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Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville

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Great Value Colleges - Top Online Degrees in Jacksonville

Students all over the state are demanding access to schools that confer an online degree in Jacksonville, Florida. With so many careers available with online programs, the demand has risen to such a degree that traditional campuses are expanding their online offerings to keep up with interest. It is a great thing to see but causes one problem: how are students going to sift through all of the schools to find the program that is right for them?

Online students want access to a variety of degrees, small class sizes, and affordable tuition. They also need programs that are accredited, enabling them to seek qualifications in their field. This ranking of the top colleges for online degrees in Jacksonville, Florida, will help them in their search for the perfect degree to help them meet their professional goals.

Methodology

Points-based rankings like this one require a great deal of research. This one began with a search for “online degrees near Jacksonville, Florida,” on the National Center for Education Statistics website and its publicly available College Navigator database. Once a sizable group of schools was identified, the second round of research was conducted; this time, all of the information was taken from each school’s website. Points were awarded in the following categories:

Types of online degree options available (associate, bachelor, master’s, doctorate): 1 point per degree level.

Cost per credit hour:
Under $250 – 4 points
$251 – $350 – 3 points
$351 – $450 – 2 points
Over $451 per credit hour – 1 point

Regional Accreditation:
Present – 1 point

Student to faculty ratio:
10:1 or less – 3 points
11:1 to 15:1 – 2 points
Greater than 15:1 – 1 point

The 10 schools that made the final cut can be found within a 50-mile radius of Jacksonville, Florida. They are listed below in descending order in accordance with the total amount of points the school accrued during the research process.

10. Bethune-Cookman University

Daytona Beach, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Bethune-Cookman University offers eight undergraduate programs, four master’s programs, and a graduate certificate online.

Website

Some of the best online bachelor’s programs available in the area come from Bethune-Cookman University. This school offers eight undergraduate programs, four master’s programs, and a graduate certificate online. Fields of study include criminal justice administration, organizational leadership, Christian ministry, and international studies. Students will find that this school has a strong online community, which is known as the Cyber Campus. It is supported by a dedicated faculty and staff who are available to help students with their needs. Online features for this school include academic and career advising, tutoring services, financial aid, 24/7 technical support, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Bachelor’s, Master’s
Cost per credit hour: $481
Student to Faculty Ratio: 16:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 5

9. Trinity Baptist College

Jacksonville, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Trinity Baptist College offers offers two associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree, and two master’s degrees online.

Website

Trinity Baptist College is a fantastic place for students interested in completing an online degree in Jacksonville, Florida. While the school is expanding its offerings, it currently offers two associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree, and two master’s degrees; stand-alone courses are also available for students. Fields of study include education, Biblical studies, and educational leadership. Students will have a fully functioning learning management system on hand through the TBCOnline portal. Features for this degree include 24/7 technical support, financial aid, academic and career advising, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s, Master’s
Cost per credit hour: $499
Student to Faculty Ratio: 15:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 6

8. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Daytona Beach, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers dozens of online degrees at all levels of education.

Website

Some great online programs are available at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. This STEM-specific school offers dozens of degrees at all levels of education; certificates, endorsements and professional pilot programs are also available. Fields of study include Aeronautics, engineering, aviation maintenance, and emergency services. This school is dedicated to online learning and has taken every opportunity available to ensure that all students are provided with the services they need in order to graduate. Online features for this school include 24/7 technical support, academic and career advising, field experience opportunities, online office hours, financial aid services, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate
Cost per credit hour: $413
Student to Faculty Ratio: 17:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

7. Jacksonville University

Jacksonville, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Jacksonville University offers online undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Website

Jacksonville University remains one of the top colleges for students who want to earn an online degree in Jacksonville, Florida. This school has a select group of undergraduate and graduate degrees available to students, with more announced for the future. Fields of study include business administration, health informatics, nursing, and sports management. All degrees are offered through the Center for Professional Studies, which is also the home to the school’s online faculty and staff. With small class sizes and experienced professors, students will have everything they need to be set up for success. Online features include academic and career advising, financial aid, 24/7 technical support, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Bachelor’s, Master’s
Cost per credit hour: $315
Student to Faculty Ratio: 11:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

6. Florida Gateway College

Lake City, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Florida Gateway College offers associate’s and bachelor’s degree entirely online.

Website

Some of the best undergraduate online programs come from Florida Gateway College. This school offers students the chance to complete an associate’s or bachelor’s degree entirely online; there are no residency requirements for these degrees. Certificates are also available. Fields of study include early childhood education, nursing, accounting technology, and environmental science technology. More programs have already been announced for the future, so students will want to keep an eye on this school. Online features include 24/7 technical support, online financial aid services, online office hours, a bookstore, and access to the school’s online library resources.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s
Cost per credit hour: $120.33
Student to Faculty Ratio: 27:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

5. St. Johns River State College

Orange Park, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
St. Johns River State College offers online associate’s and bachelor’s degrees.

