Best Online Colleges in Florida

Degree-seekers can access a variety of in-demand programs at the best online colleges in Florida - and advancing your education can create more career opportunities. Read about the best online colleges in Florida, and compare top schools by cost and program options.
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Updated on June 28, 2023
Learn more about our editorial process 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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Online programs are increasing in popularity. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 35.3% of students enrolled in at least one online class in 2018 — up from 33.5% the year before. Online college coursework tends to be more flexible, and online programs often accommodate students who have a full-time working schedule.

Degree-seekers can access a variety of in-demand programs at the best online colleges in Florida. Advancing your education can create more career opportunities. Additionally, by enrolling online, you may be able to save on the cost of college. For example, many online colleges in Florida don’t distinguish between in-state and out-of-state applicants when charging tuition, offering lower costs than in-person programs for many learners.

Related Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Top 10 Online Colleges in Florida

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#1 University of Florida-Online Gainesville, FL
#2 University of Central Florida Orlando, FL
#3 Florida International University Miami, FL
#4 Florida State University Tallahassee, FL
#5 University of South Florida-Main Campus Tampa, FL
#6 The Baptist College of Florida Graceville, FL
#7 The University of West Florida Pensacola, FL
#8 Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton, FL
#9 Nova Southeastern University Fort Lauderdale, FL
#10 Florida Institute of Technology-Online Melbourne, FL

How We Rank Schools

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At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you will make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering school rankings that are transparent, inclusive, and relevant for online students.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our Ranking Methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Why Study in Florida?

With a robust economy and thriving sectors like agriculture, tourism, and cybersecurity, the Sunshine State boasts many career options for graduates.

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Florida houses several major cities with exciting recreational and career opportunities, including Orlando, Jacksonville, Tallahassee, Miami, and Tampa Bay. These cities offer varied cultural experiences, including diverse dining choices.

Along with the amenities of big cities, Florida is perhaps best known for its amusement parks. Disney World, Universal Studios, Legoland, SeaWorld, and Busch Gardens are all located in Florida, offering entertainment for online students who live in or are visiting the state. With a robust economy and thriving sectors like agriculture, tourism, and cybersecurity, the Sunshine State boasts many career options for graduates.

Florida also offers many year-round outdoor activities, including hiking, exploring the Everglades, golfing, boating, and fishing. Thanks to the state's subtropical climate, students can take advantage of the beaches and Atlantic Ocean — even during winter months.

Top Degree Programs in Florida

Florida Employment Outlook

Florida is home to many exciting industries for job-seekers, and employment rates improved dramatically across the state over the second half of 2020. As of December 2020, the unemployment rate in Florida was 5.1% — significantly lower than the national unemployment rate of 6.7%.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual wage for all occupations in Florida in 2019 was $47,750. However, there are several career paths that can lead to higher salaries. Popular jobs in Florida with relatively lucrative salaries include management occupations, healthcare practitioners and technical occupations, and business and financial operations occupations. Workers in these areas earned median salaries of $107,250, $78,070, and $68,700, respectively.

Popular Career Paths in Florida

Best Accredited Online Colleges in Florida

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Best Online Colleges in Florida

  1. University of Florida-Online

    Gainesville, FL



    Based in Gainesville, the University of Florida serves over 56,000 students each year, many of whom pursue distance education. The institution delivers fully online certificates and degrees through the Canvas platform.

    The catalog offers bachelor's degrees in fields like sport management, environmental geosciences, and criminology. Distance learners can also enroll in a business administration program, which comes with specializations in mass communication and travel/tourism management.

    At the graduate level, online academics cover areas like sustainable design, fisheries and aquatic science, and biostatistics. Students can pursue a master of pharmaceutical sciences, picking from one of 10 specializations.

    UFL also offers remote doctoral credentials, like a Ph.D. in classical civilization. This flexible program enables high school and community college teachers to advance their careers through intensive research.

    Admission criteria vary by program, but undergraduate candidates typically need a minimum 2.0 GPA. Graduate applicants should expect to meet a 3.0 GPA requirement. Distance learners pay affordable per-credit tuition prices based on where they reside.

  2. University of Central Florida

    Orlando, FL



    The University of Central Florida serves over 68,500 students, making it one of the largest higher education institutions in the United States. The school delivers comprehensive academic programs at the main Orlando campus, 10 regional satellite locations, and online through asynchronous classes powered by Canvas.

