of-state. Keep in mind that tuition may be different for an out-of-state student.

However, some online colleges in Colorado offer a tuition discount or flat rate for all distance learners.

What is the cheapest online college in Colorado?

Several online colleges in Colorado charge affordable tuition rates. For example, Colorado State University Global charges $350 per credit for undergraduate courses.

Colorado State University Pueblo also offers online courses for $400 per credit. You can lower the cost of a degree by transferring credits from a community college and using grants or scholarships.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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