Website

St. Johns River State College is home to a great collection of online degrees near Jacksonville, Florida. Students who enroll at this school can complete an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in a variety of fields, including organizational management, nursing, criminal justice technology, and business administration. Students at this school have access to small class sizes, a dedicated faculty, and a variety of flexible options that will keep them on track for graduation. Online features include 24/7 technical support, tutoring services, financial aid services, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s
Cost per credit hour: $108
Student to Faculty Ratio: 19:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

4. Florida State College at Jacksonville

Jacksonville, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Florida State College at Jacksonville offers online associate’s and bachelor’s degrees as well as completed certificates and endorsements.

Website

The online degrees available at Florida State College at Jacksonville were created for students who are prepared to complete their education. Students at this school can complete associate’s or bachelor’s degrees as well as completed certificates and endorsements. Fields of study include real estate, business administration, human services, and computer information technology. Most programs are offered 100 percent online while others may require residency on campus. The school has a dedicated online support staff and trains its professors in online education. Features at this school include academic and career advising, 24/7 technical support, an online bookstore, online office hours, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s
Cost per credit hour: $104.88
Student to Faculty Ratio: 21:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

3. Daytona State College

Daytona Beach, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
Daytona State College offers online associate’s and bachelor’s degrees.

Website

Daytona State College is home to a great selection of online degrees near Jacksonville, Florida. This school has been ranked as having some of the best online bachelor’s programs by U.S. News and World Report. Students can earn online degrees and certificates at both the associate’s and bachelor’s levels, making it a great choice for those who are interested in advancing or changing their career. Class sizes are kept small so that students can engage with classmates and their experienced professors, giving them a feeling of community that is offered online. Features for this school include academic and career advising, 24/7 technical support, online office hours, financial aid services, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Associate’s, Bachelor’s
Cost per credit hour: $102.40
Student to Faculty Ratio: 19:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 8

2. The University of North Florida

Jacksonville, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
University of North Florida caps class sizes at 20 students.

Website

Students enrolling at the University of North Florida will have several online programs to choose from. This school offers degrees at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate levels; certificates and endorsements are also available. Fields of study include nursing, criminal justice, American sign language, and educational leadership. Students will find that their class sizes are capped at 20 students so they have a chance to interact with their classmates and professors. Online features for this program include 24/7 technical support, financial aid services, academic and career services, online office hours, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate
Cost per credit hour: $175.50
Student to Faculty Ratio: 18:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 9

1. The University of Florida

Gainesville, Florida

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida: Jacksonville, Florida
The University of Florida offers online degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Website

The University of Florida remains the top college to earn an online degree near Jacksonville, Florida. This school has a variety of online degrees at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate levels; professionals can also earn certificates and endorsements without seeking a degree. Fields of study include education, engineering, business administration, and nursing. Small class sizes and trained online instructors make the education process easy and engaging. All students will find the flexibility options that they have been looking for so no one gets left behind. Online features include tutoring services, 24/7 technical support, academic and career advising, an online bookstore, and an online library.

Types of Degrees Available:
Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate
Cost per credit hour: $129.18
Student to Faculty Ratio: 19:1
Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
Total Points: 9

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Career Options for an Online Degree?

Online education has the benefit of opening doors to every career imaginable. Students will find that with a few key exceptions, it is possible to earn online degrees from an associate’s to a doctorate degree and find the position of their dreams. And with continuing education and endorsements available online for all professions, it is a great way for students to continue with their current career while finishing a degree.

The key exceptions to this rule are the medical and law professions. These are highly specialized fields that require in-person attendance at an on-campus school. There is no getting around this requirement if a student wants to be licensed to practice either profession in the United States, so it’s important that these ambitious individuals keep this in mind.

However, more and more schools are providing even these professionals with the chance to complete pre-professional degrees online. This is a good choice for students who are moving from one related career to another as it provides them the opportunity to continue working. Specialist degrees must still be completed on-campus, but an undergraduate degree can be earned online.

Is an Online Degree a Good Choice for an Adult Learner?

This depends on the adult learner. Online degrees are a great choice for most students but what matters is that the student considers what type of student they are and how an online degree may affect their professional and personal lives. Once they have considered this, then it will be time to move on into researching online degrees if they have determined it is the right course of action for them.

Online students must be self-motivated, good with time management, and committed to their degree. They will often have to create their own schedule to stay on top of their course work and their exam dates. In some cases, students will also need to complete field experiences, which require time off from work and school to successfully finish this requirement. Some scheduling conflicts will arise, but if a student can persevere, they will be well on their way to completing their online degree.

Online degrees were created to be flexible enough to work around an adult learner’s other responsibilities; however, education must also be taken into account. Online degrees may have work experiences, as mentioned above, that are required for graduation. This may mean that a student will have to scale back on work to take on the experience, which may result in a loss of income. Additionally, adult learners with personal responsibilities, such as a family, may find it difficult to balance those responsibilities with the requirements of a degree.