    Remote bachelor's programs include anthropology, senior living management, legal studies, and teacher education and industry training. Students can also obtain an English degree, concentrating their curriculum on either creative writing or technical communication.

    UCF delivers remote master's degrees in social work, healthcare informatics, and forensic science. Students can also enroll in an online civil engineering program, which features concentrations in areas such as smart cities and water resources. For distance learners who want to earn terminal credentials, the university offers doctorates in nursing practice.

    Undergraduates enroll in online programming on a transfer basis and must have a minimum 2.0 GPA. Graduate candidates need at least a 3.0 GPA and adequate GRE/GMAT scores. Financial aid opportunities include scholarships specifically for out-of-state residents and distance learners.

  3. Florida International University

    Miami, FL



    Florida International University is a public research institution with two main campuses in Miami-Dade County. The school facilitates remote learning opportunities through Blackboard.

    Offerings include bachelor's degrees like logistics and supply chain management, electrical engineering, Asian studies, and nursing (RN to BSN). Online students can also earn a hospitality management degree, focusing their skill development on the hotel, restaurant, or tourism sector. They may also pursue an event management concentration, which covers essential accounting and operations competencies.

    Graduate students pick from remote master's programs like public health, global strategic communication, and computer engineering -- network security. FIU also provides an 18-month healthcare MBA that covers legal issues facing providers and federal health policy processes.

    The university delivers a specialized master's program for international real estate. This year-long track prepares candidates for the ARGUS certification exam.

    All applicants must submit standardized test scores. Prospective graduate students typically need a minimum 3.0 GPA. In addition to low tuition based on program type, distance learners enjoy individualized success coaching and subject tutoring services.

  4. Florida State University

    Tallahassee, FL



    Established in 1851, Florida State University is the oldest continuously running postsecondary school in the state. The institution offers affordable campus-based academics at the Tallahassee campus and online through flexible classes powered by Canvas.

    Bachelor's candidates can enroll in programs for criminology, social science, and public safety and security. They can also pursue a computer science degree accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. This 120-credit program emphasizes the interconnectedness of software design and programming languages.

    FSU offers remote graduate degrees in fields like public administration, law enforcement intelligence, and risk management and insurance. Students can also obtain master's credentials for business administration in seven semesters. Additionally, the university provides a variety of doctoral and specialist degrees that center on educational technology and leadership.

    Degree applicants undergo a holistic evaluation process that considers their GPA, academic rigor, standardized test performance, and extracurricular accomplishments. Graduate candidates need a minimum 3.0 GPA. FSU bases its affordable tuition prices on residency status.

  5. University of South Florida-Main Campus

    Tampa, FL



    Located in Tampa, the University of South Florida is the fourth-largest higher education institution in the state and serves a student population of 51,000. The school facilitates low-cost distance education through Canvas.

    Online undergraduate programs include information studies and criminology. USF also delivers an accelerated bachelor of nursing degree for licensed RNs. Distance learners can enroll in an applied science degree-completion path that offers three concentration options.

    Online graduate programs cover fields like cybersecurity, child and adolescent behavioral health, and pharmaceutical nanotechnology. Candidates can enroll in a master of public health program, focusing their studies on infection control and global disaster management. USF delivers one remote doctoral degree, a Ph.D. in career and workforce education that centers on educational policy development and economic revitalization.

    While USF does not maintain a GPA requirement for incoming freshmen, the average student has a 3.9 GPA. Graduate candidates need at least a 3.0 GPA. Distance learners enjoy ample scholarship opportunities and dedicated career guidance.

  6. The Baptist College of Florida

    Graceville, FL



    Based in Graceville, the Baptist College of Florida provides low-cost distance education through its learning management system, MyBCF. Online academics follow the same semester schedule as traditional programs but operate asynchronous classes that enable students to maintain work and family obligations while pursuing their credentials.

    The catalog features bachelor's programs for music education, psychology, and history/social studies. Students can also obtain a business leadership degree that covers foundational management and marketing skills.

    BCF delivers three remote graduate programs, which include Christian studies and music/worship leadership. Additionally, distance learners may obtain a master of arts in counseling. This 30-credit, practice-based program helps candidates develop holistic interpersonal and social support skills to work in missions, ministry, and other nonlicensed counseling settings.

