When considering higher education, online colleges in Missouri are a great option that offers flexibility.
Through new initiatives and assessments designed to evaluate schools, and numerous grant and scholarship programs that help keep them affordable, Missouri is working to improve higher education programs and make them accessible to many.
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By attending an online college in Missouri, you can start the journey to your goals while enjoying a flexible schedule that fits your needs.
Online Colleges in Missouri
Today, nearly all of Missouri’s colleges and universities offer online degree programs and courses. Online programs make it easier for students to further their education without moving or sacrificing professional or personal commitments.
Online universities in Missouri also make it possible for you to have a working schedule that fits your employment and lifestyle needs. A study by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reported that 22.6% of undergraduate students in Missouri were enrolled in fully online college degree programs.
Another 30.1% were participating in a hybrid of online and on-campus classes. Those numbers continue to rise as more schools improve their online course offerings. Some online universities in MO also offer hybrid programs, which involve some on-campus requirements. Online, hybrid, and on-campus options are also available for graduate students.
Common Online Degrees in Missouri
You will have the opportunity to choose from many different degree programs when considering online colleges in MO.
Some of the popular degree programs chosen by other students who attend Missouri colleges online include:
- Biology: This is a popular degree program for students who are interested in pursuing a career in medicine, scientific research, or health care. Students will participate in classwork, lab work, and often fieldwork in this degree.
- Business Administration: Individuals who are interested in working as entrepreneurs, in a corporate environment, or finance may choose this major. Courses will often include economics, management theory, and accounting.
- Communication: Knowing how to clearly communicate with other individuals in a variety of media and channels can be beneficial for many professionals. Students will learn how to write and speak with various audiences in different capacities.
- Health Care Administration: The field of health care and health care administration is integral to the lives of many individuals, making this a rapidly expanding area of academic concentration. Studies often include ethics, healthcare law, and American healthcare models.
- Marketing: Capturing the attention of the masses in the digital age is a field in which highly trained professionals may benefit from a degree in marketing. Students will review the importance of various mass and social media outlets, as well as the psychological and cultural influences of marketing.
When evaluating Missouri colleges online, you may wish to consider how each school’s degree program may help you as you work towards your professional goals.
Overview of Higher Education in Missouri
Missouri is home to 91 degree-granting institutions, according to a report by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Of these, 27 are public schools, 57 are non-profit private schools, and 13 are for-profit private schools.
The average cost of tuition and fees at a 4-year public institution is $8,994 for Missouri residents and $21,880 for non-residents, according to the NCES. Students from the Midwest may get an even better deal thanks to Missouri’s partnership with the Midwest Student Exchange Program (MSEP).
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MSEP gives Missouri residents the opportunity to enroll at public schools in any of the 9 participating states for no more than 150% of the in-state tuition rate. The state of Missouri links funds for their public colleges to performance measures. Rather than focusing on enrollment numbers, schools are assessed and funded based on factors such as quality of learning and degree completion.
The state’s goal, Missouri’s Big Goal for Higher Education, is for 60% of the adult population to have a certificate or degree by 2025.
Employment Outlook for College Graduates in Missouri
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), those who attend Missouri online colleges have a better-than-average outlook for professional opportunities upon graduation.
Careers in the medical field, including physicians, nurses, and dentists, are among some of the fastest-growing and highest-paid in the state of Missouri. Specialized medical professions, such as dermatology and ophthalmology, are also rapidly growing fields.
The demand for educators in Missouri also continues to increase, as well as those with advanced education in the fields of information technology and web development.
