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Best Online Colleges in Illinois 2019
Top Consensus Ranked Schools for Distance Learning

Consensus Ranked STATES top online illinois

When you decide to evaluate accredited online colleges in Illinois, you may have questions about who benefits from the classes. The state of Illinois is seeing a transition in its economic structures and is moving away from the traditional agricultural practices of the state. The opportunities in manufacturing are also starting to fall as companies move away from the state. That means working adults will need to find a solution for their career that focuses on industries like finance, technology, or business. 

Illinois online colleges offer a solution for working adults who may have obligations in their current day and lifestyle. If you are working in a job and want to switch industries or make an improvement to your position, then getting an education online helps you make the shift in your life. It gives you a flexible schedule that works around any professional or personal obligations that limit your ability to attend traditional on-campus classes. That flexibility combined with programs that are designed around non-traditional students helps you accomplish your goals and make a change to your career path.

Ranking the Best Online Colleges in Illinois 

To rank the best online schools in Illinois, College Consensus editors combed the Consensus rankings for trusted, accredited online colleges and universities in Illinois that met two criteria. First, they have to have a Consensus Score – an aggregate score of published rankings and student reviews. Secondly, they have to offer at least three online degree programs. 

Colleges are presented in order of their Consensus Score.

1

University of St Francis
Joliet, IL

USF Joliet
68.5
College Consensus
60.8
Publisher Consensus
76.2
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At the University of St. Francis students who desire to earn an online degree have the option to choose from three undergraduate programs. Their programs include Business Administration, Health Care Leadership, and Nursing RN –BSN. The Business Administration program includes five different concentrations: entrepreneurship, management, and leadership managing human resources, transportation and logistics management, and marketing. The nursing RN –BSN program requires students in this program to have their Registered Nursing license before entering the program. These degrees all apply to professionals and makes the University of St. Francis one of the best online schools in Illinois.

The University of St. Francis is nationally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Their School of Business that includes the online Business Administration program has a specialized accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). Also, the Nursing RN-BSN program has a specialized accreditation by The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Number of Online Programs
3

2

University of Illinois at Springfield
Springfield, IL

University of Illinois at Springfield
64.7
College Consensus
55.7
Publisher Consensus
73.7
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At the University of Illinois at Springfield students have a variety of online programs to choose from, that include degrees from Business Administration and Computer Science to Liberal Studies and Teacher Education for prospective students. Students who may have previous undergraduate credit are encouraged to transfer that credit to assist with their program completion and overall cost of the program. For students who may have begun a degree several years prior, they are able to pick up with their education through these programs and begin again to meet their goals. Because of this flexibility, the University of Illinois – Springfield is rated as one of the best online colleges in Illinois.

The University of Illinois – Springfield has worked over the last decade to offer online learning to its residents at an affordable rate for their education. Originally Sangamon State University, the University of Illinois recognized this campus for its attributes to the local community and acquired it in 1995 into their system, becoming the University of Illinois – Springfield location.

Number of Online Programs
14

3

Illinois Institute of Technology
Chicago, IL

lllinois Institute Technology
63.9
College Consensus
60.9
Publisher Consensus
67
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

Students who pursue an online program at the Illinois Institute of Technology experience a well-rounded curriculum that is designed to give them a unique skill set in the different academic divisions. The different online programs offered to students online are found in the Armour College of Engineering, College of Science, College of Architecture, School of Applied Technology, Lewis College of Human Sciences, and the Stuart School of Business. Because of the variety of programs available to students, the Illinois Institute of Technology is becoming known as one of the best online schools in Illinois.

At the Illinois Institution of Technology, students are met with an accredited curriculum from the Higher Learning Commission. Their programs are also inspired by a vision that exceeds a century to its founding, where education would be founded and made available for students from all walks of life, promoting changes in society. The student body is as diverse through the online programs as it is on campus with students who are from different backgrounds and maintain the integrity of the institution’s mission.

