Traditional degree programs in instructional technology revolve around group discussion, helping students build ideas off of one another. This is not easily done through online programs, so instructional technology students will be asked to complete a lot of reading and writing assignments. Many online programs (as well as some traditional programs) require that all students be full-time, licensed teachers. 
Choosing a degree program is an exciting part of any student’s journey, but it can also be a daunting choice when there are so many unknowns. While your passions and interests should play a large role in the career path you are considering, it is important to have long-term job stability and salary in mind as well. That's why the data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is so valuable. Not only can you review industry growth metrics, but you can also compare jobs and salaries in a number of fields. To help aid you in your efforts, we have assembled a list of the Top 40 career options for some of the most popular degrees. We hope you find this information both helpful and useful!
After confirming accreditation, it can still be difficult to weigh the value and quality of one online college over another. Keep in mind that regardless of whether a program is offered online or on campus, all regionally accredited programs in the U.S. are held to the same academic and professional standards. These standards also extend to the full-time faculty and adjunct professors that schools hire.

Are there other aspects of free-tuition degree programs to consider? Yes, there is. Many tuition-free degree programs focus on a particular career choice. For example, they may be limited to the field of engineering, music, or ministry. You may also find schools that will require your assistance in dairy or alfalfa farming, as well as, cattle ranching to cover your tuition costs.


Sociology is the study of society and human relationships, so it's no surprise that sociology majors have a wealth of careers to pursue. Possible fields include business management, consulting, corporate administration, insurance, medical administration, politics, realty, religious life, social work, and teaching and higher education, according to the University of Notre Dame Department of Sociology.
Southeast Missouri State University provides several online pathways for undergraduates and graduate students. Online bachelor's degree options include tech-oriented subjects such as applied technology, computer information systems, and technology management. Other options include business administration, criminal justice, family studies, and RN-to-BSN completion program. Graduate students may select from a total of 18 online master's tracks, most of which focus on management and/or education.
Hampton University helps busy students find the time to further their education with several web-based degree programs. Students studying online can either complete all of their work from home, or they have the option to split their time between in-person classes and online work. While these hybrid students have the opportunity to participate in on-campus activates, online students will be able to make use of all of Hampton University’s student services. Online tutoring is available, and personal academic advisors are ready to provide students with the quickest path to their success.
A central reason for the increasing demand for online education is flexibility. Whether the student is seeking to go back to school, is a recent high school graduate that wants to attend a college in another state, or is a career advancer who wants to pursue a graduate degree, online college allows them to complete an education on their own terms. Online education helps students to craft a schedule that fits their lives, which is typically not possible in the traditional classroom. School can be woven into the student’s working and home lives instead of the other way around, making online classes the number one option for many in pursuit of a higher education.
Most online courses at Missouri State are asynchronous, and students generally earn their bachelor's in four years or less. All baccalaureate degrees culminate in a capstone assignment that requires students to construct a public affairs project or presentation around their major. The university allows students to transfer up to 90 credits toward their undergraduate degrees.
Fort Hays State University has established itself as one of the best online colleges, largely due to their affordability and quality of education. Each program is designed to give students the knowledge they need to enter the global community as a leader and expert. This can be seen with their online bachelor’s degrees, all of which are fully accredited. Popular bachelor’s degree options include criminal justice, elementary education and accounting. Along with their bachelor’s degrees, Fort Hays also has extensive master’s degree programs that give students the experience and knowledge they need to make a leap in their career. The best online schools are the ones that prepare students for their future, and Fort Hays does just that.
A family memento or heirloom: College graduation day is a big day for both your graduate and their family. Consider gifting something that has been passed along in the family—a piece of jewelry, an old book or diary, a photo album, or a piece of military memorabilia, for example—to mark your graduate's transition from dependent student to independent, college-educated adult.
The University of Arkansas at Monticello features an online Bachelor of Science in Education Studies. The program is designed for nontraditional students, and particularly for full-time public school paraprofessionals. Anyone may apply. Freshman admission requires a diploma and a minimum GPA of 2.0. The ACT is preferred. Transfer students also need a minimum 2.0 GPA. The program does not lead to licensure but on completion, graduates may choose to enroll in UAM's online MA in Teaching, which does lead to certification. Sample courses include Education, Schools and Society, K-6 Planning, Curriculum and Programming, and Needs of Diverse Learners in Inclusive Settings.

