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Online Colleges in New Mexico

Most Affordable Online Colleges
   Page Contents

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the unemployment rate in New Mexico was 6.6 percent in 2012, better than that of the rest of the country. Some growing industries in New Mexico are:

  • Mining and Lodging
  • Leisure and Hospitality
  • Education and Health Services

Of the 1.3 million New Mexicans who are older than 25, one in 10 has a graduate or professional degree and nearly 15 percent have earned a bachelor's degree, according the U.S. Census Bureau. One in three has an associate degree or have attended college without earning a diploma. Among the 200,000 residents who are between 18 and 24, more than 40 percent have earned an associate degree or have attended some college.

New Mexico's 784,000 workers earn an average of $19.94 an hour, for an annual average income of $41.470, according to the BLS. Those who are interested in returning to school, either to complete their undergraduate degree or to simply get started on earning a diploma, can choose from 20 different colleges or universities that offer Bachelor's degrees. More than half of those schools are public institutions.

Most Affordable Online Colleges in New Mexico

The following list ranks the schools in New Mexico that offer online degrees at the lowest tuition costs. If you would like to see a ranking of the top online schools in New Mexico based on other criteria, check out the Top Colleges tool.

Most Affordable Two-Year Online College in New Mexico

1

University of New Mexico - Los Alamos

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
$1,662
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.
65.8%
Institution Type
Public

About

In recent years, this branch of the University of New Mexico has been greatly expanding its online degree programs. Bachelor's degrees are now offered online in business administration; communication; computer science; dental hygiene; early childhood & multicultural education; emergency medical services; liberal arts and integrative studies; medical laboratory sciences; nursing; and radiologic sciences. Master's degree programs range from dental hygiene to nuclear engineering. Their doctoral program is in nursing.

School Website: 
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Most Affordable Four-Year Online Colleges in New Mexico

1

Eastern New Mexico 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
$3,065
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.
60.33%
Institution Type
Public

About

Eastern New Mexico's fully accredited online degrees cover a wide range of disciplines and are noted for their personal, flexible approach. Online bachelor's degree programs range from Aviation Science, Communicative Disorders, Electronics Engineering Technology, Nursing and Religion. Their extensive options for online master's degree programs include Business Administration, Education Administration, Elementary Education, Pedagogy and Learning (with an emphasis in reading, TESOL, ELED, SPED, Ed Tech, and BLED), Physical Education (emphases in coaching or sports administration), Career and Technical Education, Reading and Literacy, Special Education-Early Childhood and Nursing-Nursing Education.

School Website: 
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2

New Mexico Highlands 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
$3,192
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.
36.63%
Institution Type
Public

About

New Mexico Highlands University, located in the Four Corners area of the state, offers many courses online that can lead to earning a bachelor's or master's degree. However, it's only fully online degree program is Nursing. That program is offered to students who have earned an associate degree in nursing.

School Website: 
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3

Western New Mexico 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
$3,562
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.
51.36%
Institution Type
Public

About

Western offers primarily asynchronous online programs, which means students can access their course assignments at any time or place. Some programs do require synchronous meetings for such things as labs or scheduled meetings via web-conference. Associate degree programs are offered in Liberal Studies and Criminal Justice. Bachelor's degree programs are offered in Criminal Justice; Interdisciplinary Studies; Nursing; Rehabilitation Services; and Social Work. Online graduate degree programs include Business Administration; Educational Leadership; Interdisciplinary Studies; Occupational Therapy; Reading; Social Work; and Teaching.

School Website: 
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4

New Mexico 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
$4,812
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.
36.97%
Institution Type
Public

About

New Mexico State University has become a leader in the Land of Enchantment through its online degree-completion programs for bachelor's degrees as well as its offerings for graduate and doctoral students. The seven undergraduate degrees include Sociology; Business Administration (General business); Criminal Justice; Information and Communication Technology; Business Administration (Marketing); Elementary Education; and Nursing. Their 18 master's degree programs run from Agricultural and Extension Education to Nursing Administration. Doctorate programs are offered in Curriculum and Instruction; Nursing; and Educational Leadership.

School Website: 
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5

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

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
$5,298
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.
6.02%
Institution Type
Public

About

At NMIMT, distance students are brought into the classroom through Tech's multimedia-enabled classrooms, which allows online students to hear the same lectures and ask questions just like those who are physically present. Students can earn graduate degrees in mechanical engineering; materials engineering; and engineering management, and a certificate in hydrology engineering. A Master of Science for Teachers degree is also available.

School Website: 
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College Accreditation in New Mexico

Before enrolling in any degree program, students should confirm a school is properly accredited. The Department of Education requires accreditation from an approved body before federal financial aid can be granted. What's more, accreditation means the college or university has met acceptable quality standards.

Colleges in New Mexico are accredited by the following regional body:

  • Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

This is the commission recognized by the government for regional accreditation. Other agencies may accredit specific types of schools or degrees within the state.

School Interviews

Teresita Aguilar
Online courses offer a diverse array of subject matter and convenience, but the exchange of ideas is still a major foundation of the learning process.

Dr. Teresita E. Aguilar

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

New Mexico Highlands University

Q. Can you tell us about the online educational opportunities available at the New Mexico Highlands University?

New Mexico Highlands offers two fully online undergraduate degrees, a Bachelor of Science in nursing for students who already hold an associate of nursing and a bachelor of business administration for students holding an associate degree. Our graduate MBA program is also fully online.

