The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

TBS Staff Writers
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Updated March 11, 2024
Find the cheapest online bachelor's in history degree programs with our list of top-rated schools that offer affordable options.

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History majors study the causes of Rome’s fall and the reasons the American Revolution succeeded. They explore topics like the Civil War, the Renaissance, ancient Egypt, and the French Revolution. Many history programs offer popular concentrations in fields like military history, U.S. history, and public history. The exciting major prepares graduates for a variety of career paths.

Earning an online bachelor’s degree in history builds career-ready skills, such as analytical thinking, research, and writing. During a history program, students build evidence-based arguments using primary sources, practicing their persuasive writing and research skills. Many employers look for job candidates with critical thinking, communication, and creativity — abilities history majors strengthen during their degree.

With a history degree, graduates can pursue career paths in business, education, government, and the nonprofit sector. Training in public history prepares history majors for careers in museums, archives, and libraries, while many graduates work in education teaching U.S. history or world history at the high school level. An undergraduate degree in history also prepares students for graduate programs in law, history, or public administration.

This page introduces the top ranked online bachelor’s programs in history. The page also explores history degree salary information, in-demand concentrations, and how to choose the best online history program.

The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Program Ranking Guidelines:
We selected the online history programs based on the quality of the program, types of online classes offered, faculty, rankings, awards, and reputation, including the school’s reputation for effectively providing quality online degree programs.

Rankings Methodology

The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

#1 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Houston-Downtown

  • Location-markerHouston, TX
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,460
  • Out-of-state$15,408
  • Retention Rate73%
  • Acceptance Rate89%
  • Students Enrolled14,640
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment53%
  • AccreditationYes
#2 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Bellevue University

  • Location-markerBellevue, NE
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$7,176
  • Out-of-state$7,176
  • Retention Rate78%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled11,637
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment95%
  • AccreditationYes
#3 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Excelsior College

  • Location-markerAlbany, NY
  • 4 year
  • Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$0
  • Out-of-state$0
  • Retention Rate0%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled25,245
  • Institution TypePrivate
  • Percent Online Enrollment0%
  • AccreditationYes
#4 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Louisiana at Monroe

  • Location-markerMonroe, LA
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,788
  • Out-of-state$17,888
  • Retention Rate73%
  • Acceptance Rate80%
  • Students Enrolled8,673
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment43%
  • AccreditationYes
#5 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Thomas Edison State University

  • Location-markerTrenton, NJ
  • 4 year
  • Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$7,926
  • Out-of-state$9,856
  • Retention Rate0%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled10,227
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment100%
  • AccreditationYes
#6 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Houston-Victoria

  • Location-markerVictoria, TX
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$4,896
  • Out-of-state$15,024
  • Retention Rate61%
  • Acceptance Rate56%
  • Students Enrolled4,506
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment83%
  • AccreditationYes
#7 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Eastern New Mexico University-Main Campus

  • Location-markerPortales, NM
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$3,996
  • Out-of-state$5,994
  • Retention Rate63%
  • Acceptance Rate58%
  • Students Enrolled5,685
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment69%
  • AccreditationYes
#8 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Arizona State University-Skysong

  • Location-markerScottsdale, AZ
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$8,867
  • Out-of-state$19,282
  • Retention Rate74%
  • Acceptance Rate64%
  • Students Enrolled45,073
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment98%
  • AccreditationYes
#9 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Northwestern State University of Louisiana

  • Location-markerNatchitoches, LA
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,180
  • Out-of-state$15,968
  • Retention Rate70%
  • Acceptance Rate82%
  • Students Enrolled10,900
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment82%
  • AccreditationYes
#10 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Sam Houston State University

  • Location-markerHuntsville, TX
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,856
  • Out-of-state$15,984
  • Retention Rate75%
  • Acceptance Rate83%
  • Students Enrolled21,558
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment53%
  • AccreditationYes
#11 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Maine at Presque Isle

  • Location-markerPresque Isle, ME
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$7,170
  • Out-of-state$11,460
  • Retention Rate63%
  • Acceptance Rate99%
  • Students Enrolled1,445
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment41%
  • AccreditationYes
#12 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Arkansas Tech University

  • Location-markerRussellville, AR
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,568
  • Out-of-state$11,136
  • Retention Rate70%
  • Acceptance Rate95%
  • Students Enrolled11,829
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment50%
  • AccreditationYes
#13 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of North Dakota

  • Location-markerGrand Forks, ND
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$8,212
  • Out-of-state$14,371
  • Retention Rate78%
  • Acceptance Rate81%
  • Students Enrolled13,581
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment45%
  • AccreditationYes
#14 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Maryland Global Campus