In the end, only a student can make the determination for themselves. If they are committed to advancing their career, then an online degree is most likely the best choice. With flexible options that make it easier to schedule a degree, it can be a great way to keep a student’s entire life in balance while moving towards their goals.

How Does a Learning Management System Work?

A learning management system is a technical term for an online portal. It is the system that a student will use in order to access their coursework, turn in assignments, and get in touch with their professors. Most online learning management systems have supporting apps, which can be downloaded to a computer, smartphone or tablet, that will help students stay on track with their educational goals.

A learning management system is an application that is the home base for an online degree. Students will log onto the system to view lectures, participate in discussions, coordinate team projects, and speak with classmates and professors. It is most commonly viewed as an internet chatroom with multimedia capabilities.

The system works much like online education websites: students register for courses, log on, and view lectures. They can take notes right on their computer and answer discussion questions in the forum that accompanies the course. Syllabi and assignment deadlines are generally also easily accessed; most students can parlay their education schedule into a calendar app on their phone or on their computer for easier access. Many lectures can also be downloaded for offline viewing.

Apps that accompany the learning management system work the same way. The only difference is that they were created for different platforms, such as smartphones and tablets. Students will have the same functionality, just in a different form.

The purpose of the learning management system is to provide students with the same feeling of being in a classroom; it is just provided online. Systems may have different features, but they all function the same way. The end goal is to provide students with an online portal that enables them to earn the degree they have worked so hard on during their time at the institution.

Are Online Programs Eligible for Financial Aid?

Most online programs are eligible for financial aid. The type of financial aid that a student uses may not be accepted by all schools, although most have an open door policy on any type of aid. Students will have to contact their school to learn more about what may be provided and what may not, because the following is a general overview of types of financial aid open to online students.

Federal financial aid is open to all students, regardless of the delivery method of the degree. This is a welcome change; online schools were not eligible for financial aid 15 years ago, meaning it was harder for students with financial need to find a program that would fit their budget.

Students can apply for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal Financial Aid, a form that is also known as FAFSA. Generally, FAFSA is open to full-time students who demonstrate need; some colleges consider all of their online students full-time, regardless of course load, meaning that part-time students may also be eligible. However, not all schools take federal financial aid, so more research on the school would be warranted to confirm that the aid would be accepted.

Scholarships and grants are also available to online students. In fact, many scholarships were created for online students. Most of these awards do not have a residency requirement, so students can apply for nearly every scholarship or grant that they qualify for with few exceptions. Please note that some grants do require residency on campus that may be covered by the school; it is worth taking into consideration these grants, especially if it is offered by a school the student wants to attend.

Lastly, loans are available; this is not considered financial aid, although some online schools do think of it as aid. Loans must be paid back and are most likely best to avoid so as to not incur more debt. Students should try hard to find other forms of financial aid prior to choosing this; loans are a last resort.

Why Do Some Online Schools Have Short Term Lengths and Others Don’t?

Online schools are not beholden to the traditional academic term schedule; on-campus schools follow a 15-week or 16-week term schedule, which is common practice in the United States. Because online schools do not have any reason to hold to these term lengths, many schools have decided to be more flexible with courses.

Students may find that online schools have term lengths that vary from four weeks to 15 weeks; this is dependent on the school and how it has created its online programs. It is necessary to understand why some schools have short term lengths and others don’t. However, students will keep in mind that term lengths are decided based on a key factor: a student’s previous experience in the field for their degree.

Some programs were designed specifically for working professionals in a designated field; business and nursing programs are two good examples. Because it is assumed that students have previous experience in the field, it is not necessary to have course lengths that go in-depth over a long period of time to ensure that students understand the concepts. Previous experience demonstrates an understanding of the core fundamentals of the field.

Short course lengths are also used in accelerated programs, which were also designed for working professionals. Students in these programs generally work in the field at the same time they are working on their degree, so they have a better chance of immersion in advanced concepts and theories. It also means that they will be able to demonstrate competency much faster than students with no experience.

Completion and bridge programs also tend to be accelerated. This is usually because a student is licensed or certified in the field and only needs to finish the degree, rather than needing to complete a program and become qualified by an independent entity in order to begin their career. These programs were designed to take half as much time so that students can move forward in the workforce.

Most programs, however, follow the traditional term length. This is because most programs that come online were designed based on the traditional on-campus program, and therefore it may take more planning to truncate those course lengths. This is by no means a mark against a college or university that utilizes 16-week terms; it only means that the school is certain that a student will thrive in the future after graduation.

Working professionals and adult learners have a lot on their plate, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have dreams of completing their education. Online degrees provide a way for them to keep on top of all of their obligations while still fulfilling their dreams. This ranking of the top colleges for students interested in earning an online degree in Jacksonville, Florida, will help them find the school that meets their needs so they can begin conquering their goals.

GVC Staff
March 2019
This concludes our ranking of the Top 10 Colleges for an Online Degree in Jacksonville, Florida.