Top 75 Online Community Colleges 2024

When faced with decisions about your higher education, there are a lot of different options to consider. Will you go to a two-year or four-year school, for example? Will you attend classes online or the more traditional ones on campus? Will you pursue an associate degree or bachelor’s degree? These are choices that could potentially impact every facet of your life for the foreseeable future. This includes your personal finances, academic and social calendar, and yes, career opportunities.

If your search for answers regarding how exactly to pursue higher ed has landed you here, then you’re probably considering attending a two-year college and taking online courses to meet your educational goals. If so, you’re certainly not alone. According to recent data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 15% of students enrolled in public two-year schools choose to take online courses only.

The quality of online education has dramatically improved in the past few years. Today, these programs are known for preparing students for in-demand and high-paying careers. To help you find a community college program offering online classes that is suited to your personal, academic, and career goals, our editors have compiled the following ranking of the best online schools and their featured online programs. What follows is the best online community colleges in America.

Featured Programs

Rating and Ranking the Best Online Community Colleges in the U.S.

To develop this ranking of the nation’s best two-year colleges, our editors began with an initial pool of just over 100 accredited online community colleges ranked by Niche. We then applied our universal ranking methodology for trade schools in order to prioritize our top schools offering online education. To deal with ties as they occurred, we considered the college’s undergraduate tuition and awarded the higher ranking to the schools with more affordable tuition.

Types of Fully Online Degree Programs Mentioned in this Ranking:

  • Online Associate of Arts (AA)
  • Online Associate of Science (AS)
  • Online Associate of Applied Science (AAS)
  • Online Associate of Applied Arts & Sciences (AAAS)
  • Online Associate of General Studies (AGS)
  • Online Associate of Applied Business (AAB)

#75—Murray State College

Tishomingo, Oklahoma

Website

 Points: 12

Murray State College- logo

Among Oklahoma’s open enrollment colleges online, Murray State College is also one of the country’s leading community colleges online. The school is home to fourteen distinct fully online associate’s degree programs and online classes. This includes the following online degree programs:

  • Online Associate (AA) in Enterprise Development
  • Online Associate (AAS) in Child Development
  • Online Associate of Science (AS) in Behavioral Sciences
  • Online AS in Computer Science

AAS programs are considered terminal degree plans for the online student. Still, AA and AS degrees are transferable to a four-year college or university. This online associate’s degree can be applied to a bachelor’s degree program so you can easily transition and continue your educational goals. The Higher Learning Commission has fully accredited Murray State College to offer online associate degrees.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,231

#74—North Hennepin Community

Brooklyn Park, Minnesota

Website

Points: 13

North Hennepin Community  - logo

North Hennepin Community is one of the Midwest’s top open enrollment colleges online. It is also one of the best 2-year colleges in the nation. The school offers many degrees, certificate programs, and courses to distance learning students. For the online student seeking an associate’s degree, options include featured online degree programs such as:

  • Online Associate’s Degree (AAS) in Business Computer Systems and Management
  • AAS in Accounting Technology
  • AAS in Finance Management
  • AAS in Marketing

An Associate of Arts (AA) in Liberal Arts, as well as an Associate of Science (AS) in Accounting transfer pathway, is also available to transfer students. North Hennepin is institutionally accredited to offer online associate degrees by The Higher Learning Commission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,596

#73—Redlands Community

El Reno, Oklahoma

Website

Points: 14

Redlands Community- logo

Redlands Community College has recently expanded its fully online programs. This is to accommodate more educational pathways. Currently, students can pursue the following credentials with entirely online degree programs like:

  • Associate’s Degree (AAS) in Criminal Justice
  • Associate (AA) in Criminal Justice
  • AA in General Studies

Besides these associate degrees, an online class for a certificate in Child Development is also available. This college’s online associate degrees are possible through its accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. Eligible students are encouraged to apply for financial aid.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,360

#72—Neosho County Community

Chanute, Kansas

Website

Points: 14

Neosho County Community - logo

Neosho County Community College boasts an impressive online division. The school is home to distance learning opportunities for prospective students with various academic and career goals. Besides university transfer programs, the school also offers career and technical credentials for students enrolled online like:

The Higher Learning Commission has fully accredited Neosho County to offer these featured online programs for an associate degree. Financial aid is available for the qualified online student.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,032

#71—Carl Albert State College

Poteau, Oklahoma

Website

Points: 14

Carl Albert State College

Carl Albert State College offers all its general education courses online. And a dozen different associate’s degree programs are also available entirely online. Examples of these associate degrees include:

  • Online AA in Pre-law Criminal Justice
  • Online AA in History and Political Science
  • Online AAS in Computer Technology
  • Online AS in Enterprise Development

Several online certificate programs with a variety of online courses can also be pursued in vocational areas with online classes such as:

  • Social Services
  • Hospitality and Event Management
  • Organizational Leadership

Carl Albert State College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. Niche has listed the school among the top accredited community colleges online in the nation.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,818

#70—Minnesota State Community and Tech

Fergus Falls, Minnesota

Website

Points: 15

Minnesota State Community and Technical College - logo

Minnesota State Community and Technical College is home to over 200 different online classes. It also hosts more than 30 fully online academic programs. Two-year programs available for the online student include:

  • Associate’s in Information Technology
  • Associate’s in Human Resources
  • Associate: Paralegal
  • Associate in Digital Marketing
  • Associate of Arts: Social Science

Minnesota State Community and Technical College is accredited to offer these fully online credentials to prospective students by The Higher Learning Commission. Interested students enrolled online are encouraged to apply for financial aid.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,560

#69—Navarro College

Corsicana, Texas

Website

Points: 15

Navarro College

This is one of the larger colleges with open enrollment status in our ranking. Navarro College offers a long list of hybrid as well as fully online programs. For distance learners seeking a two-year associate’s degree, options like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Business Information Technology
  • AAS in Accounting
  • Associate of Arts (AA) in General Studies
  • AA in Criminal Justice

Besides these associate degrees, certificate programs are also available. They span vocational disciplines like:

  • Criminal Justice Corrections
  • Social Sciences
  • Child Development
  • Administrative Professional

Navarro College ranks high among cheap accredited online colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,508

#68—Nicolet Area Technical College

Rhinelander, Wisconsin

Website

Points: 15

Nicolet Area Tech- logo

In terms of community colleges online, Nicolet Area Technical College is one of the best. Technical degree and certificate programs are available through the school’s distance learning program and encompass nine distinct areas of study with online programs such as:

  • Business Administration
  • IT Computer Support
  • IT Web Development
  • Electromechanical Technology

Prospective students can also take advantage of the school’s generous credit-for-prior learning policy as well as its competency-based education initiative. Nicolet Area Technical College is accredited to offer these credentials by The Higher Learning Commission. Financial aid is available for those who qualify to attend postsecondary institutions.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,505

#67—Volunteer State

Gallatin, Tennessee

Website

Points: 15

Volunteer State - logo

Volunteer State Community College is one of the South’s open enrollment colleges online. The school hosts over three dozen online academic programs. These include options for students who intend to enter the workforce as well as those who want to transfer to a university after graduation. Two-year associates degree programs are available via distance learning. Examples include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Logistics and Supply Chain Management
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Teaching: K-5
  • AS in Information Systems
  • Associate (AA) in General Studies

Or, the school’s distance learning students can pursue technical certificates in vocational areas like:

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Administrative Professional Technology
  • Fire Science
  • Sleep Diagnostic Technology

Prospective students interested in this online community college should apply for financial aid.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,312

