California K-12 Online Schools

The state offers supplemental learning for grades 6-8, though none for K-5 at this point. Fully-online school is available for K-8, however. At least 42 fully-online K-12 schools combine to provide virtual learning for all students in the state. According to the California Department of Education, over 56,000 students are taking one or more online classes, and over 14,000 students are taking at least 50 percent of their course load online. High school students also have the opportunity to get a jump-start on earning college credit earning their high school diploma by taking online courses via the California Community College System.

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Search School Name
School Type
28 Results
California Virtual Academies K - 12 Simi Valley Both Live/On-Demand Public (866) 339-6790
Elk Grove Unified School District Virtual Academy K - 12 Sacramento Both Live/On-Demand Public (916) 686-7747
Laurel Springs School K - 12 Ojai Both Live/On-Demand Private (800) 377-5890
Oak Knoll Virtual Academy K - 12 Glendora Both Live/On-Demand Public (626) 914-3961
Pacific View Charter School K - 12 Oceanside Both Live/On-Demand Public (760) 757-0161
EPGY Online High School 7 - 12 Stanford Both Live/On-Demand Private (800) 372-3749
Halstrom High School Online 7 - 12 Vista Both Live/On-Demand Private (760) 639-4900
iQ Academy California - Los Angeles 6 - 12 Rowland Heights Both Live/On-Demand Public (888) 997-4722
Riverside Virtual School 6 - 12 Riverside Both Live/On-Demand Public (951) 276-2006
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California Online Colleges and Universities

California has a large community college system, as well as two large university systems: University of California (UC), and California State Universities (CSU). Both entities have a growing collection of online courses and full degree programs The University of California system offers its UC Online Education program, which expands accessibility to high-demand courses while providing the flexibility of online. There are also a number of private and for-profit colleges that offer online courses, certificates and degrees in a variety of subject areas.

California Community College System

The California Community College (CCC) System is composed of 112 two-year public institutions that are organized into 72 districts across the state. As one of the largest higher education systems in the nation, it serves approximately 2.4 million students. With its focus on job-readiness and accessibility, the system offers a broad range of education options, from professional training and certification to academic and technical associate degrees. The CCC system is also becoming well-known for its alternative modes of learning, including online courses, off-campus classes in non-traditional facilities like high schools and shopping malls, and study abroad programs at select campuses.

Although there is a wealth of education options to prepare students for a career within two years or less, the system does allow students to transfer to a four-year institution to earn a bachelor’s degree.

Search School Name
Degree Levels
9 Results
Santa Ana College 1530 W. 17th Street Santa Ana +
Citrus College 1000 W Foothill Blvd Glendora +
West Hills College Lemoore 555 College Avenue Lemoore +
West Hills College Coalinga 300 Cherry Lane Coalinga +
Los Angeles Harbor College 1111 Figueroa Place Wilmington +
Monterey Peninsula College 980 Fremont St Monterey +
West Los Angeles College 9000 Overland Avenue Culver City +
Foothill College 12345 El Monte Rd Los Altos Hills +
Santa Barbara City College 721 Cliff Drive Santa Barbara +
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California State University

The second tier within California’s higher education system is the state university level, which consists of 23 four-year campuses that offer more than 2,700 undergraduate and certificate programs. According to the California State University website, the CSU system, which serves around 437,000 students, produces the most job-ready graduates in industries such as public administration, social work, engineering and information technology, life sciences and biomedicine, and business and professional services.

University of California

The UC system is home to nine undergraduate four-year public institutions, as well as the University of California San Francisco, which offers professional and graduate degree programs exclusively in health sciences. Serving 233,000 students, this system is well-known for its academic excellence, including world-renowned faculty and staff, medical centers, laboratories, research centers and innovations in the fields of biotechnology, computer science, art and architecture.

Private Nonprofit Colleges in California

Beyond its significant public education options, California is also home to more than 75 private nonprofit colleges and universities, ranging from small liberal arts colleges to professional schools in specialized areas such as business, law and medicine. This system enrolls more than 20 percent of the state’s undergraduate student population and over 50 percent of its graduate student population. Unlike the UC and CSU systems, these colleges and universities have their own governing boards, which allows each school to offer diverse, unique academic opportunities tailored to the needs of various interests, values and goals.

California Post-Secondary Spotlight

University of California, Berkeley

While the University of California, Berkeley does not currently offer full degrees online, it does offer a number of Web-based courses in a range of academic areas, including art and design, business, education, and technology and information management. Online courses are offered in one of two ways: continuous enrollment or fixed-date enrollment. Continuing enrollment is offered year-round and allows students to begin a course at any time, as long as they are completed within 180 days from the date of enrollment. Fixed-date courses are term-based and have set start and end dates. Students must complete fixed-date courses within the specified timeframe.

Most of UC Berkeley’s online courses require a final examination. All exams must be supervised by an acceptable proctor, such as a professional or school testing center, high school principal or administrator, college or university faculty or administrator, U.S. Embassy office staff or military education officer.

To find out more about online education at Cal, visit

California State University East Bay

California State University East Bay offers a number of online degree and certificate programs, as well as continuing education courses, for students who are unable to come to campus on a regular basis. Online students can choose from undergraduate degree programs in business administration or women’s studies. Online graduate-level programs are available in education, education leadership and health care administration. In addition to degree options, Cal State East Bay also offers certificate programs for academic credit or continuing education (CEU) credit in subjects such as online teaching and learning, pharmacy technician, and medical terminology.

For more information on distance learning options at Cal State East Bay, visit

University of Southern California (USCNow)

The University of Southern California’s USCNow gives students a flexible way to earn a degree from a world-renowned institution. These programs focus exclusively on graduate-level study, with master’s degrees and graduate certificates available in business, communication, engineering, dentistry, social work and more. In most cases, USCNow’s admission requirements mirror those of USC’s campus-based graduate programs, which includes a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, a satisfactory GRE or GMAT score, an excellent GPA and strong moral character.

