The College Consensus ranking of the Best Online Colleges in Washington DC combines the results of the most respected college ranking systems with the averaged ratings of thousands of real student reviews from around the web to create a unique college meta-ranking. This approach offers a comprehensive and holistic perspective missing from other college rankings. Visit our about page for information on which rankings and review sites were included in this year’s consensus rankings.
The Best Online Colleges & Universities in Washington DC category is limited to schools in Washington DC offering at least three fully-online degree programs at any level. Schools that did not qualify for a Consensus Score were ranked by their Student Review score.
If you’re interested in campus-based schools, check out our ranking of the Best Colleges in Washington DC. You can also find out more about college financial aid with our list of the Top 5 Washington DC Scholarships.
Online Learning in DC
The federal government’s various civil service departments are some of the biggest employers in the Washington D.C. area. While many entry-level jobs in these organizations can be obtained without a degree or with only an associate’s degree, advancing can be difficult without a bachelor’s degree. Many government agencies have standardized criteria for advancement that requires a bachelor’s degree for even lower-level positions. Even agencies and departments that do not have such criteria make it much easier for personnel with bachelor’s degrees to advance.
One advantage of completing a bachelor’s degree at one of the many fine colleges in Washington, DC area is the connections that many of these schools have with the federal government. This is especially true of the best universities in Washington DC, such as Georgetown University. Leading colleges in Washington DC area usually have many alumni working in the federal government, and these alumni can provide valuable career advice to students and recent graduates. They may even be able to provide career opportunities. The best universities in Washington DC will have more alumni in lofty positions than less prestigious schools in the area.
Can I Save Money By Transferring from Community College?
Living expenses in the Washington D.C. area are relatively high, and so is the tuition at many colleges in the area. This conundrum often leaves students looking for ways to save money without compromising their education. Quite a few students in the area are getting their associate’s degrees at community colleges in Washington DC. As demand has gone up for affordable associate’s degrees, community colleges in Washington DC have responded by offering many programs online. This allows these schools to accommodate a larger number of students.
The majority of students in Washington D.C. who do an associate’s degree online transfer to a four-year school and complete a bachelor’s degree. There are terminal associate’s degree programs, many of them leading to certifications in STEM fields. However, students looking to save money by completing an associate’s degree online at a Washington D.C. community college usually transfer to a bachelor’s degree program.
What About an Online Master’s Degree in Washington DC?
Even working adults with bachelor’s degrees can benefit from online education. There are many prestigious universities in Washington D.C. that offer some of the highest-paying online master’s degrees. The various universities in the area offer online master’s degrees in many different fields. Many of the students in these programs are specifically looking to advance in their chosen career path.
Many government agencies require a master’s degree to move into upper-level management positions or even middle management positions. People who are in a position to chase these promotions are already working full-time, so they cannot pursue a master’s degree through traditional education. Online education is their only option. Several top universities in the Washington D.C. area have responded to this widespread need by creating online master’s programs.
George Washington University Online is the Internet-based division of GWU. George Washington University Online offers quite a few different online master’s programs. Many of these programs, like those at Georgetown and Howard, are aimed at working students in government agencies or government contractors. Some of the standout online master’s degree programs at GWU include the health sciences and business programs, which feature degree tracks that are designed for students involved with the federal government.
Georgetown Online is the distance education division of what is arguably the most prestigious university in the region. The three programs offered through Georgetown Online are Real Estate, Technology Management and Sports Industry Management. All three of these programs are fairly unique and are not commonly offered online by other universities in the region.
Howard University Online also offers an online master’s degree. The only master’s degree offered by Howard University Online is the Master of Business Administration, which is branded by the university as an “Executive” MBA. Howard University is a historically black university. In fact, it is the most prestigious historically black university in the country. Most of the students attending traditional and online classes at Howard are black. However, students of all races can and do enroll at Howard, especially in the online MBA program.
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