When individuals think of the highest paying careers out of college, nuclear engineering often comes first to mind. This specialized occupation involves extensive research and development to create the processes, instruments, and systems used in harnessing nuclear energy and benefiting from nuclear radiation. Nuclear engineers may work in the medical field, designing imaging devices or radiation treatments for cancer, or in industrial fields, handling the development of nuclear power plant technology, safety measures and protocol, or waste control or disposal systems. Most of these professionals work in an office environment, whether at a power plant, a government building, or a consulting firm.
Institutions pursuing accreditation undergo a rigorous review process, which includes the examination of elements such as curriculum planning, course offerings, faculty, admissions standards, graduation rates, facilities, and financial resources. Accredited institutions and programs must undergo regular evaluation to ensure compliance with the standards set forth by the accrediting bodies.

Specific details about licensing and certification requirements for public school teachers can be found in our guide to teaching degrees. The licensing process for public school principals is more rigorous than the process for obtaining a teaching certificate, as administrators are expected to have advanced leadership skills and knowledge about operating a school or school district. To become a principal, most states require candidates to have a master's degree from a regionally accredited school, a teaching certificate, and at least three years of teaching experience.
Chances are, if you have a passion, you can get a degree in the subject. And, if typical majors aren’t your thing, there are plenty of unusual majors to choose from. The following list includes some weird-but-cool college majors, along with an example of a college that offers it, details of what students in the field study and the jobs that students pursue after graduation, as listed on each example college's website. (Please note that many of these aren’t the only schools which offer the academic subjects, just an example of one of the schools.) Check out the following unusual majors – perhaps your future calling is on the list!
Northern Arizona University is a large public university in Flagstaff, Ariz., with a strong reputation in its online offerings. With degree programs available at the bachelor’s and master’s levels, students who do study online are able to work toward their degrees while receiving the same quality education they would get on-campus at NAU. The school offers an innovative Personalized Learning program, where students pay a flat subscription rate over 6 months, with no additional fees, not even for books -- an attractive option for many students whose employers are picking up the tuition tab. Students at NAU also benefit from the school’s focus on career readiness in all its degree programs.
With its robust coursework in global supply chain management, leadership and organizational behavior, marketing management, managerial economics, and financial management-as well as the ability the earn a dual MBA/MS in Data Analytics if students choose to take additional classes in areas such as data mining, information visualization, optimization methods for analytics, probability and statistics for analytics, database modeling, and design and implementation-it's no wonder Clarkson University is among the best online schools for students to sharpen their business acumen. In addition, the school offers online graduate degrees in civil and environmental engineering, clinical leadership in healthcare management, computer science, data analytics, and mechanical engineering.
Online degree programs at Columbia University are currently available through just one of its schools, the School of Engineering & Applied Science. Classes in the programs are taught by the same expert faculty that conducts the courses on campus, so students can get the full Ivy League experience from the comfort of their own homes. The university boasts a range of masters programs, certificate programs, and non-degree learning opportunities in the following fields: Operations Research, Methods in Finance, Industrial & Systems Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Applied Mathematics, Applied Physics, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical and Civil Engineering, Construction Engineering & Management Systems, and Materials Science. All of the programs are provided on a part-time basis and will require no on-campus meetings.

With its robust coursework in global supply chain management, leadership and organizational behavior, marketing management, managerial economics, and financial management-as well as the ability the earn a dual MBA/MS in Data Analytics if students choose to take additional classes in areas such as data mining, information visualization, optimization methods for analytics, probability and statistics for analytics, database modeling, and design and implementation-it's no wonder Clarkson University is among the best online schools for students to sharpen their business acumen. In addition, the school offers online graduate degrees in civil and environmental engineering, clinical leadership in healthcare management, computer science, data analytics, and mechanical engineering.
A wide range of healthcare related degrees are available online, including programs in nursing, pharmacy, nutrition, personal training, public health, respiratory therapy, healthcare administration and medical and dental assisting. These online degree programs prepare students interested promoting health and wellness to ensure others maintain healthy lives. Careers in healthcare vary from hands-on positions, like working as a dental assistant, to more administrative positions, such as working behind the scenes to provide others with exceptional care. Online degrees in healthcare related fields are available at all levels, with a variety of associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and certificate degrees to choose from.
A central reason for the increasing demand for online education is flexibility. Whether the student is seeking to go back to school, is a recent high school graduate that wants to attend a college in another state, or is a career advancer who wants to pursue a graduate degree, online college allows them to complete an education on their own terms. Online education helps students to craft a schedule that fits their lives, which is typically not possible in the traditional classroom. School can be woven into the student’s working and home lives instead of the other way around, making online classes the number one option for many in pursuit of a higher education.
To become the superintendent of a school district, some states require that applicants have a current principal or teaching license and a certain number of years of experience in each professional role. Superintendents may also be required to complete a superintendent preparation program as well as an accredited master's degree program with a superintendent focus before they can take a licensing exam. After passing the exam, they may be eligible for an initial superintendent certificate for a certain number of years before they must renew their certification.

