Best Online Bachelor’s in Liberal Studies: Students Before Profits Award 2017

BEST ONLINE BACHELOR’S IN LIBERAL STUDIES - STUDENTS BEFORE PROFITS AWARD 2017Our Students Before Profits Award was created to promote nonprofit colleges and universities offering online degree programs that put students before profits and education before the bottom line.

For our 2016 Online Bachelor’s in Liberal Studies award winners, we selected online programs from accredited, nonprofit colleges and universities with objectively lower than average tuition cost and have ranked the programs according to their affordability.

Students who choose to major in Liberal Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, or the Humanities often have a variety of professional and intellectual interests and benefit from an academic program that is personalized, unique, and tailored to one’s individual aspirations. Liberal Studies majors are often self-motivated, eclectic learners, and studying a wide variety of different disciplines with an emphasis on critical thinking is ideal for opening an equally diverse variety of career doors, or for paving the way to a number of graduate programs. Most Liberal Arts curriculums compare cultural and intellectual traditions in the spirit of engendering analytical life-learners; students are inspired to not only reimagine their own place in the world, but to find deep value and likeness when examining the rich heritage of others. Additionally, many adult learners who have started but not finished a degree program are drawn to a major in Liberal Arts because of the efficient way their prior academic credits can be used rather than discarded, and streamlined into an undergraduate curriculum. These returning students often have just two years or less of full-time coursework ahead of them before walking away with a bachelor’s degree. Graduates often go on to pursue further academic study in numerous fields, including but not limited to writing, teaching, anthropology and sociology, advertising, public health, human resources, the creative arts, and law, or to advance in their current career.

Affordability, accreditation and nonprofit status are our primary criteria when it comes to ranking these programs, but many of these programs are consistently ranked among the top by other national publications and we believe they deserve to be considered among the best online bachelor’s in Liberal Studies programs available.

Note that tuition rates listed below are based on costs for out-of-state, full-time students. In-state rates are often less expensive, and part-time cost per credit hour is often more expensive.

#1. University of Wisconsin Whitewater

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Founded in 1868, the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater was originally Whitewater Normal School; its first class of teachers graduated in 1870. In 1927, the school’s name was changed to Whitewater Teaching College upon being granted the authority to award bachelor’s degrees in education. Currently located on 400 rural acres in southeastern Wisconsin, UW-Whitewater received its current name and university status in 1971, after becoming part of the University of Wisconsin system.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Studies Overview

The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater offers an online bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies. The distance program, depending on core credits taken, can be pursued as an arts or a science degree. Students may choose a 54-credit major with a single focus area, or a 36-credit major accompanied by a minor. A degree completion program, students must have sixty or more college credits from an accredited institution before applying for the specific Liberal Studies degree. Students may earn their general credits online at UW-Whitewater, or may transfer academic credits earned previously.

Accreditation

The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 56%
Tuition: $24,313

#2. Georgia Southern University

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Founded as a land grant college in 1906, Georgia Southern University is located on 920 acres in Statesboro, Georgia and is part of the University System of Georgia. The school enrolls over 20,000 students and offers 117 academic degrees in undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral programs. Recently ranked seventh most popular university in the nation — tied with Yale — Georgia Southern University has been recognized by Newsweek, Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, the Princeton Review, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, The Daily Beast, and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies Overview

Georgia Southern University’s College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences offers a flexible, fully-online Bachelor’s of General Studies degree designed for transfer students, full-time professionals, and full-time parents. After completing the foundational core, Students will choose three areas of study from the following categories: Business, Justice Studies, Sociology, Writing, Public Administration, and Music. 126 credits are required for graduation, and a minimum of 32 of these semester hours must be earned at Georgia Southern University.

Accreditation

Georgia Southern University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 51%
Tuition: $25,704

#3. Oregon State University

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Initially founded in as Corvallis Academy in the 1850s, Oregon State University rapidly transformed from a primary preparatory school into an agricultural school, going through many other changes prior to achieving university status in 1961. Oregon State University has been recognized favorably by U.S. News & World Report, Forbes, Washington Monthly, Academic Ranking of World Universities, and QS World University Rankings. Considered a highly-selective institution, OSU claims numerous outstanding alumni across diverse fields and disciplines, including Pulitzer Prize-winning poet George Oppen; Douglas Engelbart, computer scientist credited with the invention of email and the computer mouse; Donald Kerr, wildlife biologist; Nobel prize-winning chemist Linus Pauling; various local and national politicians; and more.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Studies

Oregon State University’s B.A. and B.S. of Liberal Studies allows students to create their own major structured around a topic or discipline that reflects their personal interests and professional goals. Students will select coursework from schools within OSU’s College of Liberal Arts; these include art, speech communication, history, economics, English, anthropology, foreign languages and literature, new media, women’s studies, gender and sexuality studies, ethnic studies, sociology, political science, philosophy, psychology, music, and theatre. Alumni go on to work in countless careers, and many of them pursue graduate study.

Accreditation

Oregon State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 61%
Tuition: $33,600

#4. The University of Texas of the Permian Basin

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Located in Odessa, Texas, the University of Texas of the Permian Basin was founded in 1973, in part due to the enthusiasm of oil industrialist Bill Noel, a longtime philanthropist of the school. The desert campus spans nearly 650 acres and famously houses a Stonehenge replica near the Visual Arts Studio. In the spring of 2016 enrollment reached over 6,000 — a result of the region’s oil boom — marking a 15% increase in student population compared to the previous school year.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities Overview

The University of Texas of the Permian Basin offers an online B.A. in Humanities with classes available in accelerated eight-week increments. A broad interdisciplinary arts and sciences degree, this flexible program is intended for self-motivated learners with the desire and capability to create an individualized plan of study with the help of a faculty advisor. Five concentration areas are available, and students must choose to focus on at least two; concentration areas include Art, Communication, English, History, and Music. Core coursework consists of thirty hours of classes including World Civilizations, British and American Literature, Rhetoric in Western Thought, Jazz History, and many more. The course of study ends with a capstone project, and the credits required for graduation total 120.

Accreditation

The University of Texas of the Permian Basin is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 34%
Tuition: $34,560

#5. Columbia College

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Columbia College of Missouri was established as Christian Female College in 1851, and is currently a nonsectarian liberal arts school located in Columbia, Missouri. At the time of its founding, Columbia was the first female institution of higher education west of the Mississippi River to be established directly by a state legislature. In 1970, after becoming entirely co-educational, Columbia College received its current name. The school was recently named a “Best Midwestern College” by the Princeton Review due to its reputation for academic quality and favorable student feedback.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies Overview

Columbia College of Missouri offers an online Bachelor’s of General Studies for students desiring a broad education in liberal arts and sciences. The degree program was formulated for adult students with careers and family responsibilities, and is appropriate for self-starters requiring a high level of flexibility in their studies. After fulfilling Columbia College’s general education requirements, students will complete a multicultural requirement and an ethics requirement, and then will take over 75 semester credits of electives chosen to fit into a thematic personalized degree plan. 120 credits are required for graduation, and most students, depending on the number of hours transferred, will complete the program within two to four years.

