2019 Best Online Colleges in Illinois

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The schools highlighted on this list are ranked for their affordable annual tuition and high alumni salaries. Ranked #1, University of Illinois Urbana - Champaign has the highest average alumni salary at $103,400 and offers online programs in subjects such as a Bachelor of Science in Earth, Society and Environmental Sustainability, and Society in the Earth System. Ranked #14, Southern Illinois University - Edwardsville offers the most affordable tuition on the list at $9,123 per year for programs such as Integrative Studies, Nursing, and more.

Alumni salaries were provided by PayScale. View our methodology for more details or learn more about SR Education Group. To see all online schools in Illinois, view our comprehensive list.

Rank School Annual Tuition Median Salary
#1 #1 University of Illinois Urbana - Champaign Annual Tuition $28,606 Median Salary $103,400
#2 #2 DePaul University Annual Tuition $18,900 Median Salary $89,300
#3 #3 Northern Illinois University Annual Tuition $9,466 Median Salary $85,000
#4 #4 Illinois State University Annual Tuition $14,516 Median Salary $82,400
#5 #5 Loyola University Chicago Annual Tuition $20,100 Median Salary $82,700
#6 #6 Rush University Annual Tuition $27,744 Median Salary $83,600
#7 #7 Southern Illinois University - Carbondale Annual Tuition $11,815 Median Salary $81,000
#8 #8 Elmhurst College Annual Tuition $19,680 Median Salary $79,800
#9 #9 Methodist College of Nursing Annual Tuition $22,050 Median Salary $80,000
#10 #10 Saint Xavier University Annual Tuition $17,250 Median Salary $78,600
#11 #11 Roosevelt University Annual Tuition $29,832 Median Salary $79,300
#12 #12 Western Illinois University Annual Tuition $10,041 Median Salary $76,500
#13 #13 Lewis University Annual Tuition $32,300 Median Salary $79,400
#14 #14 Southern Illinois University - Edwardsville Annual Tuition $9,123 Median Salary $75,000
#15 #15 University of St Francis Annual Tuition $17,970 Median Salary $76,000
#16 #16 Dominican University Annual Tuition $13,837 Median Salary $75,400
#17 #17 Eastern Illinois University Annual Tuition $8,880 Median Salary $74,300
#18 #18 Benedictine University Annual Tuition $19,800 Median Salary $75,100
#19 #19 North Park University-Chicago Annual Tuition $16,500 Median Salary $74,100
#20 #20 McKendree University Annual Tuition $13,800 Median Salary $71,700
#21 #21 Quincy University Annual Tuition $11,400 Median Salary $69,800
#22 #22 Governors State University Annual Tuition $9,390 Median Salary $68,200
#23 #23 University of Illinois at Springfield Annual Tuition $12,105 Median Salary $68,400
#24 #24 Lincoln Christian University Annual Tuition $13,200 Median Salary $66,700
#25 #25 Moody Bible Institute Annual Tuition $10,200 Median Salary $62,100
Salary data provided by Payscale Logo. Updated 2018.

2019 Online Colleges in Illinois Ranking Details

For each school, we conducted manual research to provide prospective students with more details about the schools' online programs. Explore online degrees offered and accreditation information below.

  • Annual Tuition: $28,606
  • Median Salary: $103,400
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Champaign
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The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign offers an undergraduate degree in Earth, Society, & Environmental Sustainability with a concentration in either Society and Environment or Society in the Earth System. They offer a number of online graduate degrees in Aerospace Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Computer Science, Global Studies in Education, and Human Resource Development, and many more. Their online doctoral programs include Learning Design & Leadership, Global Studies in Education, Diversity & Equity in Education, and Human Resource Development.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (1)

Online Master's Degrees (51)

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Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (63)

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  • Annual Tuition: $18,900
  • Median Salary: $89,300
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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DePaul University's online learning makes it easy for students to complete their entire degrees online. DePaul has invested in developing a unique online curriculum and digital learning tools. With small class sizes, students are able to interact with their professors one-on-one. DePaul University offers a variety of online programs at the bachelor's, master's, and certificate levels. Areas of study include computing, educational leadership, public administration, and more. Some programs also accept applications on a rolling basis, allowing more flexibility in terms of begin date.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (13)

Online Master's Degrees (56)

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Online Certificate Programs (16)

  • Annual Tuition: $9,466
  • Median Salary: $85,000
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Dekalb
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At Northern Illinois University, online undergraduate students can major in Health Services, Marketing, Nursing, Applied Management, and Political Science, among other degrees. The graduate degrees offered by NIU include Industrial Management, Public Health, Art Education, Data Analytics, and Educational Research and Evaluation. They also have a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree offered entirely online. Tuition for the online undergraduate programs is $454.84 per credit while the graduate courses are between $470-$870 per credit. The Doctor of Nursing Practice costs $720 per credit.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (6)

