Best Online Colleges in Massachusetts

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Are you ready to find your fit?

If you’re thinking about enrolling at a college in Massachusetts, you’re not alone. There’s a reason, after all, that Boston is called “America’s College Town.”

Boston, of course, isn’t the only hot spot for education in the state, but the city does boast the neighborhood of Kendall Square, which has been named “the most innovative square mile on the planet.” This innovative spirit bodes well for online education in Massachusetts, so if you’re thinking about getting an online degree here, you’re looking in the right place. Education in Massachusetts is really something of an historic tradition—the state boasts the oldest schools in the country!

Top 10 Best Online Colleges in Massachusetts


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What kind of Online College in Massachusetts should you attend?

It seems like we’ve narrowed down a few factors: you want an advanced degree, you want to earn it in Massachusetts, and you want to attend online. Great! We can work with that!

Of course, in an online program, you don’t have to actually be living in the same city (or even the same state!) as the college you enroll in, but at many schools, tuition rates are discounted for in-state students, including for online programs. In addition, where you study also helps determine the educational and professional networks that will help you succeed later on. So, location might not be everything, but it does count for something.

How much money can you earn with a degree from an Online College in Massachusetts?

Let’s establish one thing right off the bat: you won’t earn any less money in the long run just because you earn a degree online . . . or more for that matter! The bottom line is that earning a college degree in Massachusetts is one way to guarantee a solid career and a secure income. Overall, the median income in Massachusetts is a solid $15k higher than the national average. But having an advanced degree just solidifies your chance to be in the top earning bracket.

In fact, our friends over at Payscale.com have figured out that the average person with a bachelor’s degree in Massachusetts earns anywhere from $62k to $71k. And folks with a master’s degree make an average annual salary of $81k. Those figures can fluctuate plus or minus a few thousand, but the big takeaway is that you’ll be earning a comfortable living in Massachusetts after you graduate.

What can you do with a degree from an Online College in Massachusetts?

Regardless of whether you earn it the “traditional” way or online, an advanced degree can open doors for you that you didn’t even know were closed. If you already have a sense for what industry or sector you want to go into, then full steam ahead! But if you’re having trouble deciding on a career, we’re here to help!

The Boston Business Journal recently came out with a list of the top 25 most in-demand jobs in Massachusetts. This could be a perfect starting point for your big decision. You can breathe easy, then, knowing that your degree will lead you straight into a job when you graduate. Here’s a look at a few of the jobs from the list:

  • Teacher Assistants
  • Accountants and Auditors
  • Information Technology Managers
  • Industrial Engineers

What are the Best Online Colleges in Massachusetts?

We’ve put together this ranking of the Best Online Colleges in Massachusetts with an eye toward helping out people who are common prospective online college students: working professionals with busy schedules who are also trying to balance a budget. So we’ve taken into account the academic quality of the online colleges in our ranking, but we’ve also kept an eye on price. More specifically, we’ve calculated a “return on investment” score, that weighs tuition against the expected early career income of graduates. That way, you can know if the money you pay up front will worth it later on. With that, scroll on down and feel free to explore!

Rankings

See our rankings methodology page.

  1. Northeastern University
    Location

    Boston, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Northeastern University, known as NU to students, is a private research institution with four campuses in the Boston, Massachusetts, area. Students also can find online degrees and programs on the school’s website. This school holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This university confers an astounding 18 undergraduate degrees, 18 graduate degrees, and six doctoral degrees, all which can be completed mostly or wholly online. In addition, there are over 20 certificates that can also be conferred online. While most of these programs are available online, there may be residency requirements, so students are encouraged to seek assistance from an admissions counselor. The top three programs here are:

    • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration
    • Master of Science in Global Information Systems
    • Doctorate of Education, Curriculum and Instruction

    Notables

    Northeastern is a top-tier university and that reputation follows it online. Students are given the choice between asynchronous and synchronous courses and traditional or accelerated terms in order to give them flexibility in their study schedule. Student support services, such as academic advising and tutoring, are also available, as is around-the-clock technical support.