#66—Colby Community

Colby, Kansas

Website

Points: 15

Colby Community - logo

As for cheap accredited online colleges, Colby Community College is one of the best. The school is home to two fully online transfer degrees. These are programs for prospective students who intend to complete their studies at a four-year college or university:

  • Associate of Arts (Transfer)
  • Associate of Science (Transfer)

The online student who plans to enter the workforce after graduation also has three more options. These include online programs like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Renewable Energy
  • Associate’s in Veterinary Nursing
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Equine Studies

The school also offers several online technical certificates with an interesting array of online community college courses. Colby Community is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. Niche has ranked the school among the top 350 community colleges online.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,934

#65—Northern Oklahoma College

Tonkawa, Oklahoma

Website

Points: 15

Northern Oklahoma College - logo

Northern Oklahoma College is ranked among the top 30 schools online by Niche. It offers its distance learning students a variety of options when it comes to their online education. Specifically, the school supports most general education courses online. Upper division classes are also available for the following academic programs:

  • Associate (AA) in Child Development
  • AA in Enterprise Development
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Arts and Science
  • AS in Business Administration

Many of the online community college’s programs are Quality Matters certified. And the school itself participates in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA). Northern Oklahoma College has been accredited to offer online programs by The Higher Learning Commission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,648

#64—St. Clair County CC

Port Huron, Michigan

Website

Points: 16

St. Clair County Community - logo

Fully online students will find several different courses of study to choose from at St. Clair County Community College. This is true whether they want to earn a vocational credential or transfer to a university. Aside from Associate in General Education degrees for transfer, the school also offers stand-alone credentials. These online programs include:

  • Associate in Computer Information Systems
  • Associate in Marketing
  • Associate in Management
  • Associate in Accounting

Individual online classes are also offered. St. Clair County is fully accredited to confer online degrees by The Higher Learning Commission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $8,845

#63—Miles Community College

Miles City, Montana

Website

Points: 16

Miles Community - logo

Miles Community College has been identified by Niche as one of the top 200 community colleges online in America. The school’s fully online programs include two university transfer degrees with courses like:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in General Studies
  • Online Associate (AA) in General Studies

Other non-transfer credentials for prospective students include:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Business
  • Associate (AAS) in Accounting Technology
  • AAS in Small Business Management

Several online certificate programs also available. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities has accredited Miles Community to offer these distance learning degrees.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,910

#62—Western Oklahoma State College

Altus, Oklahoma

Website

Points: 16

Western Oklahoma State College - logo

Accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, Western Oklahoma State College offers seven fully online programs. This includes associate degrees such as:

  • Associate in Science (AS) in Early Childhood
  • AS in Health, Physical Education and Recreation
  • Associate (AA) in Behavioral Science
  • Associate (AAS) in Criminal Justice

Several remote courses, as well as blended and hybrid classes, are also available to the school’s distance learning students. Niche has recognized Western Oklahoma State College as one of the nation’s top 350 community colleges online.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,978

#61—Holmes Community College

Goodman, Mississippi

Website

Points: 16

Holmes Community- logo

Holmes Community College is one of the leading accredited online community colleges in the Southeast. It offers two different types of fully online programs:

  • Associate of Arts (AA)
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS)

This community college’s online degrees encompass subject areas such as:

  • Criminal Justice
  • Paralegal Technology
  • Medical Office Technology
  • Computer Sciences

These online courses are delivered via asynchronous delivery modes for max convenience. And accelerated tracks are available. The SACSCS has fully accredited Holmes to offer these two-year online associate degrees. Niche has ranked the school among the top 20 accredited community colleges online.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,410

#60—Mid-Plains Community College

North Platte, Nebraska

Website

Points: 16

Mid-Plains Community - logo

Mid-Plains Community is among the nation’s online community colleges with open enrollment. It has a robust distance learning program. Besides academic transfer programs, the school offers two more fully online programs:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Criminal Justice
  • Associate (AAS) in Business Administration

A variety of student resources and support services are available to the school’s online students. This includes technical assistance, academic support, and career resources. This accredited online community college is affiliated with The Higher Learning Commission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,360

#59—Clovis Community College

Clovis, New Mexico

Website

Points: 16

Clovis Community-logo

Clovis Community tops our picks for online community colleges in terms of affordability. The school offers seven fully online programs like:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Behavioral Science
  • Associate (AAS) in Business Administration
  • AAS in Computer Information Systems
  • AAS in Criminal Justice

The school also offers certificates for the online student. These can be completed in subject areas such as:

  • Paralegal Studies
  • Income Tax Preparation
  • Microsoft Office Specialist
  • Fundamentals of Game Design

The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Clovis at the institutional level to confer these online associate degrees. Niche has ranked the school among the top accredited community colleges nationwide.

Undergraduate Tuition: $1,616

#58—Herkimer County Community College

Herkimer, New York

Website

Points: 17

Herkimer County Community - logo

Herkimer County Community is another of the online community colleges affiliated with the State University of New York (SUNY) system. It offers more than twenty different degrees through its Internet Academy. Standout online programs include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Health Information Management Technology
  • AAS in Human Resource Management
  • AAS in Travel & Events Management
  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Humanities

Besides these virtual programs, the school also offers three different certificates as well as 150-plus remote courses. This community college online is fully accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed. Niche has ranked it among the top 400 two-year colleges in the nation.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,706

#57—Tompkins Cortland Community College

Dryden, New York

Website

Points: 18

Tompkins Cortland Community - logo

One of New York’s open enrollment colleges online, Tompkins Cortland Community is a member of the State University of New York (SUNY) system. A leader in remote learning, the school is home to hybrid as well as fully online programs. Associate’s degree programs with online courses offered entirely via distance education include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Hotel and Restaurant Management
  • AAS in Computer Information Systems
  • AAS in Business Administration
  • AAS: Paralegal

Aside from this community college’s online associate degrees, fully online workforce training certificates are also available with online classes such as:

  • International Business
  • Chemical Dependency Counseling
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences: Adolescent Education
  • Entrepreneurship

This community college online holds its institutional accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,547

#56—Jamestown Community College

Jamestown, New York

Website

Points: 18

Jamestown Community- logo

Jamestown Community offers many fully online degrees and certificates as well as individual online classes. These offerings span several different academic disciplines, including online programs in:

  • Liberal Arts
  • Business
  • Computer Science
  • Political Science
  • Health Information Technology

Students interested in this community college’s online associate degrees can pursue specific offerings such as:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Business Administration
  • AS in Computer Science
  • Associate (AAS) in Health Information Technology
  • AAS in Individual Studies

The Middle States Commission on Higher Ed has accredited Jamestown Community to offer these online credentials.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,336

#55—Dawson Community College

Glendive, Montana

Website

Points: 18

Dawson Community- logo

Dawson Community is one of the open enrollment colleges online in the Northwest that offers online courses and degrees for distance learning students. Options at the associate’s degree level include the following online programs:

  • Associate of (AAS) in Criminal Justice
  • AAS in Early Childhood Ed
  • AAS in Rural Organization Employee Management
  • AAS in Chemical Dependency Counseling

Certificate and diploma options are also available besides these online associate degrees. The online community college holds its institutional accreditation from the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,580

#54—Owensboro Community and Tech

Owensboro, Kentucky

Website

Points: 18

Owensboro Community and Technical College

The number one online community college in Kentucky according to Niche, Owensboro Community and Technical College also made our list. Through the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, the school offers many fully online programs. Some of these include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Healthcare Facilities Leadership
  • AAS in Paralegal Technology
  • AAS in Marine Engineering
  • AAS in Human Services

Several different online diploma and certificate programs are also available. Owensboro Community and Technical College is accredited by the SACSCC.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,488

