The Best Online Degree Programs of 2015

BY US News, Special for  USDR

To help the more than 7 million students expected to enroll in online courses in the new year, U.S. News & World Report, publisher of Best Colleges and Best Graduate Schools, today released the 2015 Best Online Programs. Pennsylvania State University—World Campus tops the list of Best Online Bachelor’s Programs. At the graduate level, California universities make a strong showing with the University of Southern California claiming No. 1 in Best Online Information Technology Programs, the University of California—Los Angeles taking the top spot in Best Online Engineering Programs, and the University of California—Irvine placing first in the new Best Online Criminal Justice  Programs.

For students seeking careers in business, three universities tied for first place in the new Best Online MBA Programs: Indiana University—Bloomington, Temple University in Pennsylvania and the University of North Carolina—Chapel  Hill.

The U.S. News Best Online Programs, now in their fourth year, are a resource for students and working adults who are increasingly enrolling in distance education programs to complete their degrees or gain essential academic credentials to advance in their careers. The rankings include online bachelor’s degrees and online master’s degrees in engineering, business, education, nursing and computer information technology. Prospective students can also find information on the costs of an online degree and tips for being a successful distance  learner.

New in 2015, U.S. News has included online master’s programs in criminal justice and produced separate rankings of online MBA programs and other non-MBA online graduate business programs, including finance, accounting and risk  management.

“There are now hundreds of online programs out there for students to choose from, but students have few resources to turn to for unbiased information on distance learning,” said Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer of U.S. News. “Much like we’ve done with Best Colleges, we’re collecting and analyzing data to help students answer their questions and identify programs that support their education and career  goals.”

The 2015 rankings evaluate information and data from more than 1,200 distance education degree programs, up more than 20 percent from the previous year. Only degree-granting programs at regionally accredited institutions that are offered predominantly online were considered. The methodologies incorporate a number of factors, including student engagement, faculty credentials and student services and  technology.

For more information on the Best Online Programs rankings, please visit or find us on Facebook, Twitter and  Google+.

2015 U.S. News Best Online Programs

See the full list of rankings online  

Best Online Bachelor’s Programs     

Best Online MBA Programs

1. Pennsylvania State University—World Campus   

1. Indiana University—Bloomington     

2. Daytona State College (FL)         

1. Temple University (PA)

2. University of Illinois—Chicago         

1. University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill

2. Western Kentucky University 

Best Online Graduate Criminal Justice Programs     

Best Online Graduate Nursing Programs

1. University of California—Irvine          

1. Medical University of South Carolina

2. Arizona State University                     

2. St. Xavier University (IL)

2. Boston University                          

3. Johns Hopkins University (MD)

2. Pace University (NY)                      

3. University of South Carolina

About U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is a digital news and information company that empowers people to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives. Focusing on Education, Health, Personal Finance, Travel, Cars and News & Opinion, provides consumer advice, rankings, news and analysis to serve people making complex decisions throughout all stages of life. More than 25 million people visit each month for research and guidance. Founded in 1933, U.S. News is headquartered in Washington, D.C.

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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