Best Online Colleges in Alaska for 2020

Today, in Alaska, more than ever before traditional college-aged students and working adults are finding themselves in need of flexibility in learning. Since so many people multitask on a day to day, even lifestyle level, managing school and degree aspirations with other commitments can be an overwhelming task. This is why online learning today is so pertinent and it is now considered to be a respected means for earning a degree from the associates to doctorate or professional levels. 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 at a steady rate. Additionally, students can earn these degrees partially online, sometimes called hybrid learning or courses, or fully online.

Methodology: Ranking the Best Online Colleges in Alaska

Value Colleges is focused on value, featuring online institutions with a trusted ROI and accreditation. This Top 10 Best list highlights your best options for online learning in the state of Alaska. Each school listed here offers degrees that students can obtain completely online and includes options ranging from associates to master’s and doctoral programs. Most colleges are a part of the UA Distance Learning Program called UAOnline.

1. University of Alaska Anchorage

The University of Alaska Anchorage is one of the best online degree programs in Alaska. The school offers 15 online programs that allow students to work on their degree when they have time. The online programs offer the same high-quality education as the on-campus programs, which gives employers confidence in the capabilities and skills of students after graduation.

The University of Alaska Anchorage stands apart as the largest university in the state. The campus is larger than any other college or university, which allows the school to offer students a wider array of courses and programs. The school takes measures to ensure that students are able to study important topics based on their interests and career objectives. The University of Alaska Anchorage offers apprenticeship programs as well as traditional degrees to allow students to focus on a variety of interesting career opportunities.

Number of Online Programs: 15

2. University of Alaska Fairbanks

When you are looking into online degree programs in Alaska, the University of Alaska Fairbanks offers seven programs to help with your goals. The online programs allow students to study topics like psychology and accounting, as well as business administration. The school offers an array of online options that give students a chance to focus on their career objectives while obtaining a degree without leaving the comfort of home or dealing with the challenges of the weather conditions in Alaska.

The University of Alaska Fairbanks gives students multiple topics of study to consider for their education. It offers online master’s degrees for students who plan to continue their education after finishing a bachelor’s program as well as occupational certifications and endorsements that allow students to enhance a degree or build up specific skills that an employer requires for their job. It focuses on the practical application of skills that allows students to improve in their career. The University of Alaska Fairbanks is recognized by Quality Matters for its exemplary online programs.

Number of Online Programs: 7

3. University of Alaska Southeast

The University of Alaska Southeast offers four online degree programs at the undergraduate level. The four programs allow students to work on their skills without leaving the comfort of home. The school recognizes that students may face challenges due to the weather and offers online courses to help students keep up with their goals for education without taking undue risks. 

The University of Alaska Southeast focuses on helping students accomplish their goals. Students who plan to take online courses are able to discuss their goals with a counselor through the school to determine the appropriate course of action to fit their situation and plans. The focus on student outcomes ensures that students are able to gain the education they need to improve their long-term plans. The University of Alaska Southeast is a military-friendly university that works around the needs of veterans and active-duty military servicemen and women.

Number of Online Programs: 4

4. Alaska Pacific University

Alaska Pacific University offers three online degree programs at the undergraduate level. The online degree programs follow a similar format to the on-campus programs by focusing on developing core competency and then working with the needs of students to ensure they are ready for the challenges of their careers. The school recognizes that technology changes industries and students will face a variety of challenges throughout their careers, so it focuses on teaching students to adapt to changes and think critically about situations.

A key way Alaska Pacific University stands apart from other programs is the focus on critical thinking. The school emphasizes critical thinking skills as a key part of education and it applies to every degree program. The goal of the school’s teaching methods is to ensure that students are able to adapt quickly to unexpected challenges and can apply their skills to a variety of fields and industries. Alaska Pacific University offers certifications to help students who want to enhance their undergraduate degree for their career.

Number of Online Programs: 3

What Makes Online Education Valuable for Students in Alaska?