Online Master's Degrees (15)

Online Doctoral Degrees (2)

Online Certificate Programs (7)

  • Annual Tuition: $14,516
  • Median Salary: $82,400
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Normal
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Illinois State University offers 5 fully online graduate degrees in Kinesiology & Recreation-Physical Education Pedagogy, Teaching & Learning, Music Education, Chemistry Education, and a Doctorate of Nursing Practice. They also have a number of partially online degrees, including Special Education, Family Nurse Practitioner, and a Doctorate in Nursing. Students in the Kinesiology & Recreation program can take courses in Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity Sequence, Motivation In Sport and Exercise, Basic Electrocardiography and Clinical Exercise Testing, and Sociocultural Perspectives in Physical Education Pedagogy, among many other courses.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (1)

Online Master's Degrees (1)

Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

  • Annual Tuition: $20,100
  • Median Salary: $82,700
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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Loyola University Chicago currently offers 5 Bachelor of Arts degrees. These degrees are Management, Information Technology, Applied Studies, Applied Psychology, and Applied Criminal Justice Leadership. These courses cost $670 per credit hour and all of them require between 36 and 39 credit hours in the student's major to graduate. Curriculum in the Applied Psychology degree includes Organizational Development and Change, Leadership, Culture and Ethics, General Psychology, Social Psychology, and Judgment and Decision-Making, among other courses.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (16)

Online Master's Degrees (23)

Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (20)

  • Annual Tuition: $27,744
  • Median Salary: $83,600
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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Rush University aims to provide a quality online learning experience, having standards for Online Course Design and Online Teaching. Distance learners benefit from the same dedicated faculty who teach on-campus classes, so students learning online will receive the same quality education as their peers on campus. Students can choose from a wide variety of degree programs in areas such as imaging sciences, nursing, clinical laboratory management, and more.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (1)

Online Master's Degrees (2)

Online Doctoral Degrees (12)

Online Certificate Programs (3)

  • Annual Tuition: $11,815
  • Median Salary: $81,000
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Carbondale
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Southern Illinois University-Carbondale has numerous online undergraduate degrees available, including Hospitality and Tourism Administration, Electrical Engineering Technology, Technical Resource Management, and Radiology Management/Education, among other programs. The university currently offers graduate degrees in Business Administration, Rehabilitation Administration and Services, Public Safety and Homeland Security Management, plus more. Students in the undergraduate Hospitality and Tourism Administration program can take courses in Introduction to Hospitality, Trade Show Management, Dimensions of Tourism, Hospitality Human Resources, Sports Event Management, and more.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (25)

Online Master's Degrees (13)

Online Certificate Programs (4)

  • Annual Tuition: $19,680
  • Median Salary: $79,800
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Elmhurst
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Elmhurst College has 4 online bachelor's degree options: Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree Completion Program, Elmhurst Management Program (Business Administration), Information Technology, and Applied Psychology. They also have 2 undergraduate certificate programs: Geographic Information Systems and Cyber Security. The Business Administration degree allows students to choose from 6 majors: Management, Supply Chain Management, International Business, Finance, Management, and Accounting. All of these majors are designed for busy, working adults who have some previous work experience.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (5)

Online Master's Degrees (14)

Online Certificate Programs (10)

  • Annual Tuition: $22,050
  • Median Salary: $80,000
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Peoria
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Methodist College of Nursing in Peoria, Illinois offers an online Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing. This degree is designed for busy, working students who already have a Registered Nurse license. This degree takes 120 credits in order to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, and students can transfer up to 77 credit hours from another school so transfer students in the program can finish their degree even quicker.

  • Annual Tuition: $17,250
  • Median Salary: $78,600
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Online
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Saint Xavier University offers online undergraduate degrees in Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), and Bachelor of Arts in Leadership and Public Administration (B.A.). They also have 3 online graduate degrees: a Master of Business Administration, a Master of Arts in Education, and a Master of Science in Nursing. Within the MBA degree, there are several programs, including Health Administration, Digital Marketing, Financial Fraud Examination and Management, and Forensic Fraud Examination and Management.

