Top 15 Nonprofit Online Colleges in Alabama

All types of students are now considering online education for their first steps into higher education. For students who are considering an online education from an Alabama college or university, this list contains some of our top picks of Alabama’s best online and non-profit institutions as ranked by their average tuition cost and program availability.

#1. University of West Alabama

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Established in 1835, the University of West Alabama is a public university. Located in Livingston, Alabama, the University of West Alabama’s motto is “Do Something That Matters”. Originally known as the Livingston Female Academy, the University of West Alabama was a female prep school that was closely associated with the Presbyterian church. Over the course of the next forty years, the school continued to operate as a female academy until the school shifted its focus towards teacher training in 1878. Renamed to the Livingston Normal College, the school shifted focus towards providing students with the opportunity to get training in education that would prepare them to work as teachers throughout the state. In 1929, the State of Alabama took over control of the school and renamed it to Livingston State Teachers College. It was at this point that the school began to offer students Bachelor’s degrees in education. Soon to follow were all types of liberal arts degree programs. The school was renamed to Livingston State College in 1957 and then to Livingston University in 1967. It wasn’t until 1995 that the school adopted the name the University of West Alabama. Today, the school enrolls over 5,000 students.

Home of the Tigers, the University of West Alabama has amassed a large catalog of academic programs from which students can choose to enroll in. Currently, students at the University of West Alabama can pick from over sixty different undergraduate degree programs and ten different graduate degrees. A selection of these programs is also offered to students entirely online helping the University of West Alabama to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of West Alabama is a public institution.

Accreditation: University of West Alabama is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $325/credit

Click here for a list of University of West Alabama‘s online programs.

#2. Auburn University at Montgomery

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Controlled by the Auburn University Board of Trustees, Auburn University at Montgomery is a public university located in Montgomery, Alabama. Established in 1967, Auburn University at Montgomery was created in order to alleviate some of the student population growth pressure on Auburn University. Hoping to attract students who were interested in enrolling at Auburn University who lived near Montgomery, Auburn University at Montogomery was also personally asked by the Montgomery Chamber of Commerce to establish a school within the city. Hoping to breathe more life into the city of Montgomery, the Chamber of Commerce believed that a well-respected university would attract people into the town. This move turned out to be quite fruitful as Auburn University at Montgomery opened in 1969 and began to attract students from across the state. Over the coming decades, Auburn University at Montgomery slowly began to add additional academic programs to its academic offerings. Growing steadily over the past half-century, Auburn University-Montgomery has become one of the more well-respected schools in the state. Today, Auburn University-Montgomery enrolls almost 5,000 students.

Students at Auburn University at Montgomery are able to choose from a large selection of academic programs offered at the school. At this time, Auburn University at Montgomery offers students over ninety different programs across their undergraduate and graduate degree offerings. Many of these programs are also online which has contributed to Auburn University at Montgomery’s ranking among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Auburn UUniversityat Montgomery is a public institution.

Accreditation: Auburn University at Montgomery is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $333/credit

Click here for a list of Auburn University at Montgomery‘s online programs.

#3. Troy University

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Established in 1887, Troy University is a public university located in Troy, Alabama. Originally known as the Troy State Normal School, Troy University was founded in order to provide people with the training to become teachers in the state of Alabama. After operating in this capacity for decades, the school began to offer students degrees in education. Adding Bachelor’s in Education degrees to the curriculum opened the door for the addition of other liberal arts programs into the curriculum. Eventually, it was decided that the school was to be renamed to Troy State College in order to better reflect the type of degrees being offered at the school. Soon after this name change, Troy State College began offering its students the opportunity to enroll in Master’s degree programs. In 1967, the school was renamed to Troy State University and was later simplified to Troy University in 2005. Currently, Troy University’s motto is “Educate the mind to think, the heart to feel, and the body to act,” and is home to a student body of approximately 18,000 students.

Home of the Trojans, Troy University currently offers students a large selection of academic programs to choose from. At this time, students can enroll in almost fifty different Bachelor’s degrees, over twenty Master’s degrees, and two different doctoral programs. Of these programs, many of them are also offered to students entirely online. Because of this dedication to online learning, Troy University has ranked among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Troy University is a public institution.

