If you plan to embark on one of the highest paying careers out of college, listed below, you could potentially earn six figures soon after completing your bachelor’s degree. Unsurprisingly, the majority of careers on this list fall under the STEM category. In terms of financial security, engineering majors boast perhaps the brightest future of all, but individuals aspiring toward scientific endeavors and technology careers also appear well-represented. Common attributes of these high-earning professionals include leadership and management skills, advanced mathematical, technical, or engineering knowledge, and high-level researching abilities. While many of the 25 highest paying careers for college graduates allow for entry-level work fresh off of an undergraduate program, some may require graduate or postgraduate education to get your foot in the industry door.

What you study: “Everyday life, including but not limited to everything that is mass produced by us and for us. Its subject matter is the world in which we live, relax and have fun.” Students take courses which “focus on the impact various aspects of popular culture (such as television, movies, rock music, popular books and magazines, sports, holidays, festivals, and folklore) have on our culture and how they reflect the values of our society.”
More students are choosing to pursue master's and doctorate degrees through accredited online colleges to expand their skill set and move up in their careers. The flexibility of online learning is particularly beneficial to professionals who want to earn an advanced degree while they continue working. Graduate programs that require students to complete practicum hours or internship experiences typically accommodate students by helping them find sites near their home. Some of the most popular graduate majors for online students include:

Occupation Finder. Within the Occupational Outlook Handbook is the Occupational Finder, where you can browse through a list of more than 800 occupations to see the projected growth, median salary information and education or training necessary for each. If you have a few options in mind, this tool can help you easily compare them and narrow your choices.

Professional development courses are a fantastic way to fill the gaps in your skills. University of Phoenix courses cover a variety of topics and are designed to give professionals a greater base of knowledge so they can improve their career opportunities or maintain professional certification. Our courses are also of interest to companies who want a more skilled workforce.
Vanderbilt University also has a partnership with Coursera and Class Central, which allows students to take free MOOCs and take individual courses online. Certificates of completion are available for a small fee. Committed to providing all students with a high quality and rigorous education regardless of their financial status, Vanderbilt University does meet 100% of the demonstrated financial needs of their students. To qualify for entirely free tuition, the family of the student must have an annual income of less than $60,000.
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is the primary programmatic accrediting body for education degrees. Accreditation is very important for online education degrees, especially for students looking to earn a teaching license. Prospective students should make sure that the online programs they are considering are recognized by the teaching board in the state where they hope to earn licensure.
In March 1906, the Kentucky General Assembly approved the establishment of the Bowling Green school that was to become Western Kentucky University. Today, more than 100 majors lead to the baccalaureate degree, and students can choose from 111 academic minors. U.S. News and World Report has ranked WKU 12th in The Best Online Bachelor's Programs and 12th in Best Online Graduate Criminal Justice Programs . Among the best online schools in the region, WKU offers 20 online undergraduate degrees, 30 wholly online master's degrees, and online 45 graduate/undergraduate certificates. Students may also enroll in one of more than 100 courses offered through the on-demand program that offers for-credit classes in 7-week semesters.
The cost of attending college typically depends on the type of school you attend, as well as your state of residence. According to College Board, private nonprofit institutions carry the highest price tag, on average — $35,380 for the 2019 academic year. Tuition prices are also relatively high for out-of-state students attending four-year public universities. These students will pay an average of $26,290 in tuition during the same year.

An undergraduate degree refers to the next level of formal education for students who hold a high school diploma or GED. They are the first step to pursuing a “higher education.”Offered by a University or College, undergraduate degrees are academic programs that focus on a specific area of study. The goal of an undergrad student is to earn a Bachelor or Associates degree.
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.
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.
Life’s circumstances can interrupt even the most dedicated of students. There’s a sense of accomplishment that comes with finishing all the work that goes into earning a degree and everyone should experience that at least once in their lifetime. Earning a degree may also make your family members proud of you in a way you’ve never experienced before. So if a part of you has always wanted to finish what you started, earning an online undergraduate degree may allow you the flexibility to finish this goal without putting other parts of your life on pause.

