The 5 Best Cheap Online Colleges

The best cheap online colleges are often state universities, many of which charge online students the same rate as those who are based on campus. Looking at in-state options may be your best bet for finding the cheapest online college, but there are a number of online schools across the country that offer affordable out-of-state tuition rates in addition to top-level online instruction. Whether you’re on a tight budget or want the best academic experience for the lowest price, consider the following universities, which offer some of the most affordable tuition rates for online bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

The University of West Georgia (UWG) offers exceptionally low graduate-level tuition rates at $282 per credit. The school’s online program offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees, which have nearly the same cost-per-credit fee structure, as well as a doctorate-level degree. UWG offers a careful selection of in-demand online graduate degrees, including nursing, education, computer science, and an MBA program. There is a higher cost per credit for the MBA program, but it is still an affordable rate compared to other top-rated online MBA programs. One other advantage of UWG’s online degree is there is no difference in tuition between in-state and out-of-state students.

Columbia College offers the same affordable tuition rates to both in-state and out-of-state students. While tuition rates are relatively lower at all degree levels, the cost of master’s degree credits are particularly low when compared to other top online graduate-degree programs. Another notable element is that all fees are included in the tuition figure. Many similar schools charge an additional technology or activity fee that can inflate your tuition bill. Columbia College offers five academic terms per year, which means you pay tuition more frequently than at other schools on the quarter or three-semester system, but the total cost of your online degree will still be comparatively low.

Arkansas State University (ASU) charges all U.S. online students the same low-cost tuition rate regardless of which state you live in. Not only does ASU offer affordable rates to domestic students, but the school’s tuition rates are also low for international students. The cost per credit varies depending on degree level, but both undergraduate and graduate credits are very competitively priced. ASU stands out as one of the best and cheapest online schools since it keeps costs flat, fair, and transparent.

Sam Houston State University is another cheap online college that offers low, flat-rate tuition for in-state and out-of-state students alike. Tuition rates vary by degree level. Bachelor’s credits currently run just below $300, while the cost per graduate-level credit is only marginally higher. MBA and doctorate-level credits have the highest cost among the degree types at Sam Houston State, but these types of credits are still priced significantly lower than at most other top online colleges. The school is also one of the more military-friendly online colleges around, and tuition assistance is available to new students, transfer students, returning veterans, and dependents.

North Carolina State University (NC State) is a cheap online college particularly for in-state students, but out-of-state rates are still competitive. NC State is the largest university in the Carolinas and has over 10 years of experience delivering quality online education. The school offers online bachelor’s degrees, and the online graduate programs are both highly regarded and well priced, making them a distinguishing choice. The online MBA program offered at NC State is the most affordable program available if you’re an in-state student. Even if you attend the online program as a nonresident, you will still pay one of the most economical prices for an MBA degree offered anywhere. Additionally, the online graduate business, information technology, education, and engineering programs all have earned high marks among national education rankings. The cost per credit for an online master’s degree at NC State is also reasonable considering the quality of their programs.