2019 Best Online Colleges in Tennessee

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Ranked based on tuition rates and average alumni salaries, this list highlights the best online schools in Tennessee. Tennessee Tech University is ranked #1, charges a tuition rate of $13,110, and offers programs such as a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies with four different concentrations. Ranked #10, Tennessee Wesleyan University offers the lowest tuition of $9,999 each year for its undergraduate degrees, and graduates earn a median salary of $64,800.

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 Tennessee, view our comprehensive list.

Rank School Annual Tuition Median Salary
#1 #1 Tennessee Tech University Annual Tuition $13,110 Median Salary $84,200
#2 #2 The University of Tennessee - Knoxville Annual Tuition $14,518 Median Salary $84,300
#3 #3 University of Memphis Annual Tuition $12,600 Median Salary $74,300
#4 #4 The University of Tennessee - Chattanooga Annual Tuition $10,290 Median Salary $69,000
#5 #5 Lipscomb University Annual Tuition $16,800 Median Salary $69,500
#6 #6 Middle Tennessee State University Annual Tuition $13,200 Median Salary $68,400
#7 #7 Union University Annual Tuition $13,600 Median Salary $67,300
#8 #8 Austin Peay State University Annual Tuition $9,030 Median Salary $66,400
#9 #9 Tennessee State University Annual Tuition $15,630 Median Salary $66,900
#10 #10 Tennessee Wesleyan University Annual Tuition $9,999 Median Salary $64,800
#11 #11 The University of Tennessee - Martin Annual Tuition $11,940 Median Salary $63,600
#12 #12 King University Annual Tuition $11,008 Median Salary $62,700
#13 #13 Lee University Annual Tuition $13,620 Median Salary $60,800
#14 #14 Bryan College-Dayton Annual Tuition $11,315 Median Salary $56,400
#15 #15 Welch College Annual Tuition $11,098 Median Salary $55,900
#16 #16 Bethel University - TN Annual Tuition $15,292 Median Salary $53,300
#17 #17 Johnson University Annual Tuition $12,000 Median Salary $40,500
Salary data provided by Payscale Logo. Updated 2018.

2019 Online Colleges in Tennessee 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: $13,110
  • Median Salary: $84,200
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Cookeville
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Founded in 1915, Tennessee Technological University offers more than 40 online bachelor's, master's and certificate programs. Tech describes itself as a STEM-infused institution, with the science, technology, engineering and math orientation evident in all programs, including those found online. The BS in Professional Studies, for example, gives students a leg up on preparation for technical professions, and the online MBA has a concentration especially for engineers. The Master's in Professional Studies has concentrations that include TESOL, Strategic Leadership and Public Safety. Two new programs are the EdS in Exercise Science and a PhD in Exceptional Learning.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (5)

Online Master's Degrees (26)

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Online Certificate Programs (10)

  • Annual Tuition: $14,518
  • Median Salary: $84,300
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Knoxville
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The University of Tennessee-Knoxville has more than 20 highly respected online programs. They are administered through Vols Online. The bachelor's program is a Registered Nurse to BS in Nursing. The Master's programs are particularly strong in Education, Nursing and Engineering. There are two MS degrees in Educational Psychology, including Applied Education Psychology. The School of Nursing offers a PhD in Nursing. The MS options in Engineering include Civil Engineering, Industrial Systems Engineering and an unusual concentration in Automotive Engineering. Other programs include the MS in Social Work (MSSW), and the MS in Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications. Support for online students is exceptional. UT is the flagship campus of the state university system.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (1)

Online Master's Degrees (14)

Online Doctoral Degrees (3)

Online Certificate Programs (5)

  • Annual Tuition: $12,600
  • Median Salary: $74,300
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Memphis
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The University of Memphis has 60 online programs, which are administered through U of M Global. The undergraduate online programs are notable in Business. The Bachelor’s in Business Administration (BBA) has concentrations in Real Estate and Marketing Management. Other undergraduate programs include the Bachelor of Professional Studies in Early Intervention and the BA in African and African American Studies. There are a large number of master's programs including the MA in Teaching Special Education and the MS in Instructional Leadership. Other graduate programs include a Master of Music Education and an MS in Environmental Nutrition. Certificate programs include Autism Studies, College and Degree Counseling, and Philanthropy and Non Profit Leadership. Support for online students through U of M Global is exceptional. UM is a public research university.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (27)

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Online Master's Degrees (30)

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Online Doctoral Degrees (3)

Online Certificate Programs (18)

  • Annual Tuition: $10,290
  • Median Salary: $69,000
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Chattanooga
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The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga has a dozen online degree programs and certificates. There are a number of additional hybrid programs that combine online classes with some on-campus meetings. The BS in Criminal Justice prepares students for careers in the field, and for advanced study. The MS in Criminal Justice aims students at leadership positions in criminal justice or social service agencies. The MS in Engineering Management offers an unusual concentration in Construction Management, with courses including Lean Construction and Strategic Bidding and Estimating. UTC's MBA has several concentrations, including Business Analytics. Other programs include an RN to BSN and a Doctor of Nursing Practice. UTC is in the Southeastern part of the state, not far from Atlanta.