One distinguishing aspect of USCNow is the daily use of technology. In addition to a standard computer and web browser, students are encouraged to acquire and maintain a web camera and chat software with video capability. Programs are also available via iPhone and iPad applications.

Many degrees can be earned fully online through Rutgers, such as a doctorate in nursing, a master’s in public administration and a master’s in biomedical engineering. Distance learners can complete coursework at their convenience while still benefitting from small classes and frequent interactions with professors. Non-credit professional development, continuing education and individual online courses are also available.

For a full list of these online schools in California, visit USCNow’s online program page at

California State University – Fullerton (Online Advantage)

California State University Fullerton’s Online Advantage offers two fully-virtual degree programs at the bachelor’s level: a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration. Admission requires completion of all lower division courses and between 60 – 69 credits from a community college or another regionally accredited post-secondary institution. Students also need a C or better average in prior coursework for general acceptance.

Anyone who fails to meet Fullerton’s credit requirements may apply for conditional admission. In general, this means the student is either completing the coursework during the admission cycle, or plans to take the necessary courses while in the actual program. Whether granted standard or conditional admission, students must keep pace with their peers. This cohort-based method organizes students into groups that stick together throughout the length of the program.

For more information about California State University Fullerton’s online programs, visit the school’s Online Advantage homepage at

California State University – Dominguez Hills (Dominguez Online)

California State University Dominguez Hills offers the most distance learning options in the California State University system, including nine bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in a variety of academic areas, such as quality assurance, humanities and nursing, as well as MBA and MPA programs. Unlike many of its CSU partners, Dominguez Hills boasts seven online certificate programs for students looking to earn a specific, career-focused credential in a flexible environment.

CSU Dominguez Hills utilizes two types of distance learning delivery systems: Blackboard and TV/Internet broadcasting. Blackboard classes leverage the learning management system (LMS) to facilitate assignment submission, exam completion and student/professor interaction. The TV/Internet classes occur live on the school’s website and run on a set schedule. The college also archives footage on its YouTube channel. Finally, Dominguez Online’s Young Scholar program allows high school students to earn college credit for $3.50 per semester, up to six credits.

For more information about California State University Dominguez Online programs, visit

Best Online Schools in California for 2015-2016

Score Student/teacher ratio Financial aid Cost more
1 Monterey Peninsula College 99.68 26:1 66%

Distance students have several options for associate's degree programs at Monterey Peninsula College. Curriculum fulfills general education requirements while imparting information literacy, business, computer science, and technology skills. In additional to associate's degrees, students can also earn certificates through online coursework. Topics of study include history, social sciences, business administration, and nutrition. Some programs, such as the early childhood education track, require fieldwork that must be completed in person. New and current online students at MPC can access tutorials and orientations that outline how to use the online learning platform, how to find classes, how to access student services, and more.

2 West Los Angeles College 99.06 31:1 76%

West Los Angeles College's online programs include general programs that prepare students to transfer to four-year institutions, such as business, English, and liberal arts, as well as more specific programs for career tracks such as real estate and fire technology. Students can earn nearly all credits for the online programs as LACCD; math courses can be taken online through one of the school's sister colleges. International students can earn an associate's degree in business administration or economics online through LACCD as well, with no need to leave their country or acquire a student visa. These credits can then be transferred if the student wishes to come to the U.S. to earn a bachelor's degree.

3 Los Angeles Harbor College 98.91 35:1 73%

Students interested in public safety careers can pursue one of two online associate's degrees at Los Angeles Harbor College. The Administration of Justice and Fire Technology programs can be completed fully online, with a flexible schedule and no on-campus meetings. However, students may be required to attend some proctored exams. Courses are not self-paced, but instead follow a traditional schedule that includes assignments, readings, and testing for specific dates. Students are expected to communicate with peers and instructors frequently for an interactive learning experience. Courses use the Etudes online learning management system, and the school offers help for new and current online students and Etudes tutorials to assist learners in using the system effectively.

4 West Hills College-Coalinga 98.68 27:1 82%

Students over the age of 21 can complete a number of associate's degrees fully online at West Hills Community College. Younger students can also take the majority of their courses online; however they must take two units of physical education on campus. Available programs include law enforcement, math and science, psychology, and computer information systems, among others. Many students in the program are parents of young children or working professionals who require a flexible class schedule. Course materials are available 24 hours a day, and students can expect to spend about 10-15 hours per week on each online class.

5 Foothill College 98.15 24:1 31%

Foothill College's online offerings range from art history to psychology, allowing students to complete an associate's degree, certificate of achievement, career certificate, or certificate of proficiency while maintaining a busy personal or professional schedule. Most online courses require no on-campus presence; for those that have proctored exams, students can take tests on campus or through an arranged proctor service at a more convenient location. Students at Foothill can monitor their degree progress online through the DegreeWorks program. This allows students to see what courses they have completed and what courses they need to graduate, calculate how long it would take to graduate if they changed majors, view their grade point average, and more.

6 Santa Ana College 98.14 38:1 77%

The Online Degree Pathway Program at Santa Ana College is open to new or existing students of the college who wish to earn an associate's degree in business administration or liberal arts. The two-year degree groups students into cohorts of 30-35 participants who progress through a set sequence of courses together. Courses are held in an eight-week format, and most students take two classes per session. The program also provides activities and mixers for online students to meet one another and form professional connections. Students are required to participate in at least two of these activities each year.