Appalachian State offers a hybrid Bachelor of Science in Middle Grades Education, with some courses offered online and some requiring an on-campus presence. This is a degree completion program, requiring at least 30 college credits and a minimum 2.0 GPA. The degree covers grades 6-8. The major has three concentrations: language arts and science, language arts and social studies, and science and social studies. The curriculum combines liberal arts and teaching content and skills. The program can lead to licensure in North Carolina. Segments of the program require practicums on campus, and student teaching must be done in-state. Courses include Teaching and Learning in the Digital Age and Language Arts in the Middle Grades. In-state tuition is $143 per credit and $643.50 per credit for nonresidents.
Today’s students should expect convenient access, affordability and academic value from online colleges. That’s why we only consider accredited online colleges for our rankings. The accreditation process guarantees that a school’s facilities, instructors, and curriculum meet a rigorous set of standards established by industry leaders. To ensure they invest in a universally respected degree, students should only consider accredited online colleges, like those on our list.

North Greenville University, in Tigerville, SC, is a private institution founded in liberal arts traditions of the South Carolina Baptist Convention. Students can complete one of more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degrees at NGU's main campus, at its sister campus in Greer, SC, or entirely online. The university has one of the best online schools in the region, ranking second among the "Best Online Colleges in South Carolina." NGU offers wholly online bachelor degrees in business & leadership, Christian ministries, criminal justice, elementary education, applied psychology, and general studies. Online graduate studies lead to degrees in business, ministry, education, music education, and health science. Students can complete their Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree in as little as 18 months with classes that have five starting dates annually.


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.

Regis University is a private nonprofit institution affiliated with the Jesuit order of Roman Catholics. The school offers a total of 25 bachelor's degrees online, including nine pathways in business-related fields, three nursing programs, and an elementary education licensure track. Standard online bachelor's programs consist of 16-week courses or accelerated formats of eight-week courses. The 33-credit online master's degrees offer tracks in education, nursing, and business administration, and doctoral degree options include concentrations in nursing and occupational therapy.
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Alice Lloyd College is a well-respected institution of higher education that offers free tuition to students within their service area, which includes 108 counties that span over 5 states—Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. This free college is highly dedicated to the success of its students and provides an excellent range of four-year degree programs in a small, private, liberal arts setting. Degrees include those in business, medicine, education, social sciences, humanities, natural sciences, and mathematics, each of which challenges students to think outside the box. A huge number of graduates go on to enter excellent master’s programs and are even more likely to do so thanks to the free college tuition! Alice Lloyd maintains an outstanding 96% job placement rate for its graduates, which is a testament to the superb levels of education provided by the faculty and administration.
Boston's Northeastern University serves as home to a total of 10 online bachelor's programs. These include degrees in business-oriented fields such as finance and accounting management, leadership, analytics, and project management. Other options include online bachelor's degrees in digital communication and media, health management, and psychology. Graduate students can choose from 40 online master's pathways, most of which focus on management and/or education, along with doctoral degrees in education or transitional physical therapy.

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.


Concordia University-Chicago is one of the best online colleges for students who want to combine a liberal arts education with the tenets of the Lutheran tradition. As one of only 10 schools part of the Lutheran college system, Concordia University-Chicago has a long tradition of promoting the faith and helping students explore their spirituality as they complete their degrees. As a result, the school has been listed multiple times on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the acts of service performed by students, professors, and staff. In the classroom, the university has a variety of degree programs, including bachelor's degrees in human resource management, organizational management, kinesiology, sports and recreation management, and health care management. Those who want to earn a graduate degree can enroll in the school's grant writing, management and evaluation, religion, leadership studies, early childhood education, and curriculum and instruction master's degree programs.

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.


