The Top 50 Community Colleges That Offer Online Degrees Ranked by Affordability
As summer winds down, many are getting ready to go back to school in the coming months. For many high school students, this fall will mark the beginning of the college search process. Deciding on a college can be a stressful and long process, especially when price is an important factor for selecting a school. It can be difficult to find an affordable school that fits your lifestyle and budget. This is why choosing to attend a community college is a popular option among graduating high schoolers.
Community colleges are known to be more affordable than most four-year institutions and larger colleges. They also typically offer more flexible schedules and a number of different online courses, as many community colleges are commuter only. Since working professionals quite often do not have enough time or the means to travel to class, online courses are becoming increasingly popular. However, it can be challenging to find an affordable community college that offers online classes. Recently, AffordableSchools.net released their ranking for “The 50 Most Affordable Community Colleges That Offer Online Degrees”.
In general it is cheaper to eventually earn a bachelor’s degree by first earning an associate’s degree at a community college. The information that this list is comprised of comes mostly from the National Center for Education Statistics database. In order to create the rankings for these community colleges, AffordableSchools.net took into account many different factors to make the perfect list. They made sure to only include colleges that offered at least “Distance” associate’s degrees, and institutions considered to be community colleges, city colleges, or tribal colleges offering at least associate’s degrees. Colleges that were not in the NCES database were left out, along with others that only indicated online courses and did not readily mention any online degrees, according to a press release from AffordableSchools.net.
These affordable community colleges which offer online courses are located in a range of states. Throughout the list, most of the wallet-friendly schools are found in Georgia. There are also many located in other states such as Ohio, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Florida. However, not every state is represented in this list, indicating that location could have a big effect on the cost and course availability of the community colleges in your area.
Coming in at number one in the rankings is Oconee Fall Line Technical College which is located in Sandersville, Georgia. It has an in-state tuition price of $2,624. Oconee also offers more than 100 academic programs (associate degrees, diplomas, certificates) and both credit and non-credit courses, and serves 11 counties in the state of Georgia. The number 50 slot in this list is held by Sinclair Community College in Dayton, The in-state tuition for Sinclair is only $3,604, which is only about $1,000 more than Oconee.
In comparison to four-year-colleges, community colleges are a far more affordable alternative. According to CollegeBoard.org, “The average published in-state price for tuition and fees for four-year public colleges is $9, 410 per year. But the average net price is just $3,980 per year. For private nonprofit four-year colleges, the average published price is $32,410 per year, but the average family pays just $14,890 annually,” which shows the great difference in rates. It is also common for these types of colleges to only offer a few online courses a semester, as opposed to community colleges. These are all things to consider when planning for college. The rankings by AffordableSchools.net can be one tool to use when researching your community college options.
The full list of community colleges that were ranked follows.
50. Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Ohio
25. Tallahassee Community College in Tallahassee, Florida
49. Holmes Community College in Goodman, Mississippi
24. Southeastern Technical College in Vidalia, Georgia
48. Pitt Community College in Winterville, North Carolina
23. West Georgia Technical College in Waco, Georgia
47. Clark State Community College in Springfield, Ohio
22. Central Texas College in Killeen, Texas
46. Lehigh Carbon Community College in Schnecksville, Pennsylvania
21. West Virginia Northern Community College in Wheeling, West Virginia
45. Daytona State College in Daytona Beach, Florida
20. Georgia Northwestern Technical College in Rome, Georgia
44. Pennsylvania Highlands Community College in Johnstown, Pennsylvania
19. Fayetteville Technical Community College in Fayetteville, North Carolina
43. Schoolcraft College in Livonia, Michigan
18. Forsyth Technical Community College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina
42. Carl Albert State College in Poteau, Oklahoma
17. Delta College in University Center, Michigan
41. Walters State Community College in Morristown, Tennessee
16. Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan
40. Florence-Darlington Technical College in Florence, South Carolina
15. Eastern Gateway Community College in Steubenville, Ohio
39. Amarillo College in Amarillo, Texas
14. Harford Community College in Bel Air, Maryland
38. Richmond Community College in Hamlet, North Carolina
13. Wayne Community College in Goldsboro, North Carolina
37. Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Maryland
12. Atlanta Technical College in Atlanta, Georgia
36. Arkansas Northeastern College in Blytheville, Arkansas
11. Westmoreland County Community College in Youngwood, Pennsylvania
35. Cochise County Community College is based in Douglas, Arizona
10. Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta, Georgia
34. Cuyahoga Community College District in Cleveland, Ohio
9. Central Georgia Technical College in Warner Robins, Georgia
33. Citrus College in Glendora, California
8. Pima Community College in Tucson, Arizona
32. Coffeyville Community College in Coffeyville, Kansas
7. Wiregrass Georgia Technical College in Valdosta, Georgia
31. State Fair Community College in Sedalia, Missouri
6. Leeward Community College in Pearl City, Hawaii
30. Erie Community College in Buffalo, New York
5. Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, Florida
29. North Arkansas College in Harrison, Arkansas
4. Olney Central College in Olney, Illinois
28. Technical College of the Lowcountry in Beaufort, South Carolina
3. South Texas College in San Antonio, Texas
27. Central Arizona College in Coolidge, Arizona
2. Albany Technical College in Albany, Georgia
26. Middlesex Community College in Bedford, Massachusetts
1. Oconee Fall Line Technical College in Sandersville, Georgia