Do you love to help others? Are you a good listener with strong interpersonal skills? A career in Human Services might just be the perfect option for you.
Human Services professionals are the healers and helpers of the world. Their organizational skills and guidance are crucial in almost every sector, from government to business to non-profit.
Money and schedule should not keep you from pursuing your dreams. That’s why some of the most viable educational options these days are through online learning. Good news—we’ve got just that!
Find an affordable program that fits both your budget and your lifestyle with this list of the Most Affordable Online Bachelor degrees in Human Services.
What kind of Online Bachelors in Human Services should you get?
Because the field of Human Services is so vast, the programs on our list vary in topic and focus as well. Many programs give you the option of specializing in Psychology, Mental Health, and more programs as well.
Clearly, the options are endless. You just need to find the program that’s right for you. The great thing about all of these programs is that they share one common feature: affordability! You won’t have to break the bank in order to start a meaningful career.
If you’re looking for other affordable, online programs, take a look at our ranking of the Most Affordable Online Schools.
How much money do people make with a degree in Human Services?
If you’re getting into Human Services, the chances are you’re not in it for the money. Unfortunately, helping professions are not always rewarded financially as much as they should! That said, you can easily make out a comfortable living from a career in Human Services.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Human Services professionals make everything from $31,800 to $46,900 annually as a starting salary. With that as a baseline salary, you’ll work your way up the ladder. Managers in the Human Services field make closer to $64,680 per year.
The demand for hard-working Human Services professionals has skyrocketed in the past decade. That’s good news for you! Employment rates are projected to increase by a whopping 16% in the next 10 years.
Some things to consider if you’ve got money on your mind: Human Services professionals who work in the government and medical sector tend to make more money than those working for individual and family services. Ultimately, if you’re interested in this career, it’s based on the joy you get out of helping others—the rest is just a perk!
What can you do with an Online Bachelors in Human Services?
A career in Human Services can take many forms. All sectors of the world world need professionals who can work with the most vulnerable populations. This includes the aging, the homeless, the sick, addicts, the disabled, and more. Ask yourself who you’re most passionate about helping, and go for it!
Many Human Services professions require further education. For example, if you want to ultimately be a mental health therapist, you’ll need to continue on to get your master’s degree. Think of this online bachelor’s degree as a launching point for a career in Human Services. You can take it anywhere that interests you. Here are just a couple (of the many!) options:
- Mental Health Specialist
- Homeless Shelter Coordinator
- Child Protective Services Worker
- Substance Abuse Counselor
- Case Manager
What are the requirements for an Online Bachelors in Human Services?
The new age of online learning makes education accessible and affordable. Once you find the program that fits your needs, you shouldn’t have much trouble jumping into the program.
You will, of course have to submit a college application. This might include a statement of purpose or a list of extracurriculars. Make sure to emphasize your strengths when it comes to working collaboratively. Don’t be afraid to demonstrate your passion for this field.
Once you’ve been accepted, you can look forward to more opportunities to further your education. For example, Old Dominion University (#11) is qualified to grant Substance Abuse Counselor and Alcohol and Drug Counselor certifications. Or Colorado State University-Global Campus awards their top students Human Services students with field-specific awards like Best Research and Decision Making in Human Services. Many other programs include an internship requirement at the end of the curriculum. See all of these features as an opportunity to become the best at what you do!
What are the most affordable Human Services Degrees?
While some of these programs specialize in mental health services and others emphasize non-profit management, they all share one thing one common: they are all good for your budget and your schedule. Whether you hope to work with the elderly or manage an addictions center, rest assured that one of these programs is the start of a rewarding career.
Here at College Choice, we’ve determined the most affordable Online Bachelor’s in Human Services programs. We started first with the net cost of each program in the nation and then factored in graduation rates, retention rates, and the early salaries of graduates.
Our final list offers the 15 Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in Human Services in the nation. Our figures and information come from the university and colleges’ websites, PayScale, and nationally recognized U.S. News & World Report and The National Center for Education Statistics.
Florida State College at Jacksonville
Average Net Price: $6,608
If you’re hoping to get a good deal on a great Human Services education, Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) is the first place to look. FSCJ is #1 on our list for its overall affordability. Located on the northeast coast of Florida, FSCJ has five campuses throughout Jacksonville. It enrolls close to 50,000 students each year.
