Online Schools & Colleges In Michigan

Options & Accreditation

As one of the top 10 most populous states, Michigan features a wide range of higher education opportunities. Students can choose from 111 accredited schools in Michigan, including public four-year institutions, public two-year institutions, independent colleges and universities, and tribally controlled community colleges. State institutions work together to serve students. For example, the Michigan Community College Virtual Learning Collaborative allows students to take online classes at any of 28 community colleges.

Several brick-and-mortar schools, as well as accredited online schools in Michigan, offer virtual programs and courses. Top-notch distance learning schools include Central Michigan University, which tied for first place in the U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 rankings for best online bachelor’s degree programs. Other highly ranked online schools include the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor (number 7) and Michigan State University (number 18).

Online schools in Michigan haven’t been limited to colleges and universities. In fact, Michigan was one of the states that pioneered distance learning for students of all ages. The Michigan Virtual University (MVU) was created in 1998 and drew 8,942 enrollments in its first five years. At the same time, the Michigan Virtual School (MVS) was launched to provide online learning options for high school students across the state.

A Look at Online Education in Michigan

Online learning is an important component of education in Michigan. The approval process of K-12 teachers in the state has gone virtual. Michigan educators applying for K-12 teacher certifications as new, returning or part-time teachers utilize the Michigan Online Educator Certification System (MOECS).

In other news, the Michigan Department of Education has created the Early/Middle College Program, which enables high school students to earn college credits for advanced courses. The program increases the length of high school by one additional year. In coordination with a higher education partner school, high school students can complete up to 60 transferable college credits in order to earn an associate degree.

Lastly, in July 2014, Michigan joined the STEM Early College Expansion Partnership. This five-year, multi-state program helps prepare students for college by providing enhanced education in science, technology, engineering and math.

Compare Universities and Colleges


Adrian College

Adrian, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Very Safe

Albion College

Albion, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Very Safe

Alma College

Alma, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Super Safe

Alpena Community College

Alpena, Michigan Public

Andrews University

Berrien Springs, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Super Safe

Aquinas College

Grand Rapids, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Very Safe

Bay de Noc Community College

Escanaba, Michigan Public

Calvin College

Grand Rapids, Michigan Private not-for-profit
Very Safe

Calvin Theological Seminary

Grand Rapids, Michigan Private not-for-profit

Michigan School of Professional Psychology

Farmington Hills, Michigan Private not-for-profit

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Michigan Online School and Program Spotlights

Online College Spotlight
Central Michigan University

Central Michigan University, through its Global Campus division, offers an array of distance learning degree and certificate programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. In fact, it is one of the most highly recognized online schools in Michigan. In 2014, U.S. News & World Report ranked CMU No. 1 for Best Bachelor’s Degree Programs for Veterans, as well as Best Online Master’s Degree in Education Programs for Veterans.

Online students can choose from 10 bachelor’s and 22 master’s degrees in disciplines such as education, administration, psychology, political science and community development. Most degrees can be completed fully online. An online Doctor of Health Administration degree is also available in a cohort format and can be started in either August or January. Central Michigan University’s selection of undergraduate and graduate certificates includes emerging fields such as social media, cybersecurity and health systems leadership.

Most CMU distance education classes are offered in an asynchronous format, meaning they can be accessed at the student’s convenience. Instructors may also schedule synchronous courses, which include some scheduled online class sessions throughout the course term. Online courses are administered through the Blackboard instructional delivery tool, with a proctor required for one or more exams. Depending on the course, proctored testing may be available either online or in-person.

Students can access more information about online degrees and programs at CMU’s Global Campus at

Online College Spotlight
Northwestern Michigan College

Northwestern Michigan College is a publicly-funded community college with an extensive distance learning program. Currently, the college offers more than 90 individual courses in either fully online, hybrid or telecourse format. Four online associate degree programs are also available in nursing, business administration, criminal justice and general studies. Additionally, NMC provides access to online courses for students seeking to fulfill continuing education or professional development requirements or who simply wish to pursue a class for personal enrichment.

NMC distance education courses are accessed through the Moodle 2 system, which is a free software eLearning platform. As with other online schools in Michigan, some fully online courses may require proctored testing, while math and science labs for some hybrid programs may require on-campus meetings. Students may be able to fulfill in-person class requirements by taking an equivalent course from a peer college through the Michigan Community College Virtual Learning Collaborative.