Number of Online Programs
14

4

Illinois College
Jacksonville, IL

Illinois College
63.4
College Consensus
51.4
Publisher Consensus
75.4
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At Illinois College, students who want online programs are met with three programs that will prepare students for the workforce immediately following graduation or graduate school for those that desire to advance their education. Their programs include a BA in Agribusiness Management, BA in Business Administration – Management, and the RN to BSN program. These programs are designed to advance current careers and give students the option to take their careers to new levels, which is why they are listed as one of the best online colleges in Illinois.

At Illinois College, students are met with a program that is affordable and provides them a high return on their investment. They are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and have been recognized by both the U.S. News & World Report and Washington Monthly for their affordability. Students who require financial aid are able to take advantage of this aid at Illinois College.

Number of Online Programs
3

5

Elmhurst College
Elmhurst, IL

Elmhurst College
63.1
College Consensus
57.5
Publisher Consensus
68.7
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At Elmhurst College, online students are able to choose from four accredited programs that give them the curriculum students need to be successful in their professional careers. With degree programs in Information Technology, Applied Psychology, RN to BSN degree, and the Elmhurst Business Administration – Management, students are able to take their careers to the next level with fast-paced education that prepares them for the professional career. Because of this flexibility, Elmhurst College is one of the best online schools in Illinois.

Elmhurst College has been rated 11th for Best Undergraduate Teaching in the Midwest by the U.S. News & World Report and 13th Best Colleges for Veterans in 2018-2019. They are a private four-year college that is founded with an affiliation with the United Church of Christ. Students in the classroom and online are able to take advantage of a small faculty to student ratio that gives them more of that one-on-one interaction.

Number of Online Programs
4

6

DePaul University
Chicago, IL

DePaul University
62.4
College Consensus
52.2
Publisher Consensus
72.6
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At DePaul University, students who want to pursue online programs from an institution with a Catholic foundation have access to the following programs; BA in Professional Studies, Communication and Media, Psychology, Computer Science, and Information Technology. These programs correlate with the fasting growing careers in the Midwest and are in-demand by employers. Because of these diverse but essential programs, students find that DePaul University is one of the best online colleges in Illinois.

At DePaul University, students have access to faculty members that are professionals in their disciplines and active researchers, providing students with an innovative curriculum and experience that they can take with them into their careers. Approximately 80 percent of students who graduate from one of these undergraduate programs are successful in finding employment, and another 12 percent move forward to graduate school to continue their education. DePaul University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Number of Online Programs
5

7

Loyola University Chicago
Chicago, IL

Loyola University Chicago
62.3
College Consensus
56.5
Publisher Consensus
68.2
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

Students who attended Loyola University Chicago have access to six online undergraduate programs available for their online learning experience. These programs are available for students who are not able to commit to traditional courses on campus due to full-time employment or family commitments. Because of the flexibility of these programs, students are able to pursue their personal dreams and career goals, making Loyola University Chicago one of the best online schools in Illinois.

At Loyola University Chicago, students have access to a fully accredited institution through the Higher Learning Commission. Students are provided the ability to gain an education founded in Jesuit Catholic values. The campus is known to have valuable Centers of Excellence for their students to take advantage of and gain a humanitarian perspective through the collaboration of disciplines in these centers.

Number of Online Programs
6

8

Eastern Illinois University
Charleston, IL

Eastern Illinois University
62.2
College Consensus
52.3
Publisher Consensus
72
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At Eastern Illinois University, students pursuing one of the nine available online undergraduate options are provided affordable tuition, with each student receiving in-state tuition despite their residency. This makes this institution one of the best online colleges in Illinois, with an affordability option that is unmatched. Students also have access to financial aid and can take advantage of this resource if they need it.

At Eastern Illinois University, they have received several accolades for their online programs such as the 2018 No. 1 Ranking for Public Regional University in the state of Illinois by U.S. News & World Report. Affordable Colleges has also noticed their affordable tuition and ranked them as one of the leading Best Online College in Illinois. Former and Active military students are also able to take advantage of their GI Bill as a resource to cover their education at Eastern Illinois University.

