Many students are drawn to online learning for the convenience and flexibility it offers, in the past, if you wanted to get a degree, or even simply learn something new, you would sign up for a course at a bricks-and-mortar institution, pay any relevant fees, and then physically attend class. That was until the online learning revolution started.
The benefits of online learning go beyond the advantage of attending class any time or the ease of engaging with instructors and other learners anywhere there is Internet access. For students with multiple priorities, such as career and family, online learning is a likely choice because of the many benefits. While taking a class online provides for a great deal of flexibility, it also means an increase in responsibility and other skill sets. It doesn’t mean that the work is “easier” than an on-campus course. With the convenience and flexibility of a 24/7 classroom comes an increased responsibility to self-motivate, manage time appropriately, adequately prepare for academic success, actively participate and fully engage in your learning, and become more familiar and comfortable with the use of technology.
The current challenges facing traditional colleges and universities, including higher tuition, budget cuts, and course shortages, have caused many students to search for alternatives. With nearly three million students currently enrolled in fully online degree programs and six million taking at least one online course as part of their degree program, online education has clearly become one of the most popular higher education alternatives. The continually improving reputation of online learning has also helped fuel its expansion, as initial doubt has faltered in the face of evidence that shows that online learning can be just as effective as face-to-face education.
Online learning is the future of education–at all levels, but especially in higher education. As the concept of distance learning evolves from cassette tape and telephone learning to high-speed, interactive Internet lessons, more doors are opened for students for whom traditional classroom learning simply does not work.
Online Learning, E-Learning, Distance Education; call it what you will, online learning has come to stay, below are some affordable online colleges you can choose from
Affordable Online Learning Colleges
1. University of Florida
The University of Florida rises to the top of this affordable online colleges ranking for a number of reasons. In addition to its satisfied students (who maintain graduation and retention rates of nearly 90%!), UF also boasts an affordable tuition rate and a robust selection of online programs. This includes over two dozen majors and minors across in-demand fields like Computer Science, Environmental Management, Health Education, and Telecommunication Media. And on top of all that, the university has created UF OneStop, a dedicated support team that exists solely to answer questions from distance learners about everything from registration to financial aid.
2. Amberton University
With programs geared towards working adults, Amberton University offers 6 online bachelor’s degree programs and 12 online master’s programs. Students can complete courses at their own pace and can start a program at the beginning of any semester. The university offers non-traditional semester schedules including a winter semester from December to February. Amberton University also has a pay-as-you-go policy as well as payment plans to help prevent students accruing long-term debt.
3. Albany State University
Albany State University offers 23 online associate degrees, 8 online bachelor’s degrees, and 5 online master’s degrees. All distance students have access to an online writing center as well as an online math center. ASU uses the Desire2Learn learning management system to organize and deliver their online courses. All students must complete the GaVIEW Orientation including a short quiz before they can begin a course.
4. Middle Georgia State University
Middle Georgia State University offers various online degree options across the associate, bachelor’s, and master’s levels. These programs include a fully online orientation for prospective students. The courses are delivered through a learning management system called Desire2Learn, and all distance students have access to an advisor. Students can choose to communicate with their advisor through email, phone, or in person.
5. Daytona State College
This highly affordable online college is actually tied for second on U.S. News and World Report’s list of the best online bachelor’s programs. The shining star of the college is its $10,000 education degree. Such a low figure is achieved by the school offering the final 30 credit hours tuition free. Certain requirements must be met, but it’s worth a look for any interested in this field. According to school reports, 93% of education graduates found jobs in their field. Other online bachelor degree programs are nursing, engineering technology, information technology, and supervision & management.
6. Bellevue University
This private, not-for-profit university is one of the most inexpensive private universities in the United States. Bellevue offers an impressive 46 undergraduate degrees online, several of which are difficult to find at other schools. Some of the programs offered include banking operations management, business analytics, communication studies, computer information systems, cyber security, digital marketing, graphic design, security management, and software development.
7.Colorado State University-Global Campus
Created in 2007, is an online state university. It’s one of the top affordable online colleges. Earning a bachelor’s degree from CSU-Global increases employment opportunities and earning potential. Undergraduate programs include accounting, project management, healthcare administration and management, and human resource management.