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Start online college today: 10 programs with rolling admissions

Getting into college isn't about application deadlines anymore. These schools have rolling admissions so you can start online college today.
Written by Melissa Sartore, Contributor
Smiling Black woman wear headphones video calling on laptop.
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Do deadlines give you a headache? Applying to college is already stressful — you have to gather documents and fill out paperwork. Rolling admissions can take the stress of deadlines off your shoulders.

Many online colleges and universities offer rolling admissions. That means a college or university evaluates your application when they receive it, so you can apply all year 'round. Once accepted, you can start online college today, tomorrow, or as soon as you're ready. 

Why enroll in an online college with rolling admissions?

The flexibility of rolling admissions relieves stress. Speedy responses mean you can apply to your top picks and wait to hear back, rather than wasting time and money applying simultaneously applying to second-choice colleges. Here are a few more perks to rolling admissions:

  • You have more time to work on your applications.
  • You are assessed on your own merit rather than in comparison to a larger pool of applicants.

Best online colleges with rolling admissions: Our picks

We chose the best online colleges with rolling admissions based on the ease and speed of the application process, plus acceptance and graduation rates. We also took into account the perks the schools provide to learners, reputation, cost, and variety of programs on offer. 

The information about each school is accurate as of the time of publication. Check with each college or university to determine what the admission process requires, what happens once your application is in, and next steps if you get accepted. 

This list is in alphabetical order.

1. Arizona State University
Phoenix, Arizona

ASU has locations throughout the state and offers more than 300 degrees and certificates online. Asynchronous and synchronous coursework accompanies interactive learning experiences that simulate labs and professional experiences. 

ASU boasts more than 60,000 online learners and popular business, nursing, and engineering programs. Tuition is $561-$661 per credit for undergraduate students and $543-$1,343 per credit hour for graduate students.

Online students also have access to tutoring, study abroad opportunities, and career services.
Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

2. Bellevue University
Bellevue, Nebraska

BU offers career-focused academic programs to around 9,600 students annually. Resources for online learners include tutoring and writing help, library access, and technology support.

Online students pay the same tuition regardless of resident status while members of the military and their spouses are eligible for tuition discounts. Tuition is $440 per credit for online undergraduate programs, $630 for graduate programs, and $795 for doctorate programs.

Several of BU's online programs are only available virtually. BU also offers many degrees in both cohort-based and asynchronous formats.

Bellevue University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

3. Colorado State University Global Campus
Greenwood Village, Colorado

CSU Global was the first independent and fully accredited online state university in the United States. Part of the Colorado State University System, CSU Global's top programs include business, healthcare administration, education, and criminal justice and law. 

Tuition is $350 per credit for undergraduate degrees and $500 for graduate degrees. CSU charges no student fees and offers tuition guarantees, military tuition assistance, and employer partnerships.

Colorado State University Global Campus is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

4. Grand Canyon University
Phoenix, Arizona

Rooted in the Baptist faith, GCU offers online programs spanning 10 areas of study. These include undergraduate, graduate, certificate, post-graduate, and bridge programs. 

Bridge programs include transitional coursework to help individuals with little or no previous coursework in a discipline enroll in a master's degree, such as one of GCU's online MBA programs

Online undergraduate students pay between $410-$485 per credit hour in tuition, depending on the program. Graduate tuition ranges from $400-$715. Active duty and active reserve military members receive tuition discounts. 

Many of GCU's programs include interactive courses to encourage collaboration and participation among students. Support for online learners includes tutoring and counseling.

Grand Canyon University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

5. Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa

Iowa State's undergraduate programs in agriculture and life science, business, human sciences, liberal arts, and sciences accompany more than 50 online graduate programs.

 Iowa State also participates in the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance, a consortium of universities that offers common tuition and expands options for online learning. 

Tuition is $348 for resident or $1,006 for non-resident undergraduate students; and $564 for resident or $1,427 for non-resident graduate students. Certain programs, such as some business and engineering programs, have higher per-credit costs. 

Iowa State's online students receive access to its academic success, tutoring, and writing centers and to career and veteran services. 

Iowa State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

6. Loyola University Chicago
Chicago, Illinois

A Jesuit institution, Loyola offers on-campus and online programs. Loyola offers eight adult degree completion programs, 35 graduate degrees, and 38 certificates online. In keeping with its Catholic roots, the school has master's degrees in Christian spirituality with concentrations in spiritual direction and contemporary spirituality.

Online students receive extensive technology and academic support. Alongside fall, spring, and summer terms, Loyola provides access to condensed, intensive online classes during abridged January terms. Online tuition is $450 per credit for undergraduates and $409-$950 for graduate students, depending on the program.

Loyola University Chicago is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

7. Penn State World Campus
University Park, Pennsylvania

Penn State World Campus provides over 175 online programs in 13 areas of study. Of note are five degrees and certificates in turfgrass science and management and 10 geospatial degrees and certificates.

Penn State World Campus states its mission is to provide affordable online education to anyone at any time. Undergraduate tuition $590-$632 per credit and graduate tuition is $950-$1,236. Penn State World Campus has a military support team and provides educational benefits and financial assistance to military students.

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

8. Purdue University Global
Lafayette, Indiana

Purdue University Global offers online programs tailored to meet the needs of working adults. Purdue University Global's degrees and certificates span more than 12 fields of study. 

Purdue University Global also provides programs specifically for members of the military and veterans. These include associate and bachelor's degrees and a general education program.

Personalized student support, writing assistance and tutoring services, and online communities accompany access to Purdue University Global's library. 

Undergraduate tuition is $280 per quarter-credit for Indiana residents and $315-$371 for non-residents. Graduate tuition is $420-$700 per quarter-credit for non-residents; residents get a 10% discount. Veterans receive discounts, too.

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

9. University of Maryland Global Campus
Largo, Maryland

UMGC offers more than 90 online certificates and degrees designed for working adults. The college's most popular programs include business and management, education, information technology and computer science, and cybersecurity. 

Undergraduate tuition is $312 for state residents and $499 for non-residents. Graduate tuition is $514-$694 for state residents and $659-$694 for residents, depending on the program; doctoral program tuition is $1,087 per credit.

UMGC provides military tuition discounts and scholarships that can eliminate the cost of textbooks entirely. Transfer policies for previous coursework, military training and experience, and industry certifications may reduce costs further. 

University of Maryland Global Campus is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

10. Western Governors University
Salt Lake City, Utah

Established by 19 state governors, WGU defines itself as a student-centric school. An exclusively online institution, WGU incorporates personalized learning and workforce skill training into each certificate and degree. 

WCU's programs focus on business, information technology, health and nursing, and teaching. Tuition varies by program and is charged per six-month term. Undergraduate tuition ranges from $3,475-$5,930; graduate tuition is $3,940-$4,530 per term.

The school also offers scholarships, corporate partnerships, and resources and funding for veterans and active members of the military. 

Western Governors University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).

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