Nova Southeastern University’s distance program doesn’t just serve students at one of the remote campuses, but also students that are studying online. Nova Southeastern University offers their online courses as part of the Southern Regional Education Board’s Electronic Campus program, meaning that each course offered online is fully accredited. This rigorous accreditation makes Nova one of the best online colleges in Florida for students that are looking for a high-quality education. Nova offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, some of which have earned the school distinctions. For example, Nova is considered one of the best online schools for graduate nursing, graduate education and criminal justice, all of which are already popular fields for online students.
Many students enter online programs with previous college credits. However, transferring these credits is easier for those who earn credits from regionally accredited schools than for those who receive credits from nationally accredited schools. Additionally, most online institutions place a maximum on transferable credits. For example, many programs limit undergraduates to 90 transfer credits. In addition, older credits for courses in rapidly evolving fields, such as information technology, may not be accepted if a certain amount of time has elapsed.
This free Christian college supplies students with programs that are shaped by fairness, peace, love, and equality, and students are only required to pay an average price of $1,000 for meals, housing, and fees. Otherwise, the entirety of an individual’s education is completely free! Over a four-year degree, students receive an education that is worth approximately $100,000. Located in the Southern United States, Berea College was founded by reformers and abolitionists with the mission to purvey the teachings and principles of Jesus Christ. Students are actively engaged on campus through the Student Labor Program, through which they serve the community and learn invaluable lessons, and which also helps keep their programs tuition free. Berea College has been recognized many times over for their dedication to students with limited resources, by resources such as Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and USA Today, as well as many others.
About 81% of online students are also employed, so the convenience of distance education works in their favor, allowing them to complete classes around their employment schedule. While almost 63% of students say that the courses they took were to further their career, only 17% claim that taking courses was due to a desire to change careers. These responses may suggest that many online students are looking to expand their current professional skills, including the skills needed for a job promotion, rather than shift career paths entirely.
In order to be one of the best online colleges, an institution must provide the tools students need for success. Western Kentucky University does just that by providing an in-depth orientation through its Online Learning 101 program-where students learn how to use the school's learning management system-and a robust Student Resource Portalwhere people can get the extra help they need with research, writing, and math. In addition, the school offers a variety of graduate and undergraduate degree programs. On the undergraduate level, students can get an associate's degree in interdisciplinary studies and early childhood education and a bachelor's degree in sociology, criminology, health sciences, and organizational leadership. On the graduate level, students can earn master's degrees in biology, recreation and sport administration, history, mathematics, and social work.
Thomas Edison State University counts among the many online colleges that offers a broad range of online undergraduate and graduate programs. Those seeking a bachelor's can choose from 32 online degree pathways, including nine business administration tracks and specialized technical fields such as nuclear engineering technology, data science and analytics, homeland security and emergency management, and cybersecurity. The college also offers 10 online master's degrees and an online doctorate in nursing practice.
Central Michigan University, established in 1892 as a teacher's college, today offers more than 200 majors through its undergraduate, master's, specialist and doctoral degree programs. It serves more than 20,000 students at its Mount Pleasant campus and another 7,000 students pursuing degrees and certificates wholly online. CMU is one of the small number of educational institutions to hold the two highest Carnegie research classifications. CMU Online offers wholly online degree and certificate programs held in 8-, 12- and 16-week sessions. One of the nation's best online schools, CMU Online has been ranked among the best colleges for online bachelor degrees, MBA degrees, and graduate education. Distance students have full access to CMU's Online Learning Resource Center.
Some online students prefer the self-paced schedule of asynchronous programs, along with the possibility of early graduation. Others appreciate the structure of synchronous programs and the idea of taking multiple courses with the same cohort of students. With this in mind, you should choose programs based in part on your preferred learning format.
Vanderbilt University is a private research university in Nashville Tennessee. It is most widely recognized for its research, continually coming in among the top 20 universities in the nation. It has the largest academic facility dedicated to studying the effect of radiation. Vanderbilt also has more unique research initiatives; their chemical biology department is on track to breeding a blue rose, they have extensive research departments on coffee, and the card game of Bridge. Interestingly, the modern form of the game was developed by Harold Stirling Vanderbilt, great-grandson to Cornelius Vanderbilt.
Yale University is a private Ivy League research university that was founded in 1701, making it the third oldest institution of its kind and also one of the nine Colonial Colleges. It is located in New Haven, Connecticut. Yale University is the alma mater of 5 former U.S. Presidents, and 19 Supreme Court Justices. More interesting trivia about Yale is that their mascot Handsome Dan is believed to be the first in the United States.
Applied mathematics involves applying high-level mathematical theories, methods, and models to specialized industry fields including engineering, computer science, business, and science. A relatively small job market exists for individuals formally called “mathematicians,” meaning these professionals more frequently hold occupations like data analyst, data scientist, or quantitative analyst. Emerging fields like data mining and privacy, climatology, and systems biology also hold high demand for individuals with mathematical prowess. Whatever their formal job title, applied mathematics professionals go far beyond crunching numbers, instead using their skills to solve real world problems on a daily basis.
Economists may work for federal, state, or local governments, research firms, international organizations, or think tanks, using their skills in quantitative and qualitative analysis to study the production and distribution of resources, goods, and services. Relied upon for information from industries, governments, and individuals, these vital professionals use historical trends to forecast future economic events and market trends. Some economists may specialize in a certain area, including product costs, energy, employment levels, exchange rates, inflation, or taxes. A typical office-environment work day for an economist includes gathering data, performing various analyses, and developing solutions or offering advice in response to findings.
According to a report from the Society of Human Resource Management, more than half of private organizations offer tuition reimbursement plans to employees who wish to earn a postsecondary degree or certificate. These plans are mutually beneficial. Employees who receive assistance can offset some of the out-of-pocket costs for their education, and employers strengthen their workforce with workers who have advanced training in their field. However, tuition reimbursement will not cover all of the student's expenses. The average organization reimburses roughly $4,600 in tuition expenses per year. Additionally, the employee may be required to work for the organization for a certain length of time after they have received their degree or certificate.
Not to be confused with software developers, who act as the creative force behind software creation, software engineers work on the entirety of what is called the software development life cycle, from initial research and study of requirements to the final design and testing of a program. The software engineer takes a systematic and scientific approach to the development of software, and must be skilled in engineering principles, programming language, analysis and problem solving. Typically, software engineers either work on computer systems or computer applications. Companies may use “software developer” and “software engineer” terms interchangeably.