#53—Southeastern Technical College

Vidalia, Georgia

Website

Points: 18

Southeastern Technical College

Southeastern Technical College is a member of the Technical College System of Georgia. It offers seven fully online degrees, including:

  • Associate’s in Business Healthcare Technology
  • Associate’s in Accounting
  • Associate’s in Cybersecurity
  • Associate’s in Information Technology

Dozens of technical certificates and diplomas are also available to the school’s distance learning students. These include online programs such as:

  • Early Childhood Care and Education Basics
  • Microsoft Office Applications
  • Business Technology
  • Healthcare Billing and Reimbursement

This online community college is fully accredited by the SACSCC.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,127

#52—Lenoir Community College

Kinston, North Carolina

Website

Points: 18

Lenoir Community - logo

Lenoir Community’s distance education offerings include over twenty different remote courses and degrees. That’s not to mention several diploma and certificate programs. Students seeking an online associate’s degree have numerous options to choose from. This includes online programs like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Criminal Justice Technology
  • AAS in Emergency Management
  • AAS in Business Administration
  • AAS in Aviation Management

Diploma and certificate offerings span vocational areas such as:

  • Software Developer Foundations
  • Marketing Essentials
  • Early Childhood Ed
  • Pilot Unmanned Aircraft Systems

Lenoir’s online associate degrees are made possible through its accreditation from the SACSCC.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,568

#51—Southwestern Oregon Community College

Coos Bay, Oregon

Website

Points: 19

Southwestern Oregon Community - logo

Southwestern Oregon Community is one of the Northwest’s best open enrollment colleges online. Here, students can pursue two fully online programs like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Computer Information Systems: Digital Design
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Childhood Education and Family Studies

Besides these two-year associate’s degree programs, the school also offers numerous remote courses. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities has accredited the school to award associate’s degrees online for community college students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,260

#50—Southeastern Illinois College

Harrisburg, Illinois

Website

Points: 19

Southeastern Illinois College

Southeastern Illinois College offers two fully online programs for distance learners:

  • Associate (General Studies)
  • Associate (AAS) in Criminal Justice

Aside from these two-year distance education programs, the school also offers numerous standalone online classes. A wide variety of support services are also extended to the school’s online students. Southeastern Illinois College holds its institutional accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. It is one of the top open enrollment colleges online in the state of Illinois.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,060

#49—Minnesota West Community and Technical

Granite Falls, Minnesota

Website

 Points: 19

Minnesota West Community and Technical College

Minnesota West Community and Technical College is a leading online community college in the Midwest and beyond. It offers a long list of fully online associate degrees and certificates for students keen on learning virtually. Associate’s degree online programs include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Computer Information Security and Assurance
  • AAS: Energy Technical Specialist
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Business Management
  • AS in Management and Supervision in Healthcare

In addition to these online associate programs, online certificate and diploma options are also available. These span workforce training and vocational disciplines such as:

  • Computer Telecommunications
  • Healthcare Administration
  • Pharmacy Technology
  • Political Science
  • Medical Coding

Minnesota West Community and Technical College holds its accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. Niche has ranked the school among the top 10 community colleges in Minnesota and the top 100 online colleges nationwide.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,936

#48—Southern Arkansas University Tech

Camden, Arkansas

Website

 Points: 19

Southern Arkansas University Tech

South Arkansas University Tech offers a dozen programs that are completely online. Aside from a general university transfer program, the school is home to several other occupational programs at the associate’s level. Examples include online programs like:

  • Associate’s in Computer Information Technology
  • Associate of Professional Studies (APS): Environmental Management
  • Associate (AAS) in Health Sciences: General Health
  • AAS in Fire and Emergency Response

All of SAU’s online classes have been approved by Quality Matters. Moreover, the school is institutionally accredited by the SACSCC. Niche has recognized it as one of the top 100 online colleges in America for students to earn associate degrees. Online students pay the same tuition as in-state students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,571

#47—Shoreline Community College

Shoreline, Washington

Website

Points: 19

Shoreline Community- logo

Shoreline Community is among the leading community colleges in the Northwest. It offers fully online programs for students who wish to enter the workforce upon graduation as well as those who intend to transfer to a four-year baccalaureate program. Besides the general transfer associate’s degree online program, the school also offers two-year degrees, including:

  • Associate of Applied Arts and Sciences (AAAS) in Accounting
  • AAAS in Criminal Justice
  • AAAS in Purchasing and Supply Chain Management

Aside from these online associate programs, students seeking a professional certificate online will have even more options such as:

  • Social Media Marketing
  • Project Management
  • Sustainable Business Leadership

This online community college is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities to offer these online programs.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,076

#46—Kennebec Valley Community College

Fairfield, Maine

Website

Points: 19

Kennebec Valley Community - logo

Kennebec Valley Community is one of the top online schools in New England. It offers five associate’s degree with online programs like:

  • AAS in Business Administration: Marketing/Management
  • AAS in Business Administration: Accounting
  • AAS in Early Childhood Ed
  • AAS in Mental Health Technology
  • AA in Liberal Studies

Numerous other degree plans featuring online classes are also available to the school’s traditional and virtual students. The school is fully accredited to offer these virtual classes and programs to community college students through the New England Commission on Higher Ed. A high school diploma or equivalent is required for admission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,882

#45—Central Texas College

Killeen, Texas

Website

Points: 19

Central Texas College

Central Texas College is one of the more comprehensive online schools in our ranking. It offers nearly three dozen fully online programs. Standout online associate programs include:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Business Administration
  • AS in Kinesiology
  • Associate (AAS) in Child Development
  • AAS in Homeland Security and Emergency Management

Among the top open-enrollment colleges online in the state of Texas, Central Texas College holds its institutional accreditation from the SACSCC. Admission requirements include a high school diploma or equivalent.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,540

#44—Tulsa Community College

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Website

Points: 19

Tulsa Community- logo

Tulsa Community is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. It offers students nine different fully online programs through its Online Learning Division. Distance learning students can pursue two-year credentials such as:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Computer Information Systems
  • AS in Business Administration
  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Psychology
  • AA in Liberal Arts

A number of different online certificates are also available as are individual online courses. The school also offers blended courses and programs for students who wish to combine online classes and in-person instruction. Applicants should submit a high school diploma or equivalent.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,445

#43—Wayne Community College

Goldsboro, North Carolina

Website

Points: 19

Wayne Community - logo

Wayne Community is one of the leading community colleges offering a two-year vocational degree. The school offers a dozen different Associate of Applied Science (AAS) credentials. Online programs prepare students in areas such as:

  • Risk Management and Insurance
  • Criminal Justice Technology: Forensic Science
  • Business Administration/Operations Management
  • Artificial Intelligence and Automation Programming
  • Computer Networking

An Associate (AA) for university transfer is also available entirely online. Community college students who opt to pursue a diploma or technical certificate, as opposed to a community college online degree, will have even more options. The school holds its institutional accreditation for online education from the SACSCC.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,524

#42—Missouri State University- West Plains

West Plains, Missouri

Website

Points: 20

Missouri State University- West Plains

MSU-West Plains is part of the Missouri State University system. Like many community colleges, it offers fully online programs for community college students who want to eventually transfer to the university for a bachelor’s degree program. Aside from the online Associate of Arts in General Studies for university transfer, the school also offers four other online learning programs:

  • Associate Degree (AAS) in Enology
  • AAS in Viticulture
  • Certificate in Enology
  • Certificate in Viticulture

