Here's a deeper look at what's available in terms of online colleges in New Jersey:

  • More than 40 public and private New Jersey institutions have online associate, bachelor's, and master's degree programs.
  • Associate-level programs can be completed online at 26 colleges. Bachelor's programs are offered online at 25 institutions and master's degrees can be earned at 25.
  • The most online degree programs can be found at Thomas Edison State University, Rutgers University-New Brunswick, and Strayer University-New Jersey.
  • The New Jersey Council of County Colleges consists of 19 community colleges that offer online degree programs.

One way New Jersey's state leaders support residents' postsecondary education is through the statewide transfer agreement. The agreement guarantees that students who complete an associate degree program at any community college in the state can transfer as juniors into one of New Jersey's public colleges.

For information about the top 10 online colleges in New Jersey, read on. This page features a wealth of useful information, including financial aid resources such as scholarships and loan programs specific to the state.

What Makes a Good Online College in New Jersey?

Discovering the online college that's right for you can be a long and involved process. Our goal is to help simplify the process, by presenting prospective students with rankings of the best online colleges in New Jersey. All of the schools displayed in our rankings have received accreditation through an official accrediting agency, such as:

  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS)
  • Council on Occupational Education (COE)
  • Association of Theological Schools (ATS)

Accreditation is extremely important for all colleges to hold, whether they are online or brick-and-mortar institutions. To learn why, read our "What is College Accreditation?" page. For more details about the accreditation of universities, colleges and community colleges in New Jersey, visit the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education in New Jersey website.

However, accreditation is not the only factor we take into account for our rankings. We assess schools based on several metrics, selected for their relevance to the online college experience. These factors — including graduation rate, availability of tuition plans and access to academic and career services — give prospective students ways to compare and contrast online schools. For more details about the criteria we chose and why, see the "What Makes a Good Online College?" section of our "About Us" page.

New-Jersey_Badge

Best Online Colleges in New Jersey for 2019-20

With so many educational options available in New Jersey, it can be difficult to make a decision about which one to attend. To help you make a decision, we analyzed data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) regarding tuition, online programs, retention rate and more to create this list of the 10 best online colleges and universities in the state.

1

Stevens Institute of Technology

Tuition & Fees
$52,202
Distance Education Participation
28%
Number of Programs Offered
33
School Type
4-year

What is SIT like?

The Stevens Institute of Technology is a private research university founded in 1870. It offers two National Research Centers of Excellence and a unique blend of technological education and applied learning opportunities. Special programs abound, such as accelerated master's programs, entrepreneurship coursework, internships, cooperative education and the Pinnacle Scholars Program, among many others.

What online programs are at SIT?

Online education at SIT focuses on the graduate level, with a plethora ofonline master's degree and graduate certificate programs. Available subjects include computer engineering, construction management, information systems, space systems engineering and business administration, with courses delivered via the Blackboard and Canvas learning platforms.

Most graduate certificate programs at SIT are only four courses in length, making them quite manageable to complete. If they desire, graduate certificate students may apply for a master's program mid-certificate and transition their completed courses towards completion of an approved master's program instead.

What online resources does SIT offer?

SIT students have access to many online resources, including Canvas and Blackboard training, library resources, web conferencing, the Boosted Learning Initiative and the Continuing and Professional Student Care Center, which assists online students with admissions, registration, billing, deadlines and graduation requirements.The college may also offer reduced tuition costs to qualifying students for certain online semesters.

2

Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Tuition & Fees
$14,974
Distance Education Participation
26%
Number of Programs Offered
35
School Type
4-year

What is RUNB like?

Rutgers University is a leading national research university established in 1766. It was one of America's first land-grant institutions and has since become a member of the Association of American Universities and the Big Ten Conference. RUNB has a diverse population of more than 50,000 students, almost 80 percent of whom receive some sort of financial aid.

What online programs are at RUNB?

RUNB offers several online master's programs as well as a handful of bachelor's programs, most available 100 percent online. Some of these programs are rather uncommon to find online, such as the M.S. in supply chain management and the Ed.M. in language education.

One advantage of RUNB is the number of learning platforms it uses for its courses, which includes Moodle, Blackboard, Sakai and eCollege. This allows RUNB instructors to use the learning platform that best suits their subject or teaching style, and helps students who have preferences for one system or another to find courses that use the platform they prefer.

What online resources does RUNB offer?

