2022 Best Online Bachelor's Degrees in Software Engineering

By OnlineU Staff | Updated 7/7/2022

Technology is rapidly evolving, and that means it’s necessary to learn the programs and operations that make a software engineer successful in the field. If you’re interested in the software engineering industry and want to work while earning your degree remotely, consider an online Bachelor’s in Software Engineering. Once you earn your bachelor’s online, consider an online master’s program in the field to take your career to new heights.

View our methodology for more details about our list or learn more about OnlineU.

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List Of Accredited Online Schools

Western Governors University

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Salt Lake City (UT)
  • Accreditation: NWCCU

Western Governors University (WGU) is a large, private university. WGU offers an online Bachelor of Science in Software Development, which requires 122 credit hours. Students can graduate in 40 months by sticking to a full-time schedule. This program prepares students to work as software developers, network architects, and software/hardware engineers by providing two educational tracks: (1) Java and (2) C#. The Java track provides the skills to work with smart devices, phones, and computers, while the C# track leads to careers in big tech centers in cities like Seattle and New York City. Core courses — like Web Development Foundations, Advanced Data Mining, and UX Design — help develop students’ skills, so they can earn certifications in their field, such as the CompTIA A+ Certification and CompTIA Project+ Certification.

At WGU, students use Blackboard to access their coursework, which is asynchronous. Students can complete the degree as quickly as they want. Online students have access to all university resources.

Southern New Hampshire University Online

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Manchester (NH)
  • Accreditation: NECHE

The Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is a large, private university that offers an online Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - Software Engineering. This program requires 120 credits. Online students may take two to four years, depending on how many credits they transfer before beginning the program. SNHU allows students to transfer up to 90 credits. Some core courses for this program include Programming Languages, Full Stack Development, and Software Security. Courses like these, as well as the program’s software database, provide students with the skills and experience that help them become software engineers, UI/UX developers, and full-stack developers.

At SNHU Online, students use Brightspace to access their online coursework, which is fully online and synchronous. At SNHU Online, online students have access to the university library and student resource centers.

Arizona State University

  • Salary Score: 52
  • Median Starting Salary: $71,373
  • Locations: Tempe (AZ) (and 4 others)
  • Accreditation: HLC

Arizona State University (ASU) is a large, public institution. ASU offers an online Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering, which requires 120 credit hours. Students can finish the software engineering degree online in three to four years with a full-time schedule. This program prepares graduates to work as software developers, who focus on applications or system software. Courses like Principles of Distributed Software Systems, Design, & Analysis of Data Structures & Algorithms provide the experience necessary to succeed in the field of software engineering. This program also requires a capstone project that spans two semesters.

At ASU, students use Blackboard to access their coursework, which is entirely online. ASU’s online students have access to all university resources.

Capella University

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Minneapolis (MN)
  • Accreditation: HLC

Capella University (CU) is a medium-sized, private institution that offers an online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology - Software Development requiring 120 credit hours. To graduate, students must complete all program requirements, such as a capstone project, which can take up to 22 months with a full-time schedule. Graduates of the program may go on to work as system engineers, net developers, web developers, and business analysts. Some core classes in this program include Advanced Database Development, Mobile Cloud Computing Application Development, and Software Construction. These courses teach students Java, HTML5, C#, and SQL, as well as Agile process and DevOps methods.

At CU, students use Blackboard to access their online coursework, which is fully online and asynchronous. At CU, online students have access to the university library and academic coaches.

Purdue University Global

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Indianapolis (IN)
  • Accreditation: HLC

Purdue University Global (Purdue Global) is a large, public institution. It offers an online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology - Programming and Software Development, which requires 180 credit hours. Purdue Global’s program has six concentrations: (1) Game Development, (2) Information Security & Assurances, (3) IT Management, (4) Network Administration, (5) Program and Software Development, and (6) Supply Chain Management & Logistics. These concentrations include science courses, such as Systems Analysis & Design, Web Development, and IT Consulting Skills. Purdue Global prepares students to work as computer system analysts, computer network architects, and software developers, among other career options. Students can graduate from this program in four years with a full-time schedule.

At Purdue Global, students use Brightspace to access their coursework, which is entirely online. Purdue Global’s online students have access to all student resources.

DeVry University

  • Salary Score: 2
  • Median Starting Salary: $44,748
  • Locations: Multiple Locations
  • Accreditation: HLC

DeVry University (DU) is a small, private university that offers an online Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems - Software Programming and an online Bachelor's in Software Development — both requiring 120 credits. These degrees can be completed in two to three years with a full-time schedule, but students can finish even sooner if they transfer credits from another higher education institution. The bachelor's degree in computer information systems has three specializations available: (1) Software Design & Programming, (2) Big Data & Analytics, and (3) Web & Mobile Application Development. The bachelor's degree in software development, on the other hand, offers six specializations: (1) Computer Forensics, (2) Software Programming, (3) Cyber Security Programming, (4) Web Development & Administration, (5) Database Management, (6) Web Game Programming, and (7) Information Systems Security. Graduates of these programs go on to work as Cyber Security Specialists, Database Administrators, Software Game Developers, and Data Architects.

At DeVry, students use Canvas to access their coursework, which is fully online and asynchronous. Online students have access to all university resources.

Brigham Young University - Idaho

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Rexburg (ID)
  • Accreditation: NWCCU

Brigham Young University (BYU) is a large, private university. BYU offers an online Bachelor of Applied Science in Applied Technology, which requires 120 credits. Students may finish the degree in three to four years if they adhere to a strict full-time schedule. Bachelor’s degrees at BYU are made up of several professional certificates. For the bachelor's in applied technology, the certificate options include Database, System Administration, and Web Development. This online program prepares students to work in the fields of digital communication, cyber security, wearable tech, and more. BYU also requires a senior project and/or internship.