Accreditation

Columbia College of Missouri is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 41%
Tuition: $34,800

#6. Sam Houston State University

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Sam Houston State University was established in 1879 and is one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the state of Texas. Located an hour north of Houston on 316 acres, Sam Houston State also has an additional 1,600 acres allotted for a rodeo arena and agricultural research. Part of the Texas State University System with an enrollment of 20,000 students, Sam Houston State prides itself on its course offerings in Texas history and folklore.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies Overview

A fully-online degree program, Sam Houston State University’s online Bachelor’s of General Studies is identical to its in-classroom counterpart. Upon completing a Declaration of Major form, students will choose three minors from a list of available distance courses to begin narrowing the focus of their personalized, interdisciplinary curriculum. Commonly available online minors include Criminal Justice, Family and Consumer Sciences, Finance, Business Administration, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, and Spanish. 120 credits are required for graduation.

Accreditation

Sam Houston State University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 53%
Tuition: $36,336

#7. Utah State University

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Located in Logan, Utah, Utah State University is a public space-grant and land-grant research university that was originally founded as an agricultural college in the late 1800s. The schools is made up of eight colleges, and offers not only undergraduate degrees, but master’s and doctoral programs in most traditional disciplines. Utah State was ranked the 25th Most Underrated College in the nation by Business Insider, and has received high accolades by Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, Washington Monthly, and Academic Ranking of World Universities.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts Overview

Utah State University’s online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts is a distance program focusing on the humanities, the arts, and social sciences. Students create a personalized degree plan, meeting with their faculty advisor at least once per semester, and incorporate their unique intellectual and professional interests into their predetermined course of study. The GPA must be kept at a minimum of 2.0 throughout the time it takes to complete the 120 required credits. Prospective students may refer to the department’s website for more specifics into required coursework and an example of an appropriate degree plan outline.

Accreditation

Utah State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 53%
Tuition: $37,200

#8. Northwest Nazarene University

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Founded in Nampa, Idaho in 1913, Northwest Nazarene University was originally a hybrid grade school and Bible school before evolving into a liberal arts college in 1917. The institution offered only undergraduate degrees until the 1960’s, when, under President John E. Riley, and later, Kenneth H. Pearsall, NNU began granting graduate degrees. Northwest Nazarene University is a private Christian school with the utmost goal of transforming the whole student; the school’s motto is “Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God.”

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

Northwest Nazarene University’s online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies is identical to its on-campus parallel; online students, if living reasonably close to campus, are encouraged to take advantage of chapel services and athletic events, workout facilities and library sources. Those living in their own communities, far from Northwest Nazarene University, will still benefit from the intentional tech community created for distance students. NNU also offers an online Associate’s of Liberal Studies; the two programs combined result in a program that is 100% available online for prospective adult students without the advantage of prior academic experience.

Accreditation

Northwest Nazarene University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 50%
Tuition: $37,800

#9. Western New Mexico University

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A public university in Silver City, New Mexico, Western New Mexico University was founded as a normal school in 1893, and has since served the region’s people in various capacities. WNMU offers over seventy areas of study in certificates, undergraduate and master’s degrees; over 150 courses are offered online through a distance education model. Notable alumni include local poets Anita Scott Coleman and Kenneth Wayne Brewer, American Southwest historian Jerry D. Thompson, New Mexico State Senator Henry “Howie” Morales, Carleton Naiche-Palmer, former President of the Mescalero Apache, and more.

Online Bachelor’s of Interdisciplinary Studies Overview

Western New Mexico University’s online Bachelor’s of Interdisciplinary Studies is a multidisciplinary general studies program designed for adult learners. After completing the general education core units, students will choose either two or three areas of concentration from the available specializations. Theoretically, any of the disciplines at Western New Mexico are appropriate for use in the Interdisciplinary Studies degree, however, students must be in contact with their advisors to choose concentrations that are 100% available online, as these are subject to change. Online students often choose to specialize in English, History, Psychology, Criminal Justice, Political Science, and Rehabilitation Services. Most students lacking relevant transfer credits will graduate in approximately four years, though students with transfer credits or those who choose to take advantage of WNMU’s Fast Track Program — a partnership with Central New Mexico College online — can finish in as little as two to three years.

Accreditation

Western New Mexico University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 15%
Tuition: $37,805

#10. Southern New Hampshire University

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Situated on 300 acres between Manchester and Hookset, Southern New Hampshire University is a private institution with an extensive online component. Over 200 regionally accredited undergraduate and graduate degrees are available as distance programs, and many of these have specialized accreditations. Southern New Hampshire University also offers an accelerated course of study for undergraduate business majors; this 3-Year Honors Program enables students to complete a custom business degree in three years rather than the standard four. Similar accelerated honors programs are also offered to creative writing and justice studies students.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in General Studies Overview

Designed to help students with previous college experience maximize their credits and earn an undergraduate degree in the most efficient way possible, Southern New Hampshire University’s online B.A. in General Studies is a flexible distance degree emphasizing critical thinking and communication. Students will choose a concentration that aligns not only with their previous academic experience, but also with their current interests and professional aspirations. Specialized tracks include accounting, business, communication, creative writing, psychology, sport management, as well as many other disciplines. Unique, personalized curricula can be constructed with the help of faculty advisors.

Accreditation

Southern New Hampshire University is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 54%
Tuition: $38,500

#11. University of Toledo

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A public research university located in Toledo, Ohio, the University of Toledo enrolls over 23,000 students on its increasingly sustainable campus. In 2009, the dining service of UT launched its “Green Stakes” campaign to expand the use of reusable containers and offer more sustainable food options. Likewise, the school is also working to transform its satellite campus in the Scott Park neighborhood into a site primarily dedicated to sustainability research; this includes creating a solar panel field and implementing the use of wind turbines.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

The University of Toledo offers an online B.A. in Liberal Studies that is flexible and convenient, an ideal choice for self-motivated working adults. Transfer applicants must have a minimum GPA of 2.0 in all prior coursework, and all applicants must be at least 25 years of age. After gaining admittance and embarking on the Liberal Studies program, students will first enroll in the Adult Liberal Studies Introductory Seminar and become matched with a faculty advisor who can look over previous academic coursework — if pertinent — and enable them to craft a customized degree plan. Along with thirteen credits of electives, general education requirements, and a senior thesis, students will complete 36 hours of Liberal Studies courses emphasizing the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. Graduates of UT’s online Liberal Arts program have gone on to continue education at a higher level, or to work in teaching, human resources, writing, social services, and advertising.

Accreditation

The University of Toledo is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 45%
Tuition: $40,259

#12. University of Missouri

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One of 34 public universities that are part of the Association of American Universities, the University of Missouri is a nationally renowned top-tier land-grant research institution and is the flagship university of the University of Missouri System. With over 30,000 students enrolled, Mizzou is one of only six universities in the country to house schools of medicine, law, engineering, agriculture, and veterinary medicine together on the same campus. Additionally, the Missouri School of Journalism, founded in 1908 by Walter Williams, a famed global journalist and educator, was the first one of its kind in the world, and is the highest-ranked journalism school according to U.S. News & World Report.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in General Studies Overview

Students working on their undergraduate degree in the University of Missouri’s General Studies program choose three disciplines to make up a personalized and flexible major that differs significantly from traditional programs. The entire program can be completed online through MU’s College of Arts and Science, and students with transfer credits from previous academic experience are encouraged to incorporate their units into the B.G.S. with guidance from a faculty advisor. 120 hours are required for graduation, and 45 of these are upper-level courses related specifically to the General Studies degree. These courses are chosen from three areas of study, and each of these courses from the aforementioned student-chosen categories may be taken from a single department or from multiple departments, insofar as the individual courses are connected to form a coherent theme. The program concludes with a three-hour capstone course in one of the three areas of study.