Accreditation: Troy University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $338/credit

Click here for a list of Troy University‘s online programs.

#4. Jacksonville State University

Located in Jacksonville, Alabama, Jacksonville State University is a public university. With the motto “The friendliest campus in the South,” Jacksonville State University was established in 1883. Originally known as the Jacksonville State Normal School, Jacksonville State University was established in order to provide students with the opportunity to gain the proper education and training needed to work as a teacher within the state of Alabama. The school continued to operate in this capacity for the next fifty years at which point the school started to offer students Bachelor’s degrees in education. This led to the school being renamed to Jacksonville State Teachers College. After adding these Bachelor’s degrees in education, Jacksonville State Teachers College began to add additional liberal arts degrees into the curriculum. Through the addition of these programs into the curriculum, Jacksonville State Teachers College was renamed to Jacksonville State College to reflect the addition of these programs. Finally, the school was officially named Jacksonville State University in 1966. Today, Jacksonville State University enrolls a student body of approximately 8,500 students.

For students who choose to enroll in Jacksonville State University, they will be greeted with the opportunity to select from a large catalog of academic programs. Currently, students can choose from hundreds of different programs made available across Jacksonville State University’s undergraduate and graduate degree options. A large amount of these programs are also made available to students entirely online earning Jacksonville State University a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Jacksonville State University is a public institution.

Accreditation: Jacksonville State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $359/credit

Click here for a list of Jacksonville State University‘s online programs.

#5. University of Alabama

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Established in 1820, the University of Alabama is a public research university and the flagship of the University of Alabama System. One of the largest and oldest universities in the state of Alabama, plans for the University of Alabama predate Alabama’s statehood. Calling for a seminary of learning that would serve the Alabama Territory, the United States Congress set into motion the events needed to officially establish what was then The University of the State of Alabama. The Board of Trustees who were in charge of founding the school chose a site just outside of the city of Tuscaloosa. At the time, Tuscaloosa was the capital of Alabama so it seemed fitting to establish the school’s flagship university there. Designs for the University of Alabama were modeled after plans created by Thomas Jefferson for the University of Virginia. The school was to be centered around the library, literally and symbolically placing the school’s wealth of knowledge at the center of the university. Over the years, the University of Alabama helped to shape the systems of higher education in the state of Alabama. Today, the University of Alabama now is home to a student body of almost 40,000 students.

Home of the Crimson Tide, the University of Alabama offers a wide array of academic programs to students enrolled in the school. Currently, students at the University of Alabama can choose to enroll in just under 200 different degree options across the schools undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degree programs. Many of these programs are also offered to students online. By focusing on online education, the University of Alabama has earned a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of Alabama is a public institution.

Accreditation: University of Alabama is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $364/credit

Click here for a list of University of Alabama‘s online programs.

#6. University of Alabama in Huntsville

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One of the three members of the University of Alabama System, the University of Alabama in Huntsville is a public research university. Established in 1950, the University of Alabama in Huntsville is located in Huntsville, Alabama. In January of 1950, an extension campus for the University of Alabama was established in the city of Huntsville known as the University of Alabama Huntsville Center. Teaching classes out of the West Huntsville High School, the University of Alabama Huntsville Center proved itself to be quite popular among the prospective students of Huntsville. But it wasn’t until Wernher von Braun, a German rocket scientist was brought to the United States to begin work on Operation Paperclip that things truly started to take shape. Tasked with creating a research institute to help teach students advanced engineering and science that would help feed people into NASA, Braun began shaping the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Offering its first undergraduate degrees in 1968, the University of Alabama in Huntsville quickly began to morph into the premier engineering and research university that it is today. At this time, the University of Alabama in Huntsville is home to a student body of approximately 9,100 students.

Students at the University of Alabama in Huntsville are afforded the opportunity to choose from a large selection of academic programs made available at the school. Currently, the University of Alabama in Huntsville offers almost forty-five Bachelor’s degree programs, thirty Master’s degree programs, and fifteen doctoral programs. Many of these programs are also given to students entirely online. University of Alabama in Huntsville’s commitment to online education has helped earn the school a place among our top online universities and colleges in the state of Alabama. University of Alabama in Huntsville is a public institution.

