Answering Frequently Asked Questions on Vermont’s Best Online Colleges
About 25,000 students are currently enrolled in Vermont’s public colleges, and more than 18,000 attend private schools in the state. With more than a dozen schools to choose from, prospective students in Vermont may have trouble deciding which institution meets their needs. Especially designed for students looking for high-quality online programs that provide flexible learning, this page aims to aid aspiring students in their decision by answering their important questions regarding education standards, financial aid, and earning potential in Vermont.
For this year’s college rankings, our analysts carefully reviewed statistical data from multiple sources for more than 7,500 postsecondary institutions so that you could easily evaluate schools based on what matters most to you. For each school, we applied the eligibility criteria outlined below, then ranked schools and programs based on four ranking factors.
Eligibility Criteria for All Postsecondary Institutions:
Must be a not-for-profit institution
Must be regionally or nationally accredited
Must offer at least one online program1
Must be located in a state (schools in US territories and Washington DC were not considered)
Dozens of data points were used to calculate a weighted score for four ranking factors: quality, affordability, flexibility and program (in order of significance). To determine quality, which was the most important consideration for all AS Online rankings, the most impactful data points were acceptance and graduation rates; for affordability, tuition2 and grants; for flexibility, part-time enrollment offerings; and for program, degrees conferred in that program area.
Some of our nursing program rankings used exam pass rates from NCLEX
How to Read Our Rankings Tool:
A dash indicates IPEDS data was not available
Annual in-state tuition is displayed unless stated otherwise
1 Our Best Vocational Programs rankings included data for both online and campus programs.
2 Both annual in-state and out-of-state tuition rates were used in our methodology; however, our Rankings Tool currently only displays annual in-state rates.
Students’ priorities for online schools vary based on their individual needs and goals. Vermont students can choose from a variety of amenities, such as the desirable teacher-to-student ratio at Vermont Tech, or the hybrid online/on-campus courses at the University of Vermont. Moreover, Champlain College offers seven- and eight-week accelerated courses for students who want to complete their degrees faster. But before narrowing down results, it’s important to understand the how the quality standards and student support structures at each college stack up against one another. With these factors in mind, we’ve made our picks for the best online colleges in Vermont:
How can I find which online colleges offer the degree I’m looking for in Vermont?
No matter what level of degree prospective students want to earn, or what discipline they’re interested in, the best way to find specific online programs is to look at the colleges’ websites directly. Some schools, such as Norwich University, Champlain College, and the University of Vermont, have web pages devoted entirely to their online programs. Aspiring learners can start their search with a complete list of Vermont’s colleges, found on the state’s official website.
Which online schools in Vermont will accept my transfer credits or work/life experience?
Students in Vermont can often save money on tuition by translating their work and life experience into college credits. Each school can choose whether to award credits for prior work or life experience, but many in Vermont do offer this option for students. For example, Norwich University allows students with previous law enforcement experience or military work training to apply it as credit toward a bachelor’s degree. Similarly, students at Champlain College who have completed professional development training can receive credits, and students in the Vermont State Colleges System can undergo an assessment process to have their professional experience considered for credit.
How Much More Do College Grads in Vermont Make?
Generally speaking, the higher a worker’s degree level is, the higher their earning potential. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) supports this correlation in the state of Vermont. The chart below illustrates the relationship between degree level and average income for Vermont workers.
At the moment, about 47 percent of workers in Vermont have at least an associate degree, according to the Lumina Foundation, meaning there is still a ways to go to meet projected employers’ demands. Manufacturing jobs in Vermont are dwindling, as reported by the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, while industries such as healthcare are expected to surge. Because those industries tend to require their employees to hold degrees, workers should prioritize their education.
The Impact of Accreditation for Online Colleges and Universities in Vermont
Online schools in Vermont provide a convenient way for students to get their degree, especially if they are juggling work and family responsibilities. However, students shouldn’t have to trade quality for convenience in choosing an online college. To ensure that they receive the quality education they need, students should only consider schools with the proper accreditation.
Paying for Online College in Vermont: Tuition & Financial Aid
The cost of education is a huge concern for students around the state, and it’s no wonder: according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the average personal income of Vermont residents was $51,114 in 2017—up from $38,866 in 2007. This means many students have extremely tight finances, which might prevent them from paying to continue their education. However, as industries that require college degrees continue growing in Vermont, paying for higher education is becoming increasingly necessary.
College Tuition Rates in Vermont
In-State Tuition, Public Colleges & Universities:$15,062
Out-of-state students are typically charged a significantly higher per-credit rate for attending college in Vermont, but those from Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Hampshire may be able to qualify for in-state tuition rates through the New England Board of Higher Education Tuition Break program. This only applies for students who enroll in certain programs at participating schools.
To find out more about paying for college in Vermont, continue below.
What are Vermont’s requirements to qualify for in-state university tuition?
To save money on tuition, students from other states may consider establishing residency in Vermont. To do this, people must live in Vermont continuously for one year before starting school. They must also demonstrate community involvement by getting a state driver’s license, paying state income taxes, or registering to vote.
Are online credits more affordable in Vermont than other places?
The per-credit rate for online schools varies between colleges in Vermont, but some schools in neighboring states are comparable to the rates that Vermont students pay. Take a look at some of the online undergraduate costs per credit reported for 2018-2019 school year below:
Keep in mind, some schools charge more in fees and lower tuition per credit for online students—be sure to understand the full cost of earning an online degree in Vermont before enrolling.
How can I get help paying for online college in Vermont?
Vermont residents may be eligible to receive financial aid from the federal government, their individual school, or from the state. To begin the process of winning grants and scholarships, students should fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, which allows schools to evaluate how much aid students can receive based on their household income.
Armed Services Scholarship: This scholarship provides aid to Vermont’s military families. Eligible students must be the spouse, child, or stepchild of someone who is active in the armed forces or who died during active duty. This scholarship is available to students attending the University of Vermont, Castleton University, Johnson State College, and Lyndon State College.
St. Johnsbury Rotary Community Service Award: Members of St. Johnsbury Rotary Club can receive this scholarship. Applicants must be graduating seniors from Hazen Union High School, Danville High School, or St. Johnsbury Academy.
In addition to the above scholarships, the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation also provides grants for full- and part-time students attending schools in Vermont.
Getting a college degree is a great way to begin a career in Vermont, but for many aspiring college students, it’s been a while since their last classroom experience. Adult education in Vermont helps students from different walks of life get the education they need to feel prepared to earn a college degree and achieve their career. People living with disabilities, single parents, foreign immigrants and those who have been unemployed for a long time all benefit from the following adult education programs in Vermont:
College and career preparedness – Anyone who is facing growing skill challenges at work can benefit from college counseling and preparedness training to meet career goals.
Foundational skill training – For students who may need to improve their reading, writing, math and computer literacy skills before attending college.
English language (ESL) – Those who speak foreign languages can benefit from Vermont’s ELS classes to improve English language and literacy skills.
High school equivalency – Adults who have not earned their high school diploma can earn a GED credential through Vermont adult education.