Accreditation

The University of Missouri is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 69%
Tuition: $42,564

#13. Thomas Edison State University

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Thomas Edison State University, previously known as Thomas Edison State College, was founded in 1972 as the namesake of inventor Thomas Alva Edison. One of New Jersey’s eleven public institutions of higher education, the school was awarded university status in 2015 and currently enrolls nearly 20,000 students at its downtown Trenton campus.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities Overview

Thomas Edison State University offers an online B.A. in Humanities for adults interested in career change or advancement, or those interested in pursuing graduate education. Throughout the course of study, students will thoroughly explore and define the major concepts and historical development of at least two humanities subjects. 120 hours are required for graduation, 33 of which are specialized humanities courses. The following subjects are considered to be under the broad umbrella of humanities disciplines and may be used as a concentration area: art, communications, dance, literature, foreign language, music, philosophy, and theatre. Students may also choose interdisciplinary coursework including African-American studies, women’s studies, environmental studies, and urban studies, as long as it can be applied to one of the aforementioned humanities concentrations. Thomas Edison State University does accept appropriate transfer credits from other college-level institutions.

Accreditation

Thomas Edison State University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 15%
Tuition: $43,200

#14. University of Massachusetts Lowell

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Established in 1972, the University of Massachusetts Lowell was the result of the merging of two institutions chartered near the turn of the century: Lowell Technical Institute and Lowell State College. Acclaimed for its science and engineering programs, UMass Lowell is an urban public research university and is part of the University of Massachusetts system. In 2013, the online campus was ranked sixth nationally in the “Guide to Online Schools.”

Online Bachelor’s of Liberal Arts Overview

The University of Massachusetts Lowell’s Department of Online and Continuing Education offers a distance undergraduate degree in Liberal Arts. The broad curriculum is strengthened by allowing students to choose two concentrations of the eight available. Concentration options include Art History, Economics, English, History, Legal Studies, Political Science, Psychology, and Gender Studies. Graduates of UMass Lowell’s well-rounded program will be more than adequately prepared to move on to graduate study, begin a career in a myriad of disciplines, or advance in their current profession.

Accreditation

The University of Massachusetts Lowell is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 54%
Tuition: $44,400

#15. Washington State University

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Founded in 1890, Washington State University is located on 620 acres in Pullman, Washington. The nation’s first and largest land-grant university, WSU enrolls nearly 30,000 students on its main campus in the Palouse region. The online campus enrolls an additional 26,000 distance students worldwide.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities Overview

Washington State University’s online B.A. in Humanities enables students to “mix-and-match” their coursework to create a personal and diverse degree program rich in global culture. Concentrations are available in eleven disciplines; these include American Studies, Anthropology, Communication, Comparative Ethnic Studies, English, Fine Arts, Foreign Language and Cultures, History, Music, Philosophy, and Women’s Studies. Students of any of the available concentrations will develop skills in writing, problem-solving, analysis, and communication. Graduates have gone on to establish careers in social services, business, and education, as well as to pursue higher education opportunities.

Accreditation

Washington State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 67%
Tuition: $45,544

#16. Portland State University

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Established in 1946 as Vanport Extension Center, Portland State University is a top-ranking public university located on fifty acres in downtown Portland. The school was founded to fulfill the need for higher education in World War II veterans and at first only offered classes at the local high school; PSU evolved into a four-year institution in 1955. The university’s is considered highly-selective compared to other public universities. Online courses are offered by the Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science, the School of Social Work, the College of Urban and Public Affairs, the School of Business Administration, and the Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in Arts and Letters and Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in Liberal Studies Overview

Portland State University offers two online interdisciplinary degrees — a B.A./B.S. of Arts and Letters and a B.A./B.S. of Liberal Studies. Both majors are highly-flexible, and require 56 hours of program-specific coursework. The Arts and Letters degree allows students to graduate without the usually required two years of foreign language. Liberal Studies majors do not need to meet the University Studies requirement unless they are double-majors. Examples of upper-level coursework include Conflict Resolution, Black Studies, Dance, Art, Philosophy, Foreign Languages and Literatures, and more.

Accreditation

Portland State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 45%
Tuition: $50,208

#17. Lesley University

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Founded as a normal school in 1909 with the purpose of training kindergarten teachers, Lesley University was awarded university status in 2001. The private women’s institution began conferring baccalaureate degrees in 1941, and merged with The Art Institute of Boston in the late 1990s before becoming fully coeducational in 2005. Lesley has received a number of distinguished acknowledgements, such as inclusion into the “Best
Northeastern Colleges” list by the Princeton Review and as one of the “Top 5 Outdoor Education” programs — regarding Lesley’s esteemed Audubon Expedition Institute — by Backpacker Magazine.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Humanities Overview

Lesley University’s online B.A. in Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Humanities is a 120-credit degree with concentrations in Creative Writing, History, Humanities, Music, Religion, and Literature. 47 units of “free electives” may be fulfilled by transfer credit, approved prior learning experiences, or credits completed at Lesley. Examples of major-specific coursework include the Art and Craft of Short Fiction, Autobiographical Writing, Humanitarian Organizations, Medieval History and Literature, Classical Music, World Religions, World Mythology, Plays of Shakespeare, Romanticism in the Arts, and more. After graduation, students may go on to pursue graduate study, gain entry into a variety of careers, or earn advancement in their current career.

Accreditation

Lesley University is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 46%
Tuition: $51,600

#18. Colorado State University

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Located in Fort Collins, Colorado State University was founded in 1870. Originally an agricultural college, CSU is now the state’s land grant university and the flagship institution of the Colorado State University system. The school’s main campus extends across 583 acres at the base of the Rocky Mountains, and additional campuses include a separate agricultural campus, the extensive Foothills Campus, and the Pingree Park Mountain Campus.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Overview

Colorado State University’s self-paced B.A. in Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts is a 120-credit degree program highlighting human history as regards interpersonal interactions, literature, politics, and economics. After completing the program’s foundational studies, students will choose one of seven degree minors that function as concentration tracks and bring focus to the course of study. These minors include Anthropology, Business Administration, Economics, Gerontology, Media Studies, Political Science, and Sociology. Graduates of CSU’s Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts program have applied their education to a diverse body of professions such as public policy, law, urban planning, business, journalism, publishing, education, sales and marketing, government work, and more.

Accreditation

Colorado State University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 65%
Tuition: $53,280

#19. Excelsior College

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Founded in 1971 as the Regents External Degree Program, Excelsior College is located in Albany, New York. The school changed its name to Excelsior College in 2001; “Excelsior” is New York’s state motto and is Latin for “ever upward.” A private, not-for-profit college offering degrees at the undergraduate and graduate level, Excelsior enrolls over 35,000 students.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities and Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts Overview

Excelsior College offers a fully-online B.A. in Humanities with an emphasis on necessary and highly-marketable skills including critical analysis, writing, and creative problem solving. Students may choose to complete the program on a general basis, without a concentration, or may choose from one of the four available concentrations and curate a more specialized degree program. Concentrations are available in Communications, Cultural Studies, Fine Arts, and Literature, though all students must complete a minimum of 120 hours to qualify for graduation, and will complete the same core requirements before proceeding to take 33 hours of discipline-specific coursework. Excelsior’s online B.A. in Liberal Arts is similar in intent and curriculum to the aforementioned undergraduate degree in Humanities, though students may choose to pursue a concentration in Professional and Technical Writing. A degree in Liberal Arts is efficient and all-encompassing, designed as a convenient option for working adults who may have previous college credit but have not yet graduated.

