Best Online Teaching Programs 2022

Earning a teaching degree can lead to a rewarding career helping students. Here, we list the best online teaching programs available.

Updated October 4, 2022 • 6 Min Read

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Best Online Teaching Programs

Teachers educate new generations and empower students to become problem-solvers. These professionals help promote advancements in all industries.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects education, training, and library occupations to grow 10% from 2020-2030.

Aspiring educators can choose from in-person and online teaching programs. This guide provides information about the best online teaching degrees and steps for becoming a licensed educator.

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Questions About Teaching Programs


Can I become a teacher without a teaching degree?

Most states allow individuals without teaching degrees to become educators. These professionals must complete an alternative licensure program.

Do teachers specialize?

Middle school and high school teachers usually specialize in teaching one or two subjects. Elementary art, music, and physical education teachers also specialize.

Can I teach without a degree?

State teaching credentials require at least a bachelor's degree. Educators at homeschooling co-ops and private schools may not need licensure or a degree.

AccreditedSchoolsOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Explore programs of your interests with the high-quality standards and flexibility you need to take your career to the next level.

Best Online Teaching Programs

#1

Liberty University

School Information
Location Lynchburg, Virginia
Admission Rate 51%
Graduation Rate 47%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 92% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Fast Facts

School Type: Private

Concentrations Available: Childhood development, curriculum preparation, and classroom experience

Accredited By: National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education 

Do Distance Learners Pay In-State Tuition? Yes

Liberty is a Christian college that has offered distance learning since 1985. The school offers a non-licensure associate in education degree that students can complete in less than two years. 

Core courses cover learning theory and portfolio development. Learners also study classroom management and childhood psychology. Graduates may work as paraeducators or early childhood educators.

Students can transfer the degree's 60 credits toward a bachelor's degree with a licensure track. Liberty's online bachelor's in teaching degree emphasizes childhood development, curriculum preparation, and classroom experience. Online learners complete one semester of teaching in their community and 90 online practicum hours.

Liberty offers eight start dates. Applicants need a minimum 2.0 GPA. 

Available Scholarships: Students with a parent serving full time on a foreign mission field may apply for the Missionary Kid Scholarship. The award is open to first-year students younger than 24 who attend Liberty full time. 

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#2

Florida Gateway College

School Information
Location Lake City, Florida
Graduation Rate 53%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 63% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Fast Facts

School Type: Public

Concentrations Available: Early childhood education inclusion, infant and toddler, child development early intervention, and preschool

Accredited By: N/A

Do Distance Learners Pay In-State Tuition? No

FGC's online teaching degrees provide traditional and alternative pathways to earn a Florida teacher certification. Online learners take one of three tracks: early childhood education, elementary education, or the educator preparation institute.

Students with a bachelor's degree in a non-education major can enroll in the educator preparation institute track. Those with a bachelor's in teaching can enroll in the elementary education track.

The 120-credit degree offers specializations in early childhood education, infant and toddler education, child development, early intervention, and preschool education.

Applicants need an associate degree from a regionally accredited college and a 2.5 GPA. Depending on the program, applicants may need a temporary teaching certificate or statement of eligibility.

Available Scholarships: FGC's Board of Trustees Scholarship offers students from select high schools full tuition for two years. Applicants must submit FAFSA results, two recommendation letters, and a 500-word essay. 

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#3

Santa Fe College

School Information
Location Gainesville, Florida
Graduation Rate 59%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Fast Facts

School Type: Public

Concentrations Available: N/A

Accredited By: N/A

Do Distance Learners Pay In-State Tuition? No

SF's online teaching degree provides a direct pathway to earn a four-year degree at 12 public Florida universities. Learners can complete the 60-credit program in two years. The curriculum includes 36 general education courses and 24 electives. 

Upper-division classes focus on positive discipline and guidance, language development and literacy, and systematic assessment in early learning. Enrollees learn how to promote inclusive classrooms, encourage collaborative learning, and create lesson plans. 

SF maintains direct articulation agreements with several schools, including Florida A&M University and University of South Florida. Applicants need a minimum 2.5 GPA and must complete prerequisites. 

Available Scholarships: The Bradford County Education Foundation Scholarship supports Bradford County students who want to earn a teaching degree. Applicants need a 2.5 GPA and must enroll full time.

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#4

Mount Vernon Nazarene University

School Information
Location Mount Vernon, Ohio
Admission Rate 73%
Graduation Rate 68%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Higher Learning Commission
Percent Online Enrollment 41% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

Fast Facts

School Type: Private

Concentrations Available: Elementary education

Accredited By: Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, Ohio Department of Higher Education

Do Distance Learners Pay In-State Tuition? No

Associate degree-holders can complete MVNU's online bachelor's in teaching in 27-48 months. The program requires 12 weeks of in-person teaching experience. Online learners complete 54 credits at their own pace. Students learn how to work with diverse populations, create lesson plans, and lead literacy programs. 

Advisors help students schedule classes and access financial aid. Degree-seekers take classes in areas such as social studies, math, and elementary language arts. The online teaching degree prepares graduates for their Ohio teaching license. 