  • Annual Tuition: $29,832
  • Median Salary: $79,300
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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Roosevelt University, a private college in Chicago, offers 1 graduate certificate degree and 7 online master's degrees. The certificate is a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Paralegal Studies and the master's degrees include Conflict & Mediation, Organization Development, Performing Arts Administration, Second Language Special Education, Training & Development, and Hospitality & Tourism Management, among other degrees. Tuition varies between colleges so it's best to check the university's website before applying, but most programs cost between $797-$1,560.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (11)

Online Master's Degrees (17)

  • Annual Tuition: $10,041
  • Median Salary: $76,500
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Macomb
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Western Illinois University has over 10 bachelor's degree programs, including Fire Protection Services, Geography and Geographic Information Sciences, Supply Chain Management, Nursing Completion Program, and Communication. Their 5 online graduate programs include Master of Business Administration, Instructional Design and Technology, and Curriculum and Instruction with 3 specializations in Early Childhood Education, Elementary/Middle School Curriculum, and Literacy Education. They also offer post-baccalaureate certificates in Police Executive Administration, Health Service Administration, and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).

  • Annual Tuition: $32,300
  • Median Salary: $79,400
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Online
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Lewis University offers fully online Bachelor of Arts degrees in Organizational Leadership, Professional Studies, Computer Science, and Criminal Justice. They also have online Bachelor of Science degrees in Business Administration, Information Security and Risk Management, Data Science, and Nursing. Online graduate degrees include a Master of Science in Public Safety Administration, Information Security, Data Science, Aviation and Transportation, and Business Analytics. Many courses can be designed around your schedule and are offered in 8-week formats.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (8)

Online Master's Degrees (42)

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Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (5)

  • Annual Tuition: $9,123
  • Median Salary: $75,000
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Edwardsville
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Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville offers online undergraduate degrees in Nursing-Accelerated Resident Nurse to Bachelor of Science Option and Leadership in Organizations (Integrative Studies). They currently offer 7 online graduate degrees, including Physical Education and Coaching Pedagogy, Healthcare and Nursing Administration, Instructional Technology, Criminal Justice Policy, and Healthcare Informatics, among other interesting degrees. The Leadership in Organizations degree allows students to take courses in Theories of Personality, Group Dynamics and Individual Behavior, Psychology of Sustainable Behavior, and Psychological Tests and Measures, among others.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (2)

Online Master's Degrees (12)

Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (2)

  • Annual Tuition: $17,970
  • Median Salary: $76,000
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Joliet
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The University of St. Francis offers online bachelor's degrees in Health Care Management, Nursing R.N.-BSN, and Business Administration with 5 concentrations in Marketing, Managing Human Resources, Management and Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Transportation and Logistics Management. The courses for the B.S. in Business Administration are taught in accelerated 8-week formats, making this program more efficient for busy, working adults. Their B.S. in Health Care Management program allows students to take 6 credit hours in 7- or- 8-week semesters.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (8)

Online Master's Degrees (24)

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Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (4)

  • Annual Tuition: $13,837
  • Median Salary: $75,400
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: River Forest
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Dominican University in California offers a number of online courses, including Classroom Management, Educational Travel, Language Arts & ELL, Social Studies, Professional Reading, and more. The online Administration courses are unique in that they are offered in a series that helps administrators foster better outcomes and achievements for students. These 3 courses are Teacher Evaluation-Doing What Matters in Teacher Observation, Teacher Evaluation-Doing What Matters in Teacher Feedback, and Teacher Evaluation-Doing What Matters in Teacher Growth.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (14)

Online Master's Degrees (10)

Online Certificate Programs (3)

  • Annual Tuition: $8,880
  • Median Salary: $74,300
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Charleston
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Eastern Illinois University offers Bachelor of Arts degrees in General Studies, Psychology, and Communication in Organizations. They also have Bachelor of Science degrees in Organizational Development, Nursing, Health Communication, and Business Administration. Their online master's degrees are particularly robust, offering 16 majors, including Master of Science degrees in Communication Disorders and Science, Talent Development, Family and Consumer Sciences, Cybersecurity, and more. Their Master of Arts degrees include Art Education, Aging Studies, Political Science, and Music Education.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (7)

Online Master's Degrees (18)

Online Certificate Programs (3)

  • Annual Tuition: $19,800
  • Median Salary: $75,100
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Online
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Founded in 1887, Benedictine University is a private, Catholic university that strives for excellence. Its online programs benefit students who have busy schedules but want to pursue an online bachelor's or master's degree. With asynchronous online courses, students can find time to complete coursework on their own time. Students can choose to from online degree programs such as management, nutrition, public health, nursing, and more.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (7)

Online Master's Degrees (29)

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Online Certificate Programs (11)

  • Annual Tuition: $16,500
  • Median Salary: $74,100
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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North Park University-Chicago offers 5 online undergraduate programs and 5 online graduate programs. The undergraduate programs are Location Intelligence, Nonprofit Management, Digital Marketing, Business Administration, and Organizational Management and Leadership. Their graduate online programs currently offered are Business Administration, Human Resource Management, Nonprofit Administration, Higher Education Administration, and Organizational Management and Leadership. The undergraduate online degree programs cost $550 per credit hour, and the graduate courses cost $2,300 per course.