Asynchronous delivery maximizes convenience and flexibility for online learners. Missouri State-West Plains is authorized to award online associate degrees and certificates through its accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. Niche has called the school one of the leading community colleges online in America. A high school diploma or equivalent is required for admission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,620

#41—Motlow State Community College

Tullahoma, Tennessee

Website

Points: 20

Motlow State Community - logo

Motlow State Community is one of the largest providers of remote education for community college students in the nation. It offers over 50 different academic credentials that can be pursued entirely via online education. These two-year associate degree programs include both university transfer degrees and vocational credentials. Sample online programs include:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Bioinformatics
  • Associate Degree (AAS) in Cyber Defense
  • AAS in Entrepreneurship
  • Associate (AA) in Mass Communications

Motlow State holds its accreditation from the SACSCC. Admission requires a high school diploma or equivalent.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,330

#40—Alexandria Technical & Community College

Alexandria, Minnesota

Website

Points: 20

Alexandria Technical & Community - logo

Alexandria Technical & Community is part of the Distance Minnesota initiative. It is also one of the state’s top open enrollment colleges online. The school offers myriad options for distance education for students, including 18 different online programs. Many of these credentials are specifically designed for students who intend to transfer to a university for a bachelor’s degree program after graduation. Examples of online degrees include:

  • Online Accounting Transfer Pathway
  • Online Pre-Social Work Transfer Pathway
  • Online Law Enforcement Transfer Pathway
  • Online Economics Transfer Pathway

The college’s online associate degrees also include standalone programs such as:

  • Online AAS in Paralegal Studies
  • Online AAS in Cybersecurity, Virtualization, and Networking
  • Online AAS: Medical Administrative Specialist
  • Online AAS: Speech-Language Pathology Assistant

Alexandria Technical is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. Niche has ranked it among the top 20 online colleges in America.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,649

#39—Finger Lakes Community College

Canandaigua, New York

Website

Points: 20

Finger Lakes Community - logo

With accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed, Finger Lakes Community offers its online students over two dozen degrees via distance education technology. Most of these associate degrees are available 100% online. Examples include the following:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Health Care Studies
  • AS in Kinesiology and Human Performance
  • Associate (AAS) in Smart Systems Technologies
  • AAS in Hospitality and Tourism Management

Hybrid programs, as well as online certificates, are also available. Finger Lakes Community College is a member of the State University of New York (SUNY) system. Applicants are required to submit a high school diploma or equivalent. Online students can access various student support services.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,534

#38—Barton County Community College

Great Bend, Kansas

Website

Points: 20

Barton County Community - logo

Barton County Community is one of the best online providers at the community college level in the Midwest. It offers approximately 40 different online programs for students seeking degrees and programs. Two-year online associate degree options include online programs like:

  • Associate’s in Business Management and Leadership
  • AAS in Early Childhood Ed
  • AS in Psychology
  • AS in Wildlife Sciences

A variety of certificates are also available virtually. That’s not to mention individual online classes such as general education classes. The Higher Learning Commission has extended its institutional accreditation status to Barton County Community College. Niche has ranked it among the 350 best online community colleges in the United States. Student support services are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,776

#37—York County Community College

Wells, Maine

Website

Points: 20

York County Community - logo

York County Community is one of the Northeast’s open enrollment colleges online. It has a robust online division. The school features ten different two-year online associate degree programs that can be completed 100% online. Examples include:

  • Associate Degree (AAS) in Forensic Social Work
  • AAS in Hospitality and Tourism Management
  • AAS in Behavioral Health Sciences
  • AAS in Information Technology

Five hybrid degree programs are also available. These are for students who can attend campus for some program requirements. Distance education learners interested in a one-year certificate option have additional opportunities in vocational fields like:

  • Community Mental Health Counseling
  • Networked Systems Technology
  • Help Desk and User Support
  • Small Business Management

York County Community College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Ed to award these online associate degree programs. Niche has ranked the school among the 450 best 2-year colleges in America. Requirements for admission include a high school diploma or equivalent. Online students have access to an array of student support services.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,720

#36—Nash Community College

Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Website

Points: 20

Nash Community - logo

Students interested in one of Nash Community College’s online associate degree programs will find more than a dozen different distance education academic and vocational credentials to choose from. Standout offerings include:

  • Associate’s in Information Technology: Health Informatics
  • Associate’s in Human Services Technology
  • Associate’s in Emergency Management
  • Associate’ in Arts/Sciences (Four Year University Transfer)

Fully distance education certificate and diploma options are also available. Nash Community College is fully accredited by the SACSCC. Niche has ranked it among some of the nation’s best online community colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,666

#35—New Mexico State University – Alamogordo

Alamogordo, New Mexico

Website

Points: 20

New Mexico State University - Alamogordo

Affiliated with the New Mexico State University system, NMSU-Alamogordo has an articulation agreement with NMSU- Las Cruces for students who wish to earn a bachelor’s degree from a four-year university. Other fully online programs offered to the school’s distance learners include:

Featured Programs

  • Associate (AAS) in Paralegal Studies
  • Associate’s in Criminal Justice
  • AAS in Business Management

Students may also opt to pursue one of a number of certificates such as:

  • Legal Assistant
  • Accounting/Bookkeeping
  • Leadership Skills

NMSU-Alamogordo is institutionally accredited to provide students with online college courses and degrees by The Higher Learning Commission.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,424

#34—Northwest Iowa Community College

Sheldon, Iowa

Website

 Points: 21

Northwest Iowa Community - logo

It’s no surprise that Northwest Iowa Community College has been ranked among the nation’s best online community colleges. Currently, the school boasts over a dozen academic degree programs that can be pursued entirely via distance education. Standout options for students enrolled online include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Agriculture
  • AAS in Virtual Administration Management
  • AAS in Medical Laboratory Technology
  • AAS in Web & Graphic Design

Aside from these fully online associate’s degrees, the school is also prepared to provide students with more than 750 individual distance ed courses. The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Northwest Iowa Community College to offer these distance education classes and credentials. Niche has ranked the school among the top 100 online in the U.S.

Undergraduate Tuition: $6,390

#33—Technical College of the Lowcountry

Beaufort, South Carolina

Website

Points: 21

Technical College of the Lowcountry - logo

Students looking for one of the best open enrollment colleges online may consider one of the Technical College of the Lowcountry’s fully online programs. Specifically, the school has four full degree programs that can be completed entirely online:

  • Associate in Arts (AA)
  • Associate (AAS): Computer Technology
  • AAS: Administrative Office Technology
  • AAS: Criminal Justice Technology

Half a dozen online diploma and certificate programs are also available to the school’s distance learning students. These span vocational and academic areas to prepare students in such as:

  • Office Applications for Business and Industry
  • Criminal Justice and Law
  • General Education
  • Medical Office Assistant
  • Business Management

The Technical College of the Low Country holds its institutional accreditation from the SACSCC. Academic and career advising are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,740

#32—Craven Community College

New Bern, North Carolina

Website

Points: 21

Craven Community - logo

Craven Community College is one of the South’s cheap accredited online colleges. It offers numerous high-quality degree programs for distance learners. In addition to Liberal Arts and Four-Year University Transfer degrees, the school is also home to many fully online programs for students with vocational aspirations. Some of these options for online students include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Business Administration: Operations Management
  • Associate in Medical Office Administration
  • AAS in Information Technology: Technical Support
  • AAS in Early Childhood Ed

Distance learning students in pursuit of a one-year certificate will find even more options at Craven Community College. The school holds its institutional accreditation from the SACSCC. It’s been ranked one of the top 100 colleges online in the nation by Niche.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,114

