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Online Colleges in Kentucky

Most Affordable Online Colleges
Article Sources

Sources:

  1. Eastern Kentucky University, http://ekuonline.eku.edu/earn-bachelors-degree-online
  2. Fun things to Do in Louisville, http://www.gotolouisville.com/play/tours-itineraries/family-children/index.aspx
  3. Gateway Community and Technical College, http://www.gateway.kctcs.edu/en/Academics/Online_Learning/Online_Course_Schedule.aspx
  4. Kentucky Mountain Bible College, http://www.kmbc.edu/OnlineLearning
  5. Kentucky State University, http://kysu.edu/academics/distance-education/online-degree-programs/
  6. Misty Hanks, interview with the author, April 2015
  7. Morehead State University, http://www.moreheadstate.edu/complete/?terms=online%20degree%20programs
  8. Murray State University, http://murraystate.net/distancelearning/programsdegrees/
  9. Northern Kentucky University, http://nkuonline.nku.edu/onlineprograms/programs.html
  10. Regional Accrediting Organizations 2016-2017, Council for Higher Education Accreditation,  accessed January 2017, http://www.chea.org/Directories/regional.asp
  11. Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College, https://southcentral.kctcs.edu/en/kctcshome/Students/LearnByTerm/Online_Courses.aspx
  12. Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, http://southeast.kctcs.edu/Academics/Distance_Learning.aspx
  13. Things to do in Lexington, http://www.10best.com/destinations/kentucky/lexington/
  14. U.S. Census Bureau: American Factfinder, http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF
  15. University of Kentucky, http://www.uky.edu/DistanceLearning/current/programs/online.html
  16. Western Kentucky University, http://www.wku.edu/online/bachelors/index.php
  17. KHEAA Administered Programs, Accessed April 2017, https://www.kheaa.com/website/kheaa/kheaaprograms?main=1
  18. KHEAA Real Cost of College, Accessed April 2017, https://www.kheaa.com/website/kheaa/pay_realcost?main=1
  19. Kentucky Schools' Net Price Calculators, Accessed April 2017, https://www.kheaa.com/website/kheaa/pay_schoolnpc?main=1
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Kentucky is offering up more than great horses and basketball these days. It is increasingly taking a place at the forefront of online learning. Boosting higher education through online alternatives could be a boon to the state's economy.

Affordable Online Colleges in Kentucky

The following list features schools in Kentucky that offer online degree programs at low tuition costs. Tuition figures are sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics and reflect in-state tuition (when in-state tuition is available) for all students, including online students.

Affordable Two-Year Online Colleges in Kentucky

1

Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$3,528
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
37.41%
Institution Type
Public

About

Southcentral Kentucky offers a varying number of online classes each spring, fall and summer term. There are classes in math, science, computers and a wide variety of topics. During registration and add/drop periods, the list of available classes is updated on a daily basis, saving you time and aggravation.

School Website: 
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2

Gateway Community and Technical College

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$3,528
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
39.38%
Institution Type
Public

About

At Gateway, online classes are fully accredited, fulfill many degree requirements and are offered in 5-, 8-, 10- and 12-week options. Classes are offered in a full array of subjects, including history, writing, business and math.

School Website: 
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3

Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$3,528
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
39.31%
Institution Type
Public

About

Southeast Kentucky invites students to "get a degree from your living room" by taking online classes through its own curriculum or by signing up for any of the 1,100 online classes offered through the Kentucky Virtual Campus. The school's Learn by Term program offers online Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree programs in a wide variety of subjects.

School Website: 
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Affordable Four-Year Online Colleges in Kentucky

1

Murray State University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$6,552
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
31.26%
Institution Type
Public

About

For 24 straight years Murray State University has been recognized by "U.S. News & World Report's Best Colleges" as one of the top regional universities in the United States. Some of the online undergraduate programs offered are in Business Administration; Computer Information Systems; Logistics and Supply Chain Management; Nursing; and Telecommunications Systems Management. Its master's degree programs are offered topics such as in Business Administration; Information Systems; Occupational Safety and Health; Public Administration; Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages; Nursing; and Telecommunications Management. It also offers a doctorate in Nursing Practice.