Beyond its affordability, the Bachelor of Science in Human Services degree at FSCJ has a number of things going for it. For one, you can complete this accelerated degree in just 20 months. You’ll attend online and learn at your own pace. This 120-credit degree includes upper-level classes like:
- Intra and Interpersonal Techniques
- Multicultural Perspectives in Mental Health
- Health Welfare Delivery Systems
- Drug Awareness and Education
The Human Services curriculum at FSCJ is designed to prepare you for the final requirement: an internship in the field of your choice. This means that when you graduate, your tuition dollars will have been well spent—you’ll already have one foot into the professional world of Human Services!
University of Maine at Augusta
Average Net Price: $8,627
The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) is another affordable program with a top online program in Human Services. It delivers its online degrees through the College of Professional Studies. It has been listed as a top public comprehensive university in the northeast region by U.S. News and World Report.
The online Bachelor of Science in Mental Health & Human Services gives you the best of both worlds. After completing coursework in the foundations of human services, you’ll get the chance to specialize in one of three concentrations: Adult Mental Health Rehabilitation, Addiction Counseling, or Child and Family Services. Some core classes include:
- Community Mental Health
- Group Process
- Assessment and Planning
- Interviewing and Counseling
The program at UMA is highly regarded in the Mental Health and Human Services field. Upon graduation, you’ll meet the requirements for Licensed Social Worker-Conditional credentialing, as well as the Mental Health Rehabilitation/Community credentialing.
Minot State University
Average Net Price: $9,987
Located in Minot, North Dakota, Minot State University is a small public school that began as a teacher’s college. It now offers over sixty different degrees to its undergraduates, some of which are delivered online. Although it has a student body of around 3,000 students, it is the third-largest university in the state.
The Minot State University program is unique in its focus: you’ll earn a Bachelor of Science in Human Services with a Major in Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities. This online program features paid field experiences and a number of unique classes. These include:
- Dual Diagnoses: ID and Mental Health Disorders
- Assisting People with Traumatic Brain Injury
- Developing Communicative Interactions
- Instructional Interventions for People with DD
If you’re interested in working with this population, you’ve found the perfect spot in Minot State University. This program is affordable ($9,987 per year) and specific in its demographic—two features that will serve you well in your working career. Just note, you’ll graduate with a non-teaching degree.
Average Net Price: $10,283
A top public school of the South (23rd according to U.S. News and World Report), Troy University has been around since 1887. It serves students in four different campuses throughout Alabama. Troy University offers degrees in both in-person and online formats.
If you’re looking for a generalist degree in Human Services, Troy University might be of interest. This major requires 36 credit hours of upper-level courses specific to the degree. However, it also integrates social work and rehabilitation courses throughout the curriculum. Some foundational classes include:
- Human Behavior and the Social Environment
- Professional Communication Skills
- Human Services Seminar
- Human Behavior in the Social Environment
The capstone feature to this program is the Human Service Field Experience. You’ll spend a minimum of 120 hours at an agency transferring your book knowledge to hands-on experience. This is a fantastic way to get a feel for what corner of Human Services interests you the most.
Average Net Price: $11,604
Based out of Topeka, Kansas, Washburn University is home to around 7,000 students. This public university is often listed on U.S. News and World Report’s ranking of the top schools in the Midwest. It also features generous tuition deals, offering in-state tuition to students from Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas.
The Bachelor of Applied Science in Human Services at Washburn University covers all the important bases of the field: addictions, youth services, aging, mental health, homelessness, and more. Within this 124-credit-hour program—which can be completed online or in-person—you’ll get a taste of everything:
- Family Issues
- Prevention and Social Change
- Substance Abuse & Co-occuring Disorders
- Human Development
One unique feature of Washburn University’s program is the option to specialize in Addiction Counseling. The Career Ladder in Addiction Counseling is a program that prepares you for the Kansas state exam to become a Licensed Addiction Counselor. An internship is included in this track.
University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh
Average Net Price: $13,171
The third-largest university in the state, the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh enrolls close to 14,000 students annually. The university prides itself on investing in sustainability throughout its campus, as well as investing in Wisconsin-based education.
