Best Online Bachelor’s in Web Development 2021

by TBS Staff
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An online web development degree offers learners numerous opportunities for specialization and professional growth and prepares them to succeed in a competitive job market.

Students in these programs can focus their degree in a specific area that aligns with their career goals and personal interests, such as web design or computer programming. The curriculum introduces students to all elements of the field, including graphic design, software development, and network security.

Graduates of an online web development program qualify for lucrative careers in a rapidly growing job market. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for web developers is expected to grow by 15% between 2016 and 2026, a rate much faster than the average for all other jobs in the United States. As e-commerce and the use of mobile devices expand, so does the demand for professionals who can manage online purchasing and sales as well as create mobile-friendly platforms and sites.

The Best Online Bachelor's in Web Development Programs

Fort Hays State University true View School Profile $$ Hays, KS 44% 39% 83% Fort Hays State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

A public university founded in 1902, FHSU offers an online bachelor of science or arts in information and networking with a concentration in web and mobile application development.

Students complete informatics courses such as introduction to web development and foundations of informatics before moving on to concentration courses. Notable courses include an introduction to human-computer interaction, mobile web development, front- and back-end development, and database design and programming.

Applicants need a high school diploma with a minimum GPA of 2.25 and a minimum ACT score of 21 (SAT 1080) to qualify for admission.

Arizona State University-Skysong true View School Profile $$ Scottsdale, AZ 14% 55% 97% Arizona State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

A public research university founded in 1885, ASU offers an online bachelor of applied science in internet and web development. Students with an associate degree in a related field may complete this bachelor's degree online.

Required courses include information design and usability, graphic industry business practices, image editing and manipulating, and website and e-commerce strategies. Students complete 60 credits online, including bachelor's-level general education and elective courses.

Applicants need an associate degree or equivalent credits to apply. Arizona residents must possess a minimum GPA of 2.0 (2.5 for out-of-state students) to qualify for admission.

Liberty University true View School Profile Lynchburg, VA 50% 60% 90% Liberty University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A private Christian university founded in 1971, Liberty offers an online bachelor of science in information technology with a specialization in web and mobile programming. Students complete 120 credits in convenient eight-week formats.

Learners complete general education and elective courses online before beginning upper-division coursework. Students take courses such as business common professional components, client-side programming, server-side programming, and web and mobile programming.

Applicants may transfer up to 75% of the credits required for the degree. Applicants must possess a high school diploma with a minimum GPA of 2.0 to qualify for admission. Students do not need to submit standardized test scores.

Baker College true View School Profile Owosso, MI 19% 65% 58% Baker College is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

A private university founded in 1911, Baker offers an online bachelor of science in information systems with a concentration in web development. Students study multiple programming languages and systems.

Required courses include system modeling and design, special topics in information systems, introduction to network security, and legal and ethical issues in information technology. The web development concentration includes courses such as world wide web design and interactive web design.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent to qualify for admission. Students do not need to submit standardized test scores.

Champlain College true View School Profile Burlington, VT 64% 54% 52% Champlain College is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

A private college founded in 1878, Champlain offers an online bachelor of science in web design and development. Students complete courses in convenient seven-week terms.

Students complete courses in designing digital images for the web, usability in website and software design, relational database design and SQL, and introduction to operating systems. Students receive training in front- and back-end development as well as programming language and security.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent with a preferred GPA of 2.5 to qualify for admission. Students do not need to submit standardized test scores.

Best Online Programs

Online Bachelor's in Web Development Programs Ranking Guidelines

We ranked these degree programs based on quality, curricula, school awards, rankings, and reputation.

Our Methodology

Here at TheBestSchools.org, we take the trust and welfare of our readers very seriously. When making our school and program rankings, our top priority is ensuring that our readers get accurate, unbiased information that can help them make informed decisions about online education. That's why we've developed a rigorous ranking methodology that keeps the needs of our readers front and center.

Our proprietary, multi-criteria ranking algorithm analyzes key data indicators — as collected by the federal government — for each school or program. What data we use depends on the focus of each specific ranking, but in all cases, our ranking methodology is impartial: Schools cannot buy better rankings at TBS.

While specific criteria under consideration can vary by ranking, there are a few data points that we value most highly. They are affordability, academic quality, and online enrollment. Below, we break down our algorithm to help you understand what you're getting when you use one of our rankings.

  • Academics
  • Affordability
  • Online Enrollment

Data Sources

The data used in TBS rankings comes primarily from the federal government, and much of it is provided by the schools themselves. We aggregate and analyze this data to build our rankings.

The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) is our primary source. Its data comes from annual surveys conducted by the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Every college, university, or technical school with access to federal financial aid must participate in these surveys, which include questions about enrollment, graduation rates, finances, and faculty qualifications. This is publicly available data, which you can access yourself through the College Navigator.