    To enroll, candidates submit school transcripts, standardized test results, and two recommendations. All students benefit from one affordable tuition price regardless of program or legal residency. BCF funds over 100 institutional scholarships.

  7. The University of West Florida

    Pensacola, FL



    The University of West Florida maintains its flagship campus in Pensacola, enrolling over 13,000 students each year. The school also serves distance learners, who can take individual asynchronous classes or pursue fully online degrees through Canvas.

    Undergraduate offerings include community education, health sciences, and maritime studies. Licensed RNs can earn their bachelor of science in nursing through a flexible program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. The university also offers an online clinical laboratory sciences track that prepares candidates to work as medical laboratory scientists.

    At the graduate level, online programs include fields like accountancy, mathematics, and geographic information science. UWF delivers a master of social work that meets the state licensure requirements for clinical social workers. Distance learners may also pursue graduate education credentials, with options for curriculum and instruction, educational leadership, and exceptional student education.

    Graduate applicants need a minimum 3.0 GPA and adequate GRE/MAT/GMAT scores. Financial aid includes academic merit and departmental scholarships. UWF also provides tuition waivers for eligible out-of-state students.

  8. Florida Atlantic University

    Boca Raton, FL



    Based in Boca Raton, Florida Atlantic University is one of 12 members in the State University System of Florida. Approximately 30,800 students attend FAU, taking advantage of career-relevant academic programs.

    The institution facilitates online education through Canvas. Undergraduate students pick from bachelor's degrees like public safety administration, criminal justice, and interdisciplinary studies. Licensed RNs can earn their bachelor of science in nursing entirely online. They may also obtain a legal nurse consultant certificate that counts toward state licensure renewal.

    FAU delivers remote master's programs for information technology and management, artificial intelligence, and school leaders (K-12). Experienced nurses may advance their careers by obtaining graduate credentials in areas like holistic nursing and financial leadership. The university also provides an online master of computer engineering that comes with thesis and non-thesis tracks.

    Prospective students must submit standardized test scores. Graduate applicants typically need a regionally accredited bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA. FAU pairs each distance learner with a personal academic advisor.

  9. Nova Southeastern University

    Fort Lauderdale, FL



    Nova Southeastern University delivers over 150 academic programs through 18 schools and colleges. The institution facilitates online learning with Blackboard.

    Distance learners can enroll in bachelor's programs for speech-language and communication disorders, entrepreneurship, theater, and recreational therapy. They may also earn a marine biology degree, which covers the chemistry and physics of ocean realms along with laboratory and research techniques.

    Graduate candidates pick from remote master's programs like information assurance and cybersecurity, biomedical informatics, and real estate development. They can pursue disaster and emergency management credentials that require the completion of a community internship and research practicum.

    NSU offers over 30 online doctoral degrees, including a Ph.D. in conflict analysis and resolution. These graduates are well-prepared to work as postsecondary educators and corporate consultants.

    Freshman candidates submit official high school transcripts, ACT/SAT scores, and one recommendation letter. Graduate admissions criteria differ by program but generally include a minimum 2.75 GPA. NSU provides a variety of scholarship opportunities, like departmental awards for business and computer science students.

  10. Florida Institute of Technology-Online

    Melbourne, FL



    Headquartered in Melbourne, the Florida Institute of Technology serves more than 6,400 students each year. The university offers affordable remote academics through Canvas and allows learners to earn full degrees by taking asynchronous classes.

    Unlike other online schools, FIT only offers master's programs. Options include operations research, computer information systems, and public administration.

    Candidates can also earn a master of science in space systems. This 33-credit program synthesizes collaborative learning with hands-on assistantships, preparing learners to design, launch, and maintain all forms of space vehicles and systems.

    Additionally, FIT delivers comprehensive graduate management degrees. Candidates can pursue a generalist track or opt for specializations in logistics, human resources, and acquisition and contract management. The university also facilitates a master of healthcare management program that enables students to work as chief hospital executives or insurance marketing specialists.

    Applicants need a minimum 3.0 GPA. They submit GRE/GMAT scores, a resume, a statement of objectives, and a recommendation letter. Online students pay one low, per-credit tuition rate regardless of legal residency. 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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