Accreditation: University of Alabama in Huntsville is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $388/credit

Click here for a list of University of Alabama in Huntsville‘s online programs.

#7. Auburn University

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Located in Auburn, Alabama, Auburn University is a public research university. Established with the motto “For The Advancement of Science and Arts”, Auburn University was originally founded in 1856. Known as the East Alabama Male College, Auburn University originally operated in close-affiliation with the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Operating in this capacity for almost twenty years, the East Alabama Male College soon came under control by the state of Alabama. Once the state took control of the school, the school was remade into a land-grant university and was named the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama. Still offering limited educational opportunities, the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama began to offer four-year degree programs at the turn of the turn of the nineteenth century. The first school of its kind to offer four-year degrees in Alabama, the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama was renamed to the Alabama Polytechnic Institute. However, in 1960, the school was renamed once again to Auburn University to acknowledge the university-style of degree programs made available to students. Today, Auburn University boasts a student body of approximately 30,000 students.

Home of the Tigers, Auburn University offers students the opportunity to choose from a large catalog of academic programs made available at the school. Currently, Auburn University is offering 140 different undergraduate programs as well as a large selection of graduate programs. Many of these programs are also offered to students entirely online helping Auburn University to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Auburn University is a public institution.

Accreditation: Auburn University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $401/credit

Click here for a list of Auburn University‘s online programs.

#8. Athens State University

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Founded in 1822, Athens State University is a public university located in Athens, Alabama. Originally known as the Athens Female Academy, the school was established in order to provide young women within the Athens area the opportunity to receive a higher education. Operating in this capacity for the next twenty years, Athens Female Academy educated many female students who went on to live more fulfilling lives due to their education. In 1842, control of the Athens Female Academy was taken over by the Methodist Church. This change of ownership resulted in the name of the school being changed to the Athens Female Institute. The curriculum at the school was expanded to offer courses that were similar to that of a college. This expansion of academic degree programs continued until 1889 at which point the school was renamed once again to Athens Female College. Offering students full college-level degree programs, Athens Female College experienced a surge in enrollment. This enrollment surge led to the school becoming coeducational in 1931 and being renamed to Athens College. In 1974, Athens College became controlled by the state of Alabama and was renamed to Athens State College and then Athens Stae University in 1998. Today, Athens State University enrolls a student body of around 3,500 students.

Students at Athens State University are able to choose from a wide selection of academic programs offered at the school. At this time, Athens State University is offering students over thirty different undergraduate degrees as well as almost a dozen graduate degree programs. A large quantity of these programs is also made available to students entirely online. By offering these programs online, Athens State University has ranked among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Athens State University is a public institution.

Accreditation: Athens State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $404/credit

Click here for a list of Athens State University‘s online programs.

#9. University of Alabama at Birmingham

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A public research university, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is a member of the University of Alabama system. Founded in 1969, the University of Alabama at Birmingham began as an extension campus for the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. To account for the rapid growth of the Birmingham-area, city officials and planners began calling for the establishment of a public university during the 1930s. It was decided that the Birmingham Extension Center would be established which would give students access to programs being offered at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. Over the next thirty years, the Birmingham Extension Center would prove to be quite popular resulting in the addition of new programs and facilities during this time. Around the 1960s, it had become quite clear to everyone involved that the Birmingham Extension Center had grown beyond the scope of what was originally planned. A university in its own right, it was decided that the Birmingham Extension Center would be merged with the School of Medicine to create a new university known as the University of Alabama in Birmingham. One of the three founding members of the University of Alabama system, the University of Alabama in Birmingham was renamed in 1984 to the University of Alabama at Birmingham. At this time, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is home to a student body of almost 22,000 students.

Students at the University of Alabama at Birmingham can choose from many different academic programs offered at the school. At this time, over 140 different programs of study are offered to students across the school’s Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral degree programs. A large quantity of these programs are also made available to students entirely online, helping the University of Alabama at Birmingham to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of Alabama at Birmingham is a public university.