Additionally, because we value a personal touch and the professional experience of our staff and Academic Advisory Board, we vet all results and adjust rankings as necessary based on our collected knowledge of schools and degree programs. Depending on the ranking, we may obtain additional input from AcademicInfluence.com, subject matter experts, prior TBS ranking lists, or other sources we deem relevant to a particular ranking.

Breakdown of Our Rankings Methodology

About Our Ranking Factors

Here at TBS, we value what you value: quality education, affordability, and the accessibility of online education. These factors guide all of our program rankings.

Each of these factors are further broken down into weighted subfactors. For example, retention rates are weighted more heavily than availability of program options because they are a better indicator of student success.

We chose the following factors for our rankings because of their influence on learning experiences and graduate outcomes. However, students should always balance our rankings against their personal priorities. For instance, a learner who needs a fully online program may prioritize online flexibility more than our rankings do. Our rankings are designed to help you make a decision — not to make a decision for you.

Academics - 75%
Affordability - 15%
Online Enrollment - 10%

In all our school rankings and recommendations, we work for objectivity and balance. We carefully research and compile each ranking list, and as stated in our advertising disclosure, we do NOT permit financial incentives to influence rankings. Our articles never promote or disregard a school for financial gain.

If you have questions about our ranking methodology, please feel free to connect with our staff through contact page.

We thank you for your readership and trust.

Featured Online Bachelor's in Web Development Programs

The Advantages of a Web Development Education

Earning a bachelor’s degree in web development can result in higher salaries and more job opportunities. For example, professionals with a bachelor’s degree in web development earn an average of about $10,000 more each year than those with an associate degree, and they can pursue a broader range of job opportunities. The section below reviews career opportunities available to those with a bachelor’s degree in web development as well as corresponding salary information.

Average Salary by Degree Level
Degree Level Average Salary
Associate Degree in Web Development $50,000
Bachelor’s Degree in Web Development $63,000
PayScale

Web Development Degree Career Information

Your program may give you the option to select a concentration in a web development subfield. For example, a cybersecurity concentration prepares you to protect a company’s data, and graduates with this specialized expertise often work for large corporations or government agencies. With a networking concentration, you can help companies network devices or streamline information sharing. Before selecting a program or concentration, consider which option best fits your interests and career goals.

true Web Designer

Web designers are responsible for developing, creating, and coding web pages and associated apps. They work with their clients to provide graphical and technical aspects of website applications. They also conduct routine maintenance of websites.

true User Experience Designer

UX designers work with executives, engineers, clients, and product managers to derive solutions to improve user experience. They present design deliverables and concepts to meet business and client requirements and produce prototypes to perform user testing and guide iterations of design.

true Web Graphic Designer

Web graphic designers create and design websites for companies, conveying a company’s overall message and mission to the public. They also communicate the company’s culture and philosophy through videos, colors, pictures, sounds, and applications.

true Web Developer

Web developers work with content producers and designers. They write code to generate web pages and access business logic servers and databases. Developers build the backbone of websites and make necessary improvements.

true Computer Programmer

Computer programmers collaborate with content producers and designers as they write, modify, and debug computer software for server applications. They also test software for server applications and document their findings and results.

Source: PayScale

Choosing an Online Web Development Degree Program

When looking for an online web development program, students should carefully review several important factors. To begin, compare program costs to determine what you can afford and take into account any expected financial aid. Then, review transfer policies, program length, school size and type, and any on-campus requirements you might need to satisfy before graduating. Being selective allows you to choose a program that best fits your specific needs.

Accreditation for Online Web Development Degrees

As you explore prospective online degrees in web development, pay special attention to a school or program’s accreditation.

Two main types of accreditation exist: national and regional. Nationally, accredited institutions typically focus on career and technical-based coursework and offer a minimal liberal arts curriculum. As a result, these institutions tend to feature lower tuition rates than regionally accredited colleges and universities, but they may be excluded from most tuition reimbursement plans. Conversely, institutions with regional accreditation feature primarily liberal arts-based coursework. Although they generally charge higher tuition rates than nationally accredited colleges and universities, these schools give students the opportunity to qualify for tuition reimbursement plans and allow them to transfer credits more easily.

While the U.S. Department of Education (ED) does not accredit educational institutions or programs, it does hold accrediting agencies responsible for proper enforcement of standards. As a part of the ED’s oversight roles, the Secretary of Education must publish a list of nationally recognized accrediting agencies considered reliable authorities for the quality of education and training in higher education. Additionally, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) functions as an organization of degree-granting colleges and universities, providing national advocacy for academic quality through self-regulation.

Students can access a list of all accredited schools on the ED’s website or on CHEA’s website.

