Most impressive is Temple University, which not only ranked as the No. 1 online MBA program for the fourth year in a row, but also ranked as the second best online bachelor's program in the nation, tied with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Consequently, indicators like standardized test scores and high school class rankings that are used by the publication to rank brick-and-mortar colleges are not used to rank online programs.
"Southeast Online is committed to providing a quality distance education experience", said Chelsea Caile McNeely, director of Southeast's Online Programs.
Appalachian offers six online bachelor's programs: career and technical education, child development, communication studies, advertising, management and nursing.
U.S. News and World Report evaluates the distance learning programs separately from the institution as a whole in order to provide a clear picture of the services and programs available specifically to distance learners. "Our online students benefit from an affordable and flexible program infused with an innovative curriculum that equips them to move forward in any industry they choose". S&T offers online graduate degrees in computer science and information science and technology. Online Bachelor's of Arts are offered in psychology and social science.
The BGS program, originally called the Board of Governor's degree and later the Board of Trustees degree program, was established to serve individuals who were unable to attend a traditional college program due to family, work or community obligations.
Petersen, dean of the College of Education, attributes this substantial jump to the head of the online education pack to the hard work and dedication of faculty and staff in the college.
The College of Criminology and Criminal Justice's online graduate program held steady at No. 7.
"Over the course of the last five years, we have been focused on not just growing our online portfolio, but doing so with a commitment to engaging, high-quality learning", Mike Hofherr, vice president and chief information officer, said in the release. Institutions were assessed on student engagement, student services and technology, faculty credentials and training, and peer reputation. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.
The list reviews nearly 1,500 distance-learning programs, and ranks schools on four categories: student engagement, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, and peer reputation.