Online education is a great option for parents, working people, and non-traditional students all over the world regardless of geographical location. Of course, going to college in Alaska presents some pretty unique challenges that make Alaska online education an even more valuable way for non-traditional students to obtain the training, expertise, and experience they need to launch into a new and lucrative career of their choice.

As an Alaskan, you know that the unique weather conditions, the rugged landscape, and the unusual daylight hours can make attending classes in person in a traditional college setting a challenge. These conditions, specific to your region, make going to college in Alaska pretty tough- especially if you’re determined to do it the old fashioned way.

With online courses, Alaska distance education has gone from being a thing that only the richest and most privileged Alaskans, and those who live in the bog city centers, can afford to commit to. But for Alaskans who live in the region’s many scattered, rural communities, far from city centers, commuting to a regular college course in person is not feasible.

Today, distance learning is more practical and more widely accepted than ever. More than ever, employers are eager to hire those with online degrees. That’s because they know, non-traditional students are balancing careers, family responsibilities, and so much more- while at the same time working to earn their degrees. Job creators are lining to get people who are up to that kind of challenge in their workforces. Now, you can easily and affordably take online classes in Alaska from home.

No longer will weather, geography, and other local conditions stop you from pursuing the education you need to pursue your dreams.

What are Some of the Most In-Demand Online Degrees in Alaska?

To most Americans, the state of Alaska seems like a remote and bleak arctic tundra, with sparse and underdeveloped working communities built around dreary factories with little opportunity for those looking for a career outside of the trades. But, as you know, the truth couldn’t be further from the myth of Alaska as a harsh and impermeable icy landscape. In reality, the State of Alaska is a thriving part of the United States. Bustling cities, innovative industrial giants, the arts, science, education, and the humanities are all thriving spheres in this part of the country. This means online degrees in Alaska are in high demand.

Many savvy, non-traditional students like yourself are asking, “What kinds of degree holders are employers most eager to hire?” Due to the nature of the Alaskan economy, a number of specific fields of study have begun to stand out in recent years. Some of today’s hottest Alaska online degrees are:

The reasons these degree programs stand out are unique to Alaska and worth exploring. Business and management positions are appearing as new companies form and existing ones grow. These organizations need leadership to expand their reach and enhance their capabilities. As for homeland security, Alaska occupies a choke point for travel between the eastern hemisphere and the West. For this reason, homeland security entities are looking for people with expertise in anti-terrorism and in every aspect of security from guarding borders, watching aerial traffic, cybersecurity and more to protect this geographically strategic zone. And finally, criminal justice degrees are in demand to a large degree because of the difficulty in policing many parts of Alaska. This is also because Alaska is known for having few regulations on life and business. This leaves a larger role for individual law enforcement personnel to play in protecting the rights of citizens.

For all these reasons and more, Alaska online degrees offer great opportunities for those who study these fields.

How Should I Choose an Online College in Alaska?

Since the economic crash in 2008- Americans in all 50 states have been looking for ways to rebrand their existing skills, obtain new ones, and seek out alternative revenue streams. One of the most important ways the American workforce has managed to revitalize itself is through online colleges.

Unfortunately, some online schools attract students with the promise of potentially lucrative programs of study but are not properly or fully accredited, or that have earned a poor reputation. As a non-traditional student, you likely understand that not all online schools are created equal and that some will inevitably seek to take advantage of this growing trend in higher learning. The best schools give students who obtain their degrees better market visibility and make learning convenient.

The good news is that there are many high quality, reputable, and fully accredited Alaska online colleges for you to choose from. As a new online student, your first job is to take the time to research the Alaska online colleges you are considering signing up for. Alaska online colleges should have the source of their accreditation available on their website or should provide a contact who can verify the school’s accreditation. Second, you should look for online reviews from students.

With just a little digging, you’ll find that the best Alaska online colleges stand out clearly above the rest.

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