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2023 Best Online Colleges in Connecticut

By OnlineU Staff Writers | Updated 7/7/2023


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Online colleges in Connecticut offer a wide variety of degrees in a range of study areas. Students may learn as residents of the state or take classes from other locations around the country. Thankfully, distance is becoming less and less of a barrier to entry for college students — but another barrier is tuition costs. The state of Connecticut offers Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) workshops and training through the CT College Bound Initiative as well as the Minority Advancement Program, which provides funding for students with disadvantaged backgrounds. Along with four-year universities, prospective students may also want to browse degrees from online community colleges in Connecticut, where they may be able to save even more money. 

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2023 Best Online Colleges in Connecticut

RankSchool Salary Score Online Enrollment
# 1 #1 University of Bridgeport 68 947
# 2 #2 University of Connecticut 67 642
# 3 #3 Quinnipiac University 65 913
# 4 #4 Sacred Heart University 55 1,073
# 5 #5 University of Hartford 47 897
# 6 #6 Albertus Magnus College 44 304
# 7 #7 University of New Haven 44 367
# 8 #8 Charter Oak State College N/A 1,611
# 9 #9 Goodwin University N/A 823
# 10 #10 Holy Apostles N/A 500

#1 University of Bridgeport

  • Salary Score: 68
  • Online Enrollment: 947
  • Locations: Bridgeport
  • Accreditation: NECHE

The University of Bridgeport (UB) is a private university located in its namesake city of Bridgeport, CT. UB has 17 fully online degrees — the majority of which are taken at the undergraduate level. There's a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene, and a Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Additional undergraduate offerings include accelerated degrees in human services and psychology, an education minor, and business certificates in project management and human resources management. All coursework within these programs are taken through the Canvas LMS. Online students receive support through a technical help desk, online libraries and bookstores, as well as career development services and web advisors.

#2 University of Connecticut

  • Salary Score: 67
  • Online Enrollment: 642
  • Locations: Storrs
  • Accreditation: NECHE

The University of Connecticut (UConn) is a public institution in Storrs offering online master’s degrees and graduate certificate programs. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 16% of graduate students in distance-only education enroll in online master’s degrees, such as engineering, business administration, data science, and energy and environmental management. UConn also has a robust online graduate nursing program in six specialties, such as neonatal nursing, family nurse practitioner, and nurse leader. UConn’s online master’s degrees generally take two years of full-time study to complete.

UConn distance learners use Blackboard to access online program content. It has a 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio. Online coursework is organized into weekly modules, each focusing on a specific topic. Each module is formatted the same and includes rubrics so students have a clear understanding of instructor expectations and potential learning outcomes. UConn is known as an R1 Research University, as designated by Carnegie Classification, for its high research activity and doctoral degrees.

#3 Quinnipiac University

  • Salary Score: 65
  • Online Enrollment: 913
  • Locations: Hamden
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Hamden’s Quinnipiac University (QU) is a private, nonprofit university offering online degrees, mainly at the master’s level and with a few offerings at the bachelor’s and doctoral levels. About a quarter of QU’s graduate students attend solely online. Online bachelor’s completion degrees are available in business administration, professional studies, and health science studies. The choice of online master’s degrees is more robust, with majors such as advanced medical imaging and leadership, public relations, business administration, cybersecurity, and cinematic production management. It takes full-time students approximately two years to complete an online bachelor’s completion program at QU and two years for online master’s degrees. QU accepts 88% of applicants, and 78% of students graduate, significantly higher than average.

Like many colleges and universities, QU delivers its online curriculum through Blackboard. It has a 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio and small class sizes, enabling individualized instruction. First-year students who complete an application are automatically considered for one of several scholarships QU offers. Some awards are worth as much as $32,000.

#4 Sacred Heart University

  • Salary Score: 55
  • Online Enrollment: 1,073
  • Locations: Fairfield
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Sacred Heart University (SHU) is a private, Catholic university in Fairfield, CT. It offers six online bachelor's degrees, five of which are designed for part-time students. Options include a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice; Bachelor of Science in Health Science; Bachelor of Science in Psychology; and Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communication, Public Relations, and Advertising. There's also a general studies degree, where students can pick between a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science. The sixth program, a Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing, is also delivered on a flexible schedule. Blackboard's digital platform is used to deliver all online coursework. Once enrolled in an online program, students receive technology and academic support and access to a career and professional services portal.

#5 University of Hartford

  • Salary Score: 47
  • Online Enrollment: 897
  • Locations: West Hartford
  • Accreditation: NECHE

The University of Hartford (UHart), located halfway between New York City and Boston, is a private, nonprofit institution offering online master’s degree programs and one online bachelor’s completion program. Just over half of UHart graduate students enroll exclusively in distance-only education. Some online master’s degrees they seek include civil engineering, mechanical engineering, nursing, and organizational psychology. Full-time students may finish these online master’s degrees in as quickly as a year.

UHart delivers its online curriculum via Blackboard. It has a low 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio, and class sizes are small, running from 15 to 20 students, which allows instructors to get to know their students. UHart is known for its commitment to “cultivating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive student population.” According to its website, 38% of full-time undergrads and 28% of graduate students identify as members of the BIPOC population. Students also represent 49 states and 44 countries.

#6 Albertus Magnus College

  • Salary Score: 44
  • Online Enrollment: 304
  • Locations: New Haven
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Albertus Magnus College (AMC) is a private, Catholic institution in New Haven, CT. The school offers a unique slate of accelerated, flexible, and online courses. Known as the FLEX format, AMC students can choose whether they want to study completely online or participate in some on-campus classes. There are 21 fully online programs to choose from in the FLEX format, including a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Religion, and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. When it comes to total courses, there are 248 individual classes that can be delivered online, including Modern Art and Architecture, Sociology of Law, and Introduction to Esports Management. AMC uses a web-based eLearning platform to deliver online coursework. Remote students can also take advantage of academic advising and research support services.