7 Santa Barbara City College 96.78 47:1 42%

Online programs at Santa Barbara City College offer distance students an opportunity to earn an associate's degree, certificate, skill competency award, or department award through fully online coursework. Virtual classrooms are available at all times, and students are encouraged to ask questions to their professors and interact with classmates through bulletin boards, chat rooms, and email. Students new to online learning may want to complete COMP 103, a one-credit course that introduces the web and electronic communication. The course is self-paced, so students can take it prior to beginning their online degree in order to ensure that they will be comfortable with the technologies used in their program.

8 Citrus College 96.33 33:1 64%

Citrus College has five associate of arts and two associate of science degrees that can be completed through online coursework. Classes are delivered through Blackboard, a platform where students can access course materials, communicate with peers and professors, and submit assignments and assessments. Some of Blackboard's features can be accessed by mobile devices including iPhones and iPads, and Android and Blackberry devices. Many of the programs are designed for students who plan to transfer to a four-year university upon graduation. They include required general education courses, as well as major-specific courses, that can apply towards the student's bachelor's degree.

Score Student/teacher ratio Financial aid Cost more
1 University of La Verne 98.37 17:1 97%

Business and education students may find the right online program at the University of La Verne. Courses at the undergraduate and graduate level use the Blackboard learning management system for all class activities, including distribution of materials, submission of assignments, and administration of exams. Courses are held in ten week terms, and students should anticipate about eight to ten hours of work each week for every course. Full- and part-time course loads are permitted, but students must follow minimum and maximum credit allowances per semester. Undergraduates take four units for part time and eight units for full time, and graduate students take three units for part time and six units for full time study.

2 Azusa Pacific University 97.98 14:1 92%

Azusa Pacific University's online programs bring a Christian viewpoint to their academics, with topics of study ranging from art history to management. Courses are held with the Sakai learning management system in an asynchronous format, allowing students to access materials and complete assignments at their convenience throughout the week. Online students at the university have access to many of the same resources as on-campus students, such as tutoring and disability services, and assistance for military and veterans. The school offers additional support through its Center for Career and Calling. Students can access tips about landing internships and jobs, and schedule an appointment to discuss majors of interest, career exploration, and resume or cover letter writing with career counselors.

3 Hope International University 97.83 14:1 98%

With four bachelor's and one associate's degree online, Hope International University has a thriving distance degree program with a Christian focus. Prospective students can attend an information session webinar about their specific program of interest, or sample an online course. Technologies used in the university's distance courses include video lectures, chat tools, and forums for discussion with peers and instructors. Each student is assigned an academic coach to guide course selection and ensure on-time graduation. Graduates can access a job portal, as well as resume and cover letter writing tips, through the university's career services.

4 Vanguard University 97.68 15:1 99%

Vanguard University offers an online associate's or bachelor's degree program in early childhood education. Students learn about child development from a Christian worldview, with curriculum addressing families and communities, principles and practices of teaching, and observation and assessment of young children. The university has another degree program with online courses that may suit working professionals: nurses local to the university can enroll in a hybrid program to earn a master's degree in nursing. Online courses are taught an in eight-week format, with three semesters each year. Students can access course materials at any time through the Moodle learning management system.

5 Shasta Bible College and Graduate School 97.61 5:1 100%

Students seeking a degree in a religious field may find what they're looking for at Shasta Bible College and Graduate School. The school offers certificates, associate's degrees, bachelor's degrees, and master's degrees through online coursework, with areas of study including biblical counseling, pastoral ministry, and Christian teacher education. Online and on-campus courses follow the same semester schedule, with 15 weeks of classes and one week for final exams. Semesters begin in August, January, and May. Courses are asynchronous and available at any time, and students typically have several days to respond to group discussions. Students with prior schooling, including college-level courses and AP units, can transfer credits towards their degree.

6 Touro University Worldwide 97.53 3:1 100%

Touro University Worldwide bases its online courses on project- and problem-based models, with interactive learning and assessment. Curriculum is focused on career advancement combined with intellectual and ethical growth. Programs can lead to degrees as the associate, bachelor, graduate, and doctoral levels. All courses are fully online, and even course materials are online - there are no required textbooks. Courses are given in an accelerated eight-week format. The school welcomes transfer students, and awards credits not only for prior schooling but also for challenge examinations and standardized tests. Active and former military may earn credits from their training or experience, as well.

7 World Mission University 97.46 7:1 100%

World Mission University's online degree programs are designed to offer religious education to Koreans around the country and internationally. Students study Christian counseling, divinity, and theology, among other topics, and learn to serve their church and community. Instruction is delivered in English. Courses use the Moodle online learning management system. All distance students at the university must take Moodle tutorial and pass a test on using the system before enrolling in any classes. The school accepts new students year-round. Students are expected to set their own schedule to keep up with readings and assignments, and to be proficient in basic technology skills.

8 Mount St Mary’s College 97.36 12:1 100%

Online students at Mount Saint Mary's College are supported by personal success coaches that work with them individually throughout their time at the school. Coaches are trained to provide guidance in personal, academic, and professional areas, with frequent communication through email, phone calls, and social media. The school enrolls new students every eight week. Students can earn associate's or bachelor's degrees, with topics of study including business administration, liberal arts, and gerontology. Current students and graduates of the program have access to an online job database that includes paid positions, internships, and volunteer opportunities.

9 California Baptist University 97.35 18:1 95%

With over 45 degree programs available online, California Baptist University distance programs in a wide variety of subject areas, including graphic design, public health, and business administration. Courses are held in an eight-week format and can be taken fully online, as a hybrid online/on-campus combination, or as evening in-person sessions. Students receive support from an enrollment counselor, a student service advisor, and the academic success center, all available online or over the phone. An online career services team is available as well, offering tips for resumes writing and interviews, as well as job search tools.

