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Northern Kentucky University

5 Reviews

Salary Score







67% of 5 students said this degree improved their career prospects
60% of 5 students said they would recommend this school to others
By the OnlineU team | Updated 3/1/2023



Northern Kentucky University (NKU) is a public institution outside Cincinnati in suburban Highland Heights, Kentucky, serving almost 16,000 students, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). 

It offers 63 online degrees, including 32 bachelor's, 25 master's, and six post-graduate degrees. It also has online graduate and professional certificates. Fields of study include education, healthcare, technology, business, social work, and criminal justice. 

Find an Online Degree:

Salary Score for Online Degrees at Northern Kentucky University

Bachelor's Degrees

Health Services/Allied Health/Health Sciences, General $21,250 $51,743 93
Communication and Media Studies $24,950 $36,949 78
Business/Commerce, General $25,000 $47,090 66
Business Administration, Management and Operations $18,500 $42,995 55
Psychology, General $22,397 $28,982 52
Criminal Justice and Corrections $23,400 $34,751 51
Social Sciences, General Not Reported $32,632 49
Computer and Information Sciences, General $24,491 $53,922 43
History $24,367 $28,555 42
Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities $23,250 $30,646 40
Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions $31,000 $44,619 33
Management Information Systems and Services $31,000 $46,914 27
Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing $24,618 $56,585 19

Master's Degrees

Human Resources Management and Services Not Reported $74,690 79
Business/Commerce, General Not Reported $86,069 68
Accounting and Related Services Not Reported $62,135 65
Educational Administration and Supervision Not Reported $58,842 60
Medical Illustration and Informatics Not Reported $75,429 57
Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing $42,000 $92,665 38
Social Work $31,458 $42,253 31
Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods $24,000 $41,248 21

FAQs About Northern Kentucky University

Does NKU Have Online Degrees?

Yes, NKU has dozens of online degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels. NCES data shows that a quarter of undergrads and 80% of graduate students enroll exclusively in distance-only education. However, while most coursework can be completed online, some programs — such as nursing (RN to BSN), respiratory care, teaching, and family nurse practitioner — may require a practicum or other fieldwork. 

Many programs are accelerated so students can finish faster. Terms are seven weeks long. For example, full-time students may complete an online master's degree in cybersecurity in as little as a year.

Is NKU a Good School?

Yes, many consider NKU a good school, and we include it in several of our rankings: #2 for Best Online Colleges in Kentucky, #5 for Most Affordable Online Master's Degrees in Exercise Science, and #6 for Best Online Human Resources Master's Degrees

NKU's favorable accreditation status also signifies it's a good school. NKU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate, baccalaureate, master's and doctorate degrees, and certificates. This accreditation status signifies that SACSCOC finds NKU's financial practices sound and its academic programming meets federal quality standards. 

Many of NKU's degrees are also programmatically accredited. For example, its nursing degrees are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

To provide the most trustworthy results, OnlineU only includes accredited online colleges and universities on its site. 

What Is NKU Known For?

NKU is known for its commitment to helping ensure student success. Through its "Success by Design" strategic plan, NKU strives to be "student ready" and support students at "every stage of their academic journey." It's also part of the "Moon Shot for Equity" initiative, working in tandem with Success by Design, that aims to close equity gaps in education in the region by 2030. Also, when discussing student success it's helpful to note that the U.S. Department of Education's College Scorecard data shows NKU has a 49% graduation rate.

NKU is also known for supporting adult learners and transfer students through its Adult and Transfer Center. These students are assigned personal advisors to help individualize degree plans. They may also receive credit for prior learning, such as work or military training. They may be able to take accelerated courses to earn degrees faster.

Which Degrees at NKU Provide the Highest Earnings for Graduates?

NKU's online bachelor's degrees in technology and health provide the highest earnings on average. Annual median salaries range from $65,400 in health services/allied health/health sciences to $75,300 in computer and information sciences.

