Top 10 Best Online Colleges in Florida

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The value of an education in today’s world is priceless, considering many jobs nowadays require at least an associate’s degree while many employers prefer an employee to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Many prospective students benefit from earning an online degree in Florida.

For instance, working adults may especially benefit from the convenience of earning an online degree. It’s possible to earn a degree from one of the Florida online colleges in a person’s spare time after work. It could be these individuals’ only option for reaching their educational goals.

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Nontraditional students like single parents can find value in an online degree in Florida. It’s possible to complete assignments at home while their children sleep or even when their children are at school. This educational option allows parents to fulfill their duties as a parent while working to better their lives. Even seniors or just older adults in general who don’t want to be around all the younger students can benefit from attending one of the Florida online colleges. 

Methodology: Ranking the Best Online Colleges in Florida

All of the colleges and universities in the Value Colleges ranking of the Best Online Colleges in Florida offer degrees that students can obtain 100% online. The list also includes options for associates, bachelor, master’s, doctorate, or continuing education degrees. Each institution meets Value Colleges Best Value requirements, including an established reputation for ROI and institutional accreditation.

1. Florida International University

With over 50 programs to choose from, Florida International University tops the list of the best online colleges in Florida. Whether you’re seeking a graduate or undergraduate degree, FIU has a flexible online course that will fit right into your schedule—no matter how busy your life is. The bachelor’s programs they offer include Asian studies, computer engineering, crime science, economics, electrical engineering, business administration, history, hospitality management, information technology, Internet of Things, management, marketing, nursing, psychology, religious studies, and more.

Florida International University is one of the largest universities in the United States and has more than 200,000 alumni worldwide. The school has earned the Carnegie Foundation’s highest research classification and provides experience-based learning that helps its students stand out. There are more than 1400 instructors teaching online courses at Florida International University. FIU awards more degrees to Hispanic students than any other university in the country.

Number of Online Programs: 53

2. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is also one of the best online colleges in Florida, with 50 online programs to choose from, including 16 bachelor’s degrees. The bachelor programs offered at Embry-Riddle are aeronautics, aviation maintenance, business analytics, aviation business administration, communication, engineering technology, engineering, emergency services, leadership, interdisciplinary studies, homeland security, project management, logistics and supply chain management, unmanned systems applications, technical management, and safety management.

At Embry-Riddle, students can establish their own schedules for online learning. There are many start dates to choose from, and sessions range from 9-12 weeks long. Embry-Riddle’s online courses provide the flexibility adult learners need. Students can take advantage of personalized degree planning and interact with their classmates and professors as they work through their courses online. Embry-Riddle was ranked #1 in the world by U.S. News & World Report for its online bachelor’s programs.

Number of Online Programs: 50

3. University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida Orlando is another of the best online colleges in Florida. The school offers dozens of online programs, including 24 bachelor’s programs. The bachelor-level programs offered online are anthropology, English—creative writing, English—technical communication, English—literature, criminal justice, communication and conflict, history, integrative general studies, international and global studies, health services administration, interdisciplinary studies, health information and information management, hospitality management, interdisciplinary studies—diversity studies, Latin American studies, political science, nursing, legal studies, psychology, senior living management, sociology, religion and cultural studies, social sciences, and technical education and industry training.

UCF Online offers more than 90 online programs and has more than 200 full-time instructors teaching its online courses. The school’s most popular online bachelor’s programs are psychology, nursing, health services administration, criminal justice, and English. UCF has been offering degrees online for twenty years and its programs are optimized to give students the best experience possible. UCF Online offers students support in the form of academic advising, peer support, and online tutors.

Number of Online Programs: 26

4. Nova Southeastern University

Nova Southeastern University offers more than 60 online programs, eight of which are bachelor’s programs. The bachelor’s degrees offered online are elementary education—ESOL/reading, criminal justice, exceptional student education—ESOL, human services administration, health science, recreational therapy, psychology, and respiratory therapy. The respiratory therapy program is a post-professional program for registered respiratory therapists.

Nova Southeastern University is not only one of the best online colleges in Florida, but the school is a leader in oceanic research. NSU is actively studying the sharks and coral reefs, as well as the effects of an oil spill that happened in the Gulf of Mexico. They are searching for ways to use the information they get from sea creatures to improve human health and to better manage and mitigate the damage from oil spills and pollution in the future. Nova Southeastern University is in the top 5 nationwide for the number of minority graduates.

Number of Online Programs: 19

5. University of Florida

The University of Florida offers 20 online bachelor’s programs. They are anthropology, communication sciences and disorders, business administration, biology, criminology, digital arts and sciences, education sciences, computer science, environmental management, geography, fire and emergency services, geology, nursing, health education, psychology, microbiology and cell science, public relations, telecommunication media and society, sport management, and sociology.

