One notable development in higher education over the past 20 years has been the rise of online learning. Today, prospective college students have more options than ever to earn online associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, along with certificates, in a wide array of fields.
Online degrees are available in 137 popular subjects, with 37,440 unique programs offered at online schools. Notably, every school on our website is accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education. On this page, we provide a list of the number of online colleges offering degrees in every subject as well as any program-specific accreditation students should pay attention to and average salary statistics.
In this comprehensive online degrees guide, we also dive into various degree levels and programs, how to complete your degree quickly, and the most important things to know about accreditation. We also provide information about the cost of an online degree and career options for online college graduates. Average salaries for each program were calculated using earnings in the first year after graduation sourced from the 2020 release of the Department of Education’s College Scorecard.
Popular Online Program
1. Associate Degree
$18,872AVG. ANNUAL TUITION
Online associate degrees typically can be completed in two years and are available for a variety of programs. Online students who’ve graduated from an associate degree program will often be more competitive in the job market, especially in technical and vocational fields, compared to those with only a high school diploma or GED. Online associate degrees are also a solid stepping stone for those looking to earn and transfer credits to a four-year institution so they can continue on to more advanced degrees.
2. Bachelor’s Degree
$22,362AVG. ANNUAL TUITION
Bachelor’s degree programs can usually be completed online in four years. Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees are available online in almost any area of study imaginable, from popular subjects such as engineering to less common subjects such as personal training or Christian counseling. Graduates of an online bachelor’s degree program will find themselves qualified for a wide range of jobs, or they may advance their studies by pursuing a master’s degree.
3. Master’s Degree
$20,143AVG. ANNUAL TUITION
Online master’s degree programs are a valuable option for students hoping to pursue graduate-level education at a flexible pace, as many programs are designed to allow online students to continue full-time work while completing their studies. Online master’s degrees typically take two years to complete and are available in most subjects. Many schools, such as Dallas Baptist University, Liberty University, and Southern New Hampshire University Online, offer over 100 different online graduate degree options.
4. Doctoral Degree
$19,813AVG. ANNUAL TUITION
$81,596 AVERAGE SALARY
Obtaining a doctoral degree is one of the ultimate ways to achieve excellence in a field, and there are a variety of online doctorates available. The time required for completion of these degrees varies, depending on whether the online student is full-time or part-time.
Many degrees are available at a reasonable rate from highly recommended institutions, such as The George Washington University and Texas A & M University-College Station. Prospective doctoral students can explore degree offerings in business, psychology, computer science, and a wide variety of other subject areas.
27,448AVG. ANNUAL TUITION
Certificates are available online for students at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Online certificates can serve as a supplement to a degree, or as a standalone qualification. There are over 7,000 online certificate programs to choose from, many leading to job opportunities as physical therapy assistants, occupational therapy assistants, dental assistants, and veterinary technicians.
To provide course materials, submit homework assignments, and promote interaction between students and instructors, online programs use a learning management system, sometimes known as an LMS. Blackboard, Canvas, D2L Brightspace, and Moodle are some of the most popular.
Learning activities, such as readings, lectures, homework, and other tasks, are placed on the site, which is only accessible to enrolled students. Students can also participate in class discussions via online discussion boards, and assignments are often completed when it is convenient for them, but by a given date.