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Virginia possesses 17 public colleges and universities, 77 private colleges and universities, and 88 technical and community colleges. It is home to many prestigious postsecondary institutions, including the No. 25 best university in the nation, the University of Virginia, and the No. 33 best university in the nation, the College of William and Mary. Virginia’s higher education system is managed by the State Council of Higher education for Virginia (SCHEV). With the established purpose of promoting higher education for a successful state community and economy, the SCHEV took obvious measures to provide students with as much information on online education as possible in recent years.
Distance education via online learning is a movement that has grown exponentially since its inception in the early 90s. This is due to the flexibility and convenience benefits an online education provides. As such, the SCHEV provides students with information pages, such as its Distance Learning Options page and direct access to various Virginia academic institutions that offer online degrees and courses. Below, you will find some of the best online colleges in Virginia.
One of the best online colleges in Virginia is Virginia Tech. Founded in 1872, Virginia Tech lies in Blacksburg and consists of eight schools and one graduate school. It has an enrollment in excess of 30,000 students and is ranked as the No. 71 best university in the United States by U.S. News & World Report. Among the 65 bachelor’s and 150 master’s and doctoral degrees it offers its students are several online master’s degree options; its online engineering and computer information systems programs are both recognized by U.S. News & World Report. However, it does offer online undergraduate courses; in total, VTOnline’s 24,487 online students can choose from 38 online programs and 944 online courses. For students considering online education, VTOnline provides resources for understanding its online programs and helpful information for the decision process, including an eLearning self-assessment survey and a student assessment report.
Old Dominion University (ODU) is also one of Virginia’s top online universities. It was originally founded as a division of the College of William and Mary in 1930. A public university, it claimed its independence more than 30 years later and today serves about 20,000 students. Its online bachelor’s and graduate-level education and nursing programs are recognized in various categories by U.S. News & World Report. Old Dominion offers online bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in such subjects as educational leadership, criminal justice, engineering, English, nursing, and many more. Old Dominion’s distance learning site is highly comprehensive. Aside from offering students 24/7 learning, it fosters easy access to students’ instructors and peers through avenues like video streams, satellite, and even a program that enables students to meet peers who live in their area.
Virginia College is another of Virginia’s online colleges. It has several branches located throughout the country and was founded in 1983. Virginia College is a two-year college that offers completely online associate degrees in 10 discipline areas, including accounting, business administration, criminal justice, culinary and pastry arts, health care reimbursement, human resource management, medical office administration, network engineering, office administration, and paralegal studies. Thus, it is of little surprise that it is one of the top online associate degree colleges in Virginia. Online students get several benefits when they attend Virginia College Online, including their textbooks’ cost inclusion in tuition rates, experienced industry professionals as instructors, and career advisors to help them with not only their educational path, but also their career path.