Careers & Salaries in Missouri
Many of the most highly-paid careers in Missouri reflect the most popular degree paths, including medical, legal, and business-related fields. Managerial and executive roles trend towards higher salaries, as well.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical professionals are among some of the highest paid in the state of Missouri, with physicians, nurse anesthetists, and dentists in the top annual median salaries.
|Careers||Annual Median Salaries|
|Family Medicine Physicians||$192,800|
|Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates||$170,730|
|Administrative Law Judges, Adjudicators, and Hearing Officers||$145,120|
|Architectural and Engineering Managers||$132,450|
|Compensation and Benefits Managers||$129,700|
|Computer and Information Systems Managers||$129,520|
Many of these career paths include education that may extend beyond a bachelor’s degree. Some Missouri online schools may offer programs to continue into a post-secondary or even doctorate-level education for those who wish to pursue these professions.
Online Missouri Colleges Admissions Requirements
The admissions requirements may vary between different Missouri online schools, so it’s a good idea to carefully review the application process before you get started.
In many cases, online colleges in MO may request:
- SAT/ACT Scores (only some schools require them)
- High School Transcripts
- Letters of Recommendation
- Personal Statement
You may also be asked to complete specific essays as part of your application, and some schools request an interview with prospective students. You may wish to contact an admissions advisor for more details.
MO Online Colleges Accreditation
When selecting from the many Missouri colleges online, you may wish to pay special attention to schools that are recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
Schools that have received CHEA accreditation have been evaluated for their high standard of education. As a result, CHEA accreditation is often required by certain financial aid opportunities and grants. Future employers may also look for candidates who have received their education from an accredited school.
Additionally, some professional organizations, as well as many certification and licensing boards, will allow membership to candidates who have graduated from a CHEA-accredited degree program.
Financial Aid and Scholarships in Missouri
Missouri has excellent financial aid resources to help residents afford higher education. The first step is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Funds awarded through the FAFSA are given out on a first-come, first-served basis, so it’s important that you apply right away. This information you provide will be used to calculate how much and what type of financial aid you are eligible for.
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Another type of financial aid is a grant or scholarship, which you do not have to repay. The Missouri Department of Education offers the following grant and scholarship programs exclusively to residents:
- A+ Scholarship Program: Based on GPA, ACT, and math scores and requires students to perform unpaid tutoring or mentoring. Covers all tuition costs.
- Access Missouri Program: Must have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of $12000 or less. The award amount varies.
- Advanced Placement Incentive Grant: Must score a 3 or higher on at least two math and/or science AP exams. Awards $500.
- Bright Flight Program: Must have an ACT or SAT score in the top 3% of the state, or the top 4th or 5th percentiles. Awards $1000-3000.
- Kids’ Chance Program: For children of workers who were seriously injured or died in a work-related accident. Covers full tuition.
- Minority and Underrepresented Environmental Literacy Program: For minority students pursuing a degree in the environmental field. Award amount varies.
- Public Service Officer Survivor Grant: For public safety officers permanently and totally disabled in the line of duty, or their spouse or child. Award amount is roughly the cost of 12 credit hours.
- Wartime Veteran’s Survivors Grant: For the spouse or child of a veteran whose death or injuries were a result of combat action. Award amount varies.
The programs above are funded by the state, but there are also plenty of private scholarships available to Missourians.
Here are a few:
- Greater St. Louis Mothers of Twins Club Scholarships: (2) $1000
- Missouri Mayflower Society Scholarship: (1) $500, (1) $1000, (1) $1500
- Nolan Moore Memorial Education Foundation Scholarship: $500-2500, multiple awards
- The Kris Paper Legacy Scholarship: Minimum of $1500
More opportunities like these can be found using scholarship search sites. It’s also a good idea to check with the financial aid office at the college you’re interested in. There may be programs exclusive to the school.
Missouri Online Education Resources
For those who are interested in higher education and employment in Missouri, there are many resources available, including:
- Journey to College is a resource provided by the Missouri Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development to help prospective students prepare for the transition into college.
- Missouri Distance Learning Association (MODLA) is designed to help students of online colleges in MO learn about programs and opportunities.
- Missouri Connections provides career planning assistance through the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
Each resource can help students navigate educational options and career opportunities to help them reach their goals.
How Much Does It Cost to Go to an Online College in Missouri?