As one of the best online colleges in Florida, UF Online offers an outstanding educational experience to students who are determined to tackle their education regardless of what life throws at them. UF Online makes it easy for working adults to return to school and complete their degrees while juggling work, parenting, and other responsibilities. UF Online graduates earn the same degree as their on-campus peers.

Number of Online Programs: 16

6. Florida Atlantic University

Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton offers 11 bachelor’s level program that can be completed 100% online, and one more that is partially online. The fully online programs are interdisciplinary studies, marketing, accounting, business administration in management, hospitality and tourism management, public management, public safety administration, criminal justice, computer science, RN to BSN, and geoscience (BA). The BS version of the geoscience program is only partially online.

Florida Atlantic University earns a spot among the best online colleges in Florida for providing high-quality education and outstanding support at an affordable price. FAU’s renowned research faculty teaches their online courses, and online students have access to academic advisors, career help, and more. Flexibility is the key to a successful online learning experience, and FAU’s online programs are designed so that students can design the schedules to work around their lives.

Number of Online Programs: 16

7. Florida Institute of Technology

The Florida Institute of Technology offers 8 online bachelor’s degree programs: accounting, applied psychology, aviation management, business administration, criminal justice, management, human resources management, and computer information systems. The applied psychology degree has concentrations available in child advocacy, clinical psychology, forensic psychology, and organizational psychology. Business administration majors can specialize in accounting, computer information systems, healthcare management, management, or marketing.

Florida Tech was started in 1958 to provide education to working professionals, and it continues that tradition today as one of the best online colleges in Florida. The school’s online programs combine a top-notch education from a well-known and prestigious school with the convenience of being able to attend classes whenever they fit into the student’s life. Most of the full-time faculty members hold terminal degrees in their specialties. Online students can interact with their professors via chat rooms, discussion boards, e-mail, and even video. Faculty members work with students to ensure their success.

Number of Online Programs: 13

8. Lynn University

Lynn University offers ten bachelor’s degree programs that can be completed online. They are aviation management, criminal justice, entrepreneurship, psychology, business administration, early childhood education, international business management, communication and media, elementary education grades K-6, and liberal arts. Lynn has been recognized as an Apple Distinguished School for its innovation in education. It’s the school’s eagerness to embrace new technologies that make it one of the best online colleges in Florida.

At Lynn University, students are encouraged to reach their full potential. The school’s small size gives it the advantage of being able to quickly to adapt and adopt new technologies. For example, the school has an iPad-powered learning initiative, and students start meeting with prospective employers as early as their first semester. In 2017, Lynn was named one of the top 25 low-debt private colleges by Forbes.

Number of Online Programs: 11

9. Florida State University

Florida State University offers five bachelor’s programs online. They are computer science (BA), computer science (BS), criminology, social science, and public safety and security. FSU’s online programs offer nontraditional students a chance to earn their degree even if they don’t have time to commute to attend on-campus classes. FSU Online is a perfect fit for anyone who has real-life responsibilities that can’t be put on hold to go back to school.

FSU’s Distance Campus offers several types of support to help online learners succeed, which makes it one of the best online colleges in Florida. The Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) helps students develop good study habits and learn to manage their time. The Career Center offers job search help, networking, and even a virtual career fair. Students in need of mental health services can find them through the Counseling Center. There is even a special library for distance education students. Online students have access to a virtual computer lab that offers more than 30 applications, such as Adobe products and Microsoft Office.

Number of Online Programs: 5

10. Barry University

Barry University offers four bachelor’s degree programs online. They are public administration, health services administration, emergency management, and administration. These programs are designed to meet the needs of working professionals who need to adapt to changes in the workforce without leaving it. As one of the best online colleges in Florida, Barry University Online gives students the ability to design their schedules to fit around their lives.

Barry University is a Catholic university with a faculty made up of dedicated professionals who want to see you succeed. The school values diversity and challenges its students to become all they can be. Barry is a liberal arts college with high academic standards.

Number of Online Programs: 4

What is the Value of Online Colleges in Florida?

With an ever-increasing pressure to juggle family, part or full-time work, and other commitments, more and more students from all walks of life, of all ages, are turning to online learning. Thankfully distance learning is now considered a viable and respected avenue for obtaining degrees from associates to doctorates, and major colleges and universities across the nation are offering degree programs fully or partially online to accommodate our ever-changing society.

When you do your coursework for a four-year college degree virtually, you give yourself more options for higher education. You may choose asynchronous classes that you can complete on your own time. Of course, internships are trickier.

The National Center for Education Statistics show that students with a college degree make more than a high school diploma, regardless of the field.