#31—Trinity Valley Community College

Athens, Texas

Website

Points: 22

Trinity Valley Community - logo

Trinity Valley Community College offers online academic credentials for university transfer as well as technical credentials in the area of workforce development. These online programs are made available through the school’s Department of Distance Learning. They include options such as:

  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Liberal Arts: History and Government
  • AA in Liberal Arts: Psychology
  • Associate (AAS) in Management Information Systems
  • AAS in Legal Assistant Technology

A variety of certificate options are also available to students enrolled online. The SACSCC has accredited Trinity Valley Community College at the institutional level. Niche has recognized it as one of the top quality community colleges in America for online students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,920

#30—Georgia Piedmont Technical College

Clarkston, Georgia

Website

Points: 22

Georgia Piedmont Technical College- logo

Georgia Piedmont Technical College categorizes its 50-plus fully online programs into five distinct career pathways:

  • Business
  • Computer Technology
  • Media
  • Community Health
  • Public Safety & Legal Studies
  • Interdisciplinary Studies

Among these programs are two-year associate’s degree programs that can be completed entirely via distance learning. Some of these include:

  • Associate (AAS) in Health Information Management Technology
  • AAS in Cyber Forensics Technology
  • AAS in Design and Media Production Technology
  • AAS in Marketing Management

Georgia Piedmont Technical College is one of the country’s open enrollment colleges online. It is accredited by the SACSCC to provide students with associate’s credentials. The community college offers academic and career counseling.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,178

#29—Montgomery County Community College

Blue Bell, Pennsylvania

Website

Points: 23

Montgomery County Community - logo

With more than two decades of experience in distance learning, it’s no surprise that Montgomery County Community College makes our list of the nation’s best online community colleges. Fully online program offerings include:

  • Associate’s in Accounting
  • AAS in Human Services: Children, Youth, and Family Services
  • AS in Computer Science
  • AA in Mass Media Studies

Accredited online community college courses and programs from Montgomery County Community College are delivered via a variety of different formats. This includes asynchronous and synchronous as well as hybrid delivery models. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited MCCC to offer these online community college options. Niche has ranked the school among the top 300 community colleges in America for online students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $10,350

#28—Dakota College at Bottineau

Bottineau, North Dakota

Website

Points: 23

Dakota College at Bottineau

Accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, Dakota College at Bottineau is one of North Dakota’s open enrollment colleges online. The school also happens to be one of the nation’s best online community colleges. It offers more than 100 individual courses via distance education. This includes general education classes as well as fully online program options such as:

  • Associate in Human Resource Management
  • AAS in Accounting Technology
  • AAS in Urban Forest Management
  • AAS in Advertising & Marketing

Aside from these vocational credentials, the school also offers four year university transfer degrees. These are for students who intend to complete a bachelor’s degree program. Niche has recognized Dakota College at Bottineau as one of the country’s top quality community colleges. Academic and career advising are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,106

#27—Klamath Community College

Klamath Falls, Oregon

Website

Points: 23

Klamath Community - logo

Klamath Community College offers a dozen different degree options for students interested in pursuing an associate’s credential via distance education. Besides two-year programs designed for university transfer, the school is home to vocational programs such as:

  • Associate of Science (AS) in Environmental Science
  • Associate (AAS) in Business Administration
  • AAS in Digital Media Design
  • AAS in Early Childhood Education

Individual online courses are also available. This includes general education classes. Klamath Community College is among the nation’s cheap accredited online colleges, thanks to its affiliation with the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The community college offers academic and career counseling.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,497

#26—Bucks County Community College

Newtown, Pennsylvania

Website

Points: 24

Bucks County Community - logo

Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed, Bucks County Community College is one of the best online community colleges in terms of its number of virtual programs. Specifically, the school is home to nearly two dozen associate’s degree offerings. This includes the following:

  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Communication Studies
  • AA in Fire Science
  • AA in Social Work
  • AA in Technical Entrepreneurship

Aside from associate programs, half dozen fully online certificate programs are also available as are hybrid programs. Niche has ranked the school among the top 400 community colleges in the country for online students. Academic and career advising are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $9,098

#25—Ocean County College

Toms River, New Jersey

Website

Points: 24

Ocean County Community College 75 Best Online Colleges

Among New York’s open enrollment colleges online, Ocean County College is also one of the country’s best online community colleges. The school hosts a variety of two-year degrees fully online. These include:

  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Global Studies
  • AA in Liberal Arts
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Environmental Studies
  • AS in Public Service

Aside from associate programs, students may also opt for a fully online certificate to prepare students in disciplines such as:

  • Small Business Management
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Business Studies
  • Information Technology

Ocean County College is fully accredited to confer online credentials by the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed. Niche has recognized it as one of the nation’s top quality community colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,790

#24—State Fair Community College

Sedalia, Missouri

Website

Points: 24

State Fair Community- logo

Whether they’re looking for degrees for university transfer or for employment upon graduation, students will find quality virtual instruction at State Fair Community College. Aside from a fully online general Associate of Arts program, the school’s two-year degrees available via distance education include online program options like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Health Information Technology
  • AAS in Health Care Specialist: Pharmacy Technician
  • AAS: Medical Assistant
  • AAS in Business Management

Some of the online degrees in healthcare do require some clinical experiences that must be completed offline. State Fair Community College is authorized to award these associate’s degrees online through accreditation from The Higher Learning Commission. This community college offers academic and career counseling.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,680

#23—Copiah-Lincoln Community College

Wesson, Mississippi

Website

Points: 24

Copiah Lincoln Community - logo

Students looking for a fully online community college may want to consider Copiah-Lincoln Community College. The school is home to nearly three dozen associate’s degree programs that can be completed entirely online. These distance education offerings for students enrolled online span disciplines such as:

  • Social Sciences
  • Public Safety
  • Humanities
  • Health Sciences
  • Business

Specific offerings include two-year programs to prepare students in academic subjects like:

  • Healthcare Data Technology
  • International Business
  • Paralegal Studies
  • Exercise Science
  • English

The SACSCC has fully accredited Copiah-Lincoln Community College to award online community college degrees. Moreover, the school has been recognized as one of the 65 best online colleges in America by Niche.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,180

#22—Itawamba Community College

Fulton, Mississippi

Website

Points: 24

Itawamba Community - logo

Itawamba Community College is one of the best and most affordable accredited community colleges in the South. It offers fully online programs in seven different academic disciplines. Specific program offerings available through the school’s eLearning department include:

  • Associate of (AAS) in Criminal Justice
  • AAS in Hospitality Management
  • AAS in Business and Marketing Management
  • AAS in Public Health

Accelerated online program paths are available. And distance learning students have access to academic and technical support. As an online college, Itawamba Community holds its institutional accreditation from the SACSCC. In its college rankings, Niche has recognized the school as one of the top 250 community colleges for online students nationwide. Academic and career counseling are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,160

#21—Community College of Baltimore County

Baltimore, Maryland

Website

Points: 25

CCBC- logo

Community College of Baltimore County makes our list of the best online community colleges in the United States for its wide variety of accessible online courses and programs. Besides thousands of individual online courses, the school offers associate’s degree programs online in nine broad areas of study. Examples include:

  • Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN)
  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Economics
  • AA in Communication and Media Studies
  • Associate (AAS) in Criminal Justice Studies

Aside from these fully online associate programs, blended and accelerated options are also available to accommodate students’ various schedules. CCBC is an online college fully accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Ed. As far as college rankings, Niche has called it one of the nation’s top online community colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $7,474

#20—Riverland Community College

Austin, Minnesota

Website

Points: 25

Riverland Community- logo

While not a fully online community college, most courses at Riverland Community College offer optional online elements. And some entire degree plans are also offered completely online. Two-year technical degrees that can be pursued via distance education include online options like:

  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Business
  • AA in Liberal Arts
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Accounting
  • Associate (AAS) in Web Development

Numerous online certificate and diploma programs are also available in career clusters that mimic the school’s on campus counterparts. This means they prepare students with the same education as on campus students. Examples include:

  • Fine Arts
  • Business Management
  • Mental Health Counseling
  • Office and Administrative Support
  • Information Technology

Riverland Community College is institutionally accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. As far as school rankings, Niche has named it one of the best online community colleges in America.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,826

#19—Northland Community & Technical College

Thief River Falls, Minnesota

Website

Points: 25

Northland Community and Technical College

Northland Community & Technical College is one of the larger providers for an online associates degree in our ranking. It offers more than two dozen different associate’s degrees via distance education. Some of these programs are intended for students who will eventually transfer to a four-year school for a bachelor’s degree. Others are standalone offerings. Examples include online college program offerings like:

  • Associate (AAS) in Digital Marketing
  • AAS: Early Childhood & Paraprofessional
  • AAS in Respiratory Therapy
  • AAs in Geospatial Intelligence Analysis

As for higher education accreditation, the Higher Learning Commission has accredited Northland Community & Technical College to award these online degrees. In terms of college rankings, Niche has recognized the school as one of the top 250 community colleges in the United States for online students. Academic and career counseling are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,793

#18—Chemeketa Community College

Salem, Oregon

Website

Points: 25

Chemeketa Community - logo

Chemeketa Community College is among the Northwest’s best community colleges. It is also one of Oregon’s open enrollment colleges online. The online college has a comprehensive distance learning initiative, offering a dozen fully online degrees. Examples include the following college program offerings with coursework online:

  • Associate of General Studies (AGS)
  • Associate (AAS) in Hospitality and Tourism Management
  • AAS in Fire Protection Technology

Besides these associate degree options, nineteen different fully online certificates are also available to the school’s distance learning students. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities has extended institutional accreditation to Chemeketa Community College. It’s been recognized by Niche as one of America’s top community colleges for online students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $5,670

#17—Lake Region State College

Devils Lake, North Dakota

Website

Points: 25

Lake Region State College

Lake Region State College offers several fully online degree programs through its Center for Distance Education. These asynchronous online associates degree programs include:

  • Associate in Arts (AA) in Business Administration Online
  • Associate (AAS) in Early Childhood Education Online
  • AAS Online: Fitness Trainer Technician
  • AAS Online: Law Enforcement/Peace Officer Training
  • AAS Online: Speech-Language Pathology Paraprofessional

Distance learning students enrolled in these online associate degree programs are assigned an online academic advisor. Various online courses and certificate programs are also available. Lake Region State College is institutionally accredited by The Higher Learning Commission to confer online associate degrees and credentials. This community college offers academic and career counseling.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,843

#16—Somerset Community College

Somerset, Kentucky

Website

Points: 25

Somerset Community - logo

Somerset Community College is one of several different members of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System that made our list of the nation’s best community colleges. Here, distance learning students can choose to pursue either an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree for university transfer or opt for one of the available online vocational degrees. Examples of online programming include:

  • Associate’s in Computer and Information Technologies
  • Associate’s in Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education
  • Associate’s in Visual Communication: Multimedia
  • Associate’s in Medical Information Technology

Somerset Community is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to offer these associate’s degree programs and online options. Niche has recognized it as one of the country’s leading community college systems for online students. Applicants are encouraged to apply for financial aid and seek academic and career counseling.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,488

#15—Northeast Mississippi Community College

Booneville, Mississippi

Website

Points: 25

Northeast Mississippi Community - logo

Northeast Mississippi Community College offers its general education courses online. It’s also home to more than twenty different academic programs. Areas of study for associate’s degree programs include:

  • Accounting
  • Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Human Resource Management
  • Criminal Justice
  • Economics
  • Business Management

The technical school’s online courses are made available through its affiliation with the Mississippi Virtual Community College. NMCC holds its institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Niche has ranked it among the best community colleges in the U.S for online students.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,036

#14—Beaufort County Community College

Washington, North Carolina

Website

Points: 25

Beaufort County Community - logo

Beaufort County Community College is one of our top picks for cheap accredited online colleges. It offers nine different options for prospective students seeking a fully online degree. Specialized programs include the following online options:

  • Associate (AAS) in Business Administration
  • AAS in Criminal Justice
  • AAS in Information Technology: Software and Web Development
  • AAS in Medical Office Administration

Diplomas and certificates are also available via distance education. They span vocational disciplines such as:

  • Criminal Justice Technology
  • Medical Coding, Billing, and Insurance
  • Essential Police Operations
  • Special Education

Beaufort County Community is accredited at the institutional level by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Financial aid may be available along with academic and career counseling to support student success.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,518

#13—Virginia Peninsula Community College (FKA Thomas Nelson Community College)

Hampton, Virginia

Website

Points: 26

Virginia Peninsula Community College is one of Virginia’s open enrollment colleges online. It offers nearly 20 different online programs through its Ecampus. Among these offerings are two-year associates degree programs, including:

  • Associate (AAS) in Fire Science Technology
  • AAS in Information Systems Technology
  • Associate of Science (AS) in Business Administration
  • AS in Computer Science

Besides these associate programs, certificate programs are also available via distance education. They span occupational areas such as:

  • Fire Science and Emergency Medical Services Leadership
  • Cybersecurity for Enterprise
  • Web Design Specialist
  • Geographical Information Systems Technician

This college’s associate’s degree programs are authorized by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. 

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,806

#12—Louisiana State University-Eunice

Eunice, Louisiana

Website

Points: 26

LSU-Eunice

LSU-Eunice is affiliated with the Louisiana State University system. It has been recognized as one of the best online community colleges in the nation. The school is home to five different associate’s degree programs that can be completed entirely via distance education:

  • Associate Degree (AA) in Humanities
  • AA in Social Sciences
  • AA in General Studies
  • Associate Degree (AS) in Criminal Justice
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Fire and Emergency Services

A fully online certificate in Medical Coding and Billing is also available for online learners. Louisiana State University- Eunice is accredited at the institutional level by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,730

#11 (TIE)—Elizabethtown Community & Technical College

Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Website

Points: 26

Elizabethtown Community & Technical College

Another member of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, Elizabethtown Community & Technical College provides its distance learners with access to the Kentucky Virtual Campus. Here, they can pursue a variety of fully online programs. These include two-year associate’s degrees such as:

  • Associate of Arts (University Transfer Credits)
  • Associate of Science (University Transfer Credits)
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Logistics & Operations Management
  • Associate Degree in Human Services

One of Kentucky’s open enrollment colleges online, ECTC is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to confer associate degrees. Niche has called it one of the nation’s leading two-year postsecondary institutions.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,488

#11 (TIE)—Southeast Kentucky Community & Technical College

Cumberland, Kentucky

Website

Points: 26

Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College

A member of the large Kentucky Community and Technical College System, Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College has been recognized as one of the best technical colleges in the nation. Here, distance learning students can pursue numerous different associate’s degree programs without ever attending class on campus. Specialized programs include:

  • Online AAS in Business Administration Systems
  • Online AAS in Energy Management
  • Online AAS in Healthcare Facilities Leadership
  • Online AAS in Library Information Technology

SKCTC holds the necessary postsecondary education accreditation to award these associate degree online credentials from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Financial aid may be available to fund online learning and community college education. Career development and advising are available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,488