Accreditation: University of Alabama at Birmingham is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $407/credit

Click here for a list of University of Alabama at Birmingham‘s online programs.

#10. University of Mobile

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Established in 1961, the University of Mobile is a private Baptist university. With the motto “The Fear of the Lord is the Beginning of Wisdom”, the University of Mobile was originally established as the Mobile College. During the early 1950s, the Mobile Baptist Association began studying how hard it would be for them to establish a small Baptist-affiliated college in the Mobile-area. After years of study and deliberation, the Alabama Baptist State Convention agreed to help the Mobile Baptist Association with the founding of the school as long as they could raise $1.5 million to help fund its creation. Given a two year deadline to meet this funding goal, the Mobile Baptist Association managed to amass more than $2 million in just one years time. With the money needed to found the school, construction began on Mobile College and the school opened its doors to students in 1963. A very small school at first, Mobile College steadily grew to enroll more students as time went on. Adding more and more academic programs to its roster, Mobile College soon had a curriculum that was more reflective of that of a university. In 1993, Mobile College was renamed to the University of Mobile. Today, the University of Mobile is home to a student body of almost 1,600 students.

The University of Mobile offers students a focused selection of academic programming to enroll in. At this time, students at the University of Mobile can choose from almost fifty different academic undergraduate programs as well as around two dozen graduate degrees. Nearly two dozen of these academic programs are also made available to students entirely online helping the University of Mobile to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of Mobile is a private institution.

Accreditation: University of Mobile is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $425/credit

Click here for a list of University of Mobile‘s online programs.

#11. Amridge University

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With the motto “Where Traditional and Online Education Merge,” Amridge University is a private university. Established in 1967, Amridge University is located in Montgomery, Alabama and is closely affiliated with the Churches of Christ.  With history dating prior to 1967, Amridge University’s earliest beginnings can be found in the Montgomery Bible School. Founded in 1942, the Montgomery Bible School offered students high school courses as well as a small selection of college classes. Over time, the Montgomery Bible School began to add more and more college courses to its curriculum. By 1953, the Montgomery Bible School was offering students Bachelor’s degree programs. The following year, the Montgomery Bible School was renamed to the Alabama Christian College. Discontinuing its upper-level programs in religious studies, the Alabama Christian College was soon accredited by the state of Alabama. In 1967, the Alabama Christian College began to offer its students the opportunity to enroll in graduate degree programs. Renamed to Southern Christian University in 1991, the school was renamed to Regions University in 2006 and then to Amridge University in 2008. Today, Amridge University has a student body of under 1,000 students.

Amridge University offers students a wide selection of academic programs. Currently, students at Amridge University can choose from a selection of dozens of undergraduate and graduate degree programs. A large amount of these degree programs are also made available to students entirely online. By focusing on online education, Amridge University has earned a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Amridge University is a private institution.

Accreditation: Amridge University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $430/credit

Click here for a list of Amridge University‘s online programs.

#12. University of South Alabama

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Located in Mobile, Alabama, the University of South Alabama is a public research university. Originally established in 1963, the University of South Alabama’s history begins with the creation of an extension campus. Hoping to provide the people of the growing city of Mobile with access to a public higher education, it was decided by the Alabama Legislature that an extension campus of the University of Alabama was to be established in the city of Mobile. This extension campus proved to be quite popular and attracted many students from across the city. As the extension campus continued to grow, it soon began to resemble a full-fledged university rather than a remote site for some distant university. In 1963, the Alabama Legislature made the decision to discontinue the extension center and reestablish it as its own university. Named the University of South Alabama, this new public research university was strategically located without another public university within a two-hundred-mile radius. Attracting students from across the area, the University of South Alabama grew to become one of the state’s most highly-regarded schools. Today, the University of South Alabama is home to almost 17,000 students.

Home of the Jaguars, the University of South Alabama has accrued a large number of academic programs for students to choose from. At this time, students at the University of South Alabama can choose to enroll in over 100 different academic programs made available across the schools undergraduate and graduate degree programs. A large quantity of these programs is also made available to students online helping the University of South Alabama to secure a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of South Alabama is a public institution.

Accreditation: University of South Alabama is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $433/credit

Click here for a list of University of South Alabama‘s online programs.

