Accredited Degree Programs, Scholarships and Resources for Top Schools
Wyoming offers several universities and colleges for students who are interested in receiving the education they need for a rewarding career. Before settling on a specific school, it's a good idea for students to weigh their academic options to ensure that their program of choice will get help them reach their specific academic goals. On this page, we list some of the information prospective students need when looking for online colleges in Wyoming — such as the importance of finding an accredited school, how to find financial aid, and the ways students can earn credit from their work and life experience.
Best Online Colleges in Wyoming
Wyoming is home to several affordable online programs. This guide provides information about online schools and colleges in Wyoming. The sections below include resources to help learners research educational options and locate financial aid opportunities.
Wyoming has many rural areas, making distance learning beneficial for students in the Cowboy State. In 2016, the Wyoming Department of Education launched the Digital Learning Plan to improve access to online education. The state's broadband program, started in 2015, makes Wyoming a national leader in providing internet access to rural communities.
How Can I Find Which Online Colleges Offer the Degree I'm Looking for in Wyoming?
With the growing number of online programs available from Wyoming institutions, learners researching academic options may feel overwhelmed. Online tools can help simplify the process of choosing a school. Students can learn about online offerings from the University of Wyoming through its distance learning page, and the Wyoming Community Colleges website provides information about each two-year school in the state. Click the icon below for details about online schools and colleges in Wyoming.
How Much More Do College Grads in Wyoming Make?
Earning a college degree often leads to more advanced career opportunities. As the table below shows, bachelor's degree-holders earn higher median salaries than professionals with only a high school diploma.
In a 2014 study by the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, employees with a bachelor's degree earned an average of $23 an hour, while those with a high school diploma averaged $12 per hour. The table below illustrates the correlation between educational attainment and earning potential.
|Less Than a High School Diploma||High School Diploma||Associate Degree||Bachelor's Degree||Master's Degree||Doctoral Degree|
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Paying for Online College in Wyoming: Tuition and Financial Aid
Average tuition rates in Wyoming fall below the national averages. The average cost of in-state tuition at public schools in Wyoming is less than half the national average, and the average tuition rate for out-of-state learners at public institutions is about 20% lower than the national average. The tables below compare average Wyoming tuition rates to the national averages.
Average Undergraduate Tuition and Fees: Public Colleges and Universities
- In-State Tuition: $4,443
- Out-of-State Tuition: $20,061
- National Average: $9,037 (In-State), $25,657 (Out-of-State)
Average Undergraduate Tuition and Fees: Private Colleges and Universities
- Tuition: N/A
- Out-of-State Tuition: N/A
- National Average: $30,731
Cost Considerations for Online Students in Wyoming
The above tuition rates do not include costs such as room and board, which can significantly impact the overall cost of earning a degree. While online programs are often more affordable than on-campus options, many schools charge distance learners additional fees. Below are some cost considerations for students attending online schools and colleges in Wyoming.
Some programs require campus visits for events such as orientation and graduation. Learners must typically pay for transportation, lodging, and food.
Computer or Technology Fees
Colleges may charge distance learners a fee to cover services such as tech support; this often comes in the form of a one-time or per-semester fee.
Distance learners must often take exams in the presence of an impartial observer. Most students use local testing facilities, which typically charge a proctoring fee.
Programs in some fields require additional fees. For example, learners studying education, law enforcement, or social work must typically pay for a background check.
Residencies, Practicums, and Internships
Programs in fields such as emergency medicine, nursing, and teaching generally require experiential components. Learners should account for costs associated with travel, housing, and time off work.
Qualifying for In-State Tuition in Wyoming
Eligible state residents pay significantly discounted tuition rates at Wyoming public institutions. Learners must meet certain requirements to qualify for in-state tuition rates. Eligibility requirements vary by school, so students should contact their institution for details. However, students must generally have lived in the state for at least 12 months prior to beginning classes.
Learners can typically demonstrate residency through employment documentation, state income taxes, or a diploma from a Wyoming high school. Schools may make exceptions to residency requirements for military members and online students.
