Best Online Colleges in Alabama for 2020

Students from all walks of life, traditional college-aged students, and working adults, find themselves managing school and degree aspirations with other commitments like family or full or part-time work. For this reason, more students today turn to online learning as a viable and respected means for earning their degree fully or partially online, or as a way to obtain professional training to further their careers. If fact, because the demand is so high, the number of fully online degrees offered by accredited and highly respected universities across the nation is increasing annually and today students can obtain degrees from the associate to doctorate levels from most major colleges and universities across the nation.

Methodology: Ranking the Best Online Colleges in Alabama

Value Colleges strives to bring you the best of the best, and in this Top 10 list you’ll find colleges and universities located in the state of Alabama that offer the state’s top online programs. Each institution listed meets Value Colleges Best Value Credentials with a solid ROI plus institutional regional or national accreditation. Each school listed also offers degrees that students can obtain 100% online and includes options for associates, bachelors, masters, doctorate or continuing education degrees.

1. University of North Alabama

The decision to look into the best online colleges in Alabama for your degree will bring the University of North Alabama to your attention. The school offers students a high-quality education through its online system that is similar to the degree that students can expect when attending the campus. It offers a flexible solution for students with personal and professional obligations that may limit their time for classes.

A key advantage of attending the University of North Alabama Florence is the number of online programs available. Students can select from 36 undergraduate degree programs to work on their long-term goals. It allows students to select a degree that fits their situation and plans for a career. It also gives students a flexible solution when they cannot attend the classes on-campus for any reason. The University of North Alabama Florence is NC-SARA approved and works with other states and schools for reciprocity.

Number of Online Programs: 36

2. Troy University

Troy University offers an online program in Alabama that allows students to focus on their long-term goals. It provides access to 29 undergraduate degree programs as well as several graduate options for students who plan to continue into a higher level of education. The ability to continue your education until you reach your goals without leaving the comfort of your home gives you the chance to work toward long-term plans and goals.

A key way Troy University stands apart is the focus on student success. The school offers a variety of online programs to help students with their long-term goals and it allows students to transfer credits into the online program. That ensures that students who have attended a community college or have credits from another university will not waste time when working on a degree. Troy University allows students to enhance their degree and qualifications with online professional certification.

Number of Online Programs: 29

3. University of Alabama at Birmingham

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is one of the best online colleges in Alabama for students who want to focus on an undergraduate degree. The school offers 20 fully online programs that allow students to work at their own pace. The online programs do not require students to spend any time on-campus and 95 percent of the business classes through the university are available in an online format.

Students who decide to study at the University of Alabama at Birmingham for an online degree will have access to a variety of minors. Access to multiple minors studies gives students the opportunity to enhance their skills or to add to their knowledge of a subject. That gives employers confidence in your abilities and helps you focus on your long-term plans for a career. The University of Alabama at Birmingham stands apart by offering a multitude of graduate programs online for students who decide to continue their education after finishing an undergraduate degree.

Number of Online Programs: 20

4. University of West Alabama

The University of West Alabama offers 20 online degree programs that allow students to focus on their career without attending classes on-campus. The online format simplifies the process of studying for a degree and gives students the flexibility to work around a personal schedule. The flexibility means students can work on their degree when they have time and can manage obligations without making changes to their current schedule.

A key advantage of the University of West Alabama is the focus on student success. The degree programs allow students to work at their own pace and the school offers certifications and advanced degrees to enhance or improve student qualifications. It allows students to identify the right strategy for their goals and work toward a long-term plan based on their specific needs. The University of West Alabama offers scholarships for students in the online programs who are studying for specific degrees or are military servicemen and women.

Number of Online Programs: 20

5. University of Alabama

The University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa offers 18 online degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate level for students who plan to obtain a degree. The online programs allow students to study subjects that range from criminology to nutrition sciences and consumer sciences. The array of studies allow students to select an area of interest that fits their goals and plans.

A key way the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa stands apart is the high standards set for students and the school. The school takes measures to maintain high standards of excellence and it offers reciprocity for out-of-state students to ensure they qualify for positions with the degree from the university. The programs focus on providing the knowledge students need for their career goals. The University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Number of Online Programs: 18

6. University of South Alabama

The University of South Alabama is one of the best online schools for students who want to work around a complicated schedule. The school offers 16 online programs for students at the undergraduate level. The focus on providing students with the support they need to accomplish their goals and the 24-hour access to materials and classes allows working adults or parents to find time to finish a degree and improve their opportunities for a career. 

The University of South Alabama stands apart by focusing on student goals and concerns. It offers an up-to-date online system that allows students to work at their own pace and take classes when they have time. It focuses on flexibility and works with students to ensure that they are able to finish a degree in a reasonable time-frame. The University of South Alabama offers scholarships to new freshmen, transfer students, and military students who may need assistance to help with their college costs.

Number of Online Programs: 16

7. Jacksonville State University

Jacksonville State University offers 14 online degree programs that allow students to obtain their career objectives. The degree programs allow students to stay engaged in their education by offering interactive options for classroom materials. As an online program, students are able to work around their schedules and keep up with their classes when it fits their specific needs and situation.

A key way Jacksonville State University stands apart from other programs is the focus on compatibility with multiple devices. Students are able to access materials and keep up with classes at home or when they are out of town. The school works with different phones, tablets, and computer systems to ensure that students have optimal flexibility to fit their lifestyle and situation. Jacksonville State University offers certifications and graduate degree programs online that allow students to continue their education after finishing an undergraduate degree program.