  • Location-markerAdelphi, MD
  • 4 year
  • Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$7,200
  • Out-of-state$11,976
  • Retention Rate52%
  • Acceptance Rate0%
  • Students Enrolled58,281
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment90%
  • AccreditationYes
#15 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Arizona

  • Location-markerTucson, AZ
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$10,990
  • Out-of-state$33,273
  • Retention Rate83%
  • Acceptance Rate85%
  • Students Enrolled44,577
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment42%
  • AccreditationYes
#16 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Memphis

  • Location-markerMemphis, TN
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$8,208
  • Out-of-state$12,048
  • Retention Rate78%
  • Acceptance Rate85%
  • Students Enrolled21,685
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment44%
  • AccreditationYes
#17 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Nebraska at Kearney

  • Location-markerKearney, NE
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$6,090
  • Out-of-state$13,290
  • Retention Rate77%
  • Acceptance Rate85%
  • Students Enrolled6,279
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment65%
  • AccreditationYes
#18 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Central Florida

  • Location-markerOrlando, FL
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$4,478
  • Out-of-state$19,810
  • Retention Rate91%
  • Acceptance Rate44%
  • Students Enrolled69,402
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment59%
  • AccreditationYes
#19 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

  • Location-markerMilwaukee, WI
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$8,091
  • Out-of-state$19,661
  • Retention Rate76%
  • Acceptance Rate77%
  • Students Enrolled25,731
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment38%
  • AccreditationYes
#20 The Most Affordable Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Programs

Nevada State College

  • Location-markerHenderson, NV
  • 4 year
  • Campus + Online
Average Tuition
  • In-State$5,048
  • Out-of-state$17,547
  • Retention Rate78%
  • Acceptance Rate85%
  • Students Enrolled5,584
  • Institution TypePublic
  • Percent Online Enrollment64%
  • AccreditationYes
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The Advantages of a History Education

Professionals with a bachelor’s in history typically earn more than those with only an associate. Professionals with an associate in history earn an average of $54,000 a year, while professionals who hold a bachelor’s in history earn an average salary of $63,000.

By earning an online bachelor’s degree in history, students strengthen their critical thinking, persuasive writing, and research skills. Through analyzing historical documents and building source-based arguments, history majors build transferable skills that many employers seek in employees. Many of these positions require a bachelor’s. For instance, history majors who become high school teachers must hold a bachelor’s to earn a state teaching license. Similarly, a bachelor’s degree is the entry-level educational requirement for writers, museum curators, and journalists.

While some career paths, such as lawyer or historian, require additional education, a bachelor’s in history leads to above-average salaries in many fields.


Average Salary by Degree Level
Degree LevelAverage Salary
Associate Degree in History$54,000
Bachelor’s Degree in History$63,000

Source: PayScale


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History Degree Salary Information

A versatile degree, a bachelor’s in history prepares graduates for careers in business, education, the nonprofit sector, and government. Many history graduates pursue advanced degrees, including in history and law, to become historians or lawyers. The degree also leads to entry-level roles in public history, writing, and museums. The critical thinking, research, and persuasive writing skills gained during a history degree help graduates pursue multiple career paths.

High School Teacher
High school teachers create lesson plans, instruct students, and assess student learning in several different subject areas. With a bachelor’s in history, educators can teach U.S. history, world history, European history, civics, and U.S. government. To earn a state teaching license, candidates may need additional teacher preparation training.
Museum Curator
Museum curators direct the acquisition, storage, and exhibition of museum collections. They research historical items, categorize material in the collection, and manage educational programs. Many museum curators design exhibits and programs to educate the public on the collection. They also oversee museum technicians.
Historian
Historians conduct research to understand the past based on historical documents and sources. They analyze and interpret sources to reach conclusions about the past, and many historians write on their findings. A bachelor’s meets the entry-level requirement for some historian positions, though other roles require a master’s or higher.
Writer
Writers create content for books, magazines, scripts, advertisements, and other media. They write fictional and nonfictional material, including biographies, often working with editors to improve and shape drafts for publication. Some writers create advertising copy, while others write speeches, scripts, or web content. A bachelor’s in history prepares writers with research, critical thinking, and writing skills.
Journalist
Journalists inform the public about current events and news and work for newspapers, magazines, broadcast, and websites. They conduct research and interview people to craft news stories, which they prepare for print, online, or broadcast sources. Journalists typically work closely with editors to identify, develop, and improve stories.