At BYU, students use Canvas to access their coursework, which is completely online and asynchronous. Online students have access to all university resources.

Saint Leo University Online

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: St. Leo (FL)
  • Accreditation: SACS COC

Saint Leo University Online (SLU) is a small, private university. SLU offers an online Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering, which requires 120 credits. This program prepares students to work as software developers, designers, architects, and testers by providing an understanding of the fundamental and theoretical concepts around modern software design and technology. Some core courses in this program include Human Computer Interaction, Software Quality Assurance, and a capstone class. Students may graduate in four years if they have a full-time study schedule.

At SLU, students use Brightspace to access their coursework, which is 100% online. Additionally, remote students have virtual access to the university campus' cybersecurity lab and the university library.

Bellevue University

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Bellevue (NE)
  • Accreditation: HLC

Bellevue University (BU) is a medium-sized, private institution that offers an online Bachelor of Science in Software Development and an online Bachelor of Science in Web Development, each requiring 127 credit hours. These degree programs teach students to use HTML, Java, Javascript, DevOps, Typescript, and more. BU requires a capstone class, and some core courses include Database Development & Use, Fundamentals of Web Development, and Business Environments for Web Professionals. Students can transfer credits, including a completed associate degree, and finish the program at an accelerated pace of two to three years. Otherwise, the program can take students three to four years to finish with a full-time schedule.

At BU, students use Blackboard to access their online coursework, which is asynchronous and fully online. At BU, online students have access to the university library, writing center, and tutoring center.

St. Petersburg College

  • Salary Score: NA
  • Locations: Clearwater (FL)
  • Accreditation: SACS COC

St. Petersburg College (SPU) is a small, public university. SPU offers an online Bachelor of Applied Science in Technology Development and Management - Software Development, which requires 120 credit hours. This program offers six subplans, which allow students to focus on a specific aspect of software development. These subplans include Cybersecurity Management, Cyber Security Defense & Risk Mitigation, Project Management, Software Assurance, Cloud Computing Management, and Software Development. Graduates of this program go on to work as Network & Operations Systems Managers, Information Security Analysts, and Industrial Production Managers. Students can complete this online degree in four years with a full-time schedule.

At SPU, students use Brightspace to access their coursework which is fully online and asynchronous. Online students have access to all university resources.

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Overview of Online Software Engineering

Online degree programs in software engineering are available at the associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and certificate levels. Associate programs are two-year degrees that give individuals a basic foundation in software engineering skills, preparing graduates to enter baccalaureate programs or gain entry-level positions.

Bachelor's degree programs will prepare students to find work as a software engineer in the fields of software application engineering, computer system administration, security systems, video game creation, and many others, while master's degree programs are available for professionals who want to update their skill set or move into more project management or managerial roles.

Online doctoral degrees in software engineering will prepare professionals to conduct advanced research or teach at the university level. Graduate certificates in software engineering are also available, and can help students decide whether to pursue a full master's degree.

Certificate coursework can usually be applied toward master's degree's completion requirements at a later date or can be used to learn specific skills to assist with finding more job opportunities.

Online Bachelor's Degrees in Software Engineering

A bachelor's degree in software engineering is the typical minimum requirement for finding work in the field. Individuals with this degree can work in areas such as software application engineering, computer system administration, security systems, video game creation, and many other related fields. The bachelor's degree takes an average of four years, or 120 semester credit hours to finish. An online bachelor's in software engineering can be earned through colleges, universities, and technical schools. Coursework for the software engineering bachelor's degree includes classes in web engineering, computer security, human-computer interaction, technical communication, and data structures. It is also not uncommon for students to be required to complete an internship and/or some kind of senior project in order to graduate. The usual requirement for enrolling in a bachelor's degree is a high school diploma or equivalent.

The Importance of an Accredited Online Software Engineering Degree

When choosing an online degree program, students should take into consideration whether or not a school or program is accredited. Accreditation means that an outside, independent organization has looked at the curriculum offered by a school and determined that it meets certain high standards for quality. Regional accreditation is when a particular group oversees the accreditation process for schools within a certain group of states.

There are also accrediting agencies that offer accreditation to specific programs within a school. For instance, the Accrediting Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) provides accreditation for computing, engineering technology, applied science, and engineering degree programs across the country. ABET accreditation is voluntary, and schools that receive this endorsement have to undergo a rigorous examination process. The accreditation is only for specific programs, not the entire school. Individuals who wish to pursue an online degree program in software engineering may want to concentrate their search on programs that are ABET-accredited in order to ensure competitiveness in the job market.

Requirements for a Career in Software Engineering

As we live in a society where technology is so prevalent and necessary to our everyday lives, there is a lot of demand for software engineers. Becoming a software engineer requires specialized training, although licensing is not common in the field. Typically, a bachelor's degree is required to find work as an actual software engineer, though other types of computing jobs can be found with less formal education. Students who know that they want to pursue a software engineering career after college should earn their degree in software engineering, information technology, computer science, or a related field. Learning to program is also an important skill for software engineers to develop. While in school, students will want to try and complete an internship in order to gain valuable work experience and make professional contacts. Sometimes, it will be necessary to also earn a master's degree in order to be hired for certain jobs. However, this isn't usually the case, and a master's degree will only need to be earned if an individual wants to further advance their skill set and career. While many institutions offer certifications for software engineers and developers, such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) or the Software Engineering Institute", these are also usually not necessary for success in the field.

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