Online Colleges & Universities Information Guide

ListOfOnlineColleges is a site dedicated to providing prospective students with useful tips and resources for online colleges. Today’s technology is changing how we communicate, run businesses, and even how we can earn an education. Several online schools and programs have emerged in the past decade making earning a degree more convenient than ever before. In fact, you can earn an associate’s, bachelor’s, and a master’s degree, even a PhD, from your home computer.

Online colleges and universities, just like campus colleges and universities, are there to provide students with an upper-level education and to award college degrees. Sometimes referred to as distance-learning, e-Learning, online learning, or distance education, online colleges differ in that they deliver curriculum via the internet rather than classroom-interaction based curriculum. Therefore all exams, lectures, and reading are done on the Web, and face-to-face interaction with other students or professors is rare.

Kaplan University
Kaplan University » One of the biggest name brands in online education, Kaplan University offers associate's, bachelor's, and master's degrees in a wide variety of fields. For those professionals that demand further expertise in a specific area, Kaplan offers certificates in education, business, information technology, arts and sciences, healthcare, nursing, criminal justice, and law.
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Liberty University
Liberty University » The distance learning division of Liberty University offers over 35 degree programs from the associates to doctoral level. The online program runs unilaterally with the on-campus semester program. Students rave about the university's Christ-centered learning. It's mission is to promote both the intellectual and spiritual development of its students.
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Northcentral University
Northcentral University » Northcentral University (NCU) is an online university founded in 1996 with the goal of providing accessible, high-quality, and relevant degree options to working professionals. NCU prides itself on its unique "One-to-One Teaching Model", in which one member of NCU’s 100% doctoral faculty is paired with one student in every course, to create a more personalized education experience. The University offers degrees ranging from bachelor’s to doctorate in the following areas: Business and Technology Management, Education, Marriage and Family Sciences, and Psychology.
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Grand Canyon University
Grand Canyon University » Founded in 1949, Grand Canyon University provides online and on-campus learning in such fields as education, liberal arts, business, and healthcare through the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Doctoral Studies, the College of Education, the College of Fine Arts and Production, the College of Nursing, and the Ken Blanchard College of Business.
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Ashford University
Ashford University » Ashford University features a campus located in Clinton, Iowa and a full offering of online degrees, so students have the option to select the style of learning that's right for them. The university offers Associate's, Bachelor's, and Master's degrees in more than 50 programs. Ashford U is accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission, 985 Atlantic Ave, Ste 100, Alameda, California 94501, (510) 748-9001,
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Walden University
Walden University » Offering degrees at the Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Business Administration, Master of Public Administration, Master of Public Health, Ed.S., Ed.D., D.B.A., and Ph.D. levels, Walden University is quickly becoming a leader in online education. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
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Southern New Hampshire University
Southern New Hampshire University » Southern New Hampshire University offers undergraduate and graduate programs both online and at the campus. This adds another layer of flexibility and convenience for students to use to their advantage. Moreover, SNHU uses results-focused curriculum to help students obtain the knowledge needed to conduct tasks and responsibilities in their chosen careers.
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Boston University
Boston University » Boston University boosts six Nobel Prize winners, and numerous Guggenheim and MacArthur fellows. The university offers bachelor's, master's, doctoral, medical, and dental degrees through 18 schools and colleges on two campuses. Boston U offers 75 study abroad programs in over 33 cities for the enterprising student with programs available online.
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Herzing University
Herzing University » Herzing University is in a unique position to offer its students a dynamic online learning environment. Herzing is able to provide the resources found on a traditional college campus, including mentoring and tutoring support, library and research databases, career service counselors, and academic advisors.
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South University
South University » South University is comprised of the following colleges and schools: College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, College of Creative Arts and Design (at The Art Institute of Dallas and The Art Institute of Fort Worth), College of Health Professions, College of Nursing, the School of Pharmacy, and has an online division.
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What is an Online College?

The National Center for Education Statistics defines an online class as “a formal education process in which the students and instructor are not in the same place.” Instructors and processors teach courses and there are multiple students taking a course at a time. Correspondence is done through email, ed telephone, ed live chat, and occasionally snail mail. Other than nursing programs where you may be required for an on-campus visit or clinical work, you will probably not meet your classmates in person.

What is the Teaching Method for Online College Courses?

Professors teaching online courses are intentional about providing detailed feedback to ensure understanding between students and assignments. There is a virtual environment in which you’re encourages to participate in class discussions and ask questions. Professors also participate in these discussions, usually highlighting key ideas and creating follow-up questions to keep students engaged and understanding the course material. Audio clips, voice chats, and discussion group emails are common online course activities. A good online professor will provide assistance and interaction for their students and be available for additional questions or concerns.

Getting an online degree can be easier and more convenient for working students as online classes provide much more flexibility for students than traditional campus classes. You can fulfill all your work and family obligations and fit school in on the side. Usually courses allow you to attend classes when it works for you and to learn at your own pace. If you’re used to traditional classroom learning then there is a bit of a learning curve for online courses and you must become accustomed to being self-motivated in studying—many students overcome these challenges though and adapt well to the virtual college system.