More information regarding Northwestern Michigan College’s distance learning options can be found at

Online College Spotlight
University of Michigan – Flint

UM-Flint has garnered a strong reputation among the many online schools in Michigan for its 100 percent online bachelor’s programs. In 1990, the college began developing hundreds of online courses led by traditional faculty. Today, UM-Flint offers both online undergraduate and graduate degrees. While most options are offered at the graduate level, the school does provide fully online programs in Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS), Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN). Four-year online programs are comprised of 124 credit hours, with 33 hours in upper division courses. Students may transfer up to 62 credits of previous undergraduate work.

Online learners at UM-Flint can take advantage of the college’s extended help desk hours and tech support, as well as financial aid, library access and advisory services through the Student Success Center (SSC).

U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Colleges 2015” has ranked UM-Flint for Best in Midwest, Top Public Schools (Midwest) and Best Colleges for Veterans. The Online Graduate Accelerated Nursing (MSN) Program was ranked third in the country by U.S. News and boasts a 95-100 percent passing rate on the Nurse Practitioner Certification Exam among students for the past three years.

For more information on UM-Flint’s online undergraduate programs, visit

Online College Spotlight
Michigan State University

At Michigan State University (MSU), students can choose from more than 100 online and hybrid undergraduate and graduate courses. As with most online schools in Michigan, face-to-face contact or scheduled classroom time may be required for certain course components such as exams and labs, though such requirements are noted in MSU’s schedule of courses.

MSU also offers an online RN-to-BSN degree, as well as hybrid doctoral degrees in physics, nursing practice, educational psychology and educational technology. Other online and hybrid offerings include a broad range of graduate certificate and master’s degree programs. MSU’s Broad College of Business recently launched a master’s of science degree in management, strategy and leadership, available exclusively online and designed to develop more effective communicators, managers, leaders and decision makers. The program’s 15 courses, each of which are five weeks in duration, can be completed in as little as 20 months depending on the student’s schedule.

For a complete list of online programs, visit Michigan State University’s Office of the Registrar:

Online College Spotlight
Michigan Community College Virtual Learning Collaborative

Through the Michigan Community College Virtual Learning Collaborative (MCCVLC), students can take online classes at any of Michigan’s community college schools and transfer all credits back to their home college. While MCCVLC is not an actual online school in Michigan and does not offer or award degrees, it does provide a single site for students to initiate the enrollment process and a consolidated listing of online courses from all member colleges.

A variety of online courses, certificates and associate degree programs are available through MCCVLC. Kirtland Community College’s new online associate degree in health information technology, for example, is designed to prepare students to sit for the national certification exam offered by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management. And Grand Rapids Community College’s new online associate degree in information security prepares individuals to safeguard organizations from digital theft and other invasions into intellectual property.

Learn more about MCCVLC at

Online College Spotlight
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

The University of Michigan – Ann Arbor is one of the most respected online schools in Michigan. The Center for Research on Learning and Teaching at the University of Michigan (UM) in Ann Arbor supports a variety of distance learning options, including online courses, certificates and professional degrees. The College of Engineering, for instance, awards online master’s degrees in automotive engineering, energy systems engineering, global automotive and manufacturing engineering, and manufacturing. It also offers online professional certificate programs in emerging automotive technologies, systems engineering and a variety of Six Sigma specialties.

In addition, UM’s School of Nursing offers a four-course online clinical research management certificate program that prepares students to meet the requirements for Society of Clinical Research Associates (SOCRA) certification. UM’s School of Dentistry offers an online degree completion program for licensed dental hygienists with associate degrees. Online students complete 36 credit hours over two years to earn a bachelor’s degree in dental hygiene.

For a complete list of distance learning programs in colleges at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, visit


Best Online Schools in Michigan for Future Service Members

Michigan may be famous for its Great Lakes, but it also boasts exceptional universities and online schools, which are further enriched by the opportunities they offer to those serving the country. ROTC has a strong presence in Michigan, and can be found at many schools for undergraduate and graduate students. Army, Navy and Air Force are all options for the Michigan student. Listed below are all of the four-year, non-profit universities that offer at least two ROTC programs. We’ve highlighted some of the more affordable schools. All of these Michigan schools have shown dedication to economical education for service-oriented students.

College Name Tuition City ROTC - Army ROTC - Navy ROTC - Air Force
Eastern Michigan University $7,701 Ypsilanti Yes Yes Yes
University of Michigan-Dearborn $9,876 Dearborn Yes Yes Yes
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor $13,625 Ann Arbor Yes Yes Yes
Michigan Technological University $13,095 Houghton Yes No Yes
Michigan State University $13,211 East Lansing Yes No Yes

Best Online Schools in Michigan for Personal Attention

Michigan offers students a vast array of high-caliber universities and colleges. For many students, a high-quality educational environment is one that provides a workable ratio between faculty and students in the classroom. Each of the non-profit, four-year colleges listed have a student body of 5,000 or more, but the average course contains 19 students or less per professor.