#10—James A. Rhodes State College

Lima, Ohio

Website

Points: 26

James A Rhodes State College

Students looking for cheap accredited colleges for an associate’s degree in the Midwest should consider the fully online programs from James A. Rhodes State College. The school is home to several fully online two-year programs in academic and vocational areas. Examples of online programming include:

  • Business Administration
  • Marketing
  • Accounting
  • Medical Administrative Assistance

Hybrid degree offerings for associate degree programs include:

  • Digital Media Technology
  • Web Programming/Computer Programming
  • Network Security

Ten different certificate programs are also available primarily online. The Higher Learning Commission has authorized this college’s associate degrees.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,325

#9—Northcentral Technical College

Wausau, Wisconsin

Website

Points: 26

Northcentral Technical College

Northcentral Technical College is home to more than two dozen fully online associate degree programs. This makes it one of the largest community colleges in our ranking. Areas of study for distance learning students seeking a two-year degree include:

  • Data Analytics
  • Business Administration
  • Legal Studies
  • Human Services

Numerous technical diplomas and certificates are also available primarily online in vocational disciplines like:

  • Bookkeeping Technology
  • Quality Manufacturing
  • Emergency Medical Services Leadership
  • Project Management

The Higher Learning Commission has accredited Northcentral Technical College to offer these online courses and credentials. Niche has ranked the school among the top 35 online colleges in the United States. Students may be eligible for financial aid, even those enrolled in online learning.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,673

#8—Central Georgia Technical College

Warner Robbins, Georgia

Website

Points: 26

Central Georgia Technical College

Central Georgia Technical College is part of the Technical College System of Georgia. The community college offers dozens of fully online courses and programs. For students seeking a two-year associate’s credential, online programming includes:

  • Associate’s in Banking and Finance
  • AAS in Applied Technical Management
  • Associate’s in Criminal Justice Technology
  • Associate’s in Business Technology

Numerous diploma programs are also available via distance education,. These include those in vocational areas such as:

  • Computer Programming
  • Logistics Management
  • Early Childhood Care/Education
  • Web Site Design/Development

Central Georgia Technical College is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award these associate degrees. Niche has ranked it among the 300 best community colleges nationwide.

Undergraduate Tuition: $3,042

#7—Rowan-Cabarrus Community College

Salisbury, North Carolina

Website

Points: 26

Rowan-Cabarrus Community - logo

Cheap accredited online colleges like Rowan-Cabarrus Community College give students the opportunity to earn a two-year degree without accumulating burdensome student debt. These students will have many options when it comes to associate’s degree credentials that can be completed entirely online. Examples of online programming includes:

  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Fire Protection Technology
  • AAS in Information Technology: Cybersecurity
  • AAS in Early Childhood Education
  • AAS in Emergency Medical Science

Over 40 different online diplomas and certificates are also available as are more than 250 individual online courses. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College holds its institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate degrees. Niche has ranked the school among the 400 top community colleges in the United States. Students enrolled in online learning may qualify for financial aid. Student services are also available to distance learners.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,632

#6—Pitt Community College

Winterville, North Carolina

Website

Points: 26

Pitt Community - logo

Distance learning students looking for cheap accredited online colleges in the South should consider Pitt Community College’s best online programs. The school’s distance education offerings include more than 20 online community college degrees. Some of the online programming includes:

  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Healthcare Management Technology
  • AAS in Industrial Management Technology
  • AAS in Early Childhood Education
  • AAS in Information Technology: Web Administration and Design

In addition to these associate degrees online, dozens of certificates and diplomas are also available. This includes those in vocational fields such as:

  • Advertising & Graphic Design
  • Office Administration
  • Medical Coding
  • Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Nuclear Medicine Technology
  • Teacher Education

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has accredited Pitt to offer these fully online degrees and certifications. Academic advising may be available.

Undergraduate Tuition: $1,940

#5—Lake Tahoe Community College

South Lake Tahoe, California

Website

Points: 26

Lake Tahoe Community- logo

Lake Tahoe Community College is one of the truly cheap accredited online community colleges in our ranking. It offers distance learning opportunities in a variety of different formats. This includes fully online associate degrees such as:

  • Associate of Arts (AA) in Criminal Justice
  • AA in Anthropology
  • AA in Business
  • AA in Social Science
  • AA in Liberal Arts

Online certificate programs are also available in four distinct career/technical areas:

  • Accounting Technician
  • Criminal Justice
  • Bookkeeping Technician
  • Teacher Education
  • Computer and Information Science

These degrees and distance learning courses can be delivered via myriad formats. This includes hybrid, synchronous, and asynchronous modes. LTCC is fully accredited to award these two-year degrees online by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges. Financial aid is available to help fund online learning. And students are eligible to receive the same student services as their on campus counterparts, including academic advising.

Undergraduate Tuition: $1,131

#4—Eastern Gateway Community College

Steubenville, Ohio

Website

Points: 27

Eastern Gateway Community - logo

Eastern Gateway Community College is one of Ohio’s open enrollment colleges online. It offers numerous online programs in in-demand vocational areas such as:

  • Education
  • Healthcare
  • Business
  • Information Technology

These degrees include specific program offerings like:

  • Associate of Applied Business (AAB) in Internet & Interactive Digital Media Design
  • AAB in Professional Office Management
  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Fire Science
  • AAS in Health Information Management

Eastern Gateway is fully accredited by The Higher Learning Commission to award these associate degrees online. Niche has called it one of the best community colleges in America. Qualified students should apply for financial aid and other student services.

Undergraduate Tuition: $4,026

#3—Stanly Community College

Albemarle, North Carolina

Website

Points: 27

Stanly Community - logo

Stanly Community College is one of the most affordable colleges in our ranking. It is currently expanding its best online offerings. Today, the school offers programs of study in a variety of academic and career/technical areas. Examples include:

  • Computer Engineering
  • Law Enforcement
  • Business Administration
  • Culinary Arts
  • Agribusiness Technology
  • Graphic Design
  • Child Development

As for content delivery, a variety of methods are utilized. Options include both asynchronous and synchronous instruction as well as hybrid learning formats. Stanly Community College is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate degrees online. Niche has ranked the school among the top 35 best community colleges in the country.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,674

#2—Richmond Community College

Hamlet, North Carolina

Website

Points: 27

Richmond Community - logo

Richmond Community College has been called one of the best community colleges in the South in terms of quality and affordability. The school’s suite of fully online programs include:

  • Associate in Arts (AA): University Transfer
  • Associate’s in Healthcare Management Technology
  • Associate’s in Human Services Technology
  • Associate’s in Early Childhood Education

Certificate and diploma options are also available via distance learning as are online community college courses. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has fully accredited Richmond Community College to confer these online credentials. Financial aid may be available, and online students qualify for the same student services as their on campus counterparts.

Undergraduate Tuition: $2,536

#1—Vance-Granville Community College

Henderson, North Carolina

Website

Points: 27

Vance-Granville Community - logo

Vance-Granville Community College is one of the cheapest online colleges in our ranking. The school is home to numerous online courses as well as ten different fully online degree programs. Examples include:

  • Associate’s in Business Administration
  • Associate’s in Information Technology: Networking & Security
  • Associate’s in Early Childhood Education
  • Associate’s in Supply Chain Management: Trucking Operations Management

Aside from these major-specific degree offerings, the school also offers a general Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) program to earn transfer credits. VGCC holds its institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Undergraduate Tuition: $1,948

How to Find the Best Online Community Colleges

With so many advantages of attending community college online, you might be wondering if there’s a catch. The short answer, thankfully, is no. There are some disadvantages of attending a two-year school virtually (think lack of student engagement or activities, for instance). But most programs, including these cheap accredited online colleges, are the real deal. Despite being more affordable and more flexible, these two-year institutions manage to deliver supportive learning environments, academic advising, and quality instruction from expert faculty members. Still, some online community colleges are better than others. And it can take some work to find a school that suits your individual needs and preferences. Aside from checking the school’s accreditation status, here’s how to find the best two-year college to support your academic success:

  • Consider your higher education budget.