  2. University of Massachusetts at Lowell
    Location

    Lowell, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of Massachusetts at Lowell is a public, urban research university. It is a member institution of the University of Massachusetts System and is the second-largest public university in the state. This school also offers a large selection of online programs, many of which have been ranked by U.S. News and World Report. This school holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This university confers over 50 online programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate levels, including the award-winning MBA program. Most degrees are available 100 percent online and never require a campus residency, ensuring that students across the country can earn a degree from this nationally recognized university. Here are the top online programs:

    • Bachelor of Science in Psychology
    • Master of Business Administration
    • Master of Science in Criminal Justice

    Notables

    Courses at UMass Lowell are taught asynchronously and in traditional or accelerated term schedules. The school’s online learning management system is supplemented by the school’s online library and a mobile app so students can learn anywhere. Students also have access to online tech support around the clock, academic advising, and program coordinators in order to ensure they finish their degree on time.

  3. University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth
    Location

    Dartmouth, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, known as UMass Dartmouth, is a public research university that is a member institution of the University of Massachusetts System. It is best known for its online business programs and for being the home of the University of Massachusetts law School. This school is located in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, and holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This school confers two undergraduate degrees, two graduate degrees, and three business certifications, all 100 percent online. These programs are for busy professionals who would benefit from the asynchronous delivery of the courses and the eight-week term schedules that accompany them. Students will note, however, that the undergraduate accounting degree delivered by this school requires at least one campus residency. Some of the most popular online degrees are:

    • Bachelor of Science in General Business Administration
    • Master of Business Administration
    • Master of Science in Health Care Management

    Notables

    UMass Dartmouth, like many other schools, prides itself on its online education services. While the school does not offer many online programs, the degrees that are available here are supported by the newest and most innovative technology available. Students also have access to a wide variety of online support services, including around-the-clock technical support, academic advising, online office hours, and an online bookstore.

  4. University of Massachusetts at Amherst
    Location

    Amherst, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of Massachusetts at Amherst is a public, land-grant research university that is located in Amherst, Massachusetts. It is the flagship institution of the University of Massachusetts System and is currently nationally ranked in the top 30 best public universities in the country. It is regionally accredited by the NEASC.

    Features

    This school confers five undergraduate degrees, seven graduate degrees, and two terminal degrees, all of which are available mostly online. Some programs may require campus residency. Most courses, however, are asynchronous and do not require residency for completion. Here’s a look at some of the top online programs:

    • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN program)
    • Master of Business Administration (Isenberg MBA)
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice

    Notables

    As part of the University of Massachusetts System, UMass Amherst continues to strive for online education excellence. The school provides its online students with access to an online library and bookstore, academic advising and career counseling services, technical support, and even online office hours for faculty who teach courses online.

  5. Westfield State University
    Location

    Westfield, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Westfield State University is a public, comprehensive research institution. It is best known as the first public university in the country to admit people without discrimination to their race, gender, or economic class. This school is located in Westfield, Massachusetts and holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This university offers six online undergraduate completion programs, one hybrid undergraduate program, and two hybrid master’s degrees. Certifications and non-degree programs are also available at Westfield. Students are encouraged to speak to an admissions advisor to see what program will fit their needs best prior to applying. You’ll find top online programs such as:

    • Online Bachelor Degree Completion Program in Business
    • Online Bachelor Degree Completion Program in Psychology
    • Online Bachelor Degree Completion Program in Criminal Justice

    Notables

    Online learning at Westfield State is a serious business; that’s why the school has put in a lot of time and resources into its virtual portal. Students will benefit from individualized academic and career advising services, around-the-clock technical support, and an online learning management system that a student can carry around with them on their smart device.

  6. Fitchburg State University
    Location

    Fitchburg, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Fitchburg State University, known as Fitchburg State to students, is a public, four-year research university that is located in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. It is known for a strong online portal that focuses on business and education professional degrees. This school is regionally accredited by the NEASC.

    Features

    Fitchburg State confers two undergraduate degrees, three graduate degrees, and one specialist degree in education with six concentrations. Certificate programs are also available in business and forensic nursing. Students are encouraged to speak with an enrollment advisor about any campus residencies that may be required in order to graduate with a degree. Here’s a look at a few popular online degrees:

    • Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing
    • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, Concentration in Management
    • Master of Business Administration, Concentration in Human Resources Management

    Notables

    This university utilizes Blackboard, the most popular online learning management system in the country, for all of its online courses. Additionally, the school also offers around-the-clock technical support, library services for research and paper assignments, and an online student resource center that offers students the chance to speak to an academic advisor or get tutoring help, all from the comfort of their own home.