College Name Student-Teacher-Ratio Undergraduate Students Tuition Type City
Saginaw Valley State University 20 to 1 10,884 $7,682 Public University Center
Davenport University 20 to 1 12,885 $12,672 Private not-for-profit Grand Rapids
Western Michigan University 20 to 1 21,897 $9,138 Public Kalamazoo
Baker College Center for Graduate Studies 18 to 1 9,077 $10,320 Private not-for-profit Flint
Eastern Michigan University 18 to 1 21,961 $7,701 Public Ypsilanti
Lake Superior State University 17 to 1 3,050 $9,540 Public Sault Ste Marie
University of Michigan-Flint 17 to 1 8,198 $8,676 Public Flint
Grand Valley State University 17 to 1 23,556 $10,078 Public Allendale
Olivet College 16 to 1 1,239 $21,150 Private not-for-profit Olivet
Cornerstone University 16 to 1 2,680 $22,690 Private not-for-profit Grand Rapids
Baker College of Cadillac 16 to 1 2,832 $7,740 Private not-for-profit Cadillac
Siena Heights University 16 to 1 2,884 $20,532 Private not-for-profit Adrian
Northwood University-Michigan 16 to 1 3,765 $20,040 Private not-for-profit Midland
University of Michigan-Dearborn 16 to 1 8,524 $9,876 Public Dearborn
Ferris State University 16 to 1 15,753 $10,192 Public Big Rapids
Wayne State University 16 to 1 24,300 $9,747 Public Detroit
Michigan State University 16 to 1 40,015 $13,211 Public East Lansing
Kuyper College 14 to 1 421 $17,400 Private not-for-profit Grand Rapids
Rochester College 14 to 1 1,261 $17,976 Private not-for-profit Rochester Hills
Kalamazoo College 14 to 1 1,421 $37,392 Private not-for-profit Kalamazoo
Adrian College 14 to 1 1,738 $28,606 Private not-for-profit Adrian
Spring Arbor University 14 to 1 3,769 $21,998 Private not-for-profit Spring Arbor
Yeshiva Gedolah of Greater Detroit 13 to 1 70 $5,700 Private not-for-profit Oak Park
Grace Bible College 13 to 1 455 $10,460 Private not-for-profit Wyoming
Alma College 13 to 1 1,437 $30,700 Private not-for-profit Alma
Albion College 13 to 1 1,558 $33,600 Private not-for-profit Albion
Kettering University 13 to 1 2,013 $33,946 Private not-for-profit Flint
Aquinas College 13 to 1 2,052 $25,070 Private not-for-profit Grand Rapids
Michigan Technological University 13 to 1 6,023 $13,095 Public Houghton
Cleary University 12 to 1 816 $18,480 Private not-for-profit Ann Arbor
Hope College 12 to 1 3,512 $27,650 Private not-for-profit Holland
University of Detroit Mercy 12 to 1 3,598 $34,530 Private not-for-profit Detroit
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor 12 to 1 28,243 $13,625 Public Ann Arbor
Great Lakes Christian College 11 to 1 252 $12,480 Private not-for-profit Lansing
The Robert B Miller College 11 to 1 567 $10,590 Private not-for-profit Battle Creek
Finlandia University 11 to 1 671 $19,980 Private not-for-profit Hancock
College for Creative Studies 11 to 1 1,402 $33,000 Private not-for-profit Detroit
Andrews University 11 to 1 2,316 $23,700 Private not-for-profit Berrien Springs
Lawrence Technological University 11 to 1 3,328 $27,300 Private not-for-profit Southfield
Madonna University 11 to 1 3,870 $15,180 Private not-for-profit Livonia
Calvin College 11 to 1 4,095 $26,480 Private not-for-profit Grand Rapids
Concordia University-Ann Arbor 10 to 1 553 $22,464 Private not-for-profit Ann Arbor
Marygrove College 10 to 1 1,169 $18,520 Private not-for-profit Detroit
Sacred Heart Major Seminary 6 to 1 313 $16,405 Private not-for-profit Detroit
Ecumenical Theological Seminary 4 to 1 23 $ Private not-for-profit Detroit

Best Online Schools in Michigan for Women in Tech

Michigan takes pride in having some of the best colleges for women in the tech field. While women are underrepresented in most of the country’s technology programs, these Michigan schools have tech and engineering gender ratios that are similar to the overall school population. Female-to-female mentorship programs in many Michigan colleges are also encouraging more women to enter the field. Women-only residence halls provide a positive, comfortable living environment for women in tech degree programs. With centers focused on the betterment of women in technology, these Michigan colleges offer the best higher education for females in this field.