10 Concordia University-Irvine 96.79 11:1 100%

All of Concordia University's online courses are at least partially synchronous, with real-time virtual classrooms that meet at a set day and time. This is combined with independent work including reading, completing assignments, and contributing to discussion forums, to build students' marketable skills and develop a professional network amongst peers and instructors. Students local to the Southern California region can also opt for hybrid programs, with some online and some in-person classes. In addition to program-specific courses, students can complete all general education requirements online. These courses can contribute towards an online degree from the university, or can serve as general education transfer credits towards a program at another school.

11 Humboldt State University 96.66 21:1 74%

Humboldt State University's online offerings include a bachelor's degree completion program in leadership studies. This interdisciplinary program culminates in a personal leadership project, and guides students to develop a career plan that they can follow after graduation. The school also offers online master's and certificate programs. Distance courses are delivered using the Moodle learning management system for distribution of materials, communication with peers and instructors, and submission of assignments and assessments. Students can complete work on their own schedule, with an asynchronous course format that is flexible for work or personal schedules. The university encourages active engagement amongst students, with online discussion forums and personalized attention from professors.

12 Bethesda University 95.05 6:1 29%

Students of religion, biblical studies, and divinity can find online degree programs at Bethesda University. Curriculum includes a strong foundation in Bible studies and theology that enables students to succeed in their chosen areas of study while thinking as Christians. Applicants will be reviewed by the university for their moral character, academic records, and religious commitment. Courses use the Moodle learning management platform. Through Moodle, students can register for courses, access course materials, and view their grades. All course syllabi are available on the university's website, so prospective students can view topics of study and course contents to determine if the school, program, or particular course is right for them.

13 National University 94.94 22:1 41%

Online programs at National University are available through five schools: business and management; education; engineering and computing; health and human services; and letters and sciences. The university's division of extended learning offers non-degree online course options, such as an autism education certificate and teacher development self-paced courses. Courses are flexible and asynchronous, allowing students to participate at any time during the week. Classes include the instructional and communication methods of email, lectures, exams, and readings, as well as multimedia-rich presentations and interactive technology. Those who need assistance can contact the university's Student Concierge Service, where advocates provide guidance in admissions, credentials, graduation, and more.

14 Golden Gate University 94.57 14:1 N/A

Golden Gate University offers online degree programs in 14 areas of study, many relating to management, finance, and technology. Prospective students can take a narrated tour or try a demonstration class to view how distance courses work and learn some tips on how to succeed in an online classroom. The university offers small class sizes and a seminar-style environment that promotes discussions and builds relationships among students and teachers. Classes for the school's online programs can be completed fully from a distance. Local students can also choose to enroll in hybrid classes that mix online and in-person instruction, or WebEnhanced classes that are in-person but use online tools to enhance curriculum.

15 California State University-Dominguez Hills 94.48 23:1 88%

Students at California State University - Dominguez Hills can choose from nine degree programs and seven certificates available through distance courses. While most courses are delivered online, the school also provides distance learning through live, interactive broadcasts on cable television, mobile devices, and the internet. Students view the broadcast on their device, and call or email during the show to ask questions and speak with the professor. Archives of these broadcasts are available for those who cannot view the live showing. High school students have the opportunity to take distance courses and earn college credits as well, through the university's Young Scholars Program.

16 California State University-Northridge 94.34 24:1 74%

"Midcareer professionals" are the target audience of California State University - Northridge's online degree programs. Curriculum is career-focused and provides students with marketable skills as they complete their bachelor's or master's degree. Many of the university's online programs are science- and health-based. Programs at the university follow the cohort model, where groups of students progress through the program at the same time, taking classes together from their first semester to graduation. This format is intended to build professional relationships and a supportive learning community that will benefit the student during schooling and after graduation. Students know from the onset what courses they will take each semester, and are guaranteed a spot in each required course.

17 Brandman University 94.17 14:1 N/A

Distance courses at Brandman University follow the Brandman iDEAL model: Instructional Design for Engaged Adult Learning. This model combines independent and collaborative online learning, and uses technology to enrich the educational experience. Sessions are held year-round, and online students can access the same student support services as on-campus students. Areas of study include education, nursing, business administration, and criminal justice, among others. Prospective students can view a demonstration course on the university's website. The demo includes information on what students can expect in class, how to access course information, technical requirements, and how to participate in class discussions.

18 California State University-Fullerton 94.08 24:1 66%

California State University's Fullerton Campus offers online degree completion programs at the bachelor's level, and fully online programs for graduate degrees or professional development. Some of the school's online programs, such as the bachelor's degree in business administration, follow a cohort model. This format puts students into groups that progress through the program together. Courses follow a weekly schedule, with assignments and participation requirements set for each week. Some courses may also require online chat sessions, and/or tests taken with an online proctoring service. No on-campus visits are required, but students are invited to participate in the university's graduation ceremony.

19 Cal State Online – The California State University 94.01 20:1 70%

Part of the California State University System, Cal State Online brings together the online education of the state university system's 23 campuses. Students at the school study business, engineering, library science, and other subject areas, with degree programs at the bachelor's, master's, and doctorate level. Graduates will receive a California State diploma, with no distinction that it was earned online. Creating a "green workforce" is one focus of curriculum at Cal State Online. The school aims to graduate students who can lead sustainable practices in business and work in management in environmental fields as these areas of study become increasingly important in California and nationwide.

20 Southern California Seminary 93.99 12:1 N/A

Southern California Seminary offers most of its degrees online, both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Religion-related degrees are available, as well as a number of degree programs that are not religious-specific. At the undergraduate level, the school offers everything from an Associate of Arts in Christian Ministry to a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies. There are even more graduate degrees available, ranging from a Master of Arts in Science and Religion to a Doctor of Psychology. Southern California Seminary also offers a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry, both highly sought-out degree programs in America.

