Online learning has been somewhat slow to come to Montana. The Montana University System launched a program in 2007 to facilitate high-quality distance learning for working adults, nontraditional students, and rural citizens, but still online colleges in Montana have attracted only 6.3% of online students compared to the nation’s 12.5%. But the introduction of online learning promises to be a major asset to students in Big Sky Country. Students who enroll for these programs are able to further their studies while maintaining their jobs, family obligations (child care), and respond to their daily commitments. This type of initiative allows them to learn from the comfort of their homes instead of commuting to and from campus.
Montana online colleges not only save students money, but they also allow them to be an alumni of the university or college you love. Nearly 100% of online students in Montana are attending a public institutions, part of the University of Montana or the state’s community college. Working adults have an opportunity to get a degree from schools that employers know and trust, creating a benefit on the job market and in promotions.
Ranking the Best Online Colleges in Montana
To qualify for the College Consensus ranking of the best online colleges in Montana, schools must be accredited, have a Consensus Score (an average of public rankings and student reviews), and offer at least 3 online undergraduate programs. At this time, only one college in Montana makes the cut.
The University of MontanaMissoula, MT
When you’re looking for the best online colleges in Montana, the University of Montana in Missoula is a good choice for your goals. The school offers three online undergraduate degree programs. Since it focuses on art and media arts, the degree programs are ideal for students who plan to take on a role in the arts or who want to work in media.
The University of Montana allows students to enhance and build on their undergraduate degree with specialized certifications. The certifications and minors available online allow students to adjust their degree and skills to fit a specific career path and goal. That gives students the flexibility to adjust their studies and coursework to fit their needs. The University of Montana is considered a “School of Extended and Lifelong Learning”, so it encourages students to pursue their interests and keep up with studies throughout different stages of their life and career.
What Kinds of Degrees Can I Earn Online in Montana?
Online degrees in Montana vary depending on the student’s area of specialization. Most schools in Montana provide online learning programs every day to accommodate the needs of long distance learners, including technical and vocational colleges, and community and universities as well. Students can fulfill requirements for Montana online degree programs such as Forestry, Fish and Wildlife Biology, Education, Agriculture, Chemistry, and Native American Studies among others.
Online degrees in Montana are designed in such a way that allows students to choose the topics they want to study. Because of this, Montana online colleges offer some degrees and courses on online to cover a variety of subject areas. Thanks to online initiatives Montana online degrees offer topics that cover associate, bachelors, and master’s degree programs as well as professional certificates and endorsements.
How Can I Save Money on an Online Degree in Montana?
Students who join the Montana community colleges online initiatives have more to gain compared to their on-campus counterparts. Because most classes rely on the student’s flexibility, they can skip paying hefty amounts for college. Also, online students automatically qualify for state-funded aid, which the university readily provides. They can enjoy online tuition, career guidance, and unlimited access to library resources.
Once the university absorbs the working student in their system, it will accept transfer credits from reputable schools. In some cases, it may accept life experience credit from eligible online students. Non-residents may be required to pay more than Montana residents. Still, cost for tuition for online students are lower than in-person classes and non-residents.
Can I Still Take Online Courses Even I Am Not Interested in Pursuing a Degree?
Yes, you can still sit some classes if you are not interested in pursuing Montana online degrees. You can enroll as a non-degree student or as an undergraduate student if you haven’t earned a Bachelor’s Degree. In case you have already earned your degree, you can still apply as an online student. This only applies to students who are taking specific courses.
Do Online Colleges in Montana Accept the General Education Development (GED) test?
Yes. Prominent online institutions in Montana admit applicants who have passed the GED tests or the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET). Provided you are above 21 and failed to graduate from high school, or got homeschool diplomas you can still be a member of online colleges in Montana.
Some schools the likes of Montana State University Northern, can allow candidates over 21 as conditional freshmen. Moreover, it will only authenticate test scores after the high school class graduates. For more information, candidates should contact the respective administration office.
Which Montana Community Colleges Online Courses are offered for free?
Online degrees in Montana may be offered for free provided the candidate is over 60. Other institutions may also offer free online services in a case where they want to introduce specific courses, before allowing them to enroll for degree programs.
The Billings Public Library also offers free courses for residents. Once they have presented proof of residency, they can obtain a library card. This allows them to take more than 500 courses including computer maintenance, fine arts, and fitness among others.