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Rhode Island is home to two public and 10 private four-year universities, as well as 14 community and technical schools. It is perhaps best known for its prestigious Brown University (ranked No. 15 nationally by U.S. News & World Report), Roger Williams University (ranked No. 46 regionally), and Providence College (ranked No. 4 regionally). The Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority and the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education are both agencies responsible for monitoring Rhode Island’s postsecondary education system. With increasing tuition costs, students in Rhode Island have found it more difficult as of late to afford higher education; luckily, the state’s governor recently stepped in.
Governor Chafee proposed in early 2012 to reorganize the state’s higher education system as a response to the state’s noticeably increasing tuition costs. The result of the governor’s plan would be the state saving $20 million, which could then be applied towards the creation of a new scholarship program. In June of 2012, the governor’s plan was approved by the House. The scholarship program, still in its infancy, has the potential to help the ever-growing online education community in Rhode Island. Such education has become more popular in recent years due to the inherent flexibility and convenience that online education offers busy adults. Below you will find some of the state’s top rated online colleges.
The University of Rhode Island (URI) is located in Kingston and was founded in 1890. Today, it is a land-grant university and is ranked No. 160 on U.S. News & World Report’s Best National Universities. URI offers its students traditional on-campus courses at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. It also offers students the option to take convenient online college courses in subjects like business, French, mathematics, and military science. Online courses are administered through Sakai, an online learning system that allows students to access their courses, communicate with their instructors and peers, and complete course work and tests.
Founded in Providence as a business school in 1914, Johnson and Wales is ranked as No. 82 on U.S. News & World Report’s Regional Universities of the North list. It is a private university that’s home to about 10,000 students, and offers bachelor’s and master’s programs. Additionally, it offers online education options to its students. It is one of the state’s top online universities, with its online bachelor’s program being among those recognized by U.S. News and World Report for online education programs. Although it offers two online completion degrees in food service management, it also offers online courses for both enrolled students and those who wish to transfer a course the university they attend. Said courses are asynchronous, which allow students to complete their course work on their own schedule. Online courses are completed with Johnson & Wales’ uLearn system, which provides support to students 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) was established in 1964 and today is comprised of six campus locations. Its 18,000 students have the opportunity to earn one of 90 associate degrees and certificates while attending CCRI. Additionally, CCRI offers students online course options, making it one of the state’s most affordable online colleges and top online associate degree colleges. Online students can choose from three types of distance courses, including online, hybrid, and tele-courses. The disciplines in which online courses are offered is very broad, including but not limited to: business, law, the arts, sciences, social sciences, liberal arts, communications, and technology.