Online Colleges in Virginia
The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (research.schev.edu, 2012) estimates that a bachelor's degree holder earns an average of $1 million more over a lifetime than someone with only a high school diploma. Even more, an individual with a doctorate can expect to earn $1 million more than a bachelor's graduate. Unfortunately, according to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau (census.gov, 2011), only 42 percent of Virginians over 25 possess a postsecondary degree. That leaves over half the state's workforce with, at best, only a high school diploma.
Thanks to the rise of online education, students in Virginia now have more options for higher education. A growing number of schools in the state have begun offering virtual degree programs, including institutions like the University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. Now a viable alternative to traditional college, online schools can provide a new way for students to get the education they need today - and help prepare them for the careers of tomorrow.
Advantages of Online Education for Students in Virginia
For Virginians pursuing higher education, there are numerous advantages to an online degree program. Most online schools allow students to follow curriculum at their own pace, accessing lectures and coursework anytime their schedule permits. This affords working adults, as well as those with a family, the ability to balance an education with their other obligations. Unlike campus classes, which meet at a fixed time and location, students can log on to online courses from anywhere with an Internet connection. This is especially beneficial for students located far from local campuses, as well as those traveling frequently for work.
Additionally, while traditional college courses tend to fill up quickly, online programs typically do not have enrollment caps. These virtual classrooms, open to anyone who qualifies, also allow students to work with peers and instructors from around the globe and across the professional landscape. Through coursework, online classmates will be introduced to technologies that are quickly becoming commonplace in businesses both big and small. For example, Virginia Tech utilizes interactive videoconferencing to deliver its master's degree programs, available in concentrations such as aerospace engineering, political science, and information technology.
Trends in Online Education: Public and Private Online Schools in Virginia
Many schools in Virginia now feature online education options, including some of the biggest institutions in the state. While many, such as George Mason University, currently only offer individual courses, a growing number have begun to offer full degree programs. The University of Virginia currently has a limited set of certificate and graduate programs available, such as M.A. in Physics Education and Master of Engineering in Electrical and Computer Engineering. On the other hand, Old Dominion is one of the nation's largest providers of online learning. They host a wide range of available programs, from a B.S. in Criminal Justice to a M.S. in Dental Hygiene to a Ph.D. in English.
The Southern Regional Education Board is a nonprofit organization comprised of governors, legislators, and educators dedicated to helping students in the region find quality education options. Launched in 2008, its Electronic Campus is a database of online education offerings from schools throughout the South. Prospective students can browse courses and degrees by subject area, institution, and program level. As of January 2013, it features 51 programs from 27 schools located in Virginia.
Many national online colleges also offer online programs to students in Virginia. Typically, these schools have featured virtual education for longer than their brick and mortar counterparts, and boast a wider range of degrees. Some, such as Strayer University and ITT Technical Institute, even have campuses in Virginia where students can attend class as well. Prospective students should research different schools and degree options to find a program that fits both their personal and academic needs.
Entry Requirements and Application Process for Virginia Online Colleges
As with traditional degrees, the application process for online programs differs from school to school. Interested students should contact an admissions advisor for details on specific entry requirements and tuition costs. Most national online schools have counselors available to answer questions immediately online. To learn more about online learning options in your area, or to start the application process today, request information from one of the colleges below.
2011 American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau
"First Look: Post-Completion Wages of Graduates," State Council of Higher Education for Virginia
Mason Online, George Mason University
Old Dominion University Distance Learning
Southern Regional Education Board's Electronic Campus
University of Virginia
Virginia Tech Online
View Online College Courses in Virginia Below
This list also contains online colleges that accept students from Virginia.
At University of Phoenix, we believe everyone deserves access to higher education.
Thanks to Florida Tech offering intensive degree programs 100% online, students located all over the world have the opportunity to access the same world-class education as those who attend classes on the main campus in Melbourne, Florida.
We're with you, from start to finish.
Earn a Certificate, Associate, Bachelor, Master's or Doctorate for less at Baker College Online.
Ultimate Medical Academy (UMA) offers industry-relevant knowledge and training for in demand careers in healthcare.
The USC School of Social Work’s MSW@USC offers the opportunity to earn a Master of Social Work degree through the Virtual Academic Center without relocating to Southern California.
Manage your career and your life while earning your degree online.