Online College: Advantages and Disadvantages

Distance education has become the perfect solution for full-time workers, stay-at-home parents, and those who are unemployed, to receive an education without changing their lifestyle. It’s open for people of all ages and all careers who are looking to further their education and career. You can log into a class from your bed, library, car, or around the world while on vacation. Online education is guaranteed to fit your needs and be arranged around your previous obligations. It may not be the best fit for everyone though. If you’re a recent high school graduate looking for a traditional college experience with campus life and peer-to-peer interaction, online education may not be the best education solution for you.


Online education, or a hybrid model incorporating both online and in person education methods, offers clear advantages over campus only education in some respects, but these advantages might not fit everyone.

  • Greater Group Effort and Understanding: Due to the nature of the students who are engaging in online education, and because of the technology tools online colleges use, students tend to collaborate more through online education. The online environment is easier and more comfortable for students to engage each other in projects without even having the face-to-face component.
  • Global Opportunities: Online learning is welcome to anyone from anywhere, therefore there is a wide global learning community through online courses that you don’ t necessarily have at traditional college campuses. There are resources used in online learning that you wouldn’t come across through traditional classroom learning.
  • Greater Flexibility: Online learning is student centered and offers room for your preferences and requirements. You can take the classes you want in the amount of time that you want and the pace you need, and there’s convenience to skip over material you already know and only focus on new topics. Without any required physical attendance or time constraints, you can take the courses from wherever you want, whenever you want.


The disadvantages of online education mostly stem from peoples’ difficulty managing their own time, but there are a few more salient problems as well.

  • Reputation and Future Employability: In some circles, online degrees get less respect than degrees from campus-only schools. There is a possibility that your future educational institution or your employer may not accept your online degree and the institution from which it is taken. That’s why it’s extremely important to research before enrolling in a program, and to attend an accredited institutions’ online learning program. A website like Board of Online Universities Accreditation can assist you in finding out which programs are accredited and accepted by employers and other universities.
  • Hands on Learning: There isn’t really a component of hands-on-learning in online education. With the exception of nursing clinical requirements, it’s sometimes impossible to get the intimate experience you need for your career through an online course.
  • Self-motivation: To go to an online college it is absolutely necessary to be self-motivated. For those not self-motivated, online learning can be a struggle. It’s easy to skip tests or assignments and not realize how the lack of scores is damaging your overall experience and grade. If you need face-to-face interaction with your professors and peers, online education may not be for you.

Widely Offered Programs at Online Colleges

There are a wide range of degree programs and topics of study in the online college world. You can get associates, bachelors, masters, and doctorate degrees online. Also available are non-degree courses, certificate and diploma programs, and graduate certifications.

The main areas of study and online degrees are:

  1. Business: These are the most popular types of degrees to get online. Some business degrees include accounting, business administration, e-commerce, economics, entrepreneurial management, finance, health care management, hospitality management, International business, marketing, real estate, retail management, statistics, and supply chain and operations managements.
  2. Health and Nursing: The demand for registered nurses is at a record high. Health care careers are a great option, and getting one online makes it easy. Health and nursing degrees include chiropractic care, community health, counseling, health care administration, health informatics, massage therapy, medical assisting, medical billing, natural health, nursing, nutrition, optician, pharmacy, physical and occupational therapy, and psychology.
  3. Criminal Justice and Law: Perhaps one of the most honorable areas of study, criminal law and justice field has the power to change lives. Degrees in this field include computer forensics, court reporting, criminal investigation, criminal justice administration, criminal justice, dispute resolution, forensic psychology, homeland security and emergency management, juvenile justice, law, legal assisting, paralegal studies, security management, and forensic science.
  4. Liberal Arts: Freedom is the main feature of liberal arts degrees. There are a wide range out there such as anthropology, business communications, business economics, English, film and video, media studies, fine arts, history, human services, journalism, modern languages, music, politic science, public administration, psychology, sociology, and theater arts.
  5. Design: Degrees in design are easy for obtain via online education, especially for those with a passion for visualization and implementation. Online degrees in design are animation, architecture, art history, costume design, fashion design, film, graphic design, illustration, industrial design, interior design, jewelry design, photography, set design, video game design, and Web design.
  6. Science and Engineering: This field has taken great leaps in the past decade, and only continues to advance and improve. Degrees in this field may include aerospace engineering, astronomy, biology, biomedical engineering, biotechnology, chemical engineering, chemistry, civil engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, environmental science, mathematics, mechanical engineering, physics, and software engineering.
  7. Education: Teaching is a field that is always open to newcomers and necessary for our world to continue making advancements. Education degrees are found in child development, corporate training, curriculum and instruction, early childhood education, education leadership, education management, educational psychology, elementary education, ESL, instructional design and technology, library science, physical education, school counseling, secondary education, and special education.
  8. Technology: This is another field that continues to advance rapidly. The options in the technology field are endless. Some degrees include computer networking, computer programming, computer science, database administration, game programming, health informatics, information technology, Internet security, IT project management, multimedia communication, network security, software engineering, technical support, telecommunications, and web design.

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