Q. Do you see interest in online education growing at your school?

Highlands is currently developing its five-year strategic plan, and the expansion of online offerings is a major component of the plan. NMHU currently offers a very limited number of fully online degree programs and several online and hybrid courses. In our strategic planning process for HU Vision 2020, the steering committee is recommending that we "leverage technology ... to support quality and innovation in teaching and learning." To that end, we anticipate increasing the number of fully online graduate programs and undergraduate degree completion programs for transfer students.

Q. What tips would you be provide to students who are considering online education, at your school or elsewhere?

Online courses offer a diverse array of subject matter and convenience, but the exchange of ideas is still a major foundation of the learning process. Students taking online courses should try to get to know other students and the professor if possible.

We have found that our more successful online students are highly motivated, disciplined, and have a good support base from family members or employers. Many students describe their appreciation for access to course materials 24-7, clear directions on assignments, and accessibility of faculty and tech support as benefits to being an online student.

Top Cities For Students In New Mexico

Albuquerque, NM Metro Area

Total Population

902,731

Median salary for high school grads

$26,785

Median salary with a bachelor's degree

$44,555

% of the population enrolled in college or grad school

31.3%

Median rent

$814

Economics

The Albuquerque metropolitan area, located in the central part of the state and including the fast-growing suburban city of Rio Ranchos, is the economic hub of New Mexico. There are 370,000 workers living in this area, and they earn an average hourly wage of $20.60. This translates into an average annual income of $42,840, slightly higher than the state average.

Demographics

Albuquerque, when combined with the surrounding counties of Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance and Valencia, is home to nearly 1 million. More than half live within the city limits of Albuquerque. The area provides roughly half of the entire state's workforce. More than 350,000 of Albuquerque's residents are older than 25, and in that group, 14 percent have a graduate or professional degree and 18 percent have a bachelor's degree.

Fun Facts

Science and Native American heritage are strong influencers in New Mexico, and this is reflected in many of the Albuquerque area's popular attractions. Many visitors make sure to stop at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center, the Petroglyph National Monument and the National Museum of Nuclear Science.

Las Cruces, NM Metro Area

Total Population

213,963

Median salary for high school grads

$21,761

Median salary with a bachelor's degree

$40,380

% of the population enrolled in college or grad school

37.3%

Median rent

$709

Economics

Las Cruces, the home of New Mexico State University, is located in the fertile Mesilla Valley and flanked by the majestic Organ Mountains. Workers here, many of whom are employed by the federal government, earn an average of $18.64 an hour for an average annual wage of $38,780.

Demographics

The nearly 70,000 workers in Las Cruces represent just under 10 percent of the state's entire workforce. Nearly 13 percent of the adult population has a graduate or professional degree, and 18 percent have a bachelor's degree.

Fun Facts

As a farming community, it's not surprising that Las Cruces is rich in farmers markets and good restaurants serving locally grown foods. As a college town, it's no surprise that the city also has a vibrant nightlife and cultural heritage. The New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum is one of the area's top attractions.

Santa Fe, NM Metro Area

Total Population

147,108

Median salary for high school grads

$26,293

Median salary with a bachelor's degree

$42,581

% of the population enrolled in college or grad school

29.4%

Median rent

$945

Economics

Though home to just under 68,000 people, Santa Fe is nevertheless a booming place. Workers here bring home on average $20.44 an hour, for an annual average income of $42,520.

Demographics

Santa Fe's 59,000 workers represent roughly 8 percent of the state's workforce. But they are a well-educated group. Among those who are older than 25, one in five has a graduate or professional degree and one in five has a bachelor's. In addition, one in four residents has attended college or earned an associate degree.

Fun Facts

Santa Fe is an artists' mecca, so it's not surprising that galleries and showings are a big part of the cultural life here. The Georgia O'Keefe Museum is located in Santa Fe, as is the Museum of International Folk Art. Visitors want to make sure to roam the Santa Fe historic district and visit the Loretto Chapel.

 
Article Sources

Sources:

  1. College Navigator, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=NM&l=93&ct=2+3
  2. Eastern New Mexico University, http://www.enmu.edu/future-students/onlinedegrees.shtml
  3. Eastern New Mexico University Notable Alumni, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eastern_New_Mexico_University#Notable_alumni
  4. Fun Things to Do in Albuquerque, http://www.visitalbuquerque.org/things-to-do/
  5. Fun Things to Do in Las Cruces, http://www.meetlascruces.com/
  6. Fun Things to do in Santa Fe, http://santafe.org/Visiting_Santa_Fe/Things_to_Do/Kids_Activities/
  7. National American University, http://www.national.edu/programs/online
  8. New Mexico Highlands University, http://nmhu.edu/statewidecenters/distancelearning/index.aspx
  9. New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, http://act.nmt.edu/distance/
  10. New Mexico State University, http://distance.nmsu.edu/degree-programs/?order=degree
  11. Notable Alumni New Mexico State University, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Mexico_State_University
  12. Regional Accrediting Organizations 2016-2017, Council for Higher Education Accreditation (Accessed January 2017), http://www.chea.org/Directories/regional.asp
  13. Teresita Aguilar, interview with the author, June 2015
  14. U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder, http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF
  15. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nm.htm
  16. University of New Mexico, http://statewide.unm.edu/online/index.html
  17. University of New Mexico Notable Alumni, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_University_of_New_Mexico_alumni
  18. University of New Mexico Los Alamos, http://statewide.unm.edu/nm/los-alamos/index.html
  19. University of the Southwest, http://www.brownmackie.edu/
  20. Western New Mexico University, http://online.wnmu.edu/offerings/#undergraduate
  21. Western New Mexico University Notable Alumni, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_New_Mexico_University#Notable_alumni
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Article Sources