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2023 Most Affordable Online Journalism Degrees

By the OnlineU team | Updated 11/16/2022
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A bachelor's degree in journalism teaches students how to gather relevant information for a story, fact–check that information, and conduct both interviews and research to provide context. While this is the foundation of a journalism degree, modern-day programs also include the study of digital technologies and social media platforms. 

Some graduates become reporters, broadcasters, writers, and media production specialists, while others may pursue a master's in journalism to prepare for a senior-level career. 

Although some of the degrees below don't include "journalism" in the diploma title — like communication degrees labeled as "mass communication" or "media studies" — they still offer the chance for students to learn journalism fundamentals, which is why they are included in our list. View our methodology for details about rankings or learn more about us. You can also check out our overall list of the most affordable online degrees for some inspiration.

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All tuition numbers were manually collected and verified
Rank School Locations Annual Tuition
# 1 #1 Ohio University - Main Campus Athens (OH) $3,645
# 2 #2 Arizona State University Tempe (AZ) (and 4 others) $4,682
# 3 #3 Southern Utah University Cedar City (UT) $7,200
# 4 #4 Valley City State University Valley City (ND) $7,955
# 5 #5 SUNY College at Oswego Oswego (NY) $8,480
# 6 #6 Southern Illinois University - Carbondale Carbondale (IL) $9,645
# 7 #7 University of North Dakota Grand Forks (ND) $11,102
# 8 #8 Utah State University Logan (UT) $11,520
# 9 #9 Indiana Institute of Technology Fort Wayne (IN) $11,970
# 10 #10 Regent University Online Virginia Beach (VA) $13,150
#1
#1
Annual Tuition: $3,645
Annual Tuition: $3,645
Annual Tuition: $3,645

Ohio University - Main Campus (OHIO) is a public institution offering a Bachelor of Science in Journalism through OHIO Online. Requiring 120 credit hours, this program typically takes students four years to complete on a full-time schedule. OHIO's acceptance rate is 87%, while its graduation rate is 65%.

OHIO Online students use the Blackboard learning management system to engage in distance learning. This allows them to study fully online and at a flexible, asynchronous pace. The curriculum for this degree looks at journalism and mass communication by teaching skills in research and critical thinking. Core classes include The Future of Media, Precision Language for Journalists, and Communication Law. To graduate, students must also complete an Honors Thesis. Graduates may go on to explore careers as reporters, broadcasters, and public relations specialists.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 94%
  • Average SATs: 1050 -1260
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 4,926
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 2,892
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#2
#2

Arizona State University

Tempe (AZ) (and 4 others)
Annual Tuition: $4,682
Annual Tuition: $4,682
Annual Tuition: $4,682

Arizona State University (ASU) is a public university with an online Bachelor of Arts in Digital Media Literacy. This program requires 120 credits, allowing full-time students to graduate in four years. ASU has an acceptance rate of 73%, along with a graduation rate of 52%.

At ASU, students use Canvas for their coursework, which is online and asynchronous. The curriculum for this program looks at the inner workings of the digital media landscape and teaches students how to identify misinformation and create digital content. Some core classes include Media Research Methods, Media and Society, and Misinformation and Society. ASU also offers a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication and Media Studies, which focuses more on the ways media affects various aspects of society. Graduates of either program may pursue careers as production assistants, writers, and reporters.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 96%
  • Average SATs: 1091 -1301
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 33,410
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 10,843
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#3
#3

Southern Utah University

Cedar City (UT)
Annual Tuition: $7,200
Annual Tuition: $7,200
Annual Tuition: $7,200

Southern Utah University (SUU) is a public institution offering a Bachelor of Science or Arts in Communication - Media Studies. This online degree requires 120 credit hours. It's generally completed in four years while studying full time. The acceptance rate at SUU is 76%, with 53% of students graduating with their degrees.

At SUU, students use Canvas to access their classes online. This 100% remote program, along with its emphasis on media studies, explores human communication as a whole and the various career paths for media and production professionals. Core classes include Media and Society, Multimedia Management, and Audio Production. Graduates are prepared for careers as production professionals, writers, or social media managers.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 95%
  • Average SATs: 1020 -1240
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 730
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 497
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: NWCCU
#4
#4

Valley City State University

Valley City (ND)
Annual Tuition: $7,955
Annual Tuition: $7,955
Annual Tuition: $7,955

Valley City State University (VCSU) is a Bachelor of Arts or Science in Communication - Journalism and Media. Students must complete 120 credit hours for this program, which may take about four years on a full-time schedule. VCSU has an 81% acceptance rate, with 45% of students graduating with a degree.

