With 188 schools to choose from, it's important to research as many schools in Florida as possible to find out where to earn your associate's degree. Learn about student population, graduation rate, proximity to cities, and net price for some of the best schools in the state using data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).
Florida Schools Near Large Cities
Going to school in a large city can be appealing for a number of reasons. Living within a major metropolitan area allows you more opportunities off campus and lets you absorb the culture of whichever city you're staying in. The NCES lists several examples of associate's degree-providing schools within large Florida cities, such as:
- Virginia College - Jacksonville (Jacksonville)
- University of South Florida - Main Campus (Tampa)
- Atlantis University (Miami)
- Everest University - Tampa (Tampa)
- Florida Career College - Jacksonville (Jacksonville)
Largest Schools in Florida
A larger campus size can often mean a larger number of activities and services offered to students. If this is a concern for you, the NCES offers a list of schools in Florida offering associate's degrees along with their student enrollment information from 2015. According to this data, these were the five largest schools in the state.
- University of Central Florida (62,953 students)
- Miami Dade College (62,332 students)
- University of Florida (50,645 students)
- Florida International University (49,782 students)
- Valencia College (44,050 students)
Lowest Net Price
The cost of going to college is often the most important factor when selecting a school. The NCES determines the average net price by subtracting the amount of government or financial aid a student receives from the total cost of attendance. The following schools offered the lowest net price among Florida schools offering associate's degree programs for full-time undergraduates in 2014-2015.
- Indian River State College ($1,547)
- Palm Beach State College ($2,615)
- North Florida Community College ($4,178)
- Tallahassee Community College ($4,307)
- Chipola College ($4,408)
Highest Graduation Rate
For determining the success of a school's students, it is important to observe the graduation rate. The figures reported by the NCES are determined by the overall graduation rates of full-time students who graduated in 150% of 'normal time' (e.g., three years for an associate's degree). The schools listed have the highest undergraduate graduation rates among Florida colleges that offer associate's degree programs.
- Argosy University - Tampa (100% for those enrolled by 2009)
- University of Florida (87% for those enrolled by 2009)
- Southeastern College - Jacksonville (80% for those enrolled by 2012)
- Beacon College (80% for those enrolled by 2009)
- Florida State University (79% for those enrolled by 2009)
Remember to account for net price, location, graduation rate, and student population for each Florida school you preview on your way to earning your associate's degree.