Paying for College in Wyoming: Scholarships and Financial Aid
Although average tuition rates are significantly lower in Wyoming than in other states, most students still need assistance paying for college. Learners can apply for scholarships and grants from the state government, private corporations, and nonprofit foundations. Below are some funding opportunities for learners attending online schools and colleges in Wyoming.
Scholarships for Wyoming College Students
Who Can Apply: The state awards these funds to first-generation Wyoming residents whose parents were born outside the United States. Applicants must be attending a public college or university in the state.
Who Can Apply: This state scholarship program encourages young Wyoming residents to pursue higher education. Applicants must be residents in the state and must attend a Wyoming school.
Who Can Apply: This scholarship supports Wyoming residents studying in an eligible field, including business management, accounting, office management, or truck driving. Recipients must attend a Wyoming institution.
Who Can Apply: Members of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe can qualify for these need-based scholarships. Applicants must submit transcripts and a detailed program of study.
Who Can Apply: This scholarship program is open to Wyoming residents pursuing an undergraduate education. Applicants must have at least a 2.0 GPA.
Amount: $500 per semester
Grants for Wyoming College Students
Who Can Apply: This federal grant program supports learners who meet income requirements. The state administers these grants through its seven community colleges and the University of Wyoming.
Who Can Apply: This program helps learners at Wyoming private schools conduct research in STEM fields. Applicants must demonstrate faculty support.
Amount: Up to $5,000
Who Can Apply: This grant is available to Wyoming residents attending a community college in the state. Applicants must be majoring in an eligible field, such as engineering, math or certain areas of healthcare.
Who Can Apply: Members of the Wyoming Society of Radiographic Technologists can apply for this grant. Applicants must be in good standing with the society.
The Importance of Accreditation for Online Colleges and Universities in Wyoming
Students attending on-campus or online schools and colleges in Wyoming should ensure that they choose an accredited institution. Accreditation demonstrates that a school meets set standards of academic quality. Accrediting agencies evaluate institutions based on criteria including curricula, administration, and student services.
Schools may hold multiple types of accreditation, including institutional and programmatic. The sections below cover various forms of accreditation, along with methods for identifying the accreditation status of a school or program.
Regional and National Accreditation
Regional accreditation is the most prestigious form of institutional accreditation in the United States. Six agencies award regional accreditation based on geographic location, and the U.S. Department of Education (ED) oversees these independent agencies. The Higher Learning Commission awards regional accreditation to schools in Wyoming.
Career and technical institutions often earn national accreditation. Credits earned from nationally accredited schools generally do not transfer to regionally accredited institutions. Additionally, certain types of financial aid are only available to learners at regionally accredited schools.
In addition to institutional accreditation, learners can look for subject-specific accreditation of individual programs. Specialized accrediting bodies evaluate programs based on industry standards. For example, the dietetics program at the University of Wyoming holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics, and the music program holds accreditation from the National Association of Schools of Music.
Individuals in some fields need a degree from an accredited program to qualify for licensure. Learners should understand the accreditation standards for their field before choosing a school.
How to Know if Your School or Program is Accredited
Most accredited institutions prominently display their accreditation status on their website. Schools that do not provide this information online may not hold proper accreditation. Learners can identify or verify the accreditation status of any school or program using the ED database or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation directory.
Online College and Adult Education in Wyoming
Online learning often makes degree programs more accessible for adults with personal and professional responsibilities. Wyoming residents can also access courses on English learning, GED preparation, and job training. The sections below explore initiatives and opportunities for adult learners in Wyoming.
By the Numbers: Adult Education in Wyoming
Adult Education Programs for Wyoming Students
Wyoming community colleges offer programs to help adults in Wyoming earn their GED credential or high school diploma. Participants can access testing centers and online assistance.
This adult education program from the state's community colleges provides support and funding to help learners obtain education and technical training.
The goal of this initiative is to increase the number of college graduates in the state. Strategies involve improving access to higher education and workforce training.