Accreditation

Excelsior College is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 24%
Tuition: $55,800

#20. Saint Leo University

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Originally established in 1889 in Saint Leo, Florida by a group of Benedictine monks, Saint Leo University is the oldest Catholic university in the state. Only 3,000 students are enrolled at Saint Leo’s main campus, but approximately 16,000 students are enrolled worldwide, many of which are affiliated with the military. The liberal arts institution has a long history as a military school, and still operates dozens of military base education centers throughout the nation.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

A broad liberal arts program, Saint Leo University’s online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies develops computer literacy, analysis, and communications. Students will engage in the multidisciplinary study of humanities and fine arts, quantitative reasoning, business, and social and natural sciences after completing Saint Leo’s core curriculum. After graduation, students will have a globally-oriented, leadership perspective on current issues and events, and will have successfully matured not only their critical thinking skills but also their own potential for creativity.

Accreditation

Saint Leo University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 46%
Tuition: $56,400

#21. University of Maryland University College

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University of Maryland University College began as a development of the University of Maryland’s evening program for adults that commenced in the 1920’s. Recognized internationally as one of the largest distance learning institutions, UMUC serves over 90,000 students worldwide in both traditional on-campus courses and online courses; brick-and-mortar campuses are located all over the world. Ranked #1 in The Military Times as a “Best for Vets” college in 2015, the public university has been offering face-to-face educational opportunities for current and prior military in both Afghanistan and Djibouti, Africa since 2005.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities Overview

UMUC’s distance B.A. in Humanities is built on an interdisciplinary curriculum focusing on analysis and communication skills while emphasizing multicultural studies in art, philosophy, religion, literature, theatre, film, music, and technology. Social responsibility and subsequent problem-solving regarding the improvement of the human condition are key practices that students will be expected to master and repeatedly defend throughout their time at UMUC. Major-specific coursework includes Introduction to Philosophy, Introduction to Humanities, Contemporary Moral Issues, World History and/or Western Civilization, Myth in the World, Contemporary Social Justice Issues, and more. Graduates go on to find work in journalism, publishing, education, advertising, sales, law, human resources, management, insurance, and the community sector.

Accreditation

The University of Maryland University College is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 10%
Tuition: $59,880

#22. Arizona State University

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Arizona State University was established in 1885 and is the largest public university in the nation by student enrollment. A national space-grant institution, ASU is spread across a number of campuses across Phoenix, Arizona. With over fifty undergraduate and graduate distance degree programs, the university’s extensive online component was ranked first in Student Services and Technology by U.S. News & World Report, and has also been recognized for its innovation and its friendliness to international students. Additionally, Arizona State University is currently the top producer of Fulbright scholars in the country.

Online Bachelor’s of Liberal Studies Overview

Arizona State University’s School of Letters and Sciences offers an online B.L.S. that allows students to work and study in over two dozen disciplines in the social sciences and the humanities. Designed for students with a broad array of academic interests, the online Bachelor’s of Liberal Studies is presented in a format that is convenient for older students, students with professional responsibilities, and those with families. The curriculum is structured so as to include space for numerous transfer credits, making it the perfect option for prospective students with prior academic experience in more than one subject area.

Accreditation

Arizona State University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 57%
Tuition: $60,000

#23. Northeastern University

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Established in 1898 at a YMCA in Boston, Massachusetts, Northeastern University is an exceedingly competitive and acclaimed private research university. The institution is located on seventy acres in urban Boston, and is a largely residential campus. Northeastern currently enrolls 25,000 students, and is well-known for its vast recognitions and rankings spanning the entirety of its offered programs; the school has been acknowledged by the Princeton Review, U.S. News and World Report, Forbes, Washington Monthly, Times Higher Education World University Rankings, Academic Ranking of World Universities, QS World University Rankings, and Bloomberg Businessweek.

Online Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Studies Overview

Northeastern University’s Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Studies enables students with a variety of intellectual interests and unique professional goals to avoid the limitations of traditional majors by piecing together a personal curriculum from available online coursework. After completing the general foundation and liberal studies foundation courses, students will go on to take 33 units of self-designed courses as well as choose and complete a related minor. 120 hours are required for graduation, and these credits may be completed in four to seven years.

Accreditation

Northeastern University is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 83%
Tuition: $60,480

#24. University of Houston-Victoria

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Part of the University of Houston system, the University of Houston-Victoria was founded in 1973 in Victoria, Texas. The university offered only upper-division and graduate courses during its first four decades and admitted only upperclassmen and graduate students. Freshman and sophomores gained admittance in 2010. The University of Houston-Victoria is the fourth-most affordable public university in Texas, and was the first public university in Texas to offer a complete bachelor’s degree in just three years.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Humanities Overview

The University of Houston-Victoria offers an online B.A. in Humanities with three concentration options. The B.A. of Humanities – Creative Writing was designed for students who wish to pursue professional work in writing, publishing, and teaching. Available coursework includes Grammar and Rhetoric, Creative Nonfiction, Fiction, Poetry, and Screenwriting, in addition to the university’s core curriculum requirements. Graduates of the program have gone on to work in public relations, journalism, advertising, publishing, arts administration, and technical writing. UHV’s English concentration is aimed at would-be writers, editors, and teachers. Apart from teaching, alumni have found work as news writers, copywriters, journalists, copy editors, in radio and television, in book production, and more. UHV’s Humanities-History undergraduate program prepares students to work as policy analysts and advisors, research historians, archivists, writers in a variety of fields, and teachers. Graduates will also be prepared for advanced academic study in history, library science, law, and business.

Accreditation

The University of Houston-Victoria is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 46%
Tuition: $64,200

#25. California Baptist University

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Founded in 1950 in Riverside, California, California Baptist University is a private liberal arts school overseen by the California Southern Baptist Convention. CBU enrolled only 120 students during its inaugural year, and now enrolls nearly 10,000 students on its 160 acres of Mission Revival-style buildings. California Baptist’s notable alumni includes Fraser Kershaw, original founder of the international Water Works charity; Rick Warren, motivational pastor, speaker, and author; and Drew Shirley, musician with Christian pop band Switchfoot.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

Students of California Baptist University’s online B.A. in Liberal Studies program will choose from four concentration areas to better tailor their undergraduate experience; these disciplines include English, Human Development, Kinesiology, and Social Science. The program and university are candidly religious and Christian in nature, and the curriculum accordingly emphasizes Christian ethics and heritage within a multidisciplinary structure. Examples of available coursework are as follows: Integrated Humanities, American Public Schools, Minorities in America, History of California, Overview of the Bible, Foundations of Christian Thought, Contemporary Health Issues, The Exceptional Child, and more. Many graduates go on to teach a variety of age groups and subjects, or to pursue higher education.

Accreditation

California Baptist University is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 59%
Tuition: $65,640

#26. Pennsylvania State University

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Pennsylvania State University was originally founded in 1855 as an agricultural high school and is now a research university with 24 local campuses. In 2010, with the inclusion of online students, the university’s enrollment totaled nearly 100,000 undergraduate and graduate learners. Pennsylvania State University World Campus officially launched in 1998, but the institution has been on the forefront of distance education since 1892, when it established one of the nation’s earliest correspondence programs for Pennsylvania farmers.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Letters, Arts, and Sciences Overview

Penn State University offers a self-designed, multidisciplinary degree for students who want to take a unique, in-depth approach to achieving their educational, intellectual, and professional goals. The B.A. in Letters, Arts, and Sciences is a 120-credit distance degree with 36 credits representing the major coursework; the remaining credits are comprised of general education courses and electives. This degree program is transfer-friendly — a good fit for students with previous college experience, students who desire to pursue graduate study, and students already enjoying the responsibilities of family and career.