Additionally, OnlineU's proprietary Salary Score ranks colleges by how much their alumni earn compared to graduates with the same degree nationwide. Out of 100 total points, NKU has a bachelor's degree Salary Score of 43, 37 for its master's degrees, and 23 for its doctoral degrees. Of all its programs, health services/allied health/health sciences bachelor's degrees have the highest salary score at 93.

Is Getting Into NKU Difficult?

College Scorecard shows NKU accepts 80% of applicants, which means that the overwhelming majority of students who apply are accepted. While it considers entrance exams during the application process, not all students must submit their scores. However, students who applied to NKU that did take the test usually have combined SAT scores between 983 and 1210 and combined ACT scores between 20 and 26.

What GPA Do You Need To Get Into NKU?

First-year students must have a 2.0 unweighted GPA to be considered for admission. Those with 2.7499 or less must submit SAT/ACT scores. Those with 2.75 and higher are offered admission regardless of entrance exam scores. Graduate programs may have individual minimum GPA requirements, depending on the field of study.

What Are the Admission Requirements for NKU?

Although individual degree programs may have additional requirements, NKU's admission requirements for first-year distance learners generally include the following:

  • An application 
  • A $40 application fee
  • Official high school transcripts or GED
  • Official college transcripts, if transferring credits
  • Official military transcripts, if applicable
  • SAT/ACT scores, as determined by your GPA

Schools such as NKU have enrollment advisors available to help you when applying to college to ensure you have what you need.

How Much is NKU Online Tuition?

Tuition for NKU's online undergraduate students is $473 per credit hour, not including fees. However, first-time online students may be eligible for NKU's Path to Success Scholarship with Tuition Lock. The scholarship brings tuition down to $291 per credit hour, including fees. An enrollment advisor or financial aid officer can provide more information.

Tuition for online graduate programs varies by major. For example, tuition for an online master's in education - teacher as leader in special education is $412 per credit hour, while an online master's in health administration is $536 per credit hour.

If you are interested in budget-friendly college programs, check out our list of the most affordable online schools

Student Reviews

Student Reviews

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Reviewed: 8/31/2022

Degree: Nurse Practitioner (Psychiatric-Mental Health)

I would not recommend this program. It is full of busy work without any meaningful instruction- at all. It was least expensive I found but there's an adage that goes along with that. I graduated. Were it not for what I learned during my clinical rotations I would not be prepared at all.


Reviewed: 6/17/2019


Chose this due to the "scholarship" award, was told several of MSN courses I had already would transfer in 8/18 but was not given the final decision until 1/26/2019 after already retaking several courses I already had, this was disheartening to say the least. The course work I had before was 10yrs old but was WORTH the time I spent, this program is 100% teaching yourself, ok, may 90% but most courses was 100% self-taught. I am now in a specialty tract with the same results. There are NO online or... Read More


Reviewed: 1/19/2019

Degree: DNP

The faculty and course content was appropriate. My problem was the system called Canvass. I reviewed the online Canvass tutorial but it was not helpful when it came to staying organized with the live program. Too much content was printed, the canvass view was cluttered and confusing to use. I am a hands on person and a little older than my cohorts and the online review was not helpful. Contacts to the IT department were not helpful either. Maybe more input from older students returning for their... Read More

Smoke RN

Reviewed: 6/11/2017

Degree: Education

This program is the most unorganized, confusing and mediocre program I have ever attended. Instructors expect Graduate level work but only put out elementary level instruction and materials. Rife with misspellings and poorly developed classes. Powerpoints look like they were assembled by a fifth grader, the instructors claim to want to help you succeed but are incapable of putting together an intelligible assignment. The clinical programs are so confusing that 3 weeks into a semester, few have started... Read More


Reviewed: 7/22/2016

Degree: Education

It was a great program. I was able to complete most of my courses online, which allowed me to do my course work at night (I was working full time, too). Professors were nice, helpful, and knowledgeable.