It’s not hard to find lots of schools offering e-learning by simply searching around Google or Yahoo. But figuring out what the total cost a bachelor’s, associates or master’s degree via online internet college credit classes isn’t quite as easy.
There’s a lot of competition among online schools today, and the people who build their websites are sophisticated marketers. They’re very much aware that they have a better chance of getting you to buy into one of their programs if they don’t talk too much about the true price of online college credits – at least not right on their home pages.
That doesn’t mean that online learning isn’t a good deal. Simply avoiding the costs of living on campus and traveling to and from school can save you a bundle. But you need to be aware that an online degree isn’t cheap.
Most schools, whether they’re state institutions, private colleges or pure online schools that operate on a for-profit basis, require somewhere between 120 and 128 credits for any type of undergraduate degree. A typical fee for an undergraduate credit (for a bachelor’s degree, for instance) is somewhere around $175. At that rate, the 120 credits required for you degree would cost a total of $21,000, a considerable sum, but a lot less than some people are paying today for a college degree. Some schools, however, require more credits for a degree and some charge up to $500 per credit.
Average costs run as follows, at brick and mortar and online schools (residence costs would be additional if you attended a campus-based program):
- 4-year non-profit bachelor’s degree: $21,000
- 4 year public college bachelor’s degree: $6,000
- Online bachelor’s degree: $15,000
- Online associate’s degree: $9,000
As you can see, the cost of online internet college credit classes is a lot less at public colleges than at private schools. Most state universities don’t charge more for out-of-state students, but there’s no universal rule. In some cases you’ll pay more – up to twice as much – if you are not a resident of the state where the school is located. One piece of good news: you may be able to deduct some of your tuition fees on your tax return.