Accreditation

Pennsylvania State University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 86%
Tuition: $67,560

#27. Marist College

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Founded in 1929 as the Marist Normal Training School, Marist College has its roots in a Catholic hermitage established in early-1800s France by Saint Marcellin Champagnat. Located in Poughkeepsie, New York, Marist College boasts an enrollment of 7,000 students, a renowned comprehensive liberal arts education, and steady good reviews from Kiplinger’s, U.S. News & World Report, and the Princeton Review as one of America’s best private colleges, both in terms of value and academic distinction.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Science Liberal Studies Overview

Marist College offers an online and on-campus B.A. and B.S. of Liberal Studies for transfer students or those beginning their college career as non-traditional adult learners. The curriculum combines an amalgam of disciplines to create a truly diverse curriculum, one in which students may pick and choose courses to create a cohesive theme in accordance with their professional and personal interests. These disciplines include American Studies, Communication and the Arts, Data Center Technologies, Economics, Enterprise Systems, Information Technology and Systems, Leadership, Organization Leadership and Communication, Professional Studies, and Project Management and Psychology. Courses are offered in an accommodating, accelerated format, and transfer students are walked through a transfer credit assessment to assist in formulating a degree plan that makes the most of prior academic experience.

Accreditation

Marist College is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 78%
Tuition: $78,000

#28. University of Oklahoma

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Founded in 1890 by the Oklahoma Territorial legislature, the University of Oklahoma is located in Norman, twenty miles south of Oklahoma City. The school existed for seventeen years in what was then Oklahoma Territory, near Indian Territory, until the two territories combined to form the state of Oklahoma. Among the top ten public universities in the nation in the graduation of Rhodes Scholars, and first in the enrollment of National Merit Scholars, OU has been favorably recognized by PC Magazine, the Princeton Review, and the Carnegie Foundation.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

Available totally online or as a hybrid program, the University of Oklahoma’s College of Liberal Studies offers a B.A. in Liberal Studies with a curriculum that follows the classical liberal studies model. Students will take courses exploring the humanities, the natural sciences, and the social sciences in a connective multidisciplinary format. Throughout the course of study students will choose a degree topic from the following five options: Humanities of the Modern and Ancient Worlds, Ecology and Evolution, the Dynamic Universe, Human Arrangement, or Social Sciences. The degree program is fast-paced and transfer credit-friendly; most students graduate within two to three years of beginning their coursework.

Accreditation

The University of Oklahoma is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 66%
Tuition: $79,367

#29. University of Arkansas at Little Rock

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Founded in 1927 as Little Rock Junior College, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock became Little Rock University in 1957. In 1969, the private institution merged with the University of Arkansas system, became a public university, and gained its current name. UALR enrolls over 12,000 students on 250 acres, and offers 160 undergraduate and graduate degrees, including doctoral programs. Notable alumni include members of the Arkansas House of Representatives Camille Bennett, Karilyn Brown, Vivian Brown, Douglas House, and James Sturch, actress Julie Adams, and Derek Fisher, former head coach of the New York Knicks.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies Overview

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s online Bachelor’s of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies is perfect for students with academic interests in a variety of disciplines. Students create a personalized degree plan by combining three concentration areas with the help of a faculty advisor; students will choose these concentrations from a truly comprehensive list of approximately fifty disciplines. Available online concentrations are subject to change, however, and this must be considered as students outline their degree plan. BAIS students are able to advance in their current career, pursue graduate studies in law or other academic areas, or enter a variety of different professional fields.

Accreditation

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 24%
Tuition: $83,552

#30. University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

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One of five campuses that make up the University of Massachusetts system, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth is located on over 700 acres in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts. UMass Dartmouth was founded by the Massachusetts legislature in 1895 as a textile school, and later merged with the Bradford Durfee College of Technology to create the Southeastern Massachusetts Technological Institute. SMU was incorporated into the UMass system and adopted its current name in the early 1990s. The school has been highly-ranked by Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, Washington Monthly, and Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts Overview

UMass Dartmouth’s Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts is available as a hybrid or online program, and although all credits can be completed at UMass, the program has a generous transfer policy, enabling students with a variety of prior academic backgrounds to finish a degree that has been previously put on hold. After completing the university’s core requirements, Liberal Arts students will choose two concentration areas from the following disciplines: Economics, English Literature and Criticism, History, Philosophy, Political Science, Sociology and Anthropology, and Women and Gender Studies. Career opportunities for recent graduates are often found in sales, human resources, management, journalism, social work, politics, law, and public policy.

Accreditation

The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 46%
Tuition: $115,920

#31. The New School

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A private research university located mostly in Greenwich Village, The New School was founded by a progressive group of New York academics and intellectuals in 1919, and was originally known as The New School for Social Research. In 1933, the university created a graduate division known as the University in Exile, a refuge for scholars fleeing Nazi Germany and other violently anti-intellectual regions in Europe. The school currently enrolls over 10,000 students, and has created a number of institutions including the World Policy Institute, the Vera List Center for Art and Politics, the Observatory on Latin America, the Center for New York City Affairs, and the India China Institute. Many of The New School’s original founders were former Columbia University professors; others include philosopher John Dewey, economist James Harvey Robinson, literary scholar Alvin Johnson, and more. Distinguished alumni and lecturers include Eleanor Roosevelt, Tennessee Williams, bell hooks, Jack Kerouac, and Siddharta Deb.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in Liberal Arts Overview

The New School’s online B.A. and B.S. in Liberal Arts is identical to its on-campus equivalent, and accepts transfer credits for not only accredited academic experience but also generalized prior learning and prepared portfolios. Students design their own course of study by choosing from hundreds of unique classes in subject areas including Gender and Sexuality Studies, Digital Humanities Initiative, Anthropology and Sociology, Food Studies, Film and Media Production, Jewish Culture, Urban Studies, Race and Ethnicity, and many, many more. A Bachelor’s-Master’s program is available to students who have completed at least sixty credits toward the degree and earned a minimum GPA of 3.3; the Bachelor’s-Master’s program allows eligible students to take up to eighteen credits in the university’s graduate school and apply these hours to both the undergraduate liberal arts degree and a master’s program.

Accreditation

The New School is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 65%
Tuition: $142,800

#32. St. John’s University

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A Roman Catholic university with campuses across New York City, St. John’s University was founded in 1870 in Brooklyn. The school now has locations in Queens, Staten Island, and Manhattan, along with overseas campuses in Rome and Paris and a graduate center in Oakdale, New York. A namesake of Saint John the Baptist, the private research university currently enrolls over 20,000 students. St. John’s has been favorably recognized by the The Princeton Review, Business Insider, U.S. News & World Report, Bloomberg Business Week, Forbes, and The Wall Street Journal.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

A 126-credit online degree program, St. John’s University’s B.A. in Liberal Studies emphasizes critical thinking, writing, and oral rhetoric. Students develop their own curriculum by way of choosing more than one available minor; these include administrative studies, business, computer studies, criminal justice, health services, journalism, and paralegal studies. In addition to the general education core, approximately fifty hours of major-related, non-elective courses are needed to complete the program’s requirements; these are divided into the essentials: Humanities, Sciences/Maths, and Social Sciences. This unique distance program is offered by St. John’s College of Professional Studies, and prepares students to embark on positive career changes, to gain greater success in a current career, or to pursue higher education.