Salary by Experience Level for History Careers
CareersEntry Level
(0-12 Months)
Early Career
(1-4 Years)
Midcareer
(5-9 Years)
Experienced
(10-19 Years)
High School Teacher$40,000$42,000$48,000$55,000
Museum Curator$40,000$41,000$50,000$56,000
Historian$45,000$42,000$50,000$68,000
Writer$40,000$46,000$51,000$54,000
Journalist$33,000$39,000$46,000$54,000

Source: PayScale


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Choosing an Online History Degree Program

Prospective history students face many choices when considering an online bachelor’s degree in history. Students can feel overwhelmed when narrowing down the options. Considering several factors can help students choose the best program for their career goals and interests.

For instance, prospective students can consider degrees with the lowest program costs. In general, in-state, public colleges and universities charge the lowest tuition rates, while private institutions charge the highest rates. However, some public institutions offer flat tuition rates for in-state and out-of-state students, and many private institutions provide financial aid to lower the cost.

  • Program Cost: The price of an online history degree varies depending on the institution, with public schools often charging the lowest tuition rates. In addition to tuition costs, prospective students should research online fees, technology fees, and the estimated cost of books. Financial aid, including scholarships and grants, can help cover program costs.
  • Transfer Policies: Prospective students with extensive transfer credits should look for a history program with a generous transfer credit policy. Applying transfer credits to cover general education and elective requirements can significantly shorten the length when obtaining a history bachelor degree online. Applicants can contact an admissions advisor to learn more about transfer policies.
  • School Size and Type: Some students prefer the small class sizes and lower student-to-faculty ratio at small schools, while others prefer a larger cohort of history majors and the more extensive alumni network of large institutions. In addition to school size, students may prefer either a public or private institution.
  • Program Length: While most bachelor’s programs take four years, the total length of an online bachelor’s degree in history varies depending on program requirements. Students may look for programs with part-time or accelerated options, which shape program length. Many programs offer transcript evaluations to determine how many semesters students must complete to earn their degree.
  • On-Campus Requirements: Online history programs may include on-campus requirements, such as an on-campus orientation or residency weekends. Local students may prefer programs with on-campus requirements, while those considering programs out of state might want a 100% online program.

Accreditation for Online History Degrees

Prospective history students should always check a school’s accreditation status before applying. Accredited institutions meet the highest standards for conferring degrees, which communicates to potential employers the value of a candidate’s degree.

Accreditation benefits undergraduates in several ways. Accredited degrees meet the qualifications for many professional certifications and licenses. For instance, states typically require an accredited degree to earn a teaching license. History majors considering graduate programs often need an accredited bachelor’s degree to gain admission. Also, accredited institutions meet the qualifications to offer federal financial aid.

To earn accreditation, colleges and universities agree to a voluntary review from an independent accrediting agency. These agencies evaluate an institution’s graduation requirements, student learning outcomes, and faculty qualifications. Accredited institutions must renew their status on a regular basis through additional evaluations. Both regional and national accrediting agencies grant institutional accreditation; for liberal arts and research institutions, regional accreditation remains the highest standard.

In addition to institutional accreditation, degree-granting programs can hold programmatic accreditation in a particular field. For instance, business schools, teacher preparation programs, and counseling programs often hold programmatic accreditation. History departments undergo review during the regional accreditation process rather than through separate programmatic accreditation, so prospective history majors should look for regionally accredited colleges or universities.

History Concentrations

History majors often choose a concentration to specialize their degree. These concentrations train students for advanced study in a particular topic, including through a graduate program in history. A concentration can also prepare graduates for specific career paths. A public history concentration, for example, helps graduates work in museums or archives.

  • U.S. History:
    One of the most common history concentrations, U.S. history studies America from the colonial era to today. Within the concentration, students can focus on early American history, 19th century U.S. history, or 20th century U.S. history. Most bachelor’s programs offer multiple U.S. history courses and electives.
    • Careers this concentration prepares for: High school teacher, museum curator, historian
  • European History:
    A European history concentration explores the history of Europe from the ancient period through the medieval, early modern, and modern eras. The concentration examines social, political, military, and cultural change over Europe’s history. Students often choose a period within European history, such as 19th and 20th century Europe, Renaissance Europe, or medieval Europe.
    • Careers this concentration prepares for: Historian, high school teacher, foreign service officer
  • Military History:
    A military history concentration examines military conflicts, changes to military technology and tactics, and the role of the military in statecraft. Students study historical conflicts, including the Civil War, the Napoleonic Wars, and the Hundred Years’ War to explore the causes and resolutions of historical wars.
    • Careers this concentration prepares for: Intelligence officer, foreign service officer, high school teacher
  • Women and Gender Studies:
    Many history departments offer a concentration in women and gender studies, through which students explore changing notions of gender roles, the evolving place of women in the public sphere, and notions of masculinity and femininity. The concentration may include the impact of gender theories on policy-making, medicine, and the economy.
    • Careers this concentration prepares for: High school teacher, museum curator, social activist
  • Public History:
    A public history concentration trains students to convey historical information to the public, with an emphasis on museum studies and historic preservation. Students learn how to design history exhibits, use methodologies in the field, and conduct research for public history projects. The concentration prepares graduates for positions in museums, archives, historical societies, and libraries.
    • Careers this concentration prepares for: Museum curator, archivist, museum worker, librarian

How Long Does It Take to Get a Degree in History?