Web Development Concentrations

Web development is a broad field with several different areas of focus. Many online web development degrees offer concentrations where students can tailor the curriculum to their personal or professional interests. The table below outlines a few of the most common areas.

Web Design

Students explore topics such as JavaScript, XML, and internet protocols. The curriculum emphasizes hands-on web design experience and features a special focus on electronic publishing through the use of industry standard software.

  • Careers this concentration prepares for: Web designer, user experience architect, computer programmer
Digital Design

A digital design concentration explores topics such as electronic publishing, multimedia projects, and motion graphics. Throughout the curriculum, students gain hands-on experience with multimedia and animation.

  • Careers this concentration prepares for: Graphic designer, typographer
Software Development

Learners apply specific methodologies and tools to assess and analyze software and software systems design. They also learn to identify vulnerabilities and threats that compromise the intention of the software.

  • Careers this concentration prepares for: Software developer, cybersecurity professional
Web and Mobile Development

This concentration allows students to learn the language of web design as they create dynamic artwork using color commands, painting tools, layers, typeface design, filters, and other imaging techniques.

  • Careers this concentration prepares for: Web designer, graphic designer, mobile application designer
Programming

Programming students learn to write code to help create software programs for businesses. Throughout their coursework, they learn to investigate enterprise resource planning, business process modeling, enterprise application integration, and business activity monitoring in a global enterprise.

  • Careers this concentration prepares for: Computer programmer, information technology specialist

How Long Does It Take to Get a Degree in Web Development?

Students typically take about four years to earn their online bachelor’s in web development; however, some may take longer if they enroll part time. Since part-time students complete fewer credits each semester, they can take up to five years to earn a bachelor’s degree.

Some programs offer accelerated options, allowing learners to double up on their credits each semester in order to graduate sooner; students can complete accelerated programs in as little as two years. Learners should consider these programs if they do not have other commitments such as full-time jobs or families, as these formats require students to complete a significant amount of coursework in a short period of time. Conversely, students might consider part-time enrollment if they have personal or professional commitments to juggle with their coursework.

Courses in an Online Bachelor’s in Web Development Program

A bachelor’s degree cultivates skills that prepare learners to succeed on the job, such as advanced knowledge of computer coding. These courses also prepare students for certification tests. Multiple certifications are available that prove your competence in computer coding to future employers. To stay competitive in the job market, choose a program that offers optimal coding courses.

Capstone projects play a significant role in online web development degree programs. They require you to synthesize the knowledge and skills gained through coursework into an original computer program, database, or web app. A successful capstone project not only ensures that you earn your diploma, but the final product can also set you apart from other applicants when you seek your first postgraduate job.

  • Foundations in Application Development: Introducing students to the design, understanding, and implementation of computer programs, a foundations in application development course focuses on programming as a problem-solving tactic in engineering and business applications. Students learn to write computer code in a structured, logical, and organized fashion.
  • Computer Platform Technologies: In this course, students develop an understanding of the background of hardware and software technology. Hardware topics in the course include memory, registers, CPU architecture, addressing modes, instruction sets, busses, and input and output devices. Software topics focus on process management, memory, file system management, and input and output.
  • Business Systems Analysis and Design: Learners explore the roles and uses of information systems in business organizations. The course focuses on the major issues that come with managing information technology in contemporary business environments as well as the relationship between an organization’s information technology and other operational structures.
  • Website Design: Students in this course learn to create interactive pages for the World Wide Web, survey internet concepts, and explore client-server communications and network protocols. Coursework also explores the syntax for building consistent appearances and styles across web pages.
  • Network and Telecommunication Management: This course gives learners in-depth knowledge of networking theory and data communications along with requirements and concepts related to networking technologies and telecommunications. Students learn to design, maintain, and build a local area network; manage telecommunications networks; and conduct cost-benefit analyses of connectivity options.

Web Development Membership Associations

With numerous resources for professionals in the field, the Association of Independent Information Professionals serves as a reliable source for professional development, collegiate support, and mutually beneficial relationships between business owners and information professionals. The User Experience Professionals Association serves professionals interested in user experience and supports them as they cultivate research and design and evaluate user experience products and services across the industry. A professional organization for design, the American Institute of Graphic Arts serves members who practice all forms of communication design including interaction design, graphic design, branding and identity, and typography. The organization focuses on encouraging professional ethics and the highest standards for design professionals. This organization helps members compete effectively in the constantly evolving graphic arts field and provides graphic artists and other design professionals resources to develop their expertise. Bringing together computing researchers, educators, and professionals, the Association for Computing Machinery inspires members to share resources and ideas to address challenges in the field. The world’s largest computing society, the association promotes high standards and technical excellence.

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