  • Annual Tuition: $16,800
  • Median Salary: $69,500
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Nashville
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Lipscomb University offers 25 online programs. The programs are particularly robust in Bachelor's and Master's of Professional Studies. The BS in Professional Studies includes Strategic Leadership, Data Analysis, Entertainment Management, and Business Management. The Master of Professional Studies (MPS) has programs in Global Leadership, Performance Coaching, and Strategic Leadership. These programs stress career preparation. The Doctor of Education is in Organization and Strategic Change, and aims at reasserting Christian values in education. Other programs include an MS in Sustainability and an ME in Technology Integration. All of Lipscomb's programs integrate Christian ethics with individual careers. Founded in 1891, Lipscomb is located in Nashville and is associated with the Churches of Christ. LU is also military friendly.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (12)

Online Master's Degrees (8)

Online Doctoral Degrees (2)

Online Certificate Programs (3)

  • Annual Tuition: $13,200
  • Median Salary: $68,400
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Murfreesboro
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Middle Tennessee State University, located near Nashville, offers more than 25 bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs online. The undergraduate programs include the BS in Professional Studies, which has options in Information Technology, Health Administration, and International Organizational Leadership. Other programs include BS degrees in Communications, Criminal Justice, and in Interdisciplinary studies. Master's programs include an MS in Aeronautical Science, with options in Aviation Management, Aviation Education, and Aviation Safety and Security Management. Other graduate degrees include Library Science and several MBA options. MTSU Online began in 1997 with 53 students and today has a population of more than 12,000. MTSU has the largest adult degree completion program in Tennessee. The school is also military friendly.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (10)

Online Master's Degrees (15)

Online Certificate Programs (2)

  • Annual Tuition: $13,600
  • Median Salary: $67,300
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Jackson
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Founded in 1823, Union University is the oldest university affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention. The school is located in Jackson and offers more than 25 online programs to distance learners. Their BS in Ministry has tracks in Education and Administration. The Master's in Christian Studies (MCS) is designed for pastors, missionaries, church planters, and others who work full time. The MBA program has four options including Accounting, Human Resource Management, Leadership, and Marketing. The programs in Education feature a 12-month M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning, and a 16-month Ed.S. in School Reform. There is also a 60 credit Ed.D. in School Reform. Union explicitly states that its dedication to quality academics and the Christian faith is integrated into every one of the school's programs.

  • Annual Tuition: $9,030
  • Median Salary: $66,400
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Online
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Austin Peay State University, formally founded in 1927, has almost fifty online associate, bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs. Bachelor's programs available include an RN to BSN, a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management, and degrees in Hospitality Administration, Sociology and Communication Arts. The MS programs in Computer Science include Data Management and Predictive Analytics. The MS degrees in Nursing feature concentrations in Nursing Education, Family Nurse Practitioner, and Nursing Administration. The MS in Professional Studies has nine options including Mathematical Finance. Among the certificates offered are Strategic Leadership, Project Management, and Conflict Resolution. APSU is distinguished by having two designated Centers of Excellence: one in Creative Arts and one in Field Biology.

Online Associate Degrees (3)

Online Bachelor's Degrees (21)

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Online Master's Degrees (25)

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Online Certificate Programs (4)

  • Annual Tuition: $15,630
  • Median Salary: $66,900
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Nashville
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Tennessee State University, founded in Nashville in 1912, offers more than 30 online bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs. TSU's undergraduate degrees feature a BS in Professional Studies that has concentrations in Health Administration, Information Technology, and International Organizational Leadership. These prepare students for both careers and graduate studies. Other BS programs include Sociology and Urban Studies. The Master's programs are particularly strong in nursing. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) offers concentrations in Nursing Administration, Family Nurse Practitioner, Holistic Nursing, and Nursing Education. They also offer an MS in Speech and Hearing Science. The school is distinguished as being a Historically Black College and University (HBCU).