Accreditation

St. John’s University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 58%
Tuition: $162,288

#33. Iowa State University

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A public flagship research university, Iowa State University was founded in 1858 and shortly thereafter accepted the provisions of the Morrill Act of 1862; Iowa was the first state in the U.S. to do so. The school was coeducational from the beginning, and was originally established on a farm of about 650 acres. Now the university is located on 2,000 acres in Ames, Iowa, is made of eight colleges and two schools granting undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral programs, and has been ranked highly by Forbes, U.S. News and World Report, and Washington Mo nthly, to name a few.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Sciences in Liberal Arts Overview

Iowa State University offers an online B.A. or B.S. in Liberal Arts through three Iowa regent universities — Iowa State, the University of Iowa, and the University of Northern Iowa — aimed at students with prior academic experience and face significant hurdles in completing a traditional degree. A degree completion program, Iowa State’s B.L.S. curriculum permits students to take coursework in three speciality areas of their choosing. The degree was initially created so that students from Iowa’s community colleges who had earned associate’s degrees would be able to streamline into a university program, though students of all regions and academic backgrounds are accepted upon meeting the appropriate admissions requirements. Students may take courses at any of the three aforementioned campuses or take coursework online, and must have completed at least sixty transferable credits before applying.

Accreditation

Iowa State University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 71%
Tuition: $14,196*

*This is a degree completion program

#34. University of Illinois Springfield

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Originally known as Sangamon State University, the University of Illinois at Springfield was founded in 1969 and offered courses only for those students in the last two years of their undergraduate program or in graduate school. In 2001 the university began admitting freshmen as part of a pioneering honors program, and then in 2006 freshmen were fully accepted under the general education curriculum. The newest campus in the University of Illinois system, UIS is part of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges, and the American Council of Education.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

The University of Illinois at Springfield offers an online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies for students who have many academic interests and want to explore these avenues while charting a practical path to degree completion. The Liberal Studies degree is arranged around seven subject categories; these include Identity, Work, Nature, Institutions, Language, Heritage, and Art. Students must choose at least one course from these categories, and then may go on to personalize their degree within the curriculum’s boundaries and with the assistance of a faculty advisor. Some of the eclectic courses offered by UIS include Baseball: An Interdisciplinary Approach, The Beatles: Popular Music and Society, Expatriate Paris, International Women Writers, Individualism and Self-Reliance in America, Memoirs Across Cultures, and more. A degree completion program, prospective students must have completed at least thirty previous core curriculum credits, either from the University of Illinois at Springfield or another regionally accredited institution.

Accreditation

The University of Illinois at Springfield is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 49%
Tuition: $18,270*

*This is a degree completion program

#35. Antioch University

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Founded in 1852 as a nonprofit school, Antioch University was created to fulfill educator Horace Mann’s dream of a coeducational, nonsectarian, classical institution that proportionately emphasizes modern literature, history, and science. Antioch encourages students to be self-motivated, to curate their studies according to their unique ambitions, and to academically pursue political, social, intellectual, and artistic issues that reflect personal interests.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

Antioch University offers an individualized undergraduate degree in Liberal Studies, wherein students may choose from online courses in Conflict Resolution and Engagement, Creative Writing and Literature, Data Analytics, Healthcare Administration, Human Services Administration, Humanities, and Management. The B.A. in Liberal Studies is a degree completion program, and previous transfer credits from a variety of disciplines are accepted. In addition to previous college credits, students will complete 21 hours comprising the university’s interdisciplinary core, and 33 credits specific to the major.

Accreditation

Antioch University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 63%
Tuition: $18,900*

*This is a degree completion program

#36. University of South Dakota

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Founded in 1862 by the Dakota Territory Legislature, the University of South Dakota is located on 274 acres in Vermillion, near the Missouri River. The campus enrolls over 10,000 students and houses South Dakota’s only accredited business school, medical school, and law school, as well as the National Music Museum, a collection of over 15,000 instruments of western and non-western origin. USD is renowned for its notable alumni in the fields of journalism and politics, and has produced nine Rhodes Scholars; one of whom, Ernest Lawrence, received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1939.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies Overview

The University of South Dakota’s online B.G.S. degree is equivalent to its on-campus counterpart, and as a degree completion program, requires a minimum of sixty credits before applying. A transfer-friendly school, USD only requires that a minimum of thirty hours be earned from their B.G.S. degree before graduation requirements are met. Students are required to choose an emphasis area from available concentrations, and would be wise to incorporate as many transfer credits as possible into their chosen “theme.” Concentration areas include Allied Health, Business, Education, Fine Arts, Humanities, Social Science, Technology, Wellness, and Science/ Engineering/ and Mathematics. The degree program concludes with a capstone course.

Accreditation

The University of South Dakota is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 45%
Tuition: $20,001*

*This is a degree completion program

#37. California State University, Long Beach

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Part of the 23-school California State University system, California State University, Long Beach ranks highly in racial diversity and is considered one of the nation’s “Best Value Colleges” by the Princeton Review. Founded in 1949 by former California Governor Earl Warren, CSULB initially served the quickly growing post-World War II population population in Orange County and surroundings areas, and has evolved into one of California’s largest institutions of higher education. The university enrolls nearly 40,000 students, and has been recognized by Payscale, Money Magazine, The Daily Beast, Forbes, Washington Monthly, and U.S. News & World Report.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts Overview

Created to serve working professionals and adults with families, California State University, Long Beach’s Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts is a two-year degree completion program emphasizing critical thinking, language and literature, scientific reasoning and analysis, philosophy, and more. The three areas of concentration include I: Oral and written communication, II: Global citizenship and cross-disciplinary knowledge, and III: Cultures, values, and beliefs. Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 throughout the entirety of the program, and upon graduation, if desired, will be able to walk in the CSULB ceremony. Both traditional and online students are guaranteed semesterly enrollment in the classes they need to keep their degree plan on schedule.

Accreditation

California State University, Long Beach is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 67%
Tuition: $20,448*

*This is a degree completion program

#38. Montana State University

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A public university located in Bozeman, Montana on over a thousand acres, Montana State University is the flagship campus of the Montana State University system. The institution was founded in 1893 shortly after the admittance of Montana into the Union. MSU received university status in 1965, and now enrolls over 15,000 students. Famous alumni include U.S. Representative Steve Daines, Montana Governors John W. Bonner and Brian Schweitzer, Montana Senator Zales Ecton, director and screenwriter John Dahl, poet and activist Wally McRae, Olympians Kari Swenson and Lance Deal, and NFL athletes Dane Fletcher, Sam McCullum, Mike McLeod, Larry Rubens, Jan Stenerud, and Ken Amato.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

Montana State University offers an online degree completion B.A. in Liberal Studies for students who have completed at least two years of previous college credits. This degree program is considered a “Quaternity” program, meaning that the curriculum emphasizes four interconnected disciplines: the arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural science. Students will take courses from all four areas of study, as well as choose a foreign language. Before graduation, students must successfully complete a four-credit senior research project, an intensive writing assignment that is intended to function as the cohesive finale of years of cross-disciplinary study. Full-time students will finish the program in as little as two years, whereas part-time students will finish in four years or more.