#7 University of New Haven

  • Salary Score: 44
  • Online Enrollment: 367
  • Locations: West Haven
  • Accreditation: NECHE

The University of New Haven (UNH) is a private, nonprofit institution in picturesque New England offering online degrees, mainly at the master’s degree level. However, it also provides a small selection of online bachelor’s degree completion programs and one online doctoral degree in health sciences. A quarter of UNH graduate students enroll in online-only education throughout master’s degree programs, such as business administration, clinical mental health counseling, criminal justice, emergency management, and public health. They can complete most of these programs online in less than two years if they attend with a full-time schedule.

UNH uses Canvas for online program content delivery. It has a 16:1 student-to-faculty ratio. Attending UNH is relatively expensive, at about $33,100 per year. Therefore, applying for federal financial aid is encouraged. Undergraduate first-time and transfer applicants will automatically be considered for merit scholarships during the application process. Awards range from $1,000 to $30,000 and may be renewed by recipients for up to ten semesters.

#8 Charter Oak State College

  • Salary Score: N/A
  • Online Enrollment: 1,611
  • Locations: New Britain
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Charter Oak State College is a public institution based in New Britain, CT that's focused exclusively on online learning. They offer over 20 online bachelor's degrees for remote students in subjects such as social work, history, and cybersecurity. Examples include a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice, Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management Program, and Bachelor of Science in Psychology. In addition to bachelor's programs, Charter Oak offers three associate degrees, three master's degrees, and three certificates.

The school also takes into account prior learning credits that help accelerate a student's completion time by considering what they already know. Busy, budget-minded students may take advantage of the school's Women in Transition initiative that offers financial aid for single mothers. Coursework is delivered through the Blackboard learning management system (LMS). Online students have access to eTutoring and online libraries.

#9 Goodwin University

  • Salary Score: N/A
  • Online Enrollment: 823
  • Locations: East Hartford
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Goodwin University (GU) is a private institution in East Hartford, CT. As a career-focused university, it features specialized programs designed to put students on a track for employment. There are 11 completely online degrees, four of which are at the bachelor's level. These options include a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN), a Bachelor of Science in Public Health, a Bachelor of Science in Professional Studies, and a Bachelor's in Business Administration. Students may also earn a Certificate in Business Administration or Certificate in Medical Billing and Coding. Courses for these programs are delivered through Canvas' online learning software. Distance learners can also receive academic advising, career services, and counseling.

#10 Holy Apostles

  • Salary Score: N/A
  • Online Enrollment: 500
  • Locations: Cromwell
  • Accreditation: NECHE

Roman Catholic Holy Apostles College and Seminary (HACS) in Cromwell is a private, nonprofit, liberal arts institution offering online master’s degrees in religion. Almost 90% of graduate students enroll in online-only education a HACS. Majors include theology, philosophy, pastoral studies, and a Master of Divinity in the new evangelization. Within each major are several concentrations. For example, online master’s in theology students can choose from concentrations, such as bioethics, dogmatic theology, general studies, and Thomistic studies.

HACS provides distance learners access to Populi to log into their online classes and receive instruction remotely. A low 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio and small class sizes help build relationships and community among students, peers, and instructors. According to its website, HACS is one of only a few U.S. Catholic colleges where lay students and seminarians attend classes together and watch each other grow spiritually and intellectually.

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Higher Education in Connecticut

Connecticut is a relatively small state with only 37 degree-granting colleges on its soil. About one-third of these are community colleges with certificate and associate degree programs and the rest are four-year schools featuring bachelor's and graduate degrees.

Colleges in Connecticut range from large public universities to a private Ivy League institution. Evidence suggests that most Connecticut college alumni stay in New England or the nearby New York City metropolitan area. The state needs college-educated workers to fill roles in its insurance and high-tech manufacturing industries.

Several colleges in the Nutmeg State provide online degree opportunities. There are even two fully online Connecticut colleges that offer distance learning exclusively. Most Connecticut online degrees feature asynchronous classes with no live meeting times. This can be a flexible way to learn because students can sign in to a learning management platform at convenient times in order to balance school with other obligations.

Check out our lists of online MSW programs in Connecticut and online nursing programs in Connecticut if you're considering a social work or nursing career.

FAQs About Online Colleges in Connecticut

How Many Colleges Are in Connecticut?

Thirty-seven colleges call Connecticut home. More than half of them are in small-to-mid-sized cities, and none are considered rural. You can find online degrees at all levels in this state, though not at every institution.

What Are the State Colleges in Connecticut?

Most of Connecticut's publicly funded state schools are community colleges. But there are also half a dozen public four-year institutions, including the completely online Charter Oak State College

What Are the Best Colleges in Connecticut?

You can review the rankings list on this page to see which Connecticut online colleges earned the highest Salary Scores. But salary and employment outcomes aren't the only factors to consider when picking a college. See our Guide to Starting Your Online Education for ideas about what to research.

How Much Is College in Connecticut?

Costs are different at each Connecticut college. But the National Center for Education Statistics provides the average tuition and fee costs for each state during 2020-2021. Read on to discover the average costs for different kinds of Connecticut schools.

  • Public four-year college, in-state resident: $14,487
  • Public four-year college, out-of-state resident: $36,881
  • Private four-year college: $43,013
  • Public two-year college, in-state resident: $4,522
  • Public two-year college, out-of-state resident: $13,483

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