Online Bachelor's Degrees (7)

Online Master's Degrees (16)

Online Certificate Programs (10)

  • Annual Tuition: $9,999
  • Median Salary: $64,800
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Athens
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Tennessee Wesleyan University, affiliated with the United Methodist Church, offers a half dozen online bachelor's and master's degree programs. The bachelor's offerings include a BS in Management that allows students to choose any of five emphases including Accounting, Healthcare Management, and Industrial Management. With transfer credits, the degree can be finished in 16 months. They also offer an RN to BSN program. MBA programs are offered in Management and Accounting, both of which can be finished in 12 months of full time study. In 2016, the school changed its name from Tennessee Wesleyan College to University, in recognition of the expansion of its programs to include graduate studies.

  • Annual Tuition: $11,940
  • Median Salary: $63,600
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Martin
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The University of Tennessee-Martin offers more than 30 online bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs. The offerings are particularly impressive in education and agriculture. Undergraduate offerings feature an RN to BSN, and BS programs in Agriculture Business, and in Agriculture, Farm and Ranch Management. Graduate programs include a Master's in Counseling with options in School Counseling and School Counseling Endorsement, an MS in Education Curriculum and Instruction, and an MA in Strategic Communications. The MS in Family and Consumer Science includes concentrations in Dietetics and Family Studies. The MS in Agriculture and Natural Resources (MSANR) has concentrations in Agribusiness Management, Natural Resource Management, and System Science in Agriculture. UTM is located northeast of Memphis.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (7)

Online Master's Degrees (22)

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Online Certificate Programs (2)

  • Annual Tuition: $11,008
  • Median Salary: $62,700
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Bristol
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King University offers more than 30 online associate, bachelor's and master's degree programs. The wide range of undergraduate programs features BS degrees in English, History, Psychology, Health Informatics, Criminal Justice, and Religious Studies. Master's programs include an MEd in Instructional Leadership. The MS in Nursing has options in Nursing Education and Nursing Administration. The MBA has numerous concentrations including Marketing, Management, Human Resources Management and Healthcare Management. Founded in 1867, King University is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and is located in Bristol, in the Northeast part of the state. KU describes itself as a Christian learning community that integrates rigorous academics and strong faith. The school is very military friendly.

Online Associate Degrees (1)

Online Bachelor's Degrees (15)

Online Master's Degrees (15)

  • Annual Tuition: $13,620
  • Median Salary: $60,800
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Cleveland
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Lee University was founded in 1918 and is located in Cleveland, near Chattanooga. The school is closely affiliated with the Church of God and offers more than 40 online bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs. All courses reflect a strong evangelical Christian worldview. The courses are exceptionally strong in religion and ministry. The BA/ BS program in Ministry Leadership has specializations in Church Administration, Discipleship, Pastoral Ministry, Music and Worship, and Youth Ministry. Other undergraduate offerings include a BA/ BS in Administration and a BA/BS in Criminal Justice. Graduate programs feature an MBA that integrates technical skills with an orientation to working in churches. The MA in Ministry Studies has several tracks including Worship Studies and Practical Theological Studies. Certificates include Bible Studies, and Pastoral Studies.

Online Bachelor's Degrees (34)

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Online Master's Degrees (7)

Online Certificate Programs (5)

  • Annual Tuition: $11,315
  • Median Salary: $56,400
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Dayton
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Bryan College-Dayton is a non-denominational evangelical Christian college located in Dayton, near Chattanooga. Bryan offers more than 20 online associate, bachelor's, master's, and certificate programs. The programs are strong in religion and business. Bryan emphasizes that all programs reflect an "integrated understanding of the Bible and the Liberal Arts." Undergraduate degrees include a BS in Applied Psychology and several Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) programs.  Graduate programs include an MEd in Child and Family Studies. Also offered is an MA in Christian Ministry in Administration and Bible Studies. The MBA has an impressive number of specializations including Marketing, Healthcare Administration, Sports Management, and Christian Ministry. The MEd programs are not intended for licensure. Available certificates include Marketing and Human Resources.

Online Associate Degrees (1)

Online Bachelor's Degrees (6)

Online Master's Degrees (11)

Online Certificate Programs (2)

  • Annual Tuition: $11,098
  • Median Salary: $55,900
  • Accreditation: SACS COC and ABHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Nashville
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Welch College is located in Gallatin, northeast of Nashville, and is associated with the Freewill Baptist Church. Welch offers one online bachelor’s and several online