Accreditation

Montana State University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 50%
Tuition: $21,588*

*This is a degree completion program

#39. University of Kansas

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The University of Kansas is a large public research university located on over a thousand acres in Lawrence, with branch campuses in Wichita, Overland Park, Kansas City and Salina. Established in 1863 as the state university of Lawrence, the school’s founding site on top of Mount Oread was donated by former Kansas Governor Charles L. Robinson and his wife Sara. KU currently enrolls over 28,000 students and has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report, Washington Monthly, Forbes, Academic Ranking of World Universities, and QS World University rankings.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies in Liberal Arts and Sciences Overview

The University of Kansas offers an online B.G.S. of Liberal Arts and Sciences intended for students with a minimum of sixty transfer credits. Four components make up the Liberal Arts and Sciences degree; these include the KU Core, World Culture or Language, Natural Science and Mathematics, and Breadth in Liberal Arts and Sciences. The curriculum emphasizes critical thinking, quantitative literacy, social responsibility, creativity, and ethics. 120 credits are required for graduation — thirty of which must be upper-level courses earned at the University of Kansas — and a 2.00 minimum GPA must be upheld for the entirety of the coursework.

Accreditation

The University of Kansas is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 60%
Tuition: $22,620*

*This is a degree completion program

#40. Bowling Green State University

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A public university in Bowling Green, Ohio, Bowling Green State University was founded in 1910 as a teacher training school, a result of the Lowry Normal School Bill approved by the Ohio state legislature. The institution is now a comprehensive high research university, with accolades from Washington Monthly, Forbes, and U.S. News & World Report. BGSU claims both the nation’s first doctoral photochemical science program and the first doctoral program in applied philosophy.

Online Bachelor’s of Interdisciplinary Studies Overview

Bowling Green State University’s Bachelor’s of Liberal Studies is a degree completion program appropriate for adult learners who have completed a minimum of sixty prior college credits. The online program is convenient and flexible and allows students to interact with other students and faculty through blogs and discussion boards. Upon gaining admission, students will be matched with a college academic advisor who can help them chart their course of study, including choosing 27 units of upper-level courses from available specialization areas. Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 throughout the entirety of the program.

Accreditation

Bowling Green State University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 58%
Tuition: $22,740*

*This is a degree completion program

#41. John Brown University

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Located on 200 acres in the small town of Siloam Springs, Arkansas, John Brown University is a private Christian liberal arts college with an enrollment of over 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The school was founded in 1919 by itinerant Methodist evangelist John E. Brown, and originally offered free tuition to those students who could contribute vocationally, often through carpentry work. Over the years, John Brown University has produced such notable alumni as founder of Lakewood Church John Osteen, members of the House of Representatives Rodney Anderson, Rebecca Petty, and Carolyn Pollan, and former MLB pitcher Jim Winn.

Online Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Studies Overview

John Brown University offers a degree completion distance program in Liberal Arts; students who graduate with a Bachelor’s of Science in Liberal Arts will have completed a total of 124 hours, including 39 credits specific to the online degree. Mandatory courses include Masterpieces of Literature, Evangelical Theology, 20th Century World History, Introduction to Philosophy, and more. Students will also choose from a number of electives in Communications and Government. Courses are offered in compressed eight-week increments, and two of these terms are available every semester. Most students enroll full-time and finish within two years. Graduates of JBU’s interdisciplinary Liberal Arts program often go on to study at a master’s or doctorate level, or advance in their present careers. A minimum of 45 transfer credits must be completed before applying, with a cumulative GPA of 2.0.

Accreditation

John Brown University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 61%
Tuition: $25,200*

*This is a degree completion program

#42. Boston University

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Founded in 1839 as a biblical institute affiliated with the United Methodist Church, Boston University is a currently a nonsectarian private research university with claims to nine Academy Award winners, seven Nobel Laureates, and twenty-three Pulitzer Prize winners among its alumni. The schools enrolls almost 35,000 students on 135 acres along the Charles River, and its main campus extends from Kenmore Square to the border of Allston, a neighborhood in west Boston. A traditionally progressive university, BU became the first American university to award a woman with a Ph.D.; in 1877 Helen Magill White graduated with a doctorate in classics with a thesis entitled “The Greek Drama.” Boston University also graduated the first black psychiatrist in the nation, Solomon Carter Fuller, the first woman to receive a degree in theology in the nation, Anna Oliver, the first woman admitted to the bar in Massachusetts, Lelia Robinson Sawtelle.

Online Bachelor’s of Liberal Studies in Interdisciplinary Studies Overview

The Metropolitan College at Boston University offers a broad online degree completion program for students who have previously earned 52-64 college credits. Boston University’s undergraduate degree in Interdisciplinary Studies emphasizes the social sciences, the natural sciences, and the humanities, with additional though lesser focus on mathematics and computer science. The curriculum consists of sixteen unique and creative courses; these include Exploring Philosophy Through Film, Explorations in the Essay, The Meaning of America, American Traditional Music, The Moral Self, Botany Without Borders, The Physics of Motion, and many, many more. After completion of the aforementioned coursework, students will be capable of pursuing higher-level studies or finding employment in a variety of career fields.

Accreditation

Boston University is regionally accredited by the New England Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 85%
Tuition: $27,840*

*This is a degree completion program

#43. Concordia University Irvine

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Concordia University Irvine was founded in 1976 as Christ College, a Lutheran College serving the Pacific Southwest. One of ten universities and colleges affiliated with the Concordia University System, Concordia University Irvine is located on seventy acres in California, fifty miles south of Los Angeles, and enrolls approximately 4,000 students. The school has been recognized by Money Magazine, U.S. News and World Report, and the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts Overview

A broad-based distance program focused on developing writing and speaking skills and critical thinking and analysis, Concordia University Irvine’s Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Arts emphasizes the attainment of meaningful work from the Christian perspective. All classes are offered completely online in scheduled real-time sessions to ensure that students and lecturers have regular opportunities to not only get to know one another but to openly discuss various aspects of the multidisciplinary program. Although there is virtually no limit to what a graduate can do upon leaving Concordia’s B.A. in Liberal Arts, many alumni have chosen to pursue teaching credential programs after graduation. Students must have a minimum of 45 transferable college credits before applying.

Accreditation

Concordia University Irvine is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 56%
Tuition: $31,200*

*This is a degree completion program

#44. Northern Arizona University

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Initially founded in 1899 as the Northern Arizona Normal School, Northern Arizona University is located on 740 acres in Flagstaff, encircled by the largest ponderosa pine forest in the nation. NAU operates 36 satellite campuses throughout Arizona, and on the whole, enrolls almost 30,000 undergraduates and graduates. Through the school’s unique Pledge Program, incoming freshmen are guaranteed four years of fixed tuition rates.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts and Science in Liberal Arts Overview

Northern Arizona University offers an online, self-paced Bachelor’s of Arts or Science in Liberal Arts through its competency-based Personalized Learning program. NAU’s Competency-Based Education programs differ from traditional distance education degrees in that they offer considerable flexibility and and autonomy for self-motivated, adult students wanting to pursue personalized higher education. A degree completion program, NAU’s B.A. or B.S. in Liberal Arts allows students to transfer a maximum of 64 appropriate units from an accredited institution, with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0. 120 semester credits are required for graduation. Examples of major-specific coursework include Interdisciplinary Cultural Aesthetics, Capstone in 1960’s American Cinema, Writing Across the Disciplines, Human Nature and Humanistic Values, The Sociological Aspects of Education, and more. Alumni have gone on to work in Business Administration, Management, Sales and Marketing, among an extensive array of professional fields.