Scuba divers build, inspect, and repair submerged structures, conduct experiments, rig explosives, and photograph sea creatures. The average salary is $53,990, and these jobs are projected to grow a whale-sized 37 percent between 2014 and 2024. Training to be a commercial diver requires only “a few months” at schools accredited by the Association of Commercial Diving Educators.
Art majors are more than just painters, illustrators and photographers — the field of visual and performing arts also covers dance, theater, film, music and more. While many art majors will pursue careers as professional photographers, painters, actors, dancers, singers and musicians, others will find ways to incorporate their passions into alternative creative jobs.
Murray State University has made a point to be an inclusive institution where all people are able to learn. However, not everyone is able to commute to campus for classes, whether it be because of a job, family or location. To help with this, Murray State offers many of their degrees through their online school. Students can study for degrees at the undergraduate, graduate and doctoral levels online, making Murray State one of the best online schools for students at any point in their education. Each of their graduate degrees is designed to help give their students a deeper knowledge of their field to help them advance in their career. Similarly, the undergrad programs at Murray State give students practical knowledge they need to begin a career. Popular options through their online school include RN to BSN, computer information systems and business administration.

A big reason for the growth in online education is demand. Online college programs make college more accessible to a much larger population than traditional on-campus learning. Thanks to technology, you can earn an online associate degree, online bachelor's degree or online master's degree without having to sacrifice your job or time caring for your family.


