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Online Colleges in Alaska

Most Affordable Online Colleges

Introduction

Residents of this northernmost state appreciate the beauty and isolation that is their unique heritage. On the other hand, local options for higher education are extremely limited. Distance learning programs may be the ideal solution for students in this secluded state. Online colleges in Alaska serve students who want to increase their educational options, despite their remote location.

Although Alaska is the largest state in the U.S., it is only the 47th most populous. As such, college degree programs in Alaska are quite limited; the state offers the fewest options in the country. That said, there are still 10 colleges in Alaska that offer a total of 1,805 associate degree programs, 2,033 bachelor's degree programs and 707 master's degree programs.

There are 710, 231 people who live in the state of Alaska. Of those aged 25 and older, 17.7 percent have a bachelor's degree and 9.8 percent have a graduate or professional degree. About half of the population of Alaska, 324,970 people, is employed, and in 2014 they collectively made a mean annual wage of $54,040, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Most Affordable Colleges in Alaska

Whether you live far from urban centers or are a resident of Fairbanks or Anchorage, you're probably looking for affordable and flexible degree program options. The following colleges offer students just that. This list of online colleges in Alaska is ranked by tuition costs from lowest to highest, and it includes information on tuition as well as the number and type of online programs offered.

1

Ilisagvik College

Tuition/Year
$3,000
Graduation Rate
23%
# of Online Degrees
0
Accredited
 
School Type
2-Year

About

Ilisagvik College offers distance education courses via teleconference and the online course management system MyCampus. These courses may be applied toward earning a degree in one of the many subject areas available, including Iñupiaq studies, allied health, business, information technology, emergency services, vocational trade, heavy equipment operations, foundation studies, and the teacher preparedness program known as Teachers for the Arctic.
School Website: 
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2

University of Alaska Anchorage

Tuition/Year
$5,376
Graduation Rate
25%
# of Online Degrees
25
Accredited
 
School Type
4-Year

About

The Anchorage campus of the University of Alaska offers online degree programs that can be completed entirely online or in a hybrid format. UA Anchorage students use Blackboard technology to receive course materials and communicate with their teachers.
School Website: 
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3

University of Alaska Fairbanks

Tuition/Year
$5,376
Graduation Rate
32%
# of Online Degrees
42
Accredited
 
School Type
4-Year

About

All three campuses of the University of Alaska, including the campus in Fairbanks, offer online degree programs that can be completed entirely online or in a hybrid format. The online degree programs offered at Fairbanks include associate degree programs in applied accounting, applied business, early childhood education and information technology specialist, as well as an Associate of Arts degree program. Online bachelor's degree programs are offered in business administration, homeland security and emergency management, and justice. Online graduate degree programs are offered in online innovation and design, administration of justice, MBA, and security and disaster management.
School Website: 
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4

University of Alaska Southeast

Tuition/Year
$5,376
Graduation Rate
17%
# of Online Degrees
31
Accredited
 
School Type
4-Year

About

At the University of Alaska Southeast, like all the campuses that are part of the University of Alaska system, eLearning courses are delivered via Blackboard technology. Fully online associate and bachelor's degree programs are offered in the following subjects: accounting, business, education, health information, human resource management, law enforcement, liberal arts, management, management information systems and public administration.
School Website: 
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5

Charter College-Anchorage

Tuition/Year
$19,195
Graduation Rate
46%
# of Online Degrees
19
Accredited
 
School Type
4-Year

About

Charter College-Anchorage offers four online degree programs: an MBA, a bachelor's in accounting and two associates in paralegal studies and computer networking systems. Course materials for all of these degree programs are delivered entirely online.
School Website: 
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6

Alaska Pacific University

Tuition/Year
$19,500
Graduation Rate
60%
# of Online Degrees
8
Accredited
 
School Type
4-Year

About

Select online courses are offered to Alaska Pacific University students each semester. Though created primarily for professional studies students, eLearning courses are available for undergraduates as well. Students must attend either a face-to-face or an online training session to learn the online platform, provided by Blackboard. Each course has a weekly eLearning live chat session, usually scheduled for the evening.
School Website: 
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Top Cities For Students In Alaska

Anchorage, Alaska

Mean Wage

$65,454

Average Cost of a House

$286,600

# of Employed People

162,486

Total Population

301,010

Avg Salary with a Bachelor's Degree

$57,097

Economics

The Anchorage metropolitan area includes the city of Anchorage, Alaska's largest city with a population of 291,826 people. There are 176,310 employed people in this region who make an annual mean wage of $54,700, according to the BLS in 2014.

Demographics

The total population of the Anchorage area is 380,821. The percentage of Anchorage's labor force that is unemployed is 5.1 percent, compared with a statewide unemployment rate of 5.7 percent.