"New student modules" are designed to assist online students with everything from navigating learning platforms to understanding how to share documents, thread discussions and more. Online students can access many of the same resources available to those on-campus, such as the Office of Academic Success, which offers tutoring, writing support and services for students with disabilities.

3

Berkeley College-Woodland Park

Tuition & Fees
$25,900
Distance Education Participation
47%
Number of Programs Offered
21
School Type
4-year

What is BCWP like?

Berkeley College was founded in 1931 and started delivering online learning in 1998, which has given it a long time to perfect its approach.BCWP goes out of its way to help its online students feel connected to their school with events like National Distance Learning Week, an annual celebration of online learning filled with special events and opportunities for student engagement. This year the school jumped to No.3 on our list of the best online colleges in New Jersey, up from No.4 last year.

What online programs are at BCWP?

The school offers asynchronous online programs in over a dozen fields, including medical insurance, billing and coding, criminal justice and management. Most of these programs are aimed at the undergraduate level, with associate and bachelor's degree programs and various certificate programs, but there is also an online MBA program. This MBA program is particularly special, as it can be taken alongside a bachelor's in business administration program, allowing both degree levels to be completed simultaneously in just four years.

What online resources does BCWP offer?

Part of the way BCWP helps online students feel included is its long list of online resources. These range from the academic (tutoring from the Center for Academic Success,electronic library resources with live chat help) to the supportive (confidential counseling through the online Student Development and Campus Life Department, an Online Veterans Resource Center) to the social (online clubs, networking and outreach initiatives).

4

New Jersey Institute of Technology

Tuition & Fees
$17,338
Distance Education Participation
30%
Number of Programs Offered
22
School Type
4-year

What is NJIT like?

As a top polytechnic university, it makes sense that the New Jersey Institute of Technology's online programs are robust. Both online and on-campus students enjoy a low student-teacher ratio, as well as a storied faculty, of which almost 100 percent hold a terminal degree in their field. The school's particular areas of focus are STEM, business and design, which may be part of the reason thatNJIT ranks eighth in the nation for graduate earning potential.

What online programs are at NJIT?

NJIT students are able to pursue online master's degree programs in fields such as business, engineering, transportation and more. Online graduate certificate programs are also available; these 12-credit programs are primarily aimed towards tech-related fields, such as data mining and pharmaceutical technology. As a side note, the school hosts continuing education courses, making it convenient for graduates to return and update their career skills when necessary.

Most of NJIT's online programs are asynchronous, and courses take place in the Moodle or Canvas learning platforms. Many courses are delivered through Converged Learning, an initiative that allows on-campus and off-campus students to take the same course, independent of location.

What online resources does NJIT offer?

Students begin their online education at NJIT with an orientation on the rigors of online learning. During their academic career, they can take advantage of many of the same resources as on-campus students, including guidance and academic advice from the Office of Graduate Studies, technology assistance from the IST Helpdesk, connection to financial aid packages through the Student Financial Aid Services office and more.

5

Rowan University

Tuition & Fees
$13,697
Distance Education Participation
32%
Number of Programs Offered
17
School Type
4-year

What is RU like?

This year, Rowan University moved up on our list from No.6 to No.5, and for good reason: as part of its mission to serve the adult student population, RU hosts online programs in a breathtaking variety of formats. Demonstrating its commitment to convenience, RU's options include degree and certificate programs, degree completion programs, education-focused certifications and endorsements, and more.

What online programs are at RU?

RU is an institution with a particular focus on education-oriented programs, such as early childhood education, educational technology and teacher leadership. However, the university touches many other fields as well, including criminal justice, business management, nursing and even theater arts.

Many of RU's online programs are available in an accelerated format, and some -- in particular the Ed.D. in educational leadership and its various specialization tracks -- are taken in a hybrid format, giving students the opportunity to participate in hands-on training exercises.

What online resources does RU offer?

Students enrolled in online programs can take advantage of many of the same resources offered to on-campus students, such as the library, a career management center, tutoring services at no additional cost, academic advising and more. In addition, particular financial aid options may be available for students entering into a healthcare program at RU.

6

Rutgers University-Camden

Tuition & Fees
$14,835
Distance Education Participation
39%
Number of Programs Offered
11
School Type
4-year

What is RUC like?

