The 11 best online programs, according to US News

Ohio State University offers the best online undergraduate degree in the United States, according to a recent ranking by U.S. News & World Report.

To create the ranking, U.S. News compared 1,490 online bachelor's degree programs at public, private, and for-profit institutions. U.S. News considered four categories of metrics: student engagement (35%); student services and technology (25%), faculty credentials and training (20%), and peer reputation (20%).

U.S. News identified the best online bachelor's programs this year as:

1. Ohio State University–Columbus

2. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

3. Temple University

4. Arizona State University

5. Utah State University

6. Oregon State University

7. (tie) Pennsylvania State University–World Campus

7. (tie) University of North Carolina Wilmington

9. (tie) Colorado State University–Global Campus

9. (tie) University of Oklahoma

9. (tie) West Texas A&M University

Online learning is growing in popularity, seeing notable growth in recent years among students under 25 years old and among students who are also taking in-person classes. Writing for U.S. News, Jordan Friedman reports that more than 6 million students enrolled in an online course in fall 2015.

Why are they so popular? Both types of students say they're attracted to the flexibility of online courses, which can make it easier for them them to work, volunteer, or participate in student activities (Friedman, U.S. News & World Report, 1/9).

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