Fun Facts

From the Chugach Mountains to the sparkling waters of Cook Inlet, Anchorage offers a beautiful, natural landscape in which to work and study. In addition to outdoor activities such as dog sledding and fishing, Anchorage offers several cultural and sporting events, such as the Anchorage International Film Festival and the college basketball tournament known as the Great Alaska Shootout.

Fairbanks, Alaska

Mean Wage

$58,946

Average Cost of a House

$215,000

# of Employed People

50,610

Total Population

99,357

Avg Salary with a Bachelor's Degree

$50,888

Economics

The Fairbanks borough that constitutes the Fairbanks metropolitan area is slightly smaller than the state of New Jersey, and it has a population of 97,581 people. The Fairbanks area has 39,950 working people, and according to the BLS, they made a mean annual wage of $54,920 in 2014.

Demographics

Of the 97,581 people in Fairbanks, 4.7 percent of them are without a job, which is lower than the statewide average of 5.7 percent.

Fun Facts

Fairbanks enjoys a rich tradition of ecotourism, which includes viewing the Northern Lights, dog mushing and epic fishing. Fairbanks also boasts a symphony orchestra and a wide selection of galleries showcasing indigenous and contemporary art.

Southeast Alaska, Alaska

Mean Wage

$63,467

Average Cost of a House

$203,500

# of Employed People

3,276

Total Population

6,931

Avg Salary with a Bachelor's Degree

$54,044

Economics

The Southeast Alaska nonmetropolitan area includes the city and borough of Juneau, in addition to seven other regions. Juneau has a population of 31,275 people and is the capital city of Alaska. The Southeast Alaska nonmetropolitan area has 35,130 people who are employed, and they make a mean annual wage of $51,420, according to a 2014 BLS report.

Demographics

Juneau is the second largest city in the United States by area. Because it is surrounded by rugged terrain, there are no roads connecting the city to the United States or the rest of Alaska, and residents rely on a ferry service to get in and out of the city. This isolation may be one reason why the city has kept a relatively low population since it became the capital in 1906.

Fun Facts

From whale watching along the coast to a downtown district rich with history, Juneau has a lot to offer residents and tourists alike. As the capital of Alaska, Juneau is also home to several cultural and historical museums, such as the Last Chance Mining Museum and the Alaska State Museum.

 
Other Alaska Resources

Accredited online colleges give you all the federal funding options students have access to at traditional campus-based programs in Alaska. Transferring your college credits between accredited schools is easy and puts your education on your terms. Furthermore, hybrid degree programs, combining the flexibility of online classes and personal experiences of classroom work, are a powerful new option.

Many occupations in Alaska keep potential students away from home for long periods of time. Even if you just like to travel, online education is a great option for advancing your studies while out on the road.

Sources:

  1. Alaska Pacific University, http://catalog.alaskapacific.edu/content.php?catoid=6&navoid=140
  2. Alaska Statistical Areas, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alaska_statistical_areas
  3. American Fact Finder, Educational Attainment: Alaska, U.S. Census Bureau, accessed November 2015, http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF
  4. Charter College Anchorage, http://www.chartercollege.edu/news-hub/are-these-online-degrees-right-me
  5. Explore Fairbanks Alaska, http://www.explorefairbanks.com/go/explore/arts-and-culture/37
  6. Ilisagvik College, http://www.ilisagvik.edu/departments/online-learning/
  7. IPEDS Data Center, National Center for Education Statistics, accessed November 2015, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/datacenter/CDSPreview.aspx?stepId=4
  8. Juneau, Alaska, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juneau,_Alaska
  9. Labor Force Data, Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed November 2015, http://www.bls.gov/news.release/metro.t01.htm
  10. Occupational Employment Statistics, Alaska, Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed November 2015, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ak.htm
  11. Occupational Employment Statistics, Anchorage, Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed November 2015, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_11260.htm
  12. Occupational Employment Statistics, Fairbanks, Bureau of Labor Statistics, accessed November 2015, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_21820.htm
  13. Occupational Employment Statistics, Southeast Alaska nonmetropolitan area, Bureau of Labor Statistics,  accessed November 2015, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_0200001.htm
  14. TravelJuneau, http://www.traveljuneau.com/index.php
  15. University of Alaska Anchorage, https://classes.uaa.alaska.edu
  16. University of Alaska Fairbanks, http://elearning.uaf.edu/degrees/
  17. University of Alaska Southeast, http://www.uas.alaska.edu/apply/programs/index.html
  18. Visit Anchorage Alaska, http://www.anchorage.net/event/great-alaska-shootout/32024/