School Website: 
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2

Kentucky Mountain Bible College

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$6,750
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
16.18%
Institution Type
Private

About

It may not be big, but it has lofty aspirations. Kentucky Mountain Bible College offers online classes for both personal enrichment and for college credit, including courses on English Bible Survey; Foundations of Faith; Theology of Holiness; and Acts. The school is located in the beautiful eastern Kentucky region, and it boasts a student-faculty ratio of 6 to 1.

School Website: 
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3

Kentucky State University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$7,364
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
52.52%
Institution Type
Public

About

KSU offers bachelor's degree programs online in the areas of Applied Information Technology; Criminal Justice; Psychology; and Public Administration. Its master's degree programs are in Aquaculture and Special Education, and it also has a doctoral program in Nursing Practice.

School Website: 
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4

Morehead State University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$8,098
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
45.43%
Institution Type
Public

About

Like other schools in Kentucky, Morehead specializes in "completer" degree programs for students who have an associate degree and want to study online to earn their bachelor's degree. These completion programs are offered in areas such as Accounting; Small Business Management; Nursing; Technology Management; and Computer Information Systems. Some of the other fully online bachelor's degree programs available are focused on Accounting; Business Administration-Small Business Management and Entrepreneurship Track; Computer Information Systems; Leadership in Medical Imaging; Nursing; Technology Management. Its online Master's degree programs include Adult and Higher Education; Educational Technology; English; Management Information Systems; Business Administration-Health Systems Management Track; Teaching; Social Science; and Wellness Promotion, plus others.

School Website: 
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5

Eastern Kentucky University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$8,150
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
49.68%
Institution Type
Public

About

Eastern Kentucky notes that the same respected faculty who teach on campus are also leading the school's online degree programs. The school offers six start dates each year, making its wide selection of online degree programs more available to students. Its associate degree programs include General Studies, General Studies degree completion; Paralegal Studies; Law Enforcement; and Police Studies. Its 18 undergraduate degrees range from Fire Science to Occupational Safety, and its online master's degree options run the gamut from Construction Management to Instructional Leadership.

School Website: 
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6

Northern Kentucky University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$8,736
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
37.74%
Institution Type
Public

About

Northern Kentucky is located just 7 miles outside of Cincinnati in Highland Heights, Kentucky, in a growing and friendly suburban campus. But what is drawing many students to Northern Kentucky is its online degree programs. NKU has bachelor's degree programs in Communication Studies; Criminal Justice; History; Integrative Studies; Organizational Leadership; Business Informatics; Health Science; Library Informatics; and Nursing. Its online master's degree programs include Education Teacher Leadership; Nursing; Health Informatics; Health Science; and Education Specialist. It also offers a doctorate program in Nursing Practice.

School Website: 
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7

Western Kentucky University

Accredited
 
Tuition/Year Tuition per year refers to the average in-state tuition for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2014, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
$9,482
Distance Education Participation Distance Education Participation refers to the percentage of students taking either some or all of the courses via distance education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
38.31%
Institution Type
Public

About

Western Kentucky offers a full range of online degree programs, including two-year, four-year and postgraduate programs. The school's three online associate degree programs are Early Childhood Education; Interdisciplinary Studies; and Water Resource Management. It has multiple online bachelor's degree programs, such as Sociology; Family and Consumer Sciences (with concentrations on Child Studies and Family Studies; and Organizational Leadership. It also offers degree completion programs for students with an associate degree or some college credit. These "2+2" degree programs include Computer Information Technology; Dental Hygiene; Environmental Health Science; Business Administration; Nursing; Systems Management; and Technology Management. Its 22 master's degree programs offered online run the gamut from Criminology to Sports Media and Branding.

School Website: 
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College Accreditation in Kentucky

Students can evaluate the strength of a college or university in many ways. They can review retention rates, graduation rates and graduate placement statistics. Accreditation is another important factor to consider.

Accreditation can come from several sources. Some organizations accredit specific types of schools. For instance, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools oversees private institutions. Other bodies may accredit a specific degree program. However, regional accreditation is available to all postsecondary schools. The following is the regional accrediting body in Kentucky:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Colleges in Kentucky that lack this accreditation may have other credentials listed on their website. If so, check carefully to ensure its accreditation is from a valid organization that is approved by the Department of Education.

School Interviews

I think the idea that there is online learning, hybrid learning, and face-to-face learning is too limited. I think the lines between all three will be blurred and we'll add new technologies, tools, practices and approaches.