  7. Fisher College
    Location

    Boston, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Fisher College is a private, not-for-profit institution that has a reputation for having 90 percent of its faculty holding terminal degrees in their specific field of study. This school is located in Boston, Massachusetts. It is regionally accredited by the NEASC.

    Features

    This school confers three undergraduate degrees and two certificate programs. There are other degrees that may also be available as hybrid programs; however, students will have to discuss this possibility with an admissions advisor. Additionally, elective courses are available to supplement an on-campus student’s degree. When it comes to online learning, here are a few of the most popular degrees:

    • Associate in Science in Health Information Technology
    • Bachelor of Science in Management, Health Information Management
    • Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing

    Notables

    The online courses at Fisher are delivered asynchronously and in eight-week terms. Students are also given access to online library resources and academic advising services. Around-the-clock technical support and tutoring services are also available via the school’s mobile app that complements the online learning management system.

  8. Worcester State University
    Location

    Worcester, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Worcester State University is a public liberal arts and sciences institution that is carving a name out for itself as one of the best distance education schools in the state. This school offers online courses for all of its students. It is located in Worcester, Massachusetts, and holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This school does not offer any online programs. However, it does offer a large variety of courses that can be taken online. These courses are either asynchronous or synchronous and can be completed in as little as five weeks or taken at the traditional academic calendar term pace. Students are advised to look up a course’s delivery method prior to registering for that subject. Here’s a look at a few online classes:

    • Ethical Decision Making in Business
    • Gender and the Media
    • Scriptwriting
    • Introduction to Macroeconomics

    Notables

    Worcester knows the value of a good college education doesn’t come from whether the knowledge was taught on campus or online; to this end, the school is expanding its current online offerings to make way for student support services. This includes the newly renovated online tutoring center, academic advising office hours, and an online library and bookstore.

  9. Wentworth Institute of Technology
    Location

    Boston, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Wentworth Institute of Technology is a private, independent engineering institution that focuses on career education in the STEM fields. This school is located in Boston, Massachusetts, and has a reputation for requiring work experience as a requirement for graduation. This school holds regional accreditation by the NEASC.

    Features

    This university offers one undergraduate degree and four graduate degrees, all of which are completed entirely online. The work requirement that these programs include for graduation is done within a student’s area of residence under the supervision of a faculty member. Most, but not all, courses are asynchronous, so students are encouraged to look closely at the delivery method of courses prior to registering for classes. Here’s a sampling of the online degrees:

    • Bachelor of Science in Project Management
    • Master of Science in Applied Computer Science
    • Master of Science in Technology Management

    Notables

    This school knows that adult learners need flexibility in order to reach their goals. That’s why the school offers so many options to online learners, including an online resource library, access to the online bookstore, faculty and advising office hours, and more. Around-the-clock technical support is also available for all students.

  10. Boston University
    Location

    Boston, MA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Boston University is a private, not-for-profit, research university that is historically affiliated with the United Methodist Church. It is one of the most respected institutions in the state, both for its commitment to excellence in on-campus and online programs and for the sheer number of Nobel Laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners it has produced. This school is located in Boston, Massachusetts, and is regionally accredited by the NEASC.

    Features

    This school confers just one undergraduate degree, 23 graduate degrees, and 15 certificates, most of which can be earned wholly online. Students who live in the Boston area are also welcome to earn their degree through a hybrid program. Many of the programs listed are nationally ranked as the best online programs in that field by the Princeton Review and U.S. News and World Report. Here’s a look at a few online degrees:

    • Master of Science in Applied Business Analytics
    • Master of Science in International Marketing Management
    • Master of Science in Computer Information Systems

    Notables

    An online education at Boston University is a unique experience. All programs were created by the school’s Distance Education team and are taught by the same BU faculty that teaches the courses on-campus; no teaching assistants ever teach online. Students also have access to new and innovative technology as well as academic and student support services, an online library, an online bookstore, and around-the-clock technical support.

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