21 California State University-San Marcos 93.92 24:1 73%

The online offerings at California State University San Marcos are plentiful. The school offers a master's degree in education fully online, as well as many credit and non-credit certificates and courses. These range in subjects from health care to legal studies to business to personal development. Also available is a fully online RN to BSN program for current nurses, with six start dates a year. Some of these online programs are funding-eligible, as well. California State University San Marcos also boasts having a number of faculty members who are nationally known authors.

22 Loma Linda University 93.67 3:1 N/A

Loma Linda University only requires its online students to come to campus twice: orientation and graduation. Otherwise, work can be done whenever and wherever. Online students even get program advisors ? not offered to online students at all schools. The university offers many programs online, with the School of Allied Health Professions offering the most. At the certificate and associate level, students can study online everything from lifestyle intervention to imaging informatics. At the undergraduate level, online bachelor's degree programs are in health care administration, radiation sciences and dental hygiene (a completion program). Master's and doctorate degree programs are also available online.

23 California State University-Chico 93.5 24:1 63%

Online students at California State University, Chico never have to come to campus. However, lectures are filmed, for the online student to stream, which brings the campus to the student. Online degrees are offered entirely online both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Online bachelor's degrees are offered in social sciences-multidisciplinary studies, social science-specialization studies, liberal studies and sociology. The school also offers a Master of Science in Nursing and a Career and Life Planning certificate completely online. Online students are also allowed to take whichever on-campus and summer courses they want, though it's not required.

24 Azusa Pacific Online University 93.02 17:1 83%

There are 36 degree programs offered online at Azusa Pacific University. These range from certificates to master's degree programs. Some topics include: nursing, special education, psychology, modern art history, criminal justice, health sciences, liberal studies and physical education. In other words: The offerings are many. The school even offers an MBA and a credential to become a disabilities specialist (a rare offering). The online format is interactive. Students engage in discussions with faculty and other students on a forum. There's also a way for students to chat with faculty and other students in real time, through an online chatting medium.

25 The Chicago School of Professional Psychology at Irvine 88.16 N/A N/A

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology offers a lot of online degree programs at all levels. Students can earn an online bachelor's degree in psychology, with a number of specializations to choose from. There are also many online master's degree programs available, from a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis to a Master of Art in Forensic Psychology. The school even offers online PhD programs, in different psychology fields such as business psychology and international psychology. Online students also benefit from a personal student advisor, a 24/7 online technology staff and career and alumni resources.

4 Year Online Colleges in California

Search School Name
School Type
Degree Levels
58 Results
University of San Diego Private not-for-profit 5998 Alcala Park San Diego +
California State University-Channel Islands Public One University Dr Camarillo +
Shasta Bible College and Graduate School Private not-for-profit 2951 Goodwater Ave. Redding +
Touro University Worldwide Private not-for-profit 10601 Calle Lee #179 Los Alamitos +
California Institute of Integral Studies Private not-for-profit 1453 Mission Street San Francisco +
Hope International University Private not-for-profit 2500 E Nutwood Ave Fullerton +
National University Private not-for-profit 11255 North Torrey Pines Road La Jolla +
Loma Linda University Private not-for-profit 11139 Anderson Street Loma Linda +
The Master's College and Seminary Private not-for-profit 21726 Placerita Canyon Road Santa Clarita +
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Best Online Schools in California: Post-Secondary

Best for Future Service Members

California offers much more than sunny skies and beaches; it’s also home to some of the best universities for students interested in serving their country. Along with a vast array of degree programs for undergraduate and graduate students, many online schools in California have impressive ROTC programs. Below are all of the nonprofit California schools that offer four-year degrees and at least two ROTC programs.

Tuition City ROTC - Army ROTC - Navy ROTC - Air Force
California State University-Los Angeles$5,472 Los Angeles Yes Yes Yes
San Diego State University$5,472 San Diego Yes Yes Yes
California State University-San Marcos$5,472 San Marcos Yes Yes Yes
University of California-Berkeley$11,220 Berkeley Yes Yes Yes
University of California-Davis$11,220 Davis Yes Yes Yes
University of California-Los Angeles$11,220 Los Angeles Yes Yes Yes
California State University-San Bernardino$5,472 San Bernardino Yes No Yes
California State University-Dominguez Hills$5,472 Carson Yes No Yes
California State University-Fresno$5,472 Fresno Yes No Yes
California State University-Long Beach$5,472 Long Beach Yes No Yes
California State University-Sacramento$5,472 Sacramento Yes No Yes
San Francisco State University$5,472 San Francisco Yes No Yes
San Jose State University$5,472 San Jose Yes No Yes
Sonoma State University$5,472 Rohnert Park Yes No Yes
California Maritime Academy$5,472 Vallejo No Yes Yes
University of California-Irvine$11,220 Irvine Yes No Yes
University of California-Riverside$11,220 Riverside Yes No Yes

Best for Personal Attention

Colleges and universities in California offer a range of high-end programs to students. Whether they’re seeking a school with a broad range of degrees and certificates or a training program focused on one subject, many students are searching for online schools in California that boast a high enrollment without the challenge of overcrowding. These four-year, nonprofit California colleges and universities offer enrollment with less than 20 students per instructor, on average.