Each of the Missouri online colleges will have its own tuition and fee schedule for students. The average tuition for public schools in Missouri is around $9,310 for in-state students and $21,880 for out-of-state students (NCES).
The average tuition for private schools is $38,798. Note that students who attend online Missouri schools will not pay room and board costs, which can provide cost savings. Virtual learners also save money by skipping the commute to campus and parking fees.
Many Missouri online schools will provide a more detailed schedule of tuition and fee payments and amounts on their websites.
Tuition Breaks for Out-of-State Students
State reciprocity allows students to attend an online school in Missouri at a discounted rate, even if they do not live in Missouri while they complete their program. A State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement, or SARA, is a voluntary agreement for online accredited programs.
Some of the online colleges in Missouri participate in the Midwest Student Exchange Program (MSEP). This allows students who live in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, or Wisconsin to receive a discounted out-of-state tuition rate.
What Jobs Are in High Demand in Missouri?
A wide variety of occupations are represented by the current roles in high demand. According to the BLS, some of the jobs that are in high demand in Missouri are:
- Office and Administrative Support Occupations
- Sales and Related Occupations
- Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations
- Business and Financial Operations Occupations
- Management Occupations
While a college degree may not be required for some jobs, those who have graduated from Missouri schools online can benefit from a thorough education in their chosen field.
What Are the Highest Paying Jobs in Missouri?
A variety of professional fields offer some of the highest paying jobs in Missouri. Medical professionals and legal professionals are joined by physicists as the top-salaried positions in Missouri, according to the BLS.
- Family Medicine Physicians: $192,800
- Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates: $170,730
- Nurse Anesthetists: $169,000
- Physicists: $163,990
- Dentists, General: $162,660
Professionals often receive post-secondary degrees in addition to their online education, which may be possible through some programs in Missouri. Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a “year-round, full-time” hours figure of 2,080 hours.
List of Online Colleges in Missouri
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.
Central Methodist University offers online courses and degree programs for students who need a flexible school schedule. The school’s online programs are designed to provide the same education as on-campus programs. Courses are fully online, and each one is 8 or 16 weeks long. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Fields of study offered include Child Development, Math, and Health Science.
Central Methodist University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Columbia College offers over 30 online degree programs. Many courses are fully online and asynchronous to fit into busy schedules. Each course is 8 weeks long, and there are six start dates offered throughout the year. The school offers associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degree programs. Fields of study offered include educational leadership, RN-to-BSN, and real estate management.
Columbia College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Students enrolled at Drury University’s online degree program have the option to take all their courses online or may complete some courses in person at one of the school’s nine locations. Students can choose from over 30 online degree programs but start by choosing one of four pathways. Pathways include studies in education and business.
Drury University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Fontbonne University has online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. Most programs are offered fully online, but some have the option to attend evening classes. Most courses are 8 weeks long with six start dates offered during the year. A few courses are 16 weeks long and start in the fall or spring. Fields of study offered include accounting and cybersecurity.
Fontbonne University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Students can choose from over 35 online degree programs at Lindenwood University. Programs are offered fully online and are asynchronous to fit in with busy schedules. Undergrad transfer students may be able to finish in as few as 30 hours. Graduate students can transfer up to nine hours. Areas of study offered include management and art and design.
Lindenwood University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Logan University specializes in holistic health sciences degrees. The school offers several programs that can be attended online or in a hybrid format. Logan’s FAST program is designed to help students earn their degrees faster. Logan’s courses are offered in a trimester format. The school offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in integrative pediatrics and nutrition and human performance.
Logan University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Maryville University was recently named an Apple Distinguished School. It works with top companies to create degree programs for the future. The school’s online programs are fully online and offer flexible start dates. Bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees are offered in fields like artificial intelligence, family nurse practitioner, and sport business management.