How Can I Save Money on an Online Degree in Florida?

One of the biggest challenges for many individuals who want to attend a Florida online college is the expense. However, it’s possible to make online education more affordable. For instance, it’s vital when a person searches for online schools in the “Sunshine State” that they look for online colleges in Florida that accept financial aid. The online colleges in Florida that accept financial aid allow students to fill out a FASFA form for grants and low-interest loans. Additionally, it’s important for students to search the web for, “Florida online colleges without the application fee.” An application fee is required just to apply for a school, whether a person gets accepted or not. Paying this fee to multiple schools can get costly. However, by researching, “Florida online colleges without application fee,” a student can alleviate one out-of-pocket expense and still benefit from being able to apply to multiple schools. 

It’s possible to save money on online education in general. For instance, online degree programs tend to have a lower cost than regional, public institutions. It’s also possible to look for schools that are known for their financial aid and scholarships or low tuition costs. Students may also look into the option of employer reimbursement, where their place of employment funds a portion of their education. 

Tuition rates for online undergraduate programs are typically lower than traditional, and a public school will usually be cheaper than a private or for-profit. If you earned a two-year degree from a community college, you can save on the first two years of courses. In-state tuition is usually cheaper than out-of-state.

What Kinds of Degrees Can I Earn Online in Florida?

Students may earn a variety of degrees online. For instance, it’s possible to search, “online masters programs Florida” and find institutions that allow a student to earn degrees in nursing, health administration, business, and more. In addition to being able to search, “online masters programs in Florida,” and find a variety of options, prospective pupils can also look for regionally accredited online colleges in Florida that offer doctorate degree programs. Schools can also be found when searching, “online associates degree Florida. There are fewer options when a person searches, “online associates degree Florida,” but the option does exist from many regionally accredited online colleges in Florida. In fact, a potential student may find schools that offer business, psychology, and criminal justice degree programs.

Many regionally accredited online colleges in Florida may also be found by searching “online certificate programs Florida.” The search results for “online certificate programs Florida” often include programs in journalism, business, and education. Students may also find Florida online college courses where they can take just one course without having to complete an entire degree. Florida online college courses work well for students who only have a few courses they need to complete or just want to learn a little bit about a topic of their choosing in their free time. 

It’s also possible to do graduate level work on line. Graduate students have lots of online graduate programs to choose from. Popular online graduate degrees include the MBA, the BSN, and the MSW.

What is the Florida Distance Learning Consortium? 

The Florida Distance Learning Consortium sometimes referred to as FDLC, is a group of both private and public educational facilities that work together. Currently, over 65 schools participate in the Florida Distance Learning Consortium. The organization serves over one million students each year. It’s a vital organization because it provides support across the nation, not just Florida. It helps any student looking to attend a school in Florida or outside of the state as a distance learner. Through its cross-institutional organization, it helps students gain access to library collections filled with resources students may utilize throughout their time as a student. Additionally, it assists students by giving them access to other learning and research tools. 

Some of the Florida schools involved include:

  • The University of West Florida
  • Baptist College of Florida (Graceville)
  • Florida State College at Jacksonville
  • Florida Gulf Coast University
  • University of Florida Gainesville
  • University of Miami
  • University of South Florida

From Fort Lauderdale to Tampa, Daytona Beach to St. Petersburg, Pensacola and everywhere in between, online students have a wealth of options.

The organization provides a wealth of reliable information available online to students, including important resources that explain the definition of online schools and how to find reputable schools. The association also provides information about master’s degree programs and various other types of online educational programs, making it easy for students to find the type of degree program they’re looking for from a reputable school. 

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Aya Andrews


Aya Andrews is a passionate educator and mother of two, with a diverse background that has shaped her approach to teaching and learning. Born in Metro Manila, she now calls San Diego home and is proud to be a Filipino-American. Aya earned her Masters degree in Education from San Diego State University, where she focused on developing innovative teaching methods to engage and inspire students.

Prior to her work in education, Aya spent several years as a continuing education consultant for KPMG, where she honed her skills in project management and client relations. She brings this same level of professionalism and expertise to her work as an educator, where she is committed to helping each of her students achieve their full potential.

In addition to her work as an educator, Aya is a devoted mother who is passionate about creating a nurturing and supportive home environment for her children. She is an active member of her community, volunteering her time and resources to support local schools and organizations. Aya is also an avid traveler, and loves to explore new cultures and cuisines with her family.

With a deep commitment to education and a passion for helping others succeed, Aya is a true inspiration to those around her. Her dedication to her craft, her community, and her family is a testament to her unwavering commitment to excellence in all aspects of her life.

Find your perfect value college 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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