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Best online degree-completion programs in 2022

A college degree boosts your earning potential and job prospects. And the best online degree-completion programs make it easier to graduate.
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Written by Genevieve Carlton, Contributing Writer on
A diverse group of happy graduates celebrating graduation day.

If you started college but didn't finish it, a degree-completion program could help you get a bachelor's degree at your own pace.

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A growing number of jobs require a bachelor's degree. But many students leave college before earning a degree. Fortunately, degree-completion programs provide a path to graduation. And online programs prioritize flexibility for busy learners.

Our list introduces the best online degree-completion programs. You can use the list to find a program that fits your budget, schedule, and educational goals. 

How does an online degree-completion program work?

Online degree-completion programs help learners with some prior college experience complete a bachelor's degree. 

Transfer students submit transcripts showing their college credits. They then learn how many credits they must complete to graduate. Some degree-completion programs require at least 60 transfer credits, while many others do not set a minimum number of credits.

These programs make it easier for people to finish a college degree. Rather than starting over and retaking classes, students get credit for prior learning — though a college may not accept all of your prior credits.

Admission requirements typically include a minimum GPA but not standardized test scores. Contact an admission counselor to learn more about applying to a specific program.

Top 10 colleges with online degree-completion programs

Our list of the best online degree-completion programs includes top-ranked institutions. The best online colleges offer flexible enrollment options, many online classes and degrees, and strong student services support. 

The colleges on our list also offer generous transfer credit policies.

We list the top online degree-completion programs alphabetically. Tuition and program data is accurate as of the time of publication. Prospective students should check the school's websites and reach out for more information before submitting an application.

1. Arizona State University

From its campus in Phoenix, ASU Online offers more than 300 fully-online programs, including many online degree-completion programs. The public university offers asynchronous courses on an accelerated term. Learners benefit from extensive tools and services, including a global education office that allows online students to study abroad.

ASU costs $561-661 per credit for online bachelor's degrees. Degree-completion options include:

  • Applied leadership
  • Business data analytics
  • Computer information systems
  • Data science
  • Technological leadership

Accreditation: Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

2. Colorado State University

A public university with many fully online undergraduate degrees, CSU integrates career training into its programs. Drawing on real-world concepts and emphasizing career-relevant skills, the programs offer flexible monthly start dates and asynchronous classes.

Learners work with a student success counselor to complete their degree. CSU accepts up to 90 transfer credits and charges $350 per credit for undergraduate online programs. The degree-completion programs offered at CSU include:

  • Business management
  • Computer science
  • Cybersecurity
  • Finance
  • Information technology

Accreditation: Colorado State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

3. Indiana University

IU Online connects students with over 200 online programs offered at multiple IU campuses. Incoming students receive a home campus enrollment and take online classes from any campus. Learners can transfer up to 90 credits toward their bachelor's degree. 

Indiana residents benefit from a tuition discount, which brings the cost of many online programs to $250-$300 per credit. Out-of-state students pay $350-$400 per credit. IU offers online bachelor's programs in:

Accreditation: Indiana University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

4. Northeastern University

A private university located in Boston, Northeastern offers online bachelor's degree-completion programs. Transfer students create a career and academic plan to structure their program. Learners then work with career and academic coaches to access resources and earn a degree. 

At Northeastern, online undergrads pay a tuition rate of $541 per credit. The university offers bachelor's programs in several areas, with options for students interested in:

  • Analytics
  • Finance and accounting management
  • Information technology
  • Management
  • Project management

Accreditation: Northeastern University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

5. Oregon State University

A public university in Corvallis, Oregon, OSU offers more than 40 online undergraduate degrees and 50 minors to customize degrees. Distance learners choose from over 1,600 online courses. OSU emphasizes experiential learning, with internships, lab kits, field study, and research opportunities available for online students.

At OSU, undergraduates pay $350-$400 per credit for online bachelor's programs. The university offers majors in:

  • Business analytics
  • Business information systems
  • Computer science
  • Management
  • Marketing

Accreditation: Oregon State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).

6. Penn State World Campus

At Penn State World Campus, distance learners choose from 38 online bachelor's degrees. Penn State offers career-focused curriculums delivered by expert faculty members. The public university's student services include orientation, academic advising, career counseling, and technical support.

Transfer students can apply up to 84 credits toward a bachelor's degree. Distance learners pay $590-632 per credit, with a flat tuition rate for those taking 12 or more credits. Penn State offers programs in:

  • Cybersecurity analytics and operations
  • Information sciences and technology
  • Organizational leadership
  • Software engineering
  • Strategic communications

Accreditation: Penn State World Campus is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

7. Purdue University Global

A public institution in West Lafayette, Indiana, Purdue University Global offers online degree-completion programs. Transfer students can apply up to 90 transfer credits toward their degree. Purdue also partners with Indiana community colleges to maximize transfer credits.

At Purdue, Indiana residents pay $280 per credit, while out-of-state students pay $371 per credit. The university's programs include:

  • Analytics
  • Cloud computing and solutions
  • Cybersecurity
  • Information technology
  • Organizational management

Accreditation: Purdue University Global is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

8. Thomas Edison State University

A public university located in Trenton, New Jersey, TESU serves adult learners in its degree completion programs. Learners choose from over 100 fields, with the option to create a custom degree. TESU accepts up to 120 transfer credits, including credits for professional training and certifications. 

New Jersey residents pay $399 per credit, while out-of-state students pay $519. TESU's bachelor's degree-completion options include:

  • Computer information systems
  • Computer science
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data analytics
  • Information technology

Accreditation: Thomas Edison State University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

9. University of Arizona

From its Tucson campus, UArizona offers multiple bachelor's programs, including degree-completion general studies and applied humanities options. These programs emphasize interdisciplinary and professional skills. Transfer students from Arizona community college also qualify for the Bridge Scholarship, which funds students for up to three years.

Arizona's online programs cost $500-$610 per credit with a flat rate for distance learners regardless of residency status. The public university offers programs in:

  • Applied computing
  • Cyber operations
  • Economics and industry
  • Information science and e-society
  • Science, technology, health, and society

Accreditation: University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

10. University of Florida

With 24 online bachelor's degrees, UF Online has options for many degree-seekers. The public university offers flexible course loads with primarily asynchronous classes. Learners work with academic advisors to plan out their program and stay on track. 

UF offers an affordable tuition rate for Florida residents of $129 per credit, with non-residents paying $553. The university's degree options include:

  • Advertising
  • Business administration
  • computer science
  • Media production, management, and technology
  • Public relations

Accreditation: University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

In conclusion

A college degree can make a major difference in your future. Degree-completion programs support adult learners returning to college. You can also consider other flexible degree pathways, including accelerated online degrees for working adults

Contact programs to learn more about how they support degree-completion students.

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