Rutgers University was founded in 1926 as the South Jersey Law School. Over time, however, the university has broadened its focus and come to offer more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs across four highly-respected colleges. RUC deserves credit for constantly innovating upon its educational systems; the university supports more than 70 instructional technologies for its courses and works to improve its curricula with faculty training, media design and gamification.

What online programs are at RUC?

RUC is primarily aimed at graduate students, with several online master's degree programs (subjects include language education, biomedical engineering, accounting, music education and more) and a handful of four-course graduate certificate programs (including public administration and supply chain management). However, there are also a few online bachelor's degree programs available for undergraduates, including the self-paced B.A. in business administration, which has a choice of four different industry-focused concentrations.

Courses are delivered through a variety of platforms, including Sakai and Canvas.

What online resources does RUC offer?

Online students in need of support can turn to RUC's resources for technical support, library services, tutoring, dedicated research offices and more. Career assistance can be found at the RUC career development office or through the Handshake platform. First-generation college students should also look into the Educational Opportunity Fund, a state-funded program that can supply up to 12 semesters of RUC grant funding and many other benefits to qualifying students.

7

Seton Hall University

Tuition & Fees
$42,170
Distance Education Participation
22%
Number of Programs Offered
16
School Type
4-year

What is SHU like?

Founded in 1856, this Catholic, career-focused university has been lauded by prominent sources such as The Princeton Review and Bloomberg Businessweek. Students enjoy small class sizes, and almost 100 percent of them receive some form of financial aid. More than 75 percent of SHU students participate in internships, helping them to earn hands-on experience for high-demand careers in New Jersey and beyond.

What online programs are at SHU?

SHU's online programs focus primarily on graduate-level education in the business and healthcare fields, with programs such as an M.P.A. in nonprofit management, a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a graduate certificate in healthcare administration. However, a smattering of other subjects add variety to the university's online catalog, such as the M.A. in police graduate studies or the K-12 supervisor certification program.

Bear in mind also that SHU offers specializations for many of its online programs, giving students far more freedom than their number of online degree programs may suggest.

What online resources does SHU offer?

Online resources at SHU include advisement, financial aid services, library services, a career center, tech support and more. Student coordinators are available on weekdays to help answer questions and make online learning as seamless as possible.Services may be available through Skype, telephone and/or email.

Students concerned about maintaining a connection with their faith from a distance may be pleased to know that SHU's campus ministry services are accessible for online students as well.

8

Caldwell University

Tuition & Fees
$34,715
Distance Education Participation
18%
Number of Programs Offered
3
School Type
4-year

What is CU like?

Caldwell University is a small Catholic liberal arts university that was founded in 1939. Rooted in the Catholic Dominican tradition, the university emphasizes faith in its curriculum, for online students as well as those on-campus. Renowned as a leader in autism education, it's no surprise that CU's online programs are largely education-oriented in nature.

What online programs are at CU?

CU's online programs are available at the graduate level, and the majority of them address teaching-based subjects such as educational administration, higher education, principal certification or superintendent certification. An online MBA and an online MSN in population health round out the university's offerings.

In order to help students complete their programs quickly, CU's courses -- which are hosted by the Blackboard learning platform -- run in accelerated sessions ranging from seven to eight weeks in length. Six start dates per year also help with flexibility.

What online resources does CU offer?

Online CU students have access to technical support, individual and group tutoring options, assistance from the university Writing Center and library resources from the Jennings Library.Students can choose to purchase hard-copy books through the Caldwell University Bookstore, but they can also rent or purchase digital copies to help keep their experience entirely online.

9

Stockton University

Tuition & Fees
$13,739
Distance Education Participation
26%
Number of Programs Offered
4
School Type
4-year

What is SU like?

SU was founded in 1969 as a public four-year college, and it offers dozens of undergrad and advanced degree programs. The university strives to create a diverse, student-centered environment of teaching and learning, with the end goal of developing engaged and effective citizens who are involved in their community.

What online programs are at SU?

Students seeking an online master's degree or graduate certificate can find it here, with some unique options to boot. There's the M.A. in holocaust & genocide studies, as well as the genocide prevention certificate. Post-master's programs are also available in areas like forensic psychology and homeland security.

Online courses are taught via Blackboard, and though most are asynchronous, some programs offer synchronous meetings.

What online resources does SU offer?

Off-campus students can enjoy the same resources as students who live on campus. Academic advising, counseling services, library services and more are available to all students, regardless of location. Tutoring support is also available. The school also offers some unique support services, such as the Meditation and Problem Solving Program (MAPS) and the CARE program, which offers individualized mentoring.