Earning a bachelor of history online typically takes four years for full-time students. Most bachelor’s degrees require 120 credits of coursework, which includes general education requirements, major coursework, and electives. Several program characteristics shape the length of a bachelor’s in history, including graduation requirements and enrollment options. Some programs, for instance, require a senior thesis or internship, which can add time to the degree.

Online programs often design their curriculum for working professionals balancing school with their career. However, students may prefer a part-time option, which can add time to the degree. Students interested in earning their bachelor’s in less time can choose an accelerated enrollment option, which includes higher course loads or accelerated classes.

Similarly, undergraduates with transfer credits can finish their degree faster by choosing a school with a generous transfer credit policy. Many bachelor’s programs accept up to 90 credits toward a 120-credit degree, meaning students can earn their bachelor’s in history in as little as one year.

Courses in an Online Bachelor’s in History Program

  • World History
    Many history programs include survey courses on world history, which cover the ancient world through the modern world. Topics in world history courses include the development of civilizations, empires, and different forms of government; changing social and economic systems; and the role of trade, disease, and technology in history.
  • U.S. History
    American history survey courses examine the development of U.S. history from the colonial era to today. The course explores the causes of the American Revolution and the Civil War, political and economic history, and social movements. The class prepares history majors for advanced courses in U.S. history.
  • 20th Century Military History
    Courses on 20th century military history examine the diplomacy and military conflicts of the era, including World War I and World War II. Students learn about military technology, evolving military strategy, and theories of military history. The course may also examine the Cold War, the Suez crisis, and the Gulf War.
  • Renaissance and Reformation
    Renaissance and Reformation courses examine European history from the 15th through 17th centuries, exploring cultural and religious movements that impacted people’s lives. The course may address Luther’s reasons for breaking with the Catholic Church, the impact of the Black Plague on the Renaissance, and the emergence of modern states.
  • History of Science
    Courses on the history of science explore changing explanations for the natural world, from ancient Greek Aristotelian physics through Copernicus and the modern era. The course may examine the Scientific Revolution, the rise of Darwinism and theories of evolution, and modern technology.

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Paying for Your Online Bachelor’s in History Degree Program

Degree-seekers should not let education costs keep them from earning an online bachelor’s degree in history. By applying for grants, scholarships, and work studies, learners can significantly reduce their expenses. In addition, federal grants can help students pay for the rest of their degree, and these loans may qualify for loan forgiveness. To apply for federal grants and scholarships, complete the FAFSA.

Scholarships for Accounting Students


Enid Hall Griswold Memorial Scholarship

Who Can Apply: The Daughters of the American Revolution awards this scholarship to college juniors or seniors studying history, political science, government, or economics. Each year, the organization chooses two individuals to earn this scholarship. For specific requirements, email EnidHallMemorialScholarship@NSDAR.org.

Amount: $5,000


The Lucinda Beneventi Findley History Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Each year, The Daughters of the American Revolution selects two outstanding high school students for this award. Applicants need least a 2.5 GPA, demonstrate an interest in history, and plan to pursue a history major at a full-time accredited university in the United States.

Amount: $2,000


Annual Constitution Essay Student Scholarship Contest

Who Can Apply: The National Rifle Association and the National Foundation for Women Legislators team up every year to select six winners in their scholarship essay contest for women. Applicants must write an essay about the Constitution.

Amount: $3,000


Dr. Aura-Lee A. and James Hobbs Pittenger American History Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Students who plan to take at least 24 credits in American history and American government may apply. This scholarship offers $2,000 per year, and it is renewable for students who continue to study in this field and maintain at least a 3.25 GPA.

Amount: Up to $8,000


Catherine W. Pierce Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Students studying art or an art history discipline may apply for this scholarship. Recipients must maintain a 2.5 GPA. Learners can apply by completing an online application and submitting transcripts. They must also write a one-page essay explaining their inspiration for choosing their career and describing their future career goals.

Amount: Up to $4,350


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