La Sierra University 20 to 1 2,216$27,180 Private not-for-profit Riverside
SUM Bible College and Theological Seminary 19 to 1 361$7,800 Private not-for-profit Oakland
San Diego State University-Imperial Valley Campus 19 to 1 801$5,472 Public Calexico
University of California-Riverside 19 to 1 19,795$11,220 Public Riverside
University of California-Irvine 19 to 1 23,765$11,220 Public Irvine
University of California-San Diego 19 to 1 24,835$11,220 Public La Jolla
Palo Alto University 18 to 1 171$14,348 Private not-for-profit Palo Alto
California Baptist University 18 to 1 5,076$25,090 Private not-for-profit Riverside
University of California-Santa Cruz 18 to 1 16,977$11,220 Public Santa Cruz
San Diego Christian College 17 to 1 794$23,824 Private not-for-profit El Cajon
Patten University 17 to 1 1,484$8,036 Private not-for-profit Oakland
Vanguard University of Southern California 17 to 1 2,454$28,500 Private not-for-profit Costa Mesa
Biola University 17 to 1 4,628$31,004 Private not-for-profit La Mirada
University of La Verne 17 to 1 5,935$33,350 Private not-for-profit La Verne
University of California-Santa Barbara 17 to 1 20,236$11,220 Public Santa Barbara
University of California-Berkeley 17 to 1 28,774$11,220 Public Berkeley
California Institute of Integral Studies 16 to 1 121$24,960 Private not-for-profit San Francisco
Columbia College Hollywood 16 to 1 354$18,375 Private not-for-profit Tarzana
California Lutheran University 16 to 1 3,026$33,910 Private not-for-profit Thousand Oaks
Fresno Pacific University 16 to 1 3,314$24,960 Private not-for-profit Fresno
University of San Francisco 16 to 1 6,870$38,490 Private not-for-profit San Francisco
University of California-Davis 16 to 1 27,171$11,220 Public Davis
University of California-Los Angeles 16 to 1 29,421$11,220 Public Los Angeles
Pacific States University 15 to 1 24$18,740 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
Southern California Institute of Architecture 15 to 1 250$33,276 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
Golden Gate University-San Francisco 15 to 1 679$14,160 Private not-for-profit San Francisco
Menlo College 15 to 1 742$35,510 Private not-for-profit Atherton
California Maritime Academy 15 to 1 901$5,472 Public Vallejo
Marymount College 15 to 1 1,031$28,220 Private not-for-profit Rancho Palos Verdes
Simpson University 15 to 1 1,162$22,400 Private not-for-profit Redding
Concordia University-Irvine 15 to 1 1,843$27,900 Private not-for-profit Irvine
University of Redlands 15 to 1 3,894$39,038 Private not-for-profit Redlands
University of San Diego 15 to 1 5,853$39,486 Private not-for-profit San Diego
South Baylo University 14 to 1 248$7,650 Private not-for-profit Anaheim
Antioch University-Los Angeles 14 to 1 267$25,080 Private not-for-profit Culver City
Azusa Pacific Online University 14 to 1 308$14,400 Private not-for-profit Glendora
Alliant International University 14 to 1 469$14,880 Private not-for-profit San Diego
Holy Names University 14 to 1 990$31,260 Private not-for-profit Oakland
Hope International University 14 to 1 1,230$26,544 Private not-for-profit Fullerton
Pacific Union College 14 to 1 1,980$25,740 Private not-for-profit Angwin
Chapman University 14 to 1 5,747$41,040 Private not-for-profit Orange
California Christian College 13 to 1 43$8,060 Private not-for-profit Fresno
William Jessup University 13 to 1 1,132$21,452 Private not-for-profit Rocklin
Notre Dame de Namur University 13 to 1 1,321$30,202 Private not-for-profit Belmont
Whittier College 13 to 1 1,680$38,280 Private not-for-profit Whittier
Point Loma Nazarene University 13 to 1 2,494$28,900 Private not-for-profit San Diego
Mount St. Mary’s College 13 to 1 2,524$31,924 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
Pepperdine University 13 to 1 3,622$42,520 Private not-for-profit Malibu
University of the Pacific 13 to 1 4,086$37,800 Private not-for-profit Stockton
Santa Clara University 13 to 1 5,620$40,572 Private not-for-profit Santa Clara
Azusa Pacific University 13 to 1 6,394$30,236 Private not-for-profit Azusa
Touro University Worldwide 12 to 1 127$15,960 Private not-for-profit Los Alamitos
Epic Bible College 12 to 1 390$10,755 Private not-for-profit Sacramento
Pitzer College 12 to 1 1,131$43,136 Private not-for-profit Claremont
Westmont College 12 to 1 1,389$35,920 Private not-for-profit Santa Barbara
Saint Marys College of California 12 to 1 3,180$38,300 Private not-for-profit Moraga
Brandman University 12 to 1 5,878$10,243 Private not-for-profit Irvine
Stanford University 12 to 1 8,264$41,250 Private not-for-profit Stanford
Antioch University-Santa Barbara 11 to 1 208$16,812 Private not-for-profit Santa Barbara
King’s University 11 to 1 311$8,280 Private not-for-profit Van Nuys
Thomas Aquinas College 11 to 1 365$23,600 Private not-for-profit Santa Paula
Laguna College of Art and Design 11 to 1 462$25,000 Private not-for-profit Laguna Beach
San Francisco Art Institute 11 to 1 511$35,748 Private not-for-profit San Francisco
Mills College 11 to 1 1,007$38,850 Private not-for-profit Oakland
California College of the Arts 11 to 1 1,633$38,448 Private not-for-profit Oakland
Dominican University of California 11 to 1 1,843$38,600 Private not-for-profit San Rafael
Loyola Marymount University 11 to 1 6,395$38,212 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre 10 to 1 34$12,000 Private not-for-profit Blue Lake
Horizon University 10 to 1 84$6,300 Private not-for-profit San Diego
John Paul the Great Catholic University 10 to 1 160$23,400 Private not-for-profit San Diego
Pacific Oaks College 10 to 1 355$17,664 Private not-for-profit Pasadena
Scripps College 10 to 1 1,052$43,406 Private not-for-profit Claremont
Occidental College 10 to 1 2,191$43,490 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
Woodbury University 10 to 1 2,303$31,925 Private not-for-profit Burbank
John F Kennedy University 9 to 1 421$14,500 Private not-for-profit Pleasant Hill
Soka University of America 9 to 1 441$27,214 Private not-for-profit Aliso Viejo
Samuel Merritt University 9 to 1 842$39,456 Private not-for-profit Oakland
Southern California University of Health Sciences 9 to 1 866$0 Private not-for-profit Whittier
The Master’s College and Seminary 9 to 1 1,245$27,300 Private not-for-profit Santa Clarita
Claremont McKenna College 9 to 1 1,319$43,840 Private not-for-profit Claremont
Art Center College of Design 9 to 1 2,282$35,052 Private not-for-profit Pasadena
National University 9 to 1 14,156$11,736 Private not-for-profit La Jolla
University of Southern California 9 to 1 19,094$43,722 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
The University of America 8 to 1 22$2,500 Private not-for-profit Murrieta
Harvey Mudd College 8 to 1 785$44,159 Private not-for-profit Claremont
Pomona College 8 to 1 1,600$41,120 Private not-for-profit Claremont
Providence Christian College 7 to 1 71$21,936 Private not-for-profit Pasadena
World Mission University 7 to 1 158$4,560 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
San Francisco Conservatory of Music 7 to 1 190$37,600 Private not-for-profit San Francisco
California Institute of the Arts 7 to 1 923$38,438 Private not-for-profit Valencia
Otis College of Art and Design 7 to 1 1,200$36,350 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
University of the West 6 to 1 104$8,400 Private not-for-profit Rosemead
Bethesda University of California 6 to 1 240$8,200 Private not-for-profit Anaheim
Coleman University 6 to 1 1,024$19,500 Private not-for-profit San Diego
Shasta Bible College and Graduate School 5 to 1 59$9,600 Private not-for-profit Redding
Southern California Seminary 5 to 1 123$13,320 Private not-for-profit El Cajon
Charles R Drew University of Medicine and Science 4 to 1 125$11,549 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
American Jewish University 4 to 1 136$25,992 Private not-for-profit Los Angeles
California Institute of Technology 3 to 1 1,013$38,085 Private not-for-profit Pasadena
Loma Linda University 3 to 1 1,580$27,600 Private not-for-profit Loma Linda
Bergin University of Canine Studies 2 to 1 25$8,250 Private not-for-profit Santa Rosa
Monterey Institute of International Studies 1 to 1 17$33,950 Private not-for-profit Monterey
American Conservatory Theater 1 to 1 80$20,500 Private not-for-profit San Francisco