The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh realizes the importance of strong leaders in human services. The degree program, an online Bachelor’s degree in Human Services Leadership addresses that need directly. If you envision starting your own non-profit or running one in the future, this is your program! Some highlight courses include:
- Social Issues & Solutions in Human Services
- Program Evaluation & Grant Writing
- Financial Sustainability in Non-Profit Organizations
- Globalization in Human Services
The University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh has a generous transfer policy and accepts a number of technical college degrees from incoming students. Even more, the online format makes this degree even easier to complete. The platform, Desire 2 Learn (D2L), makes communication between peers and professors simple and effective.
National Louis University
Average Net Price: $13,650
While the main campus of National Louis University is located in Chicago, Illinois, you’ll find other locations in Florida, Wisconsin, and even Poland! That’s not to mention their online platform. National Louis University specializes in three areas: business, human services, and behavioral science.
You’ll choose between one of two degrees at National Louis University: a B.A. in Human Services, or a B.A. in Human Services/Psychology. While they share some core classes, the a B.A. in Human Services focuses more on hands-on internships while the other deals with more theoretical behavioral science. Regardless, you’ll take classes such as:
- Crisis Intervention Principles and Practices
- Legal Issues in Human Services
- Survey of Populations with Special Needs
- Theories of Personality
Beyond your core degree, you’ll also be able to choose a concentration from the following options: Aging Studies, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Long Term Care, or Urban and Policy Studies. Specializing early makes you much more marketable in your field.
SUNY Empire State College
Average Net Price: $13,733
SUNY Empire State College is one of thirteen State Universities of New York. Beyond its many locations throughout the state, it hosts a strong online program through its Center for Distance Learning. SUNY Empire State College’s affordability has made it a popular program for many, and has led to partnerships with organized labor groups, military branches, and more.
SUNY Empire State College works hard to meet your specific needs. Within the general B.S. in Human Services, you can major in the following areas: Early Childhood Studies, Marketing for Non-Profits, and Studies in Mental Health. You’ll take interesting courses that cover a wide range of relevant topics in the field:
- The Third-Sector: Not-for-Profits in the United States
- Human Exceptionalities
- Adolescence and Addiction
- Family and Society
Beyond these degrees, SUNY Empire State College encourages students to find their own path through concentrated electives. You can specialize in children and family services, criminal justice services, disability services, health and human services, and substance abuse services.
Granite State College
Average Net Price: $13,922
If you’re an adult student coming back to your education or starting for the first time, you might want to take particular interest in Granite State College. It is based in Conrad, New Hampshire, but is primarily a distance-learning program. You’ll find the epitome of affordability and flexibility at Granite State College.
The B.S. in Human Services at Granite State College weaves together threads from psychology, sociology, research methodology, and hands-on learning. Upon graduation, this 120-credit-hour program will have you prepared to jump into your sector of choice. Some stand-out classes include:
- Social Stratification and Inequality
- Human Services and the Helping Process
- Crisis Intervention, Occupational Stress, and Victims Rights
- Human Development
You should note that 84 percent of Granite State College students are transfer students. The statistic should speak for itself. With an added feature of online learning, Granite State College makes it simple and affordable to finish your degree!
East Tennessee State University
Average Net Price: $14,915
Founded in 1911 as a Teacher’s College, East Tennessee State University is now a thriving public university in Johnson City, Tennessee. It has been listed as a top school in the region, and made it on The Princeton Review’s list of “America’s Best Value Colleges.” Over 14,500 students enroll annually.
This online B.S. in Human Services is aimed specifically at students who are interested in case management, counseling, and administration. You’ll cover all the basics in this program, as well as develop skills in more specialized tasks such as grant writing, program evaluation, and more. The curriculum features some of the following electives:
- Hospitalized Child
- Family Health and Human Sexuality
- Homelessness, Hunger, Poverty, and Politics
- Divorce: Causes and Consequences
At the end of your online B.S. in Human Services degree, you’ll take two courses to cement your skills in the field: Human Services Practicum and Human Services Internship. You’ll take this time to switch from online to in-person and make connections with other human services professionals.