Number of Online Programs: 14

8. Athens State University

Athens State University offers students the opportunity to study 13 online majors. Students can complete a degree when they have time and the programs have the same focus on quality education as the on-campus programs. It gives students the opportunity to focus on long-term goals with their careers and situation.

Athens State University gives students an array of options for their goals. While it offers 13 undergraduate degrees, it also allows students to enhance a degree with a professional certification or a minor. The school also offers online master’s degree programs that allow students to continue into a higher level of education when it fits the needs of their career. Athens State University allows online students to access financial aid and scholarships through the school, as well as through federal or private sources.

Number of Online Programs: 13

9. University of Mobile

The University of Mobile offers 9 online undergraduate degrees as well as graduate programs to give students the higher level of education they need for their careers. The school recognizes that students are often focusing on reaching a higher purpose in their lives and it strives to give a strong foundation to students who are working on finding their purpose in life. It recognizes that education is only the first step toward accomplishing more for long-term goals.

The University of Mobile in Alabama emphasizes ethics and sets high standards for students. It ensures that students are fully aware of the ethical factors that may apply to their career paths and it helps students take measures to maintain high ethical standards at every level of their careers. The emphasis on ethics gives students an edge when applying for new positions because employers recognize that students understand the potential challenges that may arise over time. The University of Mobile uses Biblical principles to set standards for education and it gives students a Christian view of their field of study.

Number of Online Programs: 9

10. University of Alabama in Huntsville

The University of Alabama in Huntsville is one of the best online colleges in Alabama, offering a wide range of degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate level. In addition to seven undergraduate programs, UAH offers numerous programs in STEM, especially graduate-level engineering degrees. With low costs and a reputation for outreach, UA Huntsville defines online educational excellence. 

The University of Alabama in Huntsville began in 1950. While it was originally just an extension campus, the arrival of NASA to the area turned UA Huntsville into one of the nation’s top STEM institutions. Its mission – to prepare engineers for the Space Race – gradually evolved into an overall science and technology focus that has made UAH a national and international destination. 

Number of Online Programs: 7

What’s the Value of Online College in Alabama? 

When you are looking at colleges in Alabama with online degrees, you will want to clarify the potential benefits of an online program. The value of an online college in Alabama stems from the advantages to the students. 

Alabama distance education allows working professionals to enhance their opportunities for advancement in a career by obtaining a higher level of education. You can work around your schedule and take classes when it fits your situation. That means you are not giving up on your career and your current job to continue working on your degree. 

Adults who are planning to change their careers may also benefit from an online program. Since you are able to work on your degree when you have time and you can take classes in a comfortable environment, you can make adjustments to your qualifications. Taking classes that allow you to make changes to your career gives you a chance to improve your opportunities. Changing a career path to a different field will require education and training. The online format allows you to gain that training and education when it fits your situation and timeframe.

How Do I Save Money on an Online Degree in Alabama?

When it comes to Alabama distance learning tuition costs, you may notice that the actual rates vary widely between schools and programs. Despite the variation in tuition expenses, you will want to take measures to save on your degree in Alabama.

The first step to save money on your online degree in Alabama is through scholarships. Find out if the school offers scholarships for online students. In some cases, you will find that the school offers the same scholarships as it offers to on-campus students. Some schools may also offer tuition assistance that applies directly to online students. You can also look into federal or government scholarships that may apply to your situation. Keep in mind that scholarships may set standards for your grade point average or other details, so you want to clarify the requirements before you apply for a scholarship.

When the tuition costs exceed any scholarships that apply to your situation, you may consider looking into employer reimbursement programs. Working adults may find that employers are willing to reimburse the cost of college for an online degree. In the case of employer reimbursement, you may be expected to work for your employer for a certain amount of time after finishing your degree. Find out what options your employer offers and the details of the reimbursement program to determine if it fits your situation and needs.

In some cases, schools may offer credit for your work experience or for online courses you take for your degree. You may also have opportunities to test out of a class and gain credit for the class through some employers. Military veterans may receive credit for their work experience in certain fields of study if their work related to the topic of study. Find out if the school offers programs to give credit for online courses, work experience, or tests you’ve passed. 

You may also consider transferring credits from a community college into an online program. Many colleges and universities accept credits from other colleges and universities into online degree programs. Community colleges may help cut  back on the cost of tuition for an undergraduate degree program by allowing you to get credits for your general studies courses.

What Kinds of Degrees Can I Get in Alabama? 

When it comes to online degrees in Alabama, you have a variety of options to fit your situation and goals. Online degree programs in Alabama allow students to get a degree from the associate’s level to the doctoral level. 

Associates degrees in Alabama allow students to gain the fundamental knowledge they need to start a career. You can obtain an associate’s degree in paralegal studies, nursing, or other fields of study to gain the basic skills you need for your job. You can then start working in your field while you continue into an online bachelor’s degree program.

A variety of Alabama distance learning degrees focus on bachelor’s programs. The undergraduate degree programs allow students to build a strong foundation for their career while still working their jobs. You can obtain the entire degree online or use hybrid programs to take the majority of your classes online. Keep in mind that many schools offer bachelor’s degree programs through an online format, so you will want to compare your options for your field of study. 

Master’s degree programs are also available for students who plan to obtain a degree online. The online master’s degree programs may require a residency as part of the degree. That may mean you spend a short amount of time on the school’s campus for a set number of days. For example, you may have a one-week residency. The requirements for a residency may vary by school and degree program.

Doctoral degrees are also available through online schools in Alabama. A doctorate may require a short amount of time on-campus for a residency or a hands-on project. In many cases, the majority of the coursework and projects are completed through the online format. The online programs for doctoral-level degree programs may use video chat services to allow students to present a thesis or other projects.

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