The Best Online Colleges in Texas

by TBS Staff

Updated September 27, 2022

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Online Colleges in Texas

Online colleges in Texas allow students in the second most populated state to pursue the college experience that best suits their needs. Working students in search of programs that do not interfere with personal or professional responsibilities should consider earning a degree in Texas from an online college. The state's 60x30TX strategic plan aims to increase the number of degree holders aged 25-34 by at least 60% before 2030.

The Texas Affordable Baccalaureate program specifically focuses on online, hybrid, and competency-based courses that offer innovative pathways for students to earn their degrees sooner and on their own terms. Online programs in Texas may also offer cohort-style models, which allow students to build a strong network with other online learners.

Texan higher education initiatives strive to remove financial barriers restricting students from obtaining degrees, lowering the amount of statewide student debt. Public universities in Texas provide over $15.3 billion in financial aid every year, and the average Texas graduate possesses about $26,900 in student debt.

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Top Online Colleges in Texas

#1

University of Texas of the Permian Basin

School Information
Location Odessa, Texas
Admission Rate 88%
Graduation Rate 40%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 70% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

The University of Texas of the Permian Basin is a fantastic choice for online learners. The public institution offers 15 online programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Many distance learners choose to study at this school because of its track record in online education and reputation for academic quality.

Online learners can benefit from the academic advisors and career services professionals at the Odessa campus. Programs like academic advising and virtual job fairs help degree-seekers plan for their academic and professional futures. The school also facilitates internships to help students gain hands-on experience. Completing all requirements results in graduates receiving an accredited degree.

Reach out to the school with any questions about what programs are available online and how to apply to them.

University of Texas of the Permian Basin at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 3,722

Online Bachelor's Programs: 12

Online Master's Programs: 3

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 29%

Admission Rate: 88%

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#2

Texas Tech University

School Information
Location Lubbock, Texas
Admission Rate 69%
Graduation Rate 61%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 52% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

For many online degree-seekers, Texas Tech University is an attractive choice. Learners who wish to study remotely at this public school can choose between 22 online programs at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. The school's experience with online education and strong academic reputation make it a great choice for distance learners.

Academic and career service professionals based out of the Lubbock campus are available to help online learners. Career-planning events like virtual job fairs are available to degree-seekers who connect with advisors. Many students also gain hands-on field experience through the school's internship programs. Program graduates are awarded a bachelor's degree with full accreditation upon completing all requirements.

For more information on how to apply and what programs are available online, contact the school directly.

Texas Tech University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 20,198

Online Bachelor's Programs: 6

Online Master's Programs: 14

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 10%

Admission Rate: 69%

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#3

Tarleton State University

School Information
Location Stephenville, Texas
Admission Rate 56%
Graduation Rate 49%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 54% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

A quality online college education is available at Tarleton State University. Learners who wish to study remotely at this public school can choose from 18 online programs at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Distance learners appreciate the way the school brings its reputation for academic success to its online programming.

Online learners can benefit from the academic advisors and career services professionals at the Stephenville, Texas, campus. Career services programs such as academic advising and virtual job fairs help degree-seekers achieve their professional goals. The school's internship programs give students a chance to gain hands-on field experience. A degree with full accreditation is awarded to all enrollees upon completing their program.

For more information on how to apply and what programs are available online, contact the school directly.

Tarleton State University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 7,073

Online Bachelor's Programs: 8

Online Master's Programs: 10

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 17%

Admission Rate: 56%

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#4

University of North Texas

School Information
Location Denton, Texas
Admission Rate 74%
Graduation Rate 56%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 49% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

The University of North Texas delivers online programming that ranks highly among similar offerings. The public institution makes 20 of its degrees available online, with programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Distance learners appreciate the way the school brings its reputation for academic success to its online programming.

Online learners can benefit from the academic advisors and career services professionals at the Denton campus. Virtual career fairs, academic advising, and other programs invest in the long-term success of degree-seekers. The school's internship programs give students a chance to gain hands-on field experience. The degree that graduates are awarded reflects the school's full accreditation.

Anyone interested in learning more about available online programs and how to apply should contact the school directly.

University of North Texas at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 19,118

Online Bachelor's Programs: 5

Online Master's Programs: 11

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 8%

Admission Rate: 74%

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#5

LeTourneau University

School Information
Location Longview, Texas
Admission Rate 45%
Graduation Rate 63%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 60% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

LeTourneau University offers a high-quality online college experience. Those who choose to enroll at this private institution can choose from 35 different programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The school's experience with online education and its strong academic reputation make it a great choice for distance learners.

