Best Online Colleges in Florida for 2022

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Florida, the Sunshine State, is home to a vibrant economy that may be well-known for its tourism but also is strong when it comes to technology, business services, manufacturing, and more. As of November 2021, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Florida had grown its non-farm labor market by 5.7%. To maintain this growth, Florida fosters a rich educational tradition that is now growing to include online degree programs.

In fact, over half of all undergraduate students in Florida are attending bachelor’s degree programs that are exclusively offered via an online portal. Where distance learning used to be a rarity, online videos and other technologies have made it a viable option for everyone. Online degree programs hold the same sorts of accreditation as traditional programs, as well as the same financial aid and many of the same degree options.


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Online Higher Education in Florida


Students in Florida have a range of choices when it comes to their college or university experience. The state supports large public universities that feature full research facilities, community colleges, and exclusive private colleges and universities. With these come a wide range in costs as well as online education options.

Online higher education is on the rise in Florida. Younger students are growing up with a mixture of online and classroom educational models, so they are all the more willing to take courses online. In fact, of Florida's one million college and university students, nearly half are taking classes exclusively online. And around a quarter of the total are taking at least some of their courses through an online portal. This leaves only one quarter of all Florida students in higher education are taking courses exclusively in a traditional environment.

These numbers track well when looking at graduate and undergraduate students. Where there are 940,000 undergraduate students in Florida, over 500,000 of them are taking courses exclusively online. In fact, a majority (54%) of Florida's undergraduate student population are online only. The percentage falls just a touch when researchers look at Florida's graduate student population. Florida's graduate students are still likely to take their degrees in online-only programs, 3% fewer graduate students opt for a 100% online degree.

When it comes to the cost of a Florida education, it clearly pays to be a state resident. This is because the average tuition and fees for a Floridian who is attending a public university in Florida are under $4,000. Meanwhile, a non-Florida resident who attends one of the state colleges and universities will pay nearly $18,000, on average. For those who opt for a private education, the University of Miami and Rollins College offer a traditional undergraduate education for around $52,000 per year. As for living costs, students in Florida pay an average of between $14,000 and $15,000 for on and off campus living, respectively.

Our School Rankings Methodology


When our educational researchers evaluated Florida's colleges and universities, they employed several statistical measures to determine the overall value of each institution. For the purpose of this study, our researchers made sure that the institutions offered online degrees. After establishing that baseline, researchers weighed each school's retention rate, graduation rate, average graduating salaries, student to faculty ratio, and overall reputation. These factors help researchers arrive at an objective evaluation that students and their families can use on conjunction with more subjective factors such as location, family heritage, desired degrees, or favorite sports teams.

The retention rate is one factor that many students and their families will want to consider. This is the rate at which first-time, full-time students return to their Florida campus for a second year. When students return for a second year, it's assumed that they have found a great value in the school's curriculum, faculty, campus resources, and even student body.

What are the Best Online Associate & Community College Programs in Florida?


Online community college degree programs are increasingly popular. These two-year degrees are more affordable than equivalent academics from four-year colleges and universities, and online options make them very flexible and student friendly. Since Florida's online community college degrees are accredited, students enjoy being able to complete a degree from afar and then transfer the credits to a four-year institution when they desire a bachelor’s degree. Given the savings a community college offers for those first two years of college, students save a lot of money overall. Further, once they land on a four-year college campus, students won't need to worry with core courses since those are required for an associate degree.

Florida Gateway College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
3,018
Graduation Rate
56%
Net Price
$2,930
Grads Salary
$29,500
South Florida State College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
2,710
Graduation Rate
59%
Net Price
$4,228
Grads Salary
$26,900
Florida State College at Jacksonville
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
22,344
Graduation Rate
40%
Net Price
$3,306
Grads Salary
$31,900
Seminole State College of Florida
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
16,298
Graduation Rate
47%
Net Price
$7,861
Grads Salary
$31,800
Florida SouthWestern State College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
16,674
Graduation Rate
37%
Net Price
$7,400
Grads Salary
$34,700
Eastern Florida State College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
13,937
Graduation Rate
47%
Net Price
$3,445
Grads Salary
$29,300
Indian River State College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
15,236
Graduation Rate
43%
Net Price
$3,878
Grads Salary
$30,400
St. Petersburg College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
26,430
Graduation Rate
33%
Net Price
$2,702
Grads Salary
$32,900
Saint Johns River State College
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
6,828
Graduation Rate
42%
Net Price
$5,266
Grads Salary
$30,800
Hillsborough Community College
College Type
2-year, Public
Student Population
19,532
Graduation Rate
29%
Net Price
$2,406
Grads Salary
$33,300
Full Ranking Report

What are the Best Online Universities & College Programs in Florida?


Students should consider an online college degree program for a variety of reasons. One of the chief attributes of an online degree is its flexibility. They can make it so that students who are graduating from high school don't need to move to the other side of the state just to attend school. They can remain in their hometown, work part-time, and complete their online classes as they like. This may be a terrific option for those who wish to launch into college courses but aren't so sure about moving away or the cost associated with living on a college campus.

To choose an online college degree program, students and their families can use our rankings as a guide. Our research staff uses a variety of objective educational statistics to assess the academics, costs, and overall reputation of every school on their list. Students and their families can then weigh these factors against their personal concerns including the degree programs each school offers, its location, their personal feelings about that school, and more.

University of Florida
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
53,372
Graduation Rate
89%
Net Price
$10,075
Grads Salary
$75,000
Florida State University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
43,569
Graduation Rate
84%
Net Price
$12,815
Grads Salary
$65,000
University of South Florida
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
50,626
Graduation Rate
74%
Net Price
$10,004
Grads Salary
$67,000
University of Central Florida
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
71,881
Graduation Rate
74%
Net Price
$11,108
Grads Salary
$66,000
Florida International University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
58,836
Graduation Rate
67%
Net Price
$8,988
Grads Salary
$66,000
University of Miami
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
17,809
Graduation Rate
83%
Net Price
$31,726
Grads Salary
$76,000
University of North Florida
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
16,926
Graduation Rate
66%
Net Price
$9,789
Grads Salary
$64,000
Florida Atlantic University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
30,805
Graduation Rate
56%
Net Price
$11,451
Grads Salary
$67,000
Stetson University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
4,429
Graduation Rate
64%
Net Price
$23,864
Grads Salary
$70,200
Nova Southeastern University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
20,888
Graduation Rate
62%
Net Price
$26,317
Grads Salary
$73,000
Full Ranking Report

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