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Top Distance Learning and Online Schools Directory

In 2001, Robert Brown, the former president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, introduced the school’s Open Courseware program, a free, non-credit or degree-granting program that allowed anyone to take classes with MIT curricula and faculty. In 10 years, the number of courses offered has exploded from 50 in 2001 to 2,000 as of 2011. Online education is growing fast and 65 percent of the 2,500 schools and universities surveyed as part of a 2010 online education study said that an online program is “a critical part” of their long-term strategy. In fact, online courses have grown so popular that one student in three of all students surveyed is taking at least one online course as part of their higher education. That’s 6.1 million students!


Online learning provides a flexible learning environment where often students can choose when to attend their classes, allowing them to manage a potentially busy daily schedule while also working towards a degree. Online and distance learning programs usually come in two forms, online and distance learning degree programs comparable to programs found at traditional schools and certification programs, which grant a professional certification.

The following schools have been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as having the top online bachelor’s programs in 2012 based on student engagement and class work assessment.

Bellevue University
Newberry College
University of the Incarnate Word
Fort Hays State University
Regis University
Pace University

Some of the distance learning certificate and degree programs available from online schools and colleges through SchoolsGalore.com

Certificate programs

Professional certificates can be valuable for individuals with prior work experience or those who want to achieve a level of professionalism that a traditional degree cannot offer. They are traditionally offered by colleges and some specific vendors and agencies. They usually require less time to complete than traditional degrees—based on availability, scheduling, etc. The programs also may have fewer, if any, education requirements, streamlining the process specifically for the work the certificate holder may perform.

Certification is available for many professional fields such as automotive repair or computer network installation -- in which certificates may demonstrate professionals are skilled in the work they are expected to perform -- and certificates that can validate the education of accountants, architects, IT professionals and project managers.

Many of the schools listed through SchoolsGalore.com offer certification programs entirely online and though distance learning can be for students both new to the profession and for experienced professionals. Hybrid programs are also available for students with prior work experience.

Degree programs

Typically, an associate degree program can be completed in about two years, depending on the level of study and class scheduling, and bachelor's degrees can be typically be in three-to-four years. Programs offering a master’s degree can vary, but typically require either a bachelor’s degree or completion of three years of post-secondary education for enrollment.

A typical adult learner might be someone who wants to return to college to finish a degree, but cannot meet a regular class schedule. Online courses provide a flexible timetable for degree completion and allow students the time to earn a degree without sacrificing their career. Schools offering distance learning programs can pair with self-study programs with approved training facilities to provide degree options to students who would otherwise be unable to attend the school.

Many of the schools listed through SchoolsGalore.com offer entirely online degree programs ranging from an associate degree up to a master’s degree. Some schools even offer online doctorate level programs. The programs are available for students with and without college experience. Hybrid programs are also available for students who are seeking degrees that require hands-on experience and education, such as degrees in surgical technology and radiology.

Learn more about accredited distance learning programs from online schools and colleges through SchoolsGalore.com

When researching online colleges and universities, make sure to verify that your choice of school is accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council or by another accrediting agency that approved by The U.S. Department of Education or The Council for Higher Education Accreditation, or both. DETC and CHEA both provide a searchable list of approved schools.

Online Schools


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    5 Program(s) Found
    • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
    • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
    • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
    • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
    • Online Courses
    1 Program(s) Found
    • Master of Science in Communications offered online through Syracuse University’s world-renowned Newhouse School of Public Communications.
    • Ranked among the Best Global Universities in 2016 by U.S. News & World Report.
    • Specializations include Advertising, Public Relations, and Journalism Innovation.
    • Coursework provides students with communication strategies for today’s changing media landscape.
    • Online Courses
    2 Program(s) Found
    • Ranked 21st among the Best Education Schools in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
    • Established in 1918 with the mission, “to improve learning in urban education locally, nationally, and globally.”
    • The first major research university to offer an online M.A.  in teaching program.
    • Offers certificate through doctoral programs in teaching, counseling, and more.
    • All programs taught with the guiding principles of leadership, learning, accountability, and diversity.
    • Online Courses
    1 Program(s) Found
    • Ranked 33rd among the Best Grad Schools for Social Work in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
    • Founded in 1904 as the nation’s first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers.
    • Provides a rigorous education, including a nationally accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) Program and PhD in Social Work.  
    • Offers inventive programs with hands-on experience.  
    • Incorporates social justice values and multicultural perspectives into curriculum. 
    • Online Courses
    1 Program(s) Found
    • Communications@Simmons prepares students to become leaders who achieve their organizational, professional, and personal goals through a strategic integration of communications theory and practice.
    • The rigorous, practice-based curriculum ensures that students develop the key skills and competencies necessary to successfully navigate the shifting landscape of the digital world.
    • Simmons’ faculties are scholars and practitioners who provide individualized attention to students, guiding their professional and personal development through hands-on engagement.
    • Online Courses
    1 Program(s) Found
    • Ranked #12 in the 2015 Best Graduate Schools in Social Work by U.S. News & World Report.
    • Offers more specialization opportunities than any other social work program, with 10 concentrations and sub-concentrations and 8 dual-degree programs.
    • The first elite researching university to offer a Master of Social Work degree online.
    • Has 4,000 field internship opportunities that give students real-world experience.
    • Online Courses
    • Accelerated Programs
    • Financial Aid
    • Transferable Credits
    2 Program(s) Found

    Nursing@Simmons, the innovative, online nursing degree program from Simmons School of Nursing and Health Sciences prepares Registered Nurses for the next stage of their careers.

    You need to have a Bachelor’s degree and RN license to be qualified for this school.

    • Online Courses
    2 Program(s) Found
    • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
    • Ranked 8th among the Best Online Graduate Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
    • A private, co-ed college founded in 1821 and located in downtown Washington, D.C.
    • Its student-faculty ratio is 13:1, and 55.1% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
    • Has distinguished alumni including Senator Harry Reid, former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, and actress Courtney Cox.
    • Accredited
    • Online Courses
    • Accelerated Programs
    • Financial Aid
    • Transferable Credits
    3 Program(s) Found
    • Founded in Southern California in 1998 by dog training expert Steven Appelbaum.
    • The largest independent dog training company in the United States.
    • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
    • A member of the MyCAA Financial Assistance program, which offers eligible military spouses up to $4,000 of tuition assistance that can be used towards any of their courses.
    • Helps graduates find employment and coaches those who are looking to start their own business.
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    • Online Courses
    5 Program(s) Found
    • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
    • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
    • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
    • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
    • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
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    Good for Working Adults
    • Accredited
    • Online Courses
    • Flexible Scheduling
    • Financial Aid