Misty Hanks

Director of Distance Education & Instructional Design

Morehead State University

Q. Can you tell us a little about the online programs offered at Morehead?

Morehead State has both graduate and undergraduate online programs and is committed to providing rigorous degree and certificate programs that support working adults. Our English master's degree program was rated ninth best by OnlineMastersPrograms.org. Our School of Business Administration was ranked in the 2015 rankings of the Top 50 Best Value Online Business Schools by Value Colleges and in Military Times' "Best For Vets: Business Schools 2015."

Q. What advice would you give to students interested in an online degree program?

Online degree programs offer the student a lot of flexibility but that does not mean that you do not need some kind of structure to be successful. I would recommend that an online student set aside time to work on schoolwork -- put it on your calendar. It is like they tell us about making time for exercise -- put it on your calendar and make it a priority. When I was working on an online degree the only time I could carve out for my studies was 5-6 a.m. I worked for one hour every day before going to work. I used my lunch hours to read textbooks, read a journal article, or proofread assignments. That work time adds up to 10 hours a week!

Also important is having a dedicated place to do your school work. If you do not have an office or a desk, then at a minimum, keep all your school materials in the same backpack. Keep everything you need together so that you don't waste time chasing down materials. Time is a precious commodity for everyone. Keeping your school materials all together helps you avoid needless searching and lets you use every minute learning.

Q. How do you anticipate online learning might evolve in the coming years?

I think that most people have this vision of online learning as a very specific thing. Many think it is only about asynchronous communication and not as dynamic as a traditional face-to-face classroom. I think online learning will be a term that evolves to include a very broad spectrum of teaching and learning practices that can't be pigeon-holed. I think the idea that there is online learning, hybrid learning, and face-to-face learning is too limited. I think the lines between all three will be blurred and we'll add new technologies, tools, practices and approaches. I see online learning growing and I don't mean enrollment.

Financial Aid in Kentucky

Kentucky Loans

The state of Kentucky does not provide students with loans for college, preferring instead to offer assistance through scholarships and grants administered by the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA). Before acquiring a federal or private loan, students are encouraged to apply for these state-specific awards, as well as other scholarships, grants, work-study programs and tuition waivers for which they are eligible. At that point, if you are still in need of additional funding for college, you can look into federal and private student loan programs. To qualify for federal aid, you will need to fill out the FAFSA and supply information about your family's financial situation.

Get more in-depth information about how to qualify for student loans by checking out the Ultimate Guide to Student Loans.

Additional Resources for Financial Aid in Kentucky

  • KHEAA Real Cost of College is a resource for Kentucky students to get an idea of how much of their tuition will actually need to be paid by them or their family. Often, the cost is less than families might think. There is also a handy link to a list of Kentucky Schools' Net Price Calculators for students to get an even more specific idea of what they might be expected to pay for their education at their Kentucky school of choice.

Featured Cities in Kentucky

Data on these featured cities is sourced from the 2015 American Community Survey (census.gov).

Fun Facts

Nothing says Kentucky like horse racing, so many visitors to the city make sure to visit Churchill Downs race track. Other popular sites include the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the Kentucky Derby Museum, and the Louisville Zoo.

Lexington-Fayette, KY Metro Area

Total Population

489,799

Median salary for high school grads

$26,336

Median salary with a bachelor's degree

$45,530

% of the population enrolled in college or grad school

37.7%

Median rent

$764

Fun Facts

Lexington, of course, is a hotbed for college basketball, so during the college season visitors like to get in to see the perennially powerful Wildcats play in Rupp Arena. There is also a lot of history to see here, including the Mary Todd Lincoln House, the Kentucky Theater, and the Hunt-Morgan House.

Bowling Green, KY Metro Area

Total Population

164,245

Median salary for high school grads

$25,991

Median salary with a bachelor's degree

$40,158

% of the population enrolled in college or grad school

37.8%

Median rent

$677

Fun Facts

Bowling Green has several significant points of interest for a town of its size. There is, for example, the Lost River Cave, Kentucky's only underground boat tour; Beech Bend Park; and the National Corvette Museum. Bowling Green is also home to Corsair Distillery, which gives visitors a taste of Kentucky's rich distilling history.

 
Article Sources