The school's main campus in Longview, Texas, hosts academic and career services offices available to online learners. These advisors facilitate career-planning events like virtual job fairs for interested degree-seekers. Many students also prepare for future careers by gaining hands-on experience in internships. Graduates are awarded a fully accredited degree upon completing their program.

Prospective students can get more information about online programs and application requirements from the school directly.

LeTourneau University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 1,884

Online Bachelor's Programs: 19

Online Master's Programs: 13

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 34%

Admission Rate: 45%

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#6

Sam Houston State University

School Information
Location Huntsville, Texas
Admission Rate 83%
Graduation Rate 54%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Sam Houston State University is a popular choice among those seeking a degree online. The 43 online programs offered by this public institution consist of both undergraduate and graduate offerings. The school's proven track record in online education and its reputation for quality academics leads many distance learners to apply.

Online learners not located near the Huntsville, Texas, campus can still take advantage of academic and career advising services. Advisors facilitate career-planning events like virtual job fairs for interested degree-seekers. The school also emphasizes hands-on learning through its internship programs. Upon completion of all program requirements, graduates are awarded an accredited degree.

Contact the school directly to receive more information about online program opportunities and application procedures.

Sam Houston State University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 11,475

Online Bachelor's Programs: 8

Online Master's Programs: 27

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 33%

Admission Rate: 83%

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#7

University of Texas at El Paso

School Information
Location El Paso, Texas
Admission Rate 100%
Graduation Rate 37%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 40% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

The University of Texas at El Paso offers a high-quality online college experience. Both undergraduate and graduate programs are available through this public institution, which hosts a total of 21 online degree programs. The school's proven track record in online education and reputation for quality academics leads many distance learners to apply.

The school hosts academic and career service specialists at its campus, which online learners can also access. Degree-seekers have the option to connect with academic advisors and participate in virtual job fairs, helping set them up for scholastic and professional success. The school's internship programs give students a chance to gain hands-on field experience. Upon completion of all program requirements, graduates are awarded an accredited degree.

For more information on how to apply and what programs are available online, contact the school directly.

University of Texas at El Paso at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 10,039

Online Bachelor's Programs: 7

Online Master's Programs: 14

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 12%

Admission Rate: 100%

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#8

Texas A&M University-Commerce

School Information
Location Commerce, Texas
Admission Rate 43%
Graduation Rate 43%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 65% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Texas A&M University-Commerce ranks among the best online colleges. The school, a public institution, hosts 39 distance programs for remote learners at the graduate and undergraduate levels. These remote programs benefit from the school's reputation for strong academics and its track record in online course offerings.

Online learners can receive assistance from career and academic service associates located at the school's physical campus. Virtual career fairs, academic advising, and other programs invest in the long-term success of degree-seekers. Many programs include an internship, helping students gain experience in their field. Upon completion of their program, the college gives graduates an accredited degree.

Additional information about how to apply and what programs are available can be obtained by contacting the school directly.

Texas A&M University-Commerce at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 7,879

Online Bachelor's Programs: 12

Online Master's Programs: 26

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 39%

Admission Rate: 43%

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#9

West Texas A&M University

School Information
Location Canyon, Texas
Admission Rate 69%
Graduation Rate 45%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 59% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

West Texas A&M University provides one of the best online college experiences available. Both undergraduate and graduate programs are available through this public institution, which hosts a total of 15 online degree programs. Distance learners appreciate the way the school brings its reputation for academic success to its online programming.

The physical campus in Canyon employs academic and career service professionals that are also available to assist online learners. Career services such as academic advising and virtual job fairs help degree-seekers achieve their professional goals. Many programs require an internship, helping students gain experience in their field. Graduates are awarded a fully accredited degree after completing their program.

Reach out to the school with any questions about what programs are available online and how to apply to them.

West Texas A&M University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 5,886

Online Bachelor's Programs: 10

Online Master's Programs: 5

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 16%

Admission Rate: 69%

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#10

Stephen F. Austin State University

School Information
Location Nacogdoches, Texas
Admission Rate 68%
Graduation Rate 52%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 40% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

A quality online college education is available at Stephen F. Austin State University. Both undergraduate and graduate programs are available through this public institution, which hosts a total of 33 online degree programs. The school has experience facilitating online classes and a reputation for strong academics, attracting many remote students.