Available Scholarships: MVNU's endowed scholarships provide $500 per student on a need basis. Some scholarships, including the Dorothy H. Burton Endowed Scholarship and Anonymous Alumni Endowed Scholarship, benefit elementary education majors. 

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#5

Western Governors University

School Information
Location Salt Lake City, Utah
Graduation Rate 21%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

Fast Facts

School Type: Private

Concentrations Available: N/A

Accredited By: Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation

Do Distance Learners Pay In-State Tuition? Yes

WGU's online bachelor's in teaching degree prepares graduates to work as licensed elementary educators anywhere in the country. The curriculum covers topics like psychology and development, children's literature, and math. Courses end with proctored exams. 

The program includes in-person teaching observation and experience working in an elementary classroom. WGU reports that about 60% of graduates complete the degree in 36 months. WGU offers start dates every month. 

Graduates can join the Teachers College alumni network with more than 8,000 members. Students seeking a teaching license must pass a state-approved basic skills test before completing the teaching experience.  

Available Scholarships: The WGU Loves Teachers Scholarship awards up to $4,000 to future educators. Students must complete a general scholarship application to apply.

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Why Get a Teaching Degree?

In addition to completing meaningful work, teachers often benefit from union advocacy, generous time off, and higher-than-average pay.

Teacher unions advocate for educators' rights, pay, and work conditions. Teachers normally receive a pension retirement with an employer match, which varies by school district and state. According to the BLS, education, training, and library professionals earn a median salary of $57,220 per year, higher than the median of $45,760 for all occupations.

Online teaching programs allow students to earn their degree while fulfilling personal and professional responsibilities.

How Much Does a Teaching Degree Cost?

The cost of a teaching degree varies by school. Public schools generally charge lower tuition rates than private institutions. Public schools typically offer the lowest rates to state residents and online learners.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average cost of undergraduate tuition and fees was $13,677 for the 2020-21 academic year. Students should contact their prospective school for details about specific online teaching degree costs.

Education students should also budget for professional clothing to wear during student teaching. This major may require more textbooks than other programs. Students can save money by renting textbooks or purchasing digital versions.

Additional Online Student Fees

Online learners may need to pay technology fees, which typically cover technology assistance and virtual learning platforms. Online students may also need to invest in a new computer and high-speed internet access. Many schools charge a graduation fee. Aspiring educators should also consider the cost of obtaining a teaching license after graduation.

How Much Do Teaching Majors Make?

Teachers' earning potential depends on their education level and employer. Most school districts offer higher pay to teachers with a master's degree.

According to the BLS, high school teachers earn a median salary of $61,820 per year, while elementary school teachers earn a median of $61,350 annually.

Geographic location also impacts salary potential. According to BLS data, high school teachers in California earn an average salary of $94,600 per year.

Courses in Teaching

Most bachelor's degrees in teaching require about 120 credits, which full-time learners typically complete in four years. Master's degrees in teaching require about 60 credits and take most full-time students two years.

Learners pursuing an online teaching degree may complete coursework synchronously or asynchronously. The former requires students to attend virtual class sessions at set times. Learners in asynchronous classes, on the other hand, can watch recorded lectures at their convenience.

Most online teaching programs feature specialized courses to prepare learners for specific roles. Programs also feature coursework on pedagogy and teaching methods. The following list highlights courses common to online teaching programs. However, available classes vary by school.

  • Learning Styles and Lesson Planning

    Students in this class prepare to design lessons for all types of learners. Participants examine the four learning styles: visual, auditory, reading and writing, and kinesthetic. Students construct lesson plans that balance learning styles.
  • Ethics in the Classroom

    Students discover ways to uphold ethics in the classroom and create safe spaces. This class highlights laws that protect student privacy. Learners evaluate case studies and develop a framework for navigating ethical dilemmas in the classroom.
  • Creating Individualized Education Programs

    Aspiring educators learn to create and implement individualized lesson plans for students with special needs. Coursework explores assistive technology and typical accommodations for these learners.

How to Become a Teacher

Aspiring educators begin by earning a bachelor's degree. Students completing teaching programs online take classes in general education, teaching, and specialized topics. Degree-seekers practice working with students in classroom settings. Learners observe classroom methods during a practicum and complete a semester of student teaching.

After earning their bachelor's degree, some graduates pursue a master's degree full time or while teaching. A graduate degree can lead to higher earning potential and postsecondary teaching positions. Applicants for public school teaching jobs typically need a state license.

Licensure for Teachers

Online teaching programs prepare learners to pursue state licensure. Licensure requirements vary by state. Learners should ensure their online teaching program meets the licensure requirements for the state in which they plan to teach. Most states require a bachelor's degree and student teaching experience.

Licensure candidates must also pass a background check and an exam. Middle school and high school teachers usually take a subject test in the area they plan to teach.

Teachers who move to a new state may need to complete additional requirements. Many states participate in reciprocity agreements, which allow teachers to transfer credentials between participating states. Teach.org provides information on each state's licensure requirements and reciprocity agreements.

Popular Resources

Whether you’re looking to earn your online degree or you’re a parent looking for answers, you can find all of your questions covered here. Explore these resources to help you make informed decisions and prepare for whatever is thrown your way.

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AccreditedSchoolsOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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