10

Georgian Court University

Tuition & Fees
$32,976
Distance Education Participation
42%
Number of Programs Offered
9
School Type
4-year

What is GCU like?

GCU is a small private Catholic university open to students of all faiths. Undergraduates are required to participate in service learning, thus helping them earn the hands-on experience they need for their careers.

What online programs are at GCU?

Students can partake of online bachelor's completion programs and master's programs, as well as education certification programs for those who want to teach in New Jersey.Most classes are asynchronous.

Those who have earned 60 college credits or more should be eligible to complete their bachelor's program in criminal justice or business at GCU. Meanwhile, the online master's offerings include education, healthcare management and holistic health studies.

What online resources does GCU offer?

Online students receive personal attention from the same faculty that teaches on-campus students, as well as access to the Sister Mary Joseph Cunningham Library. Academic advisement is offered to keep students on track, and there is robust support for the Blackboard learning system.

Affordable Online Colleges in New Jersey for 2019-20

Career changers, single parents, new college students and anyone else interested in attending New Jersey colleges may be looking at affordability as a key factor. After all, paying for college can be a challenge for anyone in any walk of life. Directly below is a list of some of the most affordable online colleges in New Jersey, broken down into two categories: two-year schools and four-year schools.

Financial Aid Resources in New Jersey

Every year, over 1 million New Jersey college students receive financial aid through the state's Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA), with more than $18 billion dollars given to students since 1959. For those who wish to attend a New Jersey college or university, HESAA offers scholarships, grants, and loan programs administered by the state.

While the Institute for College Access and Success finds that New Jersey graduates carry an average student loan debt of $28,318, the array of state financial aid programs can help offset tuition and related expenses.

What Grants and Scholarships are Available in New Jersey? 

New Jersey's scholarships and grants are generally available to students who have shown academic merit and/or can demonstrate financial need. Every bit of assistance helps, but since grants and scholarships don't have to be repaid, they may be the options most worth exploring.

Check out the Ultimate Guide to Grants for guidance on how to find grants in your state, and the Ultimate Guide to Scholarships for similar assistance with scholarships.

Student Loans in New Jersey

Although federal student loans are usually the most ideal option for student borrowers, state-sponsored loan programs can have favorable terms as well. New Jersey's program helps students who do not have expenses covered by other aid.

Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, New Jersey Grants & Scholarships
NJCLASS offers fixed-rate and variable-rate supplemental loans to those students whose college expenses are not covered by other forms of student aid. Eligible students must be the borrower of the loan and also must be enrolled at least half-time at an approved school, either in-state or out-of-state.
  • Application deadline:  Must file the FAFSA by May 1, 2017 (priority deadline is February 1)
  • Award amount:  Varies

Find out more about how student loans work in the Ultimate Guide to Student Loans.

Additional Resources for Financial Aid in New Jersey

Costs for Out-of-State Students in New Jersey

To be considered a resident of New Jersey for tuition purposes, you must generally have had your home in the state for 12 months. Additional rules also apply, but exceptions are almost always made for members of the military. For instance, Rutgers University offers courses under the New Jersey Tuition Equality for America's Military  (NJTEAM) Act, under which members of the military may qualify for in-state tuition.

The New Jersey Institute of Technology grants in-state tuition for citizens or permanent residents of any state who marry a New Jersey resident starting the term following the marriage. While qualifying for in-state tuition and being qualified as a resident for tuition purposes in New Jersey can be trickier in the Garden State than in other states, there's great news for New Jersey residents or those who have established legal domicile here, as New Jersey offers ways to get a free (or almost free) education. These programs include NJ Stars, which gives free two-year tuition to eligible students who graduate in the top 15 percent of their high school class or Newark College Promise for students who live in public housing.

 

Best Careers In New Jersey

What are the best jobs to have in New Jersey? It depends on your personal goals, interests and education level, but one thing is certain: the state offers plenty of opportunity. As you explore your different options, take a look at the jobs that are most in demand in the Garden State. It might help you to decide which degree program to pursue at one of New Jersey's online colleges.

EmploymentEmployment GrowthMedian High School SalaryMedian Bachelor's Salary
4,318,4608.2%$32,816$62,600

Top New Jersey Industries

*Industry rankings determined by annual mean wage, employment, projected growth and location quotient. Data is sourced from the BLS, 2019 dataset.