Institutions pursuing accreditation undergo a rigorous review process, which includes the examination of elements such as curriculum planning, course offerings, faculty, admissions standards, graduation rates, facilities, and financial resources. Accredited institutions and programs must undergo regular evaluation to ensure compliance with the standards set forth by the accrediting bodies.
Instructors deliver most of the university's distance-based programs asynchronously and fully online, but some incorporate blended learning and synchronous coursework. The university offers rolling application deadlines and four start dates year-round. Additionally, transfer students can apply up to 64 credits toward their bachelor's degrees. Most bachelor's programs culminate in either a capstone project or an internship.
The number of online learning options continues to grow across majors, with students earning degrees in accounting, criminal justice, psychology, and even nursing. While online programs have core elements across these majors, each one requires a targeted content and delivery to ensure graduates have the flexibility they need without sacrificing quality. Browse the pages below to learn how online education works in each major.
If you have a passion for working directly with people and a knack for compassion and understanding, then a degree in Counseling could be the perfect fit for you! With a wide range of disciplines and positive job outlook, those interested in counseling have a number of opportunities available for turning their degree into a rewarding, exciting career!
The University of Toledo has been offering online courses for two decades, giving them plenty of time create one of the best online schools in the nation for adults who want to further their career. The flexibility of the courses offered by UT is one of the biggest draws, particularly for adults who are working or have families, or for military members. These students are usually looking for a way to move forward, and the online degrees offered by UT are designed to do just that. With degrees offered from the associate to doctoral level, students and adult learners of all ages can find something that fits their needs, helping them advance their career or learn new skills to pivot into a new field.
Central Methodist University features two online Bachelor of Science in Education degrees: one in Elementary Education and one in Early Childhood Education. Freshman admission requires a diploma with a minimum 2.5 GPA or the GED, and SAT or ACT scores. Transfer students need a minimum GPA of 2.0. The Early Childhood program covers all aspects of development and education and can lead to teacher certification in birth to age 5. The Elementary Education program focuses on child development, teaching methods and teaching content (such as math). It also can also lead to teacher certification. Courses in the programs include Reading and Writing with Young Children, Emerging Language, and Children's Literature. Online tuition is $250 per credit. CMU is affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
Most nationally accredited colleges are for-profit and meet lower academic standards than their regional counterparts. Students considering a nationally accredited online college should research the school's reputation and understand how academic standards differ from regionally accredited schools. It's important to note that most nationally accredited schools will accept transfer credits from regionally accredited colleges and universities, but the opposite is not always true.
Economists may work for federal, state, or local governments, research firms, international organizations, or think tanks, using their skills in quantitative and qualitative analysis to study the production and distribution of resources, goods, and services. Relied upon for information from industries, governments, and individuals, these vital professionals use historical trends to forecast future economic events and market trends. Some economists may specialize in a certain area, including product costs, energy, employment levels, exchange rates, inflation, or taxes. A typical office-environment work day for an economist includes gathering data, performing various analyses, and developing solutions or offering advice in response to findings.
Although online learning has removed many time and place barriers, it’s important to see which colleges in your state offer online programs. Attending a local college or university with online programs makes it easier to take advantage of physical resources or, if necessary, enroll in a hybrid program. Select a state below to learn more about its online learning landscape.

If your goal is to apply scientific skills to real world problems, engineering is a field you should explore. Online engineering programs are available at the introductory level for new students, with a number of options at both the associate and bachelor’s level. For those more experienced in the field, online master’s and doctoral degrees in engineering are available as well. Interested students should also research what engineering specializations appeal them, as online programs are available in areas such as electrical engineering, civil engineering, software engineering and mechanical engineering. Graduates of an online engineering degree program may find work at research labs, governmental agencies, large corporations, construction sites, or small companies.
Stephen F. Austin State University offers three online Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies degrees in education. They are the BSIS in Elementary Education 4-8, the BSIS in Elementary Education EC-6, and the BSIS in Special Education. All three are 45 credit majors and admissions require a 3.0 GPA. Up to 60 credits may be transferred. The EC-6 program is only available to Texas residents and requires a concentration in math, English, social studies or generalist. The 4-8 program focuses on the middle grades. The Special Ed program focuses on teaching diverse students with exceptionalities. It prepares students for EC-12 Special Ed Teacher and EC-6 Generalist Teacher. All three programs require a visit to campus once a semester for program intensives. Tuition is $362 per credit hour.
Despite what some students may think, online colleges are no less challenging than traditional colleges. Depending on a student's learning style, keeping up with online work may actually prove to be more demanding for some. When asked about the greatest challenges they face while studying online, a majority of students in a Learning House survey cited motivation, attention, and focus as their main concerns.
All of the online schools, at any degree level, featured on our website are accredited, ensuring that they meet high standards of quality. In order to be accredited, online colleges are evaluated based on criteria such as curricula, faculty, course offerings, facilities, financial resources, and support services. Accreditation in the United States comes from federal and state agencies as well as non-governmental bodies approved by the U.S. Department of Education. Accreditation not only demonstrates the quality of an online school, but can also determine whether credits are transferable to other accredited online colleges. To find out whether an accreditation agency is legitimate, make sure it is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Indiana Wesleyan University is a private, religiously affiliated school with a wide selection of online undergraduate and graduate degrees. Those seeking an online bachelor's can choose from eight business pathways, along with degrees in fields such as digital communication, addictions counseling, criminal justice, and licensure or non-licensure early childhood education. Indiana Wesleyan also offers several online graduate programs, including English-language and Spanish-language master's degrees in divinity and ministry; several graduate-level nursing tracks are also available.
×