  • Annual Tuition: $13,800
  • Median Salary: $71,700
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Lebanon
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McKendree University offers a number of online undergraduate degrees in Psychology, Business Administration, Computer Information Systems, Nursing, and Criminal Justice. Their online Bachelor of Business Administration allows students to choose between 7 specializations, including Human Resource Management, Entrepreneurship, Sport Management, Accounting, and more. They offer 5 master's degrees: a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice, a Master of Arts in Education, a Master of Business Administration, a Master of Science in Nursing, and a dual Master of Science in Nursing & Master of Business Administration.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (11)

Online Master's Degrees (10)

Online Doctoral Degrees (1)

Online Certificate Programs (5)

  • Annual Tuition: $11,400
  • Median Salary: $69,800
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Quincy
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Quincy University is a private university in Quincy, IL who offers 3 online degrees: a Bachelor of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Human Services, and a Master of Business Administration. The Bachelor of Business Administration requires students to specialize in a particular business field: accounting, finance, management, or marketing. Yearly tuition for Quincy University is $30,200 for undergraduate students. Their Master of Business Administration costs $500 per credit, making it an affordable option for many students.

  • Annual Tuition: $9,390
  • Median Salary: $68,200
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: University Park
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Governors State University offers 3 online bachelor's degrees: Nursing, Interdisciplinary Studies, and Business and Applied Sciences. They offer 3 online graduate degrees as well. These programs are in Supply Chain Management, Addiction Studies, and Business Administration. Students interested in their Business and Applied Sciences undergraduate degree can take courses in Principles of Entrepreneurship, Business Communication, and Production and Operations Management. This degree, like many of their other undergraduate degrees, requires 120 credits in order to graduate.

  • Annual Tuition: $12,105
  • Median Salary: $68,400
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Springfield
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The University of Illinois at Springfield currently offers 14 online undergraduate degrees in majors such as Political Science, Information Systems Security, Computer Science, Teacher Education, and Health Care Informatics concentration in Management Information Systems. They also have 13 online graduate degrees, including a Master of Science in Data Analytics, a Master of Arts in Liberal and Integrative Studies, a Master of Science in Management Information Systems, and a Master of Arts in Environmental Science.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (14)

Online Master's Degrees (20)

Online Certificate Programs (24)

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  • Annual Tuition: $13,200
  • Median Salary: $66,700
  • Accreditation: HLC and ABHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Lincoln
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Lincoln Christian University, who has a campus in Lincoln, Illinois, as well as 2 others across the country, offers an online Associate of Arts in Bible, an online Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration, Psychology, Christian Ministry, and an online Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership, Intercultural Studies, and Bible & Theology. Their BA in Psychology gives students the opportunity to take classes in Skills of the Helping Professional, Lifespan Developmental Psychology, Physiological Psychology, and Psychology and Religion.

  • Annual Tuition: $10,200
  • Median Salary: $62,100
  • Accreditation: HLC, ABHE, and TRACS
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chicago
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Moody Bible Institute offers a wide variety of online courses in Bible, ministry, theology, and education. Students can choose from two formats. One is the 8-week courses that are designed to be eight weeks long, having a week-by-week schedule that consists of reading assignments, projects, and discussion board posts. Students can also choose an online self-paced course that can be completed within a 16-week time period.

Find an Online Degree:

Comprehensive List of Accredited Online Schools in Illinois (73)

Illinois offers working and distance students over 73 online colleges to choose from. Southeastern Illinois College and Shawnee Community College are among the most affordable, offering degrees for $5,040 and $5,408 per year, respectively. Web development, software development, and computer systems analysis are among the top-ten fastest growing career sectors in Illinois. For students hoping to enter these career fields, Illinois Institute of Technology offers comprehensive degree programs in information technology and management, network engineering, and electrical and computer engineering. Lewis University also offers a bachelor's in computer science and master's degrees in both computer science and data science.

At a Glance:

  • The Illinois State Board of Education provides numerous state and federal grants available to college students, including arts and foreign language grants.
  • Each year, the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois distributes more than $200,000 in scholarship funding to local students.
  • Over 60% of accredited online colleges in Illinois charge less than $25,000 per year.

References

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