As you move through different phases of your life you mature and your lifestyle and priorities change, so it makes sense that your career choice may change as well. Many individuals choose to pursue a new career when they’re in their 20s, 30s, 40s and even into their 50s, because the career that once suited them no longer does. It’s never too late to alter the course of your life and pursue something you’re interested in!
The City College of San Francisco offers an exciting opportunity for residents of the city to attend the school under a completely free tuition program through a partnership with the city itself. This two-year college is well-accredited and has a vibrant campus life. The free tuition gives students access to an enormous amount of opportunities through the resources, clubs, and academics provided by the City College. Not only can students attended on-campus programs, but there are also fantastic options through the free college courses online! Some of the most popular programs at this free college include the Liberal Arts and Humanities degrees, those in the Social Sciences, and the Biological and Physical Science. Students graduate with transferrable credits to carry over into an undergraduate degree of their choice, as well as the skills and understanding necessary to begin a career in their area of choice, if possible. Students have excellent things to say about this school, especially about the active campus and mindful professors.
Many students enroll at public colleges in their own state to qualify for lower in-state tuition rates. However, several public colleges now offer in-state tuition rates to all online students, even if you don't live in the same state as the school. This can mean savings of thousands of dollars a year, which means you pay less out-of-pocket and take out fewer loans. If you are looking for a degree with a high return on investment, or are entering a field that doesn't pay a six-figure salary, do your research to find out if the program you are interested in can be found somewhere where you qualify for in-state tuition.
In 2012-2013, more than 1 out of 5 masters degrees was awarded in education. Employees in education with masters degrees earned 44 percent more than employees with bachelors degrees. In 2013, education administrators, preschool and kindergarten teachers, and elementary and middle school teachers benefited most financially from having masters degrees.

The coursework in the education certificate will vary, depending on the program’s goals. Many programs are designed to certify teachers in a particular subject area, such as elementary or secondary education. These programs discuss instructional abilities and teaching theory. Some programs are aimed at experienced educators and discuss education administration and leadership topics, such as human resources issues and professional communication techniques. Other certificates are useful for seasoned teachers who want more knowledge in a particular teaching area, such as teaching students with disabilities or using educational technology.
One of the goals at George Washington University’s online school is to educate leaders. They understand that the best online schools are the ones that teach students everything they need to succeed, both right after graduation and in the future. Students that do end up studying toward an online degree at George Washington will find that the curriculum goes beyond the degree they’re earning. There are online options in most fields, and degrees are available at various levels. However, the graduate degree options are what sets George Washington apart from other online colleges. George Washington is home to many well-respected online programs, and they are considered one of the best online colleges for earning a master’s degree in public health.