Despite being significantly cheaper than four-year schools or traditional university, two-year online colleges still vary in terms of cost. Before you choose a school to attend, you’ll definitely want to review your personal finances and consider how much you can spend. One thing to keep in mind when considering the cost of online community colleges is that approximately two dozen states in the United States offer free tuition to two-year schools. Most programs offer other financial aid programs to help you save money as well.

  • Consider your academic goals.

Contrary to popular belief, online community colleges aren’t just for students who desire a two-year associate’s degree. As far as academic advising, there are other options. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that students who desire a bachelor’s degree may still benefit from attending a fully online community college program as opposed to a traditional university. That’s because many of these schools offer university transfer degrees. These are credentials designed for high school graduates who intend to transfer to a four-year college or university after obtaining an Associate of Arts (AA) or Associate of Science (AS) degree. Shorter-term vocational programs such as diplomas and certificates are often available from online community colleges as well.

  • Think about your future career.

The best online community colleges offer a variety of academic programs. But the vast majority of these are geared towards students who want to enter the workforce immediately upon graduation. If you’re one of these students, you’ll want to look at a college’s available credentials prior to enrolling. Be sure that the two-year school you’re considering has a program for the specific occupational role you desire after you earn your degree. Also, be aware that some schools offer career advising.

Types of Online Colleges For A Two-Year Degree

Once you’ve determined that online community colleges are the right choice for your educational and career goals, you can begin to consider what type of school you want to attend.

Fully Online Community Colleges

Some students begin their search for a virtual two-year school by looking for fully online colleges. The fact is, there aren’t many schools that fit this bill. Most schools have both on-campus programs and online degree options. Fortunately, you don’t have to attend a fully online school to earn a fully online degree. But you still need to practice discernment when choosing a school to attend. Some schools that advertise fully online degrees actually require some on-campus attendance. Technically, these programs are better labeled as hybrid or blending learning programs. But you will still have to attend some in-person classes. To ensure a program offers 100% online classes, it’s wise to speak to an online admissions counselor before enrollment.

Accredited Online Colleges

To make a shortlist of two-year colleges to attend, you’ll want to make sure that the school is either regionally or nationally accredited. Look for common accrediting bodies such as:

  • The Higher Learning Commission
  • The Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • New England Commission of Higher Education
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

You can find other accrediting agencies approved by the U.S. Department of Education on the department’s website.

Online Community Colleges with Open Enrollment

Most online community colleges in the United States are open enrollment colleges online. This means that they accept all qualified students who apply. To be qualified, you’ll need a high school diploma or equivalent. Typically, there are no other eligibility requirements like a minimum GPA or college entrance exam scores, for instance. If your academic transcript leaves something to be desired, then you may be wise to search for online community or 2-year colleges with open enrollment status.

Two-Year Colleges: Degrees and Programs

When contemplating distance ed, you’ll want as much information as possible. This includes all your educational options. While some people think all accredited online community or 2-year colleges offer the same basic programs and online classes, this is a misconception. In reality, the school you attend will dictate the various options you’ll have for your academic endeavors, whether on-campus or online. Generally speaking, there are three different credentials one can earn:

  • Associate of Sciences/Arts (University Transfer)
  • Associate of Applied Science
  • Technical Certificate/Diploma

Community or Junior Colleges: Best Online Credentials

If you decide to prepare for the workforce with a degree such as an Associate of Applied Science (AAS), you’ll have lots of different options to choose from. When making this important decision, it may be wise to consider the job opportunities you’ll have upon graduation. For the purpose of career advising, we’ve created the following list. It includes some of the fastest-growing occupational fields for applicants with online associate’s degrees:

  • Diagnostic Medical Sonography
  • Health Sciences
  • Environmental Science
  • Public Health
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Paralegal Studies
  • Respiratory Therapy
  • Web Development

Community or Junior Colleges: Best Online Certificates and Diplomas

Associate’s degrees aren’t your only option when it comes to two-year colleges. If you opt for a certificate or diploma, you’ll save both time and money. And you’ll still qualify for some attractive job prospects in fields like:

  • Health Information Technology
  • Nursing and Allied Health
  • Computer Programming
  • Computer Sciences
  • Fire Science
  • Aviation Maintenance
  • Surgical Technology
  • Culinary Arts

Professional Licensure

Depending on the vocational field you choose to pursue, you may need a professional license in addition to an associate’s degree or certificate/diploma. Some of these programs (both online and on-campus)will prepare you to sit for the required examinations for a specific licensure program. Others do not. Check with the school’s website, or speak to an admissions counselor to confirm this programmatic feature before enrollment.

Frequently-Asked Questions About Two-Year Colleges

If you have questions about attending a fully online community college, then you’ve come to the right place. Below, our editors have compiled a shortlist of some of the most commonly asked questions regarding online community college programs, online technical schools, and online associate’s degrees. When addressing each of these questions, we provide students some general information. For specific advice, speak to an enrollment counselor at the accredited online community college you’re considering. Or you can request official resource guides. And as always, be sure to check the school’s accreditation status.

Q: What are the top online community colleges?

A: Despite our ranking, there is no single best community college online. Still, you can find the perfect school with for you by evaluating and prioritizing certain factors like affordable education, scheduling, curriculum, technical support, student resources, and accreditation.

Q: What does online community college cost?

A: Cost of attendance throughout your academic career will vary from one community college online to the next. Still, these schools will almost always be cheaper than four-year colleges. Many community colleges such as the two-year colleges highlighted in our ranking are associated with in-state undergraduate tuition ranging from less than $2,000 per year to nearly $10,000 annually. Students can potentially save money by applying for financial aid.

Q: How long does it take to finish these programs?

A: It depends on the specific community college online program you’re enrolled in as well as how many online community college classes you take per semester. For many community colleges and associate’s degree programs, the standard completion time for high school graduates is two years. Certificate and diploma programs can be finished in a year or less. Be sure to consider any transfer credits you may have as well.

Q: Can I get a community college education entirely with online classes?

A: It’s possible for most community college students. Still, it depends on the program you’re enrolled in as well as the school you choose to attend. Some courses, particularly in the fields of education and healthcare, require hands-on learning experiences. Thus, they cannot be completed fully online.

Career Questions About Two-Year Remote Degrees

Q: Are jobs with an online degree in demand?

A: It depends on the field you plan to enter as well as the type of associate degree you have. Health care and computer information technology are two of the fastest-growing fields for graduates with a two-year credential, but there are others.

Q: How much will I make after graduation from a junior college?

A: With an associate degree, your salary will vary depending on a number of factors. These may include your specific degree, vocational field, and geographical location, for instance. Still, PayScale reports that students who hold a terminal associate’s degree (i.e., an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) make approximately $56,000 per year on average.

Q: Will my employer ask if I attended community college online?

A: It’s possible that a hiring manager may ask about the details of your college attendance. Still, the diploma awarded to community college graduates with an associate degree will likely be the same as those awarded to in-person students. Moreover, fully online courses and degrees are just as legitimate today as traditional credentials. They are well-known for preparing students for success in the workplace.

Q: Can I join a professional organization if I learn online?

A: Yes. Online students with an associate degree will be eligible for membership to industry organizations of their choice, just as traditional students are.

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