All learners, including those studying online, can take advantage of the academic and career services professionals hosted at the school's Nacogdoches, Texas, campus. Online offerings from academic advisors and career-planning events like virtual job fairs help degree-seekers plan for success. Many students also prepare for future careers by gaining hands-on experience during internships. Program graduates are awarded a bachelor's degree with full accreditation upon completing all requirements.

Additional information about how to apply and what programs are available can be obtained by contacting the school directly.

Stephen F. Austin State University at a Glance:

Online Student Enrollment: 5,220

Online Bachelor's Programs: 16

Online Master's Programs: 16

Percent of Programs Offered Online: 29%

Admission Rate: 68%

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Online Colleges in Texas Ranking Guidelines

We selected the online schools in Texas based on the quality of their programs, types of courses and degrees offered, and faculty strengths, as well as school awards, rankings, and reputation, including a strong reputation for online degree programs.

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.

Employment in Texas

While out-of-state learners may choose online colleges in Texas, many online students also to live in the state or plan to after graduation. Texas is the 10th largest economy in the world, providing excellent opportunities for professionals holding degrees. Texas is also home to nearly 50 Fortune 500 organizations.

Students seeking steady careers should examine the leading industries in Texas, which include advanced manufacturing, aerospace, aviation and defense, biotechnology and life sciences, energy, and information technology. Each industry offers opportunities for varying levels of education, and students can advance as they earn advanced degrees.

Quality of life is another factor. On a 100 point scale, Texas offers a 93.9 cost of living index. Students may want to examine the average earning potential in their desired roles to determine what sort of lifestyle they could afford after earning their degrees.

Highest Paying Careers Texas
Career Salary Projected Job Growth (2016-2026)
Chief Executives $231,310 -3.9%
Surgeons $237,240 14.4%
Obstetricians and Gynecologists $177,970 15.2%
Dentists $183,510 19.4%
Family Medicine Physicians $222,900 14.3%
Source: BLS, ProjectionsCentral
Fastest Growing Careers Texas
Career Salary Projected Job Growth (2016-2026)
Wind Turbine Service Technicians $53,180 94.8%
Forest Fire Inspectors and Prevention Specialists $65,640 29.4%
Genetic Counselors $86,070 29.0%
Physician Assistants $109,270 37.4%
Nurse Practitioners $115,440 36.1%
Source: BLS, ProjectionsCentral

Associate and Graduate Degrees in Texas

Students considering an online degree in Texas have access to multiple programs that prepare graduates to excel in competitive markets. Distance learners with no prior college experience may want to begin by earning an associate degree, which are typically offered by community colleges or technical schools.

Both online associate degrees and master's degrees may differ from traditional, on-campus programs.

An associate degree typically requires 60 credits and two years of study, though schools may also offer accelerated options. Online associate degrees may qualify graduates for degree-completion programs, which lead to a bachelor's degree. Common majors reflect thriving industries in the state, including mechanical drafting or mechanical engineering technology.

Online colleges in Texas also offer opportunities for working professionals who wish to advance their careers or transition to another field. Graduate programs require 30-60 credits and students can typically earn their degrees in 12-24 months, depending on the program.

Both online associate degrees and master's degrees may differ from traditional, on-campus programs. Online courses often utilize an asynchronous learning format, which relies on students managing their own schedules and doing independent work outside of group projects and forum discussions. Additionally, students may need to acquire their own field placements for practicum requirements, though schools often assist in this process.

Questions About Online College in Texas

Is Online College Cheaper in Texas?

While some schools offer lower rates for distance programs, the cost of online degrees in Texas varies by institution and can be different depending on prior completed coursework. Attending a Texas college online can mean savings on commuting costs or on-campus living expenses.

How Long Does It Take to Get an Online Degree in Texas?

Distance learners can access traditional semester-based programs, which often require four years for a bachelor's program. However, accelerated options allow students to graduate sooner.

What Is the Most Popular Degree in Texas?

The most popular majors at public institutions in Texas include business, health professions, interdisciplinary studies, engineering, and biological or biomedical sciences.

Does an Online Degree Have the Same Value as an On-Campus Degree?

Online programs offer the same educational quality as in-person courses. In fact, many online courses are taught by the same professors as in-person classes, and colleges and universities don't typically mark whether a degree was earned online on the final diploma.

Is Texas a Good State For Higher Education?

Online schools in Texas offer quality programs that allow students to acquire pertinent knowledge and skills needed to excel in their respective fields.

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