Accreditation

Northern Arizona University is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 52%
Tuition: $34,560*

*This is a degree completion program

#45. University of South Carolina

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The University of South Carolina was founded in Columbia in 1801, and is the flagship school of the University of South Carolina system. Approximately 50,000 students are enrolled at USC; 34,000 are enrolled on the main campus, with the remaining 16,000 taking distance courses from various locales. Ranked as an “up-and-coming” university by U.S. News & World Report, the institution is renowned nationwide for its various International Business degrees.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

The University of South Carolina’s Palmetto College offers an online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies. A degree completion program, this undergraduate degree requires 120 completed credits to be eligible for graduation, and sixty of these credits must be completed prior to applying. Students will take 27 credits of coursework in their major of choice, and will finish an additional twelve credits in a concentration area that is separate from their major. They may choose to focus on either Arts and Humanities, or the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Most students complete the program within two years or less.

Accreditation

The University of South Carolina is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 72%
Tuition: $39,576*

*This is a degree completion program

#46. The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

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Part of the University of North Carolina system, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro is home to the Weatherspoon Art Museum, one of the most extensive collections of modern American art in the United States. Originally a women’s institution, the school was established in 1891 by Charles Duncan McIver — renowned campaigner for women’s rights and education. Known as The Women’s College of the University of North Carolina, by 1949, the university was largest of its kind in the nation. Men gained admittance in 1963 when the school received its current name. UNC Greensboro has been recognized by Forbes, The Princeton Review, the U.S. News & World Report, and Kiplinger’s for its academic excellence and corresponding value.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

An online degree completion program for working adults with a minimum of 60 transferable credits, UNC Greensboro’s B.A. in Liberal Studies is an interdisciplinary major emphasizing the humanities and social sciences. All courses are offered online and are fully asynchronous, meaning that they are available at all times of the day or night with the purpose of fitting conveniently into an adult’s busy schedule. Students may choose to concentrate in Humanities, Professional Studies, or Social Sciences, and will complete at least 60 major-specific credits toward a 120-credit degree. Examples of such riveting and varied coursework includes Contemporary Issues in the Social Sciences, Visions of the Creation, Inequality in a Changing World, Reading the Human Experience, Revolutionary Lives, Contemporary Short Stories, The Art of Life, Painting on the Page, Representing Women, American Dreams, Mystics in America, Divided We Stand, The Sixties, Religious Resistance to Political Power, American Motherhood, and many, many more.

Accreditation

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 56%
Tuition: $39,827*

*This is a degree completion program

#47. California State University, Chico

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California State University, Chico, was founded in 1887 as a branch of the California State Normal School, and is located ninety miles north of Sacramento. The second-oldest campus in the California State University system, the university enrolls almost 20,000 students. Chico State’s campus is rurally located on over 100 acres, and a thousand acre farm calls back to the institution’s agricultural history.

Online Bachelor’s of Arts in Liberal Studies Overview

An online degree completion program, Chico State’s B.A. in Liberal Studies was designed for prospective students with previous academic experience and a desire to teach elementary school. After graduation, before being eligible to teach K-8 professionally, graduates will have to enter a credential program in their state of residency. Students will study different academic perspectives in teaching, educational psychology, health education, social science, and mathematics. Courses include Reading Literature for Future Teachers, Development of Children’s Art, Foundations of Childhood Physical Education, American Indian Environmental Philosophy, Access and Equity in Education, and many more.

Accreditation

California State University, Chico is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 59%
Tuition: $39,960*

*This is a degree completion program

#48. Texas Woman’s University

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A co-ed university located in Denton, Texas, just over thirty miles north of Dallas, Texas Woman’s University is was founded in 1901 as an industrial college for women. Though the school began accepting men in a limited way in the early 1970s, and then offered full enrollment to all qualified men by 1994, TWU is still largely a women’s school, with female students making up more than 90% of the population. The university is highly-rated by Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, and Washington Monthly.

Online Bachelor’s of General Studies Overview

Texas Woman’s University offers an online Bachelor’s of General Studies is an online multidisciplinary degree emphasizing management, social sciences, health sciences, humanities, and the arts. Before applying, prospective students must have completed the first two years of a core curriculum from an accredited institution of higher education. Texas Woman’s University will accept appropriate transfer credits from qualifying students no matter how long ago they were acquired. Concentration areas that are offered fully online include Business, Computer Science, Criminal Justice, English, Government, Health Studies, Sociology, and Multicultural Women’s and Gender Studies. Recent alumni of TWU’s B.G.S. program are currently working as administrative assistants, managers, analysts, directors, customer care representatives, chief operating officers, and facilitators.

Accreditation

Texas Woman’s University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 47%
Tuition: $40,440*

*This is a degree completion program

#49. Drexel University

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Originally founded as the Drexel Institute of Art , Science, and Industry in 1891, Drexel University and has three campuses in Philadelphia and an additional campus in Sacramento, California. The school achieved university status in 1970, and currently enrolls over 26,000 students. Drexel has been offering online courses since 1996 and is acknowledged as one of the nation’s primary forerunners in distance education.

Online Bachelor’s of Science in General Studies Overview

An individualized studies program, Drexel University’s Bachelor’s of Science in General Studies is offered fully online and was created for prospective students wishing to study the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences. The program is very friendly to transfer students and is only available on a part-time basis. Requisite courses include Lifelong Learning Theory and Practice, Composition and Rhetoric, Techniques of Speaking, Mathematical Analysis, Introduction to Computing, and more. Students will also choose from an array of electives in the natural sciences, and from available courses in anthropology, psychology, sociology, political science, history, philosophy, religion, fine arts, and literature. Drexel’s B.S. in General Studies is a degree completion program, and all prior and current work must be completed with a GPA of 2.5.

Accreditation

Drexel University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 66%
Tuition: $43,110*

*This is a degree completion program

#50. University of Missouri-Kansas City

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A public research university, the University of Missouri-Kansas City was imagined in the 1920s by a Methodist movement looking to simultaneously honor Abraham Lincoln and Robert E. Lee. Officially established in 1933, UMKC is part of the University of Missouri system and currently enrolls over 15,000 students on 157 acres in Kansas City’s Rockhill neighborhood. The school has been favorable recognized by the Princeton Review, Forbes, and U.S. News & World Report, and is well-known for its literary magazine “New Letters” as well as its nationally syndicated public radio station “New Letters on the Air,” part of KCUR, the university’s radio station and an affiliate of NPR.

Online Bachelor of Liberal Arts Overview

The University of Missouri-Kansas City offers an online B.L.S., an alternative to the B.A./B.S. degree model and designed for individuals with professional aspirations not served by traditional programs. Many Liberal Arts students have gone into the six-year medical program at UMKC or into the Early Entry program at the school of law. The B.L.A. is separated into three division — humanities, natural sciences and math, and social sciences. Students must take a minimum of eighteen hours of coursework from each of the three divisions, as well as a number of free electives that will be used toward a minor. A degree completion program, online students must have at least 65 hours of transferable credit before applying.

Accreditation

The University of Missouri-Kansas City is regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

6 Year Graduation Rate: 51%
Tuition: $49,936*

*This is a degree completion program