Best for Women in Technology

Head west to California to find some of the nation’s best colleges for women in technology. Though STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) graduates earn the highest paychecks when entering the workforce, women have historically been a small percentage of these classes. However, some online schools in California are breaking that stereotype. Many schools offer mentorship programs that enable new female tech students to learn from their more experienced counterparts. Some schools are also offering all-female residences and college-funded centers focusing on women in technology. We’ve catalogued the best California colleges for women in technology and engineering.

Stanford University$42,225 Stanford 493 15,294 Private Not for Profit
University of Southern California$44,463 Los Angeles 444 33,082 Private Not for Profit
University of California-Berkeley$12,874 Berkeley 331 34,450 Public
San Jose State University$6,852 San Jose 290 23,054 Public
University of California-Los Angeles$12,692 Los Angeles 269 38,128 Public
University of California-Davis$13,877 Davis 266 30,449 Public
University of California-San Diego$13,217 La Jolla 225 27,677 Public
University of California-Irvine$13,122 Irvine 190 26,344 Public
California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo$8,043 San Luis Obispo 175 17,843 Public
Santa Clara University$40,572 Santa Clara 132 6,963 Private Not for Profit
California State Polytechnic University-Pomona$6,125 Pomona 127 17,417 Public
California State University-Northridge$6,296 Northridge 99 27,763 Public
California State University-Long Beach$6,052 Long Beach 82 27,356 Public
San Diego State University$6,578 San Diego 77 25,091 Public
University of California-Riverside$12,960 Riverside 71 20,322 Public
California Institute of Technology$39,588 Pasadena 70 2,231 Private Not for Profit
California State University-Los Angeles$6,101 Los Angeles 69 16,359 Public
California State University-Fullerton$6,195 Fullerton 66 26,824 Public
National University$11,736 La Jolla 64 7,721 Private Not for Profit
Naval Postgraduate SchoolN/A Monterey 56 1,783 Public
Northwestern Polytechnic University$8,170 Fremont 55 652 Private Not for Profit
International Technological UniversityN/A San Jose 48 843 Private Not for Profit
California State University-Chico$6,890 Chico 45 14,422 Public
University of California-Santa Barbara$13,671 Santa Barbara 44 21,199 Public
California State University-Sacramento$6,620 Sacramento 42 22,300 Public
Loyola Marymount University$39,125 Los Angeles 42 8,428 Private Not for Profit
California State University-Fresno$6,228 Fresno 41 18,430 Public
San Francisco State University$6,440 San Francisco 38 23,826 Public
California Institute of the Arts$39,014 Valencia 28 1,423 Private Not for Profit
University of California-Santa Cruz$13,416 Santa Cruz 26 16,926 Public
Harvey Mudd College$44,442 Claremont 25 780 Private Not for Profit
University of the Pacific$38,320 Stockton 21 5,987 Private Not for Profit
California State University-Dominguez Hills$6,095 Carson 20 8,980 Public
California State University-Channel Islands$6,216 Camarillo 20 3,417 Public
Pepperdine University$42,772 Malibu 18 5,333 Private Not for Profit
Loma Linda UniversityN/A Loma Linda 17 3,515 Private Not for Profit
University of San Francisco$38,884 San Francisco 16 9,053 Private Not for Profit
Humboldt State University$7,135 Arcata 15 7,241 Public
Brandman UniversityN/A Irvine 15 2,739 Private Not for Profit
University of California-Merced$13,070 Merced 13 5,158 Public
California State University-San Marcos$6,452 San Marcos 11 7,677 Public
University of San Diego$39,970 San Diego 11 6,969 Private Not for Profit
California State University-Monterey Bay$5,963 Seaside 11 4,639 Public
University of California-San FranciscoN/A San Francisco 7 3,054 Public
California Maritime Academy$6,536 Vallejo 7 860 Public
Claremont McKenna College$44,085 Claremont 6 1,313 Private Not for Profit
California State University-East Bay$6,309 Hayward 5 10,506 Public
California College of the Arts$38,798 Oakland 5 1,856 Private Not for Profit