VCSU students use the digital learning platform, Blackboard, for their coursework, which they can finish exclusively online. This degree's digital media management cognate combines public relations, social media, communication theory, and website design. There are several required classes, including Gender Communication, Communication Theory, and Group Dynamics. Students must also complete an internship, senior capstone project, and field experience. After graduation, they can explore social media management, public relations, and media writing careers.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 98%
  • Average SATs: 948 -1090
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 289
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 141
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#5
#5
Annual Tuition: $8,480
Annual Tuition: $8,480
Annual Tuition: $8,480

SUNY College at Oswego (SUNY Oswego) is a public institution with a Bachelor of Arts in Broadcasting and Mass Communication, which requires 120 credits. Students can complete this program in four years if they study full time. SUNY Oswego's acceptance rate is 69%, and they have a 65% graduation rate.

At SUNY Oswego, students use Brightspace for all their remote coursework, which can be completed 100% online. This program's curriculum teaches practical production skills along with the industry's history, regulations, and management techniques. Core classes include Foundations of Communications, Critical Thinking and Public Speaking, and Broadcast News Writing. Alumni may explore career opportunities in the fields of media management, broadcast journalism, and video production.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 97%
  • Average SATs: 1070 -1240
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 288
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 393
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: MSCHE
#6
#6
Annual Tuition: $9,645
Annual Tuition: $9,645
Annual Tuition: $9,645

Southern Illinois University - Carbondale (SIU) is a public university with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism requiring 120 credit hours. Typically, students take four years to complete this degree while studying at a full-time pace. While SIU's acceptance rate is 92%, its graduation rate currently rests at 53%.

SIU students use Brightspace to access their fully online coursework. The curriculum aims to teach the fundamentals of journalism, while the various specializations allow students to focus on specific areas — such as advertising, news-editorial, or photojournalism, among other options. Some core classes include Multimedia Reporting, Editing Across Platforms, and Media as a Business. To graduate, students must complete a practicum and a proseminar. Career options include news reporter, publications specialist, writer, and advertising copywriter.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 95%
  • Average SATs: 1030 -1250
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 1,534
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 552
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#7
#7

University of North Dakota

Grand Forks (ND)
Annual Tuition: $11,102
Annual Tuition: $11,102
Annual Tuition: $11,102

University of North Dakota (UND) is a public institution offering a Bachelor of Arts in Communication - Digital Journalism. This program requires 120 credit hours and may take full-time students up to four years to complete. Overall, the acceptance rate at UND is 87%, and the graduation rate is 50%.

Students at UND use Blackboard for their remote coursework, which they can finish asynchronously and completely online. The curriculum delves into oral and written communication, teamwork, and analytical skills required by employers in the industry. Required major courses include Social Media Strategy, Digital Video Production, and Advertising and Society. Graduating students can expect to pursue careers as social media managers, press secretaries, and broadcast journalists.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 92%
  • Average SATs: 1010 -1250
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 1,851
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 1,500
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#8
#8
Annual Tuition: $11,520
Annual Tuition: $11,520
Annual Tuition: $11,520

Utah State University (USU) is a public university with an online Bachelor of Science in Journalism that requires 120 credit hours. Generally, students graduate within four years if they study full time. USU's acceptance rate is 91%, and 54% of students graduate with a degree.

At USU, students utilize Canvas for all their coursework, which they can complete through distance learning. The curriculum for this degree explores the skills needed to study topical issues, report stories, and produce content. Core classes in this program include Media Literacy, Communication Research Methods, and News Writing. Graduates may go on to pursue careers as news editors, writers, reporters, and news analysts.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 86%
  • Average SATs: 1050 -1310
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 3,906
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 1,099
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: NWCCU
#9
#9
Annual Tuition: $11,970
Annual Tuition: $11,970
Annual Tuition: $11,970

Indiana Institute of Technology (Indiana Tech) is a private institution offering a Bachelor of Arts in Communication - Journalism and Broadcasting. This online degree requires 121 credit hours, and students generally complete it in four years if they maintain a full-time schedule. The acceptance rate at Indiana Tech is 63%, with 36% of students graduating.

Students at Indiana Tech use Blackboard for their remote coursework, which can be completed online. The degree curriculum explores effective communication tactics, theory, and practices, alongside relevant media formats — such as publishing, marketing, and video production. Students are also required to complete a senior capstone project. Alumni may go on to seek employment as digital content developers, script writers, and publishers.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 99%
  • Average SATs: 930 -1150
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 12
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 519
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
#10
#10

Regent University Online

Virginia Beach (VA)
Annual Tuition: $13,150
Annual Tuition: $13,150
Annual Tuition: $13,150

Regent University Online (Regent) is a private, Christian university with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies - Journalism. Regent requires at least 120 credit hours to graduate, and full-time students generally aim to finish in four years. The school's acceptance rate for new students is 50%, while 30% of enrolled students graduate.

Regent's primary learning management system is Canvas, where students can complete coursework fully online and asynchronously. The curriculum teaches students the skills needed for professional reporting through experience with hands-on news coverage and content development. Required classes include Personal and Professional Editing, Reporting, and Principles of Journalism. Career opportunities for graduates are becoming a journalist, reporter, digital media producer, and writer, to name a few options.

  • Financial Aid Recipients: 99%
  • Average SATs: 990 -1220
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 3,146
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 5,092
  • School Type: Nonprofit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC

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