Maryville University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary offers online education to prepare students for ministry. Courses are fully online with live online classes available. Students may also earn credit for conferences and work in the church. There are ten start dates offered throughout the year. The school offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in fields like church planting and Christian ministry.
Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The Wall Street Journal named Missouri Baptist University among the top ten most inspirational colleges. MBU provides a faith-based online education with accommodations for working adults.
The school offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in fields such as cybersecurity and business. Many of the undergraduate programs only require 120 credit hours to graduate. Students may also complete prior learning assessments to earn credit for work experience.
MBU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Missouri State University offers degrees that can be earned completely online. MSU offers lots of support for its online students, including one-on-one tutoring and research and writing assistance. The school also has a generous transfer policy. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in fields such as professional writing and social work.
Missouri State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Northwest Missouri State University offers online degree programs for students who need a flexible schedule. Programs are offered entirely online. Courses are attended in a 7 week accelerated format. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees that can be earned online. Fields of study offered include public relations, criminology, geographic information science, and business administration.
Northwest Missouri State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Park University has offered online learning for over 25 years. Students can earn bachelor’s or master’s degrees completely online. Courses are delivered in 8 week blocks, and students usually take two classes per block. Courses are asynchronous but have due dates. Areas of study offered include teacher leadership, public administration, personal finance planning, and military history.
Park University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Princeton Review named Saint Louis University one of the Best Private Schools for Making an Impact. The school offers fully online degree programs for undergraduate and graduate students. SLU has multiple start dates throughout the year, including in the summer and winter. Fields of study offered include emergency management, strategic intelligence, aviation, and nursing.
Saint Louis University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Southeast Missouri State University aims to offer online students the same quality of education as their on-campus students. Programs are fully online, and many courses are offered in 8 week blocks. Students can choose from 36 online undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Fields of study offered include applied behavior analysis, exceptional child education, and healthcare administration.
SEMO is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
University HQ named the University of Central Missouri one of the Best Bachelor’s Degree Colleges in Missouri. The school offers fully online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for students who have other commitments outside of their education. Most online courses are asynchronous. Programs of study offered include marketing, RN-to-BSN, and occupational safety management.
The University of Central Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Missouri offers over 300 online programs to give students plenty of options for their degrees and careers. Many programs are offered fully online. Course schedules are designed to be flexible for busy lifestyles. The school offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees that can be earned online. Fields of study offered include agriculture, dental hygiene, and economics.
The University of Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Missouri—Kansas City offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral online degree programs. The bachelor’s is a degree completion program. Some programs are synchronous, while others are asynchronous. Fields of study offered include dental hygiene and nursing.
The University of Missouri – Kansas City is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Nontraditional students at the University of Missouri—Saint Louis can earn degrees through the school’s online and evening programs. Many programs are fully online, while others have evening class components. The school offers master’s degrees, doctorates, and graduate certificates. Fields of study offered include information systems and technology, mathematical and computational sciences, chemistry, and social work.
UMSL is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Students at Webster University can earn a degree entirely online. Some courses are asynchronous, while others are conducted via live, virtual meetings with set times. Courses run either an entire semester or in 8 or 9 week accelerated formats. Webster offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in fields such as data analytics, media production, and counseling.
Webster University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
William Woods University offers online degree programs to students who need flexibility in their school schedules. Most programs are fully online, but some also have on-campus offerings in the evenings. The school offers associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. Courses are attended in an 8 week, accelerated format. Fields of study offered include workforce management, health administration, and digital filmmaking.
William Woods University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Getting Your College Degree in Missouri Online
For those who are considering Missouri online schools, there are many opportunities. Consider the type of degree you wish to receive, as well as your long-term and short-term professional goals when evaluating programs.
While tuition for online Missouri colleges is often less expensive for in-state students, reciprocity agreements and similar programs for out-of-state students may make tuition more affordable.
If your educational and professional goals include a connection to the Show-Me State, take a look at some of the online programs offered through accredited Missouri colleges and universities to determine which best aligns with your dreams.