Number of Online Programs
9

9

University of Illinois at Chicago
Chicago, IL

University of Illinois at Chicago
61.5
College Consensus
55.2
Publisher Consensus
67.8
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

The University of Illinois at Chicago offers online programs for their students like other campuses in the University of Illinois system. Through this institution, students are able to choose from three undergraduate programs; BS in Health Information Management, Bachelor of Business Administration, and RN to BSN. These programs are geared towards working adults who have already begun their careers or are looking to make a transition into a particular field. These programs are also designed to accept previous undergraduate transfer credit, allowing students to accelerate their programs. Because of this, the University of Illinois at Chicago is becoming known as one of the best online schools in Illinois.

At the University of Illinois at Chicago, students in all programs are encouraged to pursue an education despite their background or culture. As one of the more diverse Illinois institutions, the University of Illinois at Chicago is heavily involved in the Chicago community and encourages students to also act in this involvement, as their curriculums prepare them to be leaders in their community.

Number of Online Programs
3

10

Lewis University
Romeoville, IL

lewis u
61.1
College Consensus
57.5
Publisher Consensus
64.7
Student Consensus
Accessed August, 2019

At Lewis University, online undergraduate students have eight different programs options to pursue. These programs range from Organizational Leadership to Criminal Justice, with many of these programs being at the accelerated track. These tracks allow students to take as many courses as they choose during a term, giving them the option to complete their program at a faster rate than their peers in the traditional format. Because of this acceleration, Lewis University is gaining recognition as one of the best online colleges in Illinois.

At Lewis University, students are able to take responsibility for their own program and move at a pace that works for them and their daily commitments. Although online students are not on campus, they have access to the Student Service Desk and Library online for assistance from staff and faculty. Lewis University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Number of Online Programs
8

What Kinds of Degrees Can I Earn Online in Illinois?

When you are looking at Illinois online degrees that fit your long-term goals, you will want to clarify the options that are available. Although the areas of study may vary slightly based on the school and program, you can obtain anything from an online associate’s degree to a doctorate degree online.

Online graduate programs in Illinois help you advance in your career and improve your leadership skills. You can also add online certifications to enhance your credentials and improve your degree program. Obtaining a graduate degree online allows you to continue your current work while you increase your credentials and prepare for your future. It helps you stay on track to reach your goals without giving up your current job, changing your work hours, or putting personal obligations on your time aside. You can work at your pace and obtain a degree when you have the time.

What About Online Colleges in Chicago?

When you are looking for online colleges in Chicago that give you the ability to address your goals, you have a variety of options available for your plans. You can focus on public schools in the Chicago area that offer online degree programs.

The University of Illinois in Chicago offers online degree programs that allow you to focus on accomplishing your career goals. You can obtain degrees from a bachelor’s degree to a graduate degree based on your current level of education. If you prefer to focus on the technology field, then you can consider an online program from the Illinois Technical Institute in Chicago. The institute offers several fields of study online that help you plan for your future and your goals.

Although online colleges in Chicago at a public school offer an opportunity to obtain a degree to fit your situation, you are not limited to public universities. You can consider a private college in the city. Several private colleges in the city have online programs available to assist with your career goals.

You can consider Loyola University if you want to attend a college with small class sizes. The online programs only have 15 students per class, which allows you to obtain assistance from a professor when you have questions about an area of study. You can study everything from your bachelor’s degree and master’s degree to a doctoral degree, depending on your area of interest and goals.

DePaul University also offers online degree programs that allow you to work on your career goals. The online programs focus on bachelor’s degrees and master’s degrees in areas like communication, finance, and business. Alternatively, you can study at St. Francis University or at Lewis University for an online degree program.

The reason you want to consider studying in a Chicago program is the urban environment. Chicago online degree programs recognize the value of a degree in a business-centered city. That means you will have the opportunity to obtain a degree that works with the changing economic structure of the state and prepare for a job within the city. The degree programs at online universities in Chicago ensure that you are prepared for a position in the city or in an area that focuses on areas of study that appeal to the urban surroundings.

The schools focus on teaching students useful skills based on the needs of the urban city center. That means you will have a competitive degree that is relevant to the current atmosphere of the city. You will not limit your options through inappropriate areas of study and you will have the chance to improve your job options with a degree that focuses on business, finance, or technology.

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