Online Schools & Colleges
in Vermont

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.

Best Online Colleges in Vermont

2-Year Colleges

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:

Rank University Title Tuition # of Online Programs Expand Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid Credit for Experience Placement Services Counseling Services University Description
Community College of Vermont $6,072 15 15% 23% Yes No Yes
Rank University Title Tuition # of Online Programs Expand Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid Credit for Experience Placement Services Counseling Services University Description
1 University of Vermont $15,096 4 69% 76% 92% No Yes Yes

Both online and hybrid course formats are available through the distance education program at the University of Vermont. More than 40 full programs and over 400 individual courses are available to residents outside the state and locals who need the flexibility of online learning. Studies may culminate in a certificate or a full degree. Students are paired with career coaches and enrollment advisers to help them with the application process all the way through to graduation. Different programs have different graduation requirements, but all students can transfer incoming credits from eligible schools.

2 Norwich University $35,318 11 70% 60% 100% No Yes Yes

Online education at Norwich University dates back 20 years, with some 93% of graduates recommending its distance education programs. Graduate students can choose from more than a dozen fully online master's degrees; there are also 6 online undergraduate degree programs as well as several certificates and continuing education programs. All online programs are designed for adult learners. Although graduation requirements vary by program, all courses and programs are taught by the same instructors who teach on the university's physical campus.

3 Champlain College $38,560 31 70% 57% 96% Yes Yes Yes

There are over 60 fully online certificate, undergraduate and graduate programs available at Champlain College. Student's can earn an associate's degree in accounting, a bachelor's degree in business management or a master's degree in digital forensics. Some courses can be completed in a 7-8 week accelerated format. All classes are semi-structured, allowing students to reach deadlines on their own time. Academic and career advisors will assist you through your experience, and you can also participate in live webinars to answer questions regarding financial aid or your program of choice.

4 Green Mountain College $35,560 5 79% 48% 96% Yes No Yes

Green Mountain College is committed to social and environmental sustainability, offering online degree completion for undergraduate and graduate programs in sustainable business administration, interdisciplinary studies, sustainable food systems, environmental studies or resilient and sustainable communities. Students move through coursework at their own pace, and depending on the number of courses transferred over, complete their degree in 2-3 years. Classes have a maximum of 20 students, and run for 6 weeks. Graduates have found work with a number of green-friendly employers, including Apple and the One World Conservation Center.

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.

No Formal
High School
$31,757 $42,564 $56,380 $72,750 $68,729 $135,964

Source: BLS, 2017

As the data indicates, as workers obtain jobs that require higher degree level minimums, their salaries increase. A report from Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce project that by 2020, 65 percent of all jobs in Vermont will require some level of postsecondary education.

College Education & Careers in Vermont

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.

Colleges in Vermont—such as the University of Vermont, Vermont College of Fine Arts, and Goddard College—are accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Accreditation (NEASC). To earn accreditation from the NEASC, schools must undergo a peer review of their curricula and policies.

In addition to NEASC accreditation, schools can also obtain specialized and subject-specific accreditation for their individual programs. For example, the Vermont Department of Education provides accreditation to teaching programs at the University of Vermont, while the American Psychological Association verifies the university's clinical psychology program. Moreover, the school's social work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

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

Change from 2015 $567

National Average:$8,778

In-State Tuition, Private Colleges & Universities: $39,518

Change from 2015 $2,127

National Average:$27,951

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:


$664 to $1,647 per credit
$640 per credit

College of St. Joseph (Pennsylvania)

$320 per credit

Neighboring States

$295 to $600 per credit

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.

There are several scholarships available to state residents from the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, including the following:

  • 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.

  • Emily Lester Vermont Opportunity Scholarship: This scholarship is for students who have been in foster care. People must enroll in an accredited school in order to receive this funding.

  • Sunrise Scholarship: This scholarship is for students from Windham County who demonstrate financial need and entrepreneurial skills.

  • Vermont Retail and Grocers Association Scholarship: The children of people who work for a VRGA-member company can receive this scholarship.

  • 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.

Online Education & Adult Education 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.

Vermont’s adult education programs served more than 1,400 Vermont residents between 2016 and 2017, according to the U.S. Department of Education. To find an adult education program near you, visit the State of Vermont’s Agency of Education website.

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