Top Online Graduate Degree Programs Thru Distance Learning

Many online or distance learning graduate programs are designed to provide working students with the educational training they need to advance in their careers or make a career change. Online graduate programs are available at the graduate certificate, masters and doctoral level from a number of top schools.

School Overviews

Top online graduate schools offering distance learning programs include University of Florida in Gainesville, Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts and Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. These schools offer a variety of distance learning programs, including online master's and doctoral degree programs in a number of fields of study. Each of these schools has online graduate programs that are highly ranked by US News & World Report. In addition, the University of Florida and Northeastern are both ranked among the top 50 national universities.

University of Florida in Gainesville, FL

School Highlight: The school offers a CHOMP (Career Help for Major Planning) program to help students decide on a structured career path.

Individuals interested in enrolling in an online graduate degree program can look to this college's distance learning institution, which offers master's degrees in business, engineering, education and pharmacy. Additionally, online distance education doctoral programs are available in subjects ranging from education to audiology. According to the U.S. News & World Report, many of these programs are ranked as some of the best online programs in their field for 2017, including the MBA program, ranked at #4, and the education program, tied for #1.

Northeastern University in Boston, MA

School Highlight: Five different colleges all offer online graduate degree programs.

This private research university provides distance-based master's and doctoral degree programs. Master's degree areas of study include information technology, engineering, legal, communications, health and business. Online doctoral degree programs are offered in physical therapy and education. U.S. News & World Report ranked the online graduate business program as tied for 18th place among online graduate business programs, with the online MBA program tied for 36th place.

Ball State University in Muncie, IN

School Highlight: Ball State University offers over 20 online master's degree programs in fields like psychology, business, education and nursing.

In addition to their master's degrees, Ball State also offers online doctoral degrees in the areas of adult, higher and community education; education administration, supervision and superintendency; and nursing. In addition to these degree programs, the university also offers certificates and licensure programs online. According to U.S. News & World Report's 2017 online graduate program rankings, Ball State University's online education program tied for 11th best place, the MBA program tied for 12th best and the online graduate nursing program tied for 23rd place.

Top Online Graduate Degree Distance Learning Programs

Here are a few more schools that offer high-quality, online graduate programs.

  • Boston University in Boston, MA, earned the U.S. Distance Learning Association award for 21st Century Best Practices.
  • Columbia University in New York, NY, ranked #3 for best online graduate engineering programs by U.S. News & World Report for 2017.
  • East Carolina University in Greenville, NC, offers online orientation for distance learners.
  • Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY, has over 100,000 distance learning alumni.
  • Indiana University - Bloomington Ranked #1 for best online graduate business programs by U.S. News & World Report for 2017.
  • Michigan State University in East Lansing, MI, offers special library services for distance learners.
  • Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, has online graduate programs offered in non-traditional fields, like pharmacy, construction management and agricultural economics.

We've provided a roundup of top schools around the country that offer graduate-level degrees and certificates through online or distance learning programs. By earning a high rank from U.S. News & World Report or by providing a wide range of programs, these programs have distinguished themselves as some of the best.

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