#13. University of North Alabama

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Alabama’s oldest public four-year university, the University of North Alabama was founded in 1830. Established with the motto “Truth and Light of the World,”, the University of North Alabama is located in Florence, Alabama. Originally opened as LaGrange College in 1830, the University of North Alabama was actually destroyed during the Civil War. Fortunately, plans to move the university to Florence, Alabama were already in motion and the school was relocated to the nearby city of Florence, Alabama. Upon its moving, LaGrange College was renamed to Florence Wesleyan University. Operated by the Methodist Church, control of Florence Wesleyan University was soon given to the state of Alabama in 1872. After coming under the control of the state of Alabama, Florence Wesleyan University was renamed to the State Normal School at Florence. The curriculum at the school was adapted in order to provide teacher training courses to students who wanted to become teachers. Operating as a normal school for fifty years, the State Normal School at Florence was renamed to Florence State Teachers College in 1929. Over the coming decades, the school would undergo several more name changed until being renamed to the University of North Alabam in 1974. Today, the University of North Alabama enrolls a student body of almost 7,500 students.

Currently, the University of North Alabama offers students the ability to select from a large number of academic programs offered at the school. Students at the University of North Alabama can choose from almost fifty undergraduate degree programs as well as twenty Master’s programs. The University of North Alabama makes many of these programs available to students entirely online helping the school to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. University of North Alabama is a public institution.

Accreditation: University of North Alabama is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $544/credit

Click here for a list of University of North Alabama‘s online programs.

#14. Judson College

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Now affiliated with the Alabama Baptist Convention, Judson College is a private Christian university. Located in Marion, Alabama, Judson College was originally established in 1838. A women’s university, Judson College was originally created in order to provide female students with the opportunity to gain a higher-education while also learning about the Bible and Christianity. Since its founding, Judson College slowly expanded its curriculum from that of a bible school. Always remaining a smaller college, Judson College focused closely on selecting the proper academic programs that would benefit the students who chose to enroll at the school. With the motto “Light and Truth,” Judson College has grown to become one of the most notable female institutions in the state. Since its founding, the school has now grown to become the fifth-oldest women’s college in all of the United States. While originally founded by the Siloam Baptist Church, Judson College gains most of its funding and support from the Alabama Baptist Convention. Today, Judson College has grown its student body to nearly 350 students.

Students at Judson College are able to choose from a focused collection of academic programs made available at the school. At this time, students at Judson College can choose from over twenty undergraduate degrees with an addition twenty-two minors. A selection of these programs is also made available to students entirely online. Because of this dedication to online learning, Judson College has ranked among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Judson College is a private institution.

Accreditation: Judson College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $585/credit

Click here for a list of Judson College‘s online programs.

#15. Faulkner University

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Established in 1942, Faulkner University is a private Christian university. Located in Montgomery, Alabama, Faulkner University’s motto is “For God and For You”. Originally established as the Montgomery Bible School, Faulkner University focused closely on providing students with an education in the Bible and Christianity. Initially offering few non-religious studies, these very courses proved to be quite popular and Montgomery Bible School began to expand its focus to include more courses like it. Over the course of the next decade, the Montgomery Bible School had added so many additional college courses that it was decided that the school would be renamed to Alabama Christian College. Now offering full college degree programs, Alabama Christian College experience a surge of growth. In 1965, the Alabama Christian College had grown too large for its intitial location and moved to its current location Montgomery. In 1985, Alabama Christian College was renamed to Faulkner University to honor Dr. James H. Faulkner. Dr. Faulkner was one of the school’s longest-running supporters and was also chairman of the school. Today, Faulkner University has grown to enroll a student body of just under 3,600 students.

Over the years, Faulkner Univerity has accumulated a large catalog of academic programs for students to enroll in. At this time, students at Faulkner University can choose to enroll in dozens of different academic programs including undergraduate and graduate degrees. Many of these programs are also made available to students entirely online helping Faulkner University to earn a place among our top online universities and colleges in Alabama. Faulkner University is a private institution.

Accreditation: Faulkner University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Tuition: $675/credit

Click here for a list of Faulkner University‘s online programs.