Old Dominion University
Average Net Price: $15,218
Located in Norfolk, Virginia—and one of the largest universities in the state—Old Dominion University (ODU) enrolls around 24,000 students each year. ODU Online is one of the more established distance-learning programs in the country. This year, ODU was ranked #23 in College Factual’s “Top Online Colleges for Social Sciences.”
The online Human Services degree at Old Dominion University prepares you to know both the theory and hands-on applications of the field. You’ll complete a 12-credit internship at the end of the degree. But some of the core Human Services courses that you’ll take before that include:
- Diversity Issues in Human Services
- Fund Raising
- Psycho-educational Groups
- Family Guidance
If you’re particularly interested in the substance abuse side of human services, you’ll be happy to know that this program is accredited to grant Substance Abuse Counselor and Alcohol and Drug Counselor certifications. This would be another great “tool in your belt” upon graduation.
Colorado State University-Global Campus
Average Net Price: $15,780
Connected to the larger Colorado State University system, Colorado State University-Global Campus is the distance-learning branch. It was founded in 2007 to educate adult professionals and non-traditional students at the undergraduate and graduate level.
Colorado State University-Global Campus delivers a 100 percent online B.S. in Human Services. This program uniquely awards top students with field-specific awards like Best Research and Decision Making in Human Services. This would be a great addition to a resume. The curriculum lets you choose from a wide variety of classes, including:
- Working in Modern Society
- Grant Writing
- Race, Gender, and Ethnic Relations in the U.S.
- Crisis Intervention
Beyond your general B.S. in Human Services, CSU-Global makes it possible for you to specialize in an area of your choice. Students in the past have paired their degree with Business Administration, Healthcare Management, Public Relations, Criminal Justice, and more.
Western Washington University
Average Net Price: $16,245
Western Washington University, located in Bellingham, is a school of around 14,000 students. It delivers both bachelor’s and master’s degrees. We’re not the only ones who have taken notice at Western Washington University’s affordability. Forbes and Kiplinger have both named it a “top value university.”
Western Washington University takes a social justice approach to their B.A. in Human Services. You’ll wrestle with the ways Human Services address social need at an individual, community, and global level. Within the 76 major credits, you’ll take stand-out classes such as:
- Interpersonal and Small Group Systems
- Inequity in U.S. Policy and Institutions
- Diversity & Social Justice
- Conflict Resolution in Human Services
This program is similar to others in its requirement of a Human Services internship. However, Western Washington University goes above and beyond in requiring 380 of field experience in total. This will give you ample amount of time to integrate your classroom knowledge to real-life scenarios.
Average Net Price: $18,469
Ashford University was established in 1918 as a teacher education college. Today, however, it is a 100 percent online university that grants degrees at both the undergraduate and graduate level. Close to 49,000 students attend Ashford University through its distance learning programs.
You’ll take one course at a time through Ashford University’s online B.A. in Health and Human Services. Each course is five weeks long. Ashford University blends its curriculum with a mix of classes in health care administration, sociology, and human services. Certain degree programs may not be available in all states. A sampling of courses includes:
- Communication Skills for Health & Human Service Personnel
- Social Implications of Medical Issues
- Cultural Awareness in the Human Services
- Special Populations
You can choose to specialize in two areas within the Health and Human Services major: Health Care Informatics Systems and Long-Term Care. You’ll need to take four 3-credit classes in the area of your choice. A specialization goes a long way in the professional world!
Ohio Christian University
Average Net Price: $18,640
Ohio Christian University is a private institution based in Circleville, Ohio. It was founded by the Churches of Christ in Christian Union denomination, and teaches Biblical principles in its core classes. Ohio Christian University also maintains an Adult and Online Degree Program.
The B.A. in Human Services curriculum at Ohio Christian University approaches this field from a Biblical perspective. The classes cover elements from counseling, psychology, criminology, and social work. You can look forward to a wide variety of course topics, some of which include:
- Advocacy and Public Policy
- Theories of Personality
- Conflict Resolution
Aside from being overall an affordable school, Ohio Christian University is a certified “Military Friendly School.” All military services members can take advantage of a tuition rate of $250 per credit hour. Ohio Christian University also accepts military education benefits.