Schools Fighting for Families

California is home to some of the best programs for students who are focused on families within the social work curriculum. With one of the largest job market growth rates in any field, social work is an excellent career choice. These California colleges fully prepare students for careers centered on children, youth and families. These programs grant access to both class and clinical settings, and offer unsurpassed internships in preparation for a career helping families. These online schools in California also provide abundant scholarship opportunities and field study openings. Based on awards, rankings, facilities and academic opportunities, we’ve compiled the very best California colleges for family-focused social work.

University of California-Santa Barbara Santa Barbara 713 489 224 $13,671 21,199
University of Southern California Los Angeles 652 538 114 $44,463 33,082
California State University-Northridge Northridge 604 434 170 $6,296 27,763
University of California-Berkeley Berkeley 523 395 128 $12,874 34,450
University of California-Los Angeles Los Angeles 495 364 131 $12,692 38,128
California State University-Long Beach Long Beach 433 357 76 $6,052 27,356
California State University-Los Angeles Los Angeles 387 294 93 $6,101 16,359
California State University-Sacramento Sacramento 376 300 76 $6,620 22,300
San Jose State University San Jose 356 278 78 $6,852 23,054
University of California-Irvine Irvine 342 230 112 $13,122 26,344
California State University-Fullerton Fullerton 333 269 64 $6,195 26,824
University of California-Davis Davis 296 209 87 $13,877 30,449
San Diego State University San Diego 272 217 55 $6,578 25,091
California State University-Dominguez Hills Carson 269 214 55 $6,095 8,980
University of California-Riverside Riverside 267 185 82 $12,960 20,322
University of California-Santa Cruz Santa Cruz 262 188 74 $13,416 16,926
California State University-Fresno Fresno 256 208 48 $6,228 18,430
California State University-San Bernardino San Bernardino 249 198 51 $6,327 13,996
San Francisco State University San Francisco 226 168 58 $6,440 23,826
California State University-East Bay Hayward 224 178 46 $6,309 10,506
California State University-Chico Chico 180 146 34 $6,890 14,422
University of California-San Diego La Jolla 177 126 51 $13,217 27,677
California State University-Bakersfield Bakersfield 169 142 27 $6,709 6,726
California State University-Stanislaus Turlock 160 131 29 $6,582 7,129
Azusa Pacific University Azusa 138 116 22 $31,076 7,002
California State Polytechnic University-Pomona Pomona 128 90 38 $6,125 17,417
California State University-San Marcos San Marcos 123 101 22 $6,452 7,677
Sonoma State University Rohnert Park 109 77 32 $7,162 7,540
Humboldt State University Arcata 82 59 23 $7,135 7,241
Mount St. Mary’s College Los Angeles 79 78 1 $32,894 2,165
California State University-Channel Islands Camarillo 79 58 21 $6,216 3,417
Brandman University Irvine 70 55 15 N/A 2,739
University of San Diego San Diego 53 43 10 $39,970 6,969
Loyola Marymount University Los Angeles 51 32 19 $39,125 8,428
University of San Francisco San Francisco 48 42 6 $38,884 9,053
Stanford University Stanford 45 31 14 $42,225 15,294
Biola University La Mirada 40 33 7 $31,004 4,912
Loma Linda University Loma Linda 40 35 5 N/A 3,515
Santa Clara University Santa Clara 34 25 9 $40,572 6,963
Occidental College Los Angeles 30 25 5 $44,570 2,117
California Baptist University Riverside 27 23 4 $26,900 4,398
Chapman University Orange 26 20 6 $42,084 6,449
Vanguard University of Southern California Costa Mesa 23 19 4 $28,500 1,550
University of La Verne La Verne 22 13 9 $33,350 4,908
Point Loma Nazarene University San Diego 22 14 8 $29,510 2,927
National University La Jolla 21 18 3 $11,736 7,721
University of Redlands Redlands 21 17 4 $39,338 3,579
Pepperdine University Malibu 20 18 2 $42,772 5,333
University of the Pacific Stockton 19 13 6 $38,320 5,987
Pitzer College Claremont 18 14 4 $43,402 1,058
Saint Marys College of California Moraga 18 11 7 $38,450 3,342
Fresno Pacific University Fresno 17 14 3 $25,336 2,658
Notre Dame de Namur University Belmont 17 14 3 $30,522 1,004
Pomona College Claremont 17 10 7 $41,438 1,572
Mills College Oakland 16 16 0 $40,080 1,407
University of California-Merced Merced 16 11 5 $13,070 5,158
Westmont College Santa Barbara 15 15 0 $37,020 1,339
Whittier College Whittier 15 11 4 $38,640 2,156
California Lutheran University Thousand Oaks 13 12 1 $34,360 3,395
La Sierra University Riverside 12 11 1 $28,314 1,890
Alliant International University San Diego 11 4 7 $15,190 2,327
California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo San Luis Obispo 10 8 2 $8,043 17,843
Pacific Union College Angwin 7 6 1 $26,640 1,358