College Name Tuition + Fees City Women in Tech Degrees Awarded Total Enrollment Institution Type
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor $12,994 Ann Arbor 545 40,225 Public
Michigan State University $12,622 East Lansing 293 41,596 Public
Michigan Technological University $13,353 Houghton 180 6,215 Public
Wayne State University $10,190 Detroit 128 18,637 Public
Ferris State University $10,354 Big Rapids 127 10,024 Public
Western Michigan University $9,982 Kalamazoo 90 18,075 Public
Siena Heights University $21,152 Adrian 78 1,239 Private Not for Profit
Eastern Michigan University $9,026 Ypsilanti 75 13,905 Public
Central Michigan University $10,950 Mount Pleasant 69 20,880 Public
University of Michigan-Dearborn $10,250 Dearborn 63 5,126 Public
Oakland University $10,230 Rochester Hills 61 13,061 Public
Kettering University $33,946 Flint 60 1,720 Private Not for Profit
Lawrence Technological University $27,870 Southfield 58 1,486 Private Not for Profit
Grand Valley State University $10,078 Allendale 30 19,575 Public
University of Michigan-Flint $9,028 Flint 20 4,861 Public
Saginaw Valley State University $8,120 University Center 18 8,121 Public
University of Detroit Mercy $34,530 Detroit 16 3,900 Private Not for Profit
Andrews University $24,478 Berrien Springs 15 2,420 Private Not for Profit
Walsh College of Accountancy and Business Administration N/A Troy 14 235 Private Not for Profit
College for Creative Studies $34,380 Detroit 13 1,156 Private Not for Profit
Northern Michigan University $8,709 Marquette 11 7,976 Public
Hope College $27,710 Holland 11 3,127 Private Not for Profit
Madonna University $15,300 Livonia 10 1,733 Private Not for Profit
Baker College of Jackson $7,740 Jackson 6 1,491 Private Not for Profit
Marygrove College $18,900 Detroit 6 664 Private Not for Profit
Calvin College $26,705 Grand Rapids 5 3,769 Private Not for Profit

Best Online Schools in Michigan for Fighting for Families

There are many online schools in Michigan designed to prepare the next generation of social workers for rewarding careers assisting children and families. Recognizing that the field of social work is predicted to have some of the largest growth, these programs have met the challenge with unparalleled academic opportunities. New social work students have access to clinical settings, field study and an array of specialization areas. With excellent scholarship options combined with top rankings and academic facilities, these Michigan schools are unsurpassed in their social work programs.

College Name City Social Degrees Awarded Women Men Tuition & Fees Total Enrollment
Wayne State University Detroit 475 403 72 $10,190 18,637
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Ann Arbor 450 362 88 $12,994 40,225
Michigan State University East Lansing 350 264 86 $12,622 41,596
Grand Valley State University Allendale 300 255 45 $10,078 19,575
Western Michigan University Kalamazoo 231 179 52 $9,982 18,075
Eastern Michigan University Ypsilanti 202 169 33 $9,026 13,905
Oakland University Rochester Hills 128 89 39 $10,230 13,061
Saginaw Valley State University University Center 105 80 25 $8,120 8,121
Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant 100 78 22 $10,950 20,880
Spring Arbor University Spring Arbor 98 88 10 $22,538 2,764
University of Michigan-Flint Flint 62 51 11 $9,028 4,861
Ferris State University Big Rapids 54 43 11 $10,354 10,024
Madonna University Livonia 52 45 7 $15,300 1,733
Hope College Holland 48 37 11 $27,710 3,127
Calvin College Grand Rapids 44 35 9 $26,705 3,769
Northern Michigan University Marquette 44 36 8 $8,709 7,976
Andrews University Berrien Springs 38 30 8 $24,478 2,420
Marygrove College Detroit 28 27 1 $18,900 664
Aquinas College Grand Rapids 23 16 7 $25,250 1,691
University of Michigan-Dearborn Dearborn 18 13 5 $10,250 5,126
University of Detroit Mercy Detroit 14 12 2 $34,530 3,900
Kuyper College Grand Rapids 14 14 $17,950 276
Adrian College Adrian 13 9 4 $29,156 1,621
Albion College Albion 11 4 7 $34,194 1,492
Cornerstone University Grand Rapids 10 10 $23,260 2,049
Olivet College Olivet 10 7 3 $21,971 995
Siena Heights University Adrian 9 8 1 $21,152 1,239
Alma College Alma 8 7 1 $30,960 1,379
Lake Superior State University Sault Ste Marie 8 8 $9,640 2,243