As professionals in one of the broadest engineering fields, mechanical engineers may work on anything from the production of new batteries, to the design of elevators, to the manufacture of internal combustion engines. Mechanical engineers utilize their advanced knowledge of mechanics, thermal devices, and machines to analyze and solve problems. Specialized occupations include auto research engineers, heating and cooling systems engineers, and robotics engineers. Mechanical engineers work in office environments with travel to on-site locations as their job demands, frequently working on teams with other engineers, completing tasks using computers and other hands-on equipment.
Political Science is an expansive degree program that exposes students to in-depth knowledge concerning the government, politics, and world culture. While many Political Science graduates go on to work within the political sector, there is also ample opportunity for building a rewarding, lucrative career within the fields of law, business, research, and education!
Programmatic accreditation, in contrast, applies to individual schools and programs available through larger colleges and universities that qualify for institutional accreditation. Qualifying programs often include law schools, nursing schools, teachers colleges, and graduate degrees in fields such as engineering and psychology. The best accredited online colleges earn institutional accreditation in addition to programmatic accreditation for all eligible programs.
Alice Lloyd College is a well-respected institution of higher education that offers free tuition to students within their service area, which includes 108 counties that span over 5 states—Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. This free college is highly dedicated to the success of its students and provides an excellent range of four-year degree programs in a small, private, liberal arts setting. Degrees include those in business, medicine, education, social sciences, humanities, natural sciences, and mathematics, each of which challenges students to think outside the box. A huge number of graduates go on to enter excellent master’s programs and are even more likely to do so thanks to the free college tuition! Alice Lloyd maintains an outstanding 96% job placement rate for its graduates, which is a testament to the superb levels of education provided by the faculty and administration.
Specific requirements vary by program, but most online students log into their school's learning management system (LMS) to participate in course lectures. Asynchronous programs allow students to view lecture recordings on their own time. Alternatively, synchronous programs may require students to watch live-streaming lectures. In some cases, synchronous courses feature video conferencing components that allow students to ask questions and interact with their professors and fellow students.
Although most commonly associated with academic careers, not every mathematics major goes on to seek a university faculty position. Mathematicians work in a wide variety of other fields, including astronomy, climatology, medicine, government, robotics, and even in animation. A strong background and knowledge of mathematical theories allows these professionals to devise solutions to technical problems through extensive analysis, research, and the development of computational methods. Many entry-level careers in mathematics fields do require education beyond a bachelor’s degree, but salary potential also typically increases with the completion of graduate or postgraduate study.
Although online and brick-and-mortar courses share similarities in terms of readings, lectures, and assignments, these programs also differ in several ways. Additionally, finding great online colleges can be difficult due to the wealth of differences between each institution. Here are answers to some of the most common questions about online versus brick-and-mortar programs.
The University of Arizona Online offers multiple bachelor's programs for distance learners. Students pursuing technical careers can choose degrees in STEM fields such as cyber operations, geographic information systems technology, network operations, and meteorology. Options for those seeking a liberal arts education include bachelor's degrees in Africana studies, economy and industry, public health, and sustainable built environments. The university also offers 31 online master's degrees and six online nursing doctorates.
The fourth-largest degree-granting institution in North Carolina, East Carolina University offers a total of 22 online bachelor's degree completion programs aimed at transfer students. These include concentrations in several specialized areas of industrial technology, such as bioprocess manufacturing, distribution and logistics, and health information technology. Other options for undergraduates include five business pathways, five teaching tracks, and an RN-to-BSN. Online grad students at ECU can choose from 51 master's degrees and concentrations -- most of which concentrate in education and/or healthcare -- and seven doctorates.
It's important to note that tuition prices for online students do not always match those of their brick-and-mortar counterparts. Many colleges and universities offer a flat tuition rate for online students, regardless of their state of residence. These rates vary by school, but generally fall between the rates for in-state and out-of-state learners.
Considered the oldest and largest online degree-providing institution in the state, Northwestern State University of Louisiana offers web-based programs at all degree levels. Bachelor's options include degrees in fields such as addiction studies, business administration, and social work; the psychology and unified public safety administration fields offer multiple concentrations.
To ensure the best possible outcomes for your education program, the online degree program you choose should be accredited by either one of the six primary regional accrediting boards, the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, or an accrediting board that specializes in education programs. Examples of these programmatic accrediting agencies include the Commission on English Language Program Accreditation (CEA), Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS), and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
Whereas electronics engineering focuses on developing and bettering technology that uses electricity to function, electrical engineers focus on electricity itself. The main goal of electrical engineers lies in how to produce sufficient energy for human needs and how to effectively distribute it. Areas of specialization can include motors, power generation equipment, and radar or navigational technology. Electrical engineers often work with dangerous or even deadly amounts of electricity in play and require extensive safety training on top of their formal education. Due to the nature of their work, electrical engineers may spend significant amounts of time working on-site at locations.
Online degrees are available in over 134 popular subjects that cover 32,167 unique programs from online schools. They are available at the associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and certificate levels. Every school on our website is accredited by an organization recognized by the Department of Education. This list provides 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.

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.

Online courses often consist of required readings and lecture videos, which may be livestreamed or prerecorded. Distance learners can complete these assignments entirely online. Some courses also include discussion elements; in these cases, students typically participate in group chats with their professors and fellow classmates. Some online courses also feature in-person components, such as site-based practicum training. These courses are known as "blended" because they integrate online and brick-and-mortar elements.
Why do we focus our work on accredited online colleges? With the expansion of traditionally campus-based institutions into online degree programs, there are more options than ever for prospective online students. This also increases the need for research before committing to an online college. An accredited online college will guarantee that your degree is seen as valuable by other learning institutions and future employers, providing you assurance that your online degree will be a good investment. There are many
Another important consideration is the cost of tuition compared to the net price of attendance. Tuition is the listed rate found on the school's website, while net price refers to the amount students pay after loans, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid are applied. For example, the College Board notes that the average student attending a four-year public institution in 2017-18 paid $21,370 in tuition and room and board. However, these students also received an average of $6,490 in financial aid, bringing their average net price to $14,880 — nearly 30% less than the listed price for tuition and room and board.
Texas Tech helps veteran students and holds the designation of a Purple Heart University. The school also welcomes transfer students with scholarships of $4,500 for those who enroll with up to 30 transfer credits and $6,000 for those with up to 60 transfer credits. Those who place in the top 10% of their graduating high school class qualify for automatic admission to Texas Tech.
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