Top IndustriesEmploymentProjected GrowthAverage Salary
Ambulatory healthcare services3,097,1608%$72,492
Hospitals; state, local, and private3,323,5508%$71,074
Educational services; state, local, and private3,645,7208%$67,937
Utilities2,213,3706%$74,257
Nursing and residential care facilities2,867,8209%$65,066
Construction of buildings2,137,0208%$70,849
Insurance carriers and related activities2,479,3206%$74,338
Waste management and remediation services1,847,9507%$71,869
Water transportation1,435,8307%$72,592
Social assistance3,248,6408%$64,304

Barnabas Health and Meridian Health are among the largest employers in New Jersey, and many other medical centers, clinics and hospitals fall under the umbrella of these two companies. Other healthcare facilities in the area, such as AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center, Hackensack University Medical Center and Robert Wood Johnson University, create a lot of demand for healthcare professionals in ambulatory healthcare services, hospitals, nursing and residential care facilities and beyond.

Another big industry in New Jersey is pharmaceuticals. Many medical professionals are employed by companies like Merck & Co. Inc., Bristol-Myers Squibb and Johnson & Johnson. These large companies are part of the reason why New Jersey has the greatest concentration of scientists and engineers in the country. With the prevalence of healthcare, insurance carriers and social assistance are also prominent industries.

Though healthcare is a booming industry in New Jersey, there are other great options for employment as well. Financial services hold a strong place in New Jersey's economy, as do utilities companies, including those in the information and communications technology sector. In fact, New Jersey has the second-highest concentration of ICT workers in the nation. There are more than 5,000 information and tech companies based in the state.

Let's take a closer look at some of the best careers to pursue in specific metro areas in New Jersey.

New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA Metro Area

Total Population
20,192,042
Median salary for high school grads
$31,574
Median salary with a bachelor's degree
$61,586
% of the population enrolled in college or grad school
29%
Median rent
$1,341

Atlantic City is home to New Jersey's top casinos and other attractions, so the city has need of architectural and engineering managers to build and maintain them. Computer and information scientists abound in the state, with many of them working in the casino industry. A strong law enforcement presence is required in this high-tourism area, so the Atlantic County Sheriff's Office needs to be well-staffed with police and sheriff's patrol officers in order to keep the area safe and secure.

The region's largest healthcare organization, AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center, offers both primary and specialized care. Considering the prominence of the healthcare field in New Jersey, it's no surprise that RNs and nurse practitioners are also notably high demand jobs in Atlantic City.

Best CareersMinimum EducationAverage SalaryEmployment
Computer and Information Research ScientistsDoctoral or professional degree$125,340220
Architectural and Engineering ManagersBachelor's degree$139,470240
Registered NursesBachelor's degree$80,0003,030
Nurse PractitionersMaster's degree$120,170210
Police and Sheriff's Patrol OfficersHigh school diploma or equivalent$78,820800

*Career rankings determined by annual mean wage, employment, projected growth and location quotient. Data sourced from the BLS, 2019 dataset.

Atlantic City-Hammonton, NJ Metro Area

Total Population
272,926
Median salary for high school grads
$30,078
Median salary with a bachelor's degree
$51,918
% of the population enrolled in college or grad school
27.7%
Median rent
$1,070

With easy access to Philadelphia and Wilmington, many pharmaceutical companies choose to base their operations in Camden. As a result, there is a strong demand for medical scientists and statisticians who can fill available jobs. Furthermore, it's common for healthcare professionals to turn to teaching later in their careers. With the many college campuses in the greater Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington area, it can be easy for medical professionals to transition into health specialties teaching positions, where they can pass down their skills and knowledge to the next generation.

Outside of healthcare, aerospace also has a firm foothold in the region, with Lockheed Martin leading the way among numerous aerospace and defense companies.

Best CareersMinimum EducationAverage SalaryEmployment
Medical Scientists, Except EpidemiologistsDoctoral or professional degree$117,9107,040
LawyersDoctoral or professional degree$152,10018,280
StatisticiansMaster's degree$93,5302,600
Aerospace EngineersBachelor's degree$115,6303,200
Health Specialties Teachers, PostsecondaryDoctoral or professional degree$102,2807,060

*Career rankings determined by annual mean wage, employment, projected growth and location quotient. Data sourced from the BLS, 2019 dataset.

 
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