Best Online Colleges in West Virginia for 2022

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West Virginia is a state known for its rugged Appalachian landscape, making it a draw for those who enjoy spending time doing outdoor activities like hiking and biking. For those who wish to live in West Virginia long-term, the state also offers plenty of job opportunities in traditionally attractive industries, making the region a fit for workers with diverse backgrounds and skillsets. Specifically, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in April 2022, West Virginia had a very low unemployment rate of 3.6%, underscoring that the state has a relatively competitive job market. This can be a draw for young professionals seeking new career opportunities.

Furthermore, the BLS highlighted West Virginia’s fastest-growing industries in the past twelve months to be leisure & hospitality (11.4% change), mining and logging (8.7%), and professional & business services (5.2%). According to the BLS, West Virginia’s mean annual wage in 2021 was $46,490, with a mean hourly wage of $22.35 and a median hourly wage of $17.72. Certain careers, like sales managers, earned an average of $105,510 per year.


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Online Higher Education in West Virginia


West Virginia offers varied post-secondary schooling options for those looking to complete their associate, bachelor’s, or graduate-level degrees. There are also a significant number of traditional and online program options in the state, allowing students to decide for themselves if in-person education or distance learning is a better fit for their financial needs and educational goals. Below is a quick Q&A to introduce West Virginia’s online higher education opportunities and compare them to traditional on-campus programs.

  • What is the average cost of on-campus and online higher education programs in West Virginia?

    According to UnivStats.com, students attending school in West Virginia can expect to pay an average of $6,431 per year for in-state tuition and $12,946 for out-of-state tuition (if they are attending from elsewhere).

    Even so, it’s essential to note that the cost of attendance will depend heavily on the institution that a student chooses to attend. For example, expensive universities like West Virginia Wesleyan College will cost an average of $32,612 per year, while more affordable options like West Virginia University Hospital Departments of Rad Tech and Nutrition cost around $6,000 per year. Additionally, it is essential to note that the affordability of distance learning programs also depends on the university administering them, so students should not automatically expect online programs to have lower tuition than traditional college programs. For instance, at West Virginia University, students can expect to pay $376-$516 per credit hour, with an additional $25 per credit hour Online Learning Student Support Fee. Where savings could add up most for those pursuing distance learning are living costs, which add up to around $12,973 per year for on-campus students.

  • What are the qualifications a student needs to be considered for in-state tuition?
    To be eligible for in-state tuition, a student must first establish a West Virginia domicile. This means that the student must have had a continued presence in the state for at least 12 months before July 1 of the year of matriculation into a university program of their choice. Students may also become eligible in less than 12 months of continuous presence if they can provide evidence of positive and unequivocal action that is not automatically provided if a student lives with relatives other than their parents or legal guardian.
  • What percentage of higher education students in West Virginians are online learners?
    For the 2020-2021 school year, West Virginia enrolled a total of 139,562 students. Of these, 116,853 were undergraduates and 22,709 were graduate students. Of all the students enrolled within the state, 76,963 were exclusively online students and 38,074 took some form of hybrid classes. Given that the large majority of post-secondary students in West Virginia are enrolled in at least some online learning, it’s clear this is a popular form of education within the state.

Our School Rankings Methodology


University HQ carefully considers important factors when crafting its ranking of online programs in West Virginia. When deciding on a school to attend, students and families may primarily be concerned with the return on investment of their education, as well as the teaching quality at the school. As such, metrics that were analyzed for University HQ’s ranking program include the school’s graduation rate, financial aid opportunities, and net price, data that can help students and families determine whether the cost of achieving their degree makes sense. Other considerations, like the university’s student-to-faculty ratio, can indicate to prospective students the type of learning they can expect at the school. Post-graduation details, like the average graduate’s starting salary can likewise help students gain perspective on their future earning power.

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


When students are reviewing online community college rankings to decide the institution they wish to study at, it’s essential to consider many of the same factors that apply to ranking in-person associate and bachelor’s programs. First, they should take a look at the cost of attendance and the graduation rate to determine if the degree is affordable and likely achievable. Additionally, it’s important to only seek out accredited online community college programs in West Virginia, which is why we check for graduation before considering any other criteria for our rankings. Accreditation is an essential aspect that many future employers consider when determining whether one’s college program was rigorous enough to pass hiring standards.

Martinsburg College
College Type
2-year, Private for-profit
Student Population
1,691
Graduation Rate
79%
Net Price
$5,381
Grads Salary
$24,600
Pierpont Community and Technical College
College Type
2-year, Public
Student Population
1,613
Graduation Rate
29%
Net Price
$6,659
Grads Salary
$33,000
BridgeValley Community & Technical College
College Type
2-year, Public
Student Population
1,662
Graduation Rate
21%
Net Price
$6,361
Grads Salary
$34,100
Mountwest Community and Technical College
College Type
2-year, Public
Student Population
1,292
Graduation Rate
27%
Net Price
$8,178
Grads Salary
$31,900
West Virginia University at Parkersburg
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
2,624
Graduation Rate
35%
Net Price
$8,226
Grads Salary
$31,363
Valley College-Martinsburg
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Private for-profit
Student Population
628
Graduation Rate
71%
Net Price
$23,534
Grads Salary
$24,600
Huntington Junior College
College Type
2-year, Private for-profit
Student Population
212
Graduation Rate
15%
Net Price
$9,972
Grads Salary
$21,200

What are the Best Online Universities & College Programs in West Virginia?


Students often plan to do a college search and quite a bit of their own research when they are considering which school or program to attend, but there’s no need to gather all the data yourself. Here you’ll find a well-researched college ranking list that covers all the best online colleges in West Virginia no matter your interests or needs. You might not prioritize factors like the number of programs offered or the institution’s graduation rate, but with this list you can consider the programs available in your areas of interest, the cost, and all your own needs and subjective opinions as well as already having reliable data on hand. Take a look and see which school fits your needs.

American Public University System
College Type
4-year, Private for-profit
Student Population
50,047
Graduation Rate
48%
Net Price
$11,503
Grads Salary
$73,000
Marshall University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
11,958
Graduation Rate
50%
Net Price
$8,387
Grads Salary
$64,000
Alderson Broaddus University
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
863
Graduation Rate
32%
Net Price
$20,080
Grads Salary
$95,000
West Liberty University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
2,481
Graduation Rate
53%
Net Price
$13,812
Grads Salary
$65,000
Shepherd University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
3,159
Graduation Rate
46%
Net Price
$10,685
Grads Salary
$62,600
Davis & Elkins College
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
738
Graduation Rate
48%
Net Price
$18,819
Grads Salary
$73,000
Concord University
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
1,807
Graduation Rate
38%
Net Price
$8,677
Grads Salary
$65,000
University of Charleston
College Type
4-year, Private not-for-profit
Student Population
2,967
Graduation Rate
46%
Net Price
$20,598
Grads Salary
$69,000
Bluefield State College
College Type
4-year, Public
Student Population
1,243
Graduation Rate
32%
Net Price
$11,451
Grads Salary
$67,000
West Virginia University at Parkersburg
College Type
4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Student Population
2,624
Graduation Rate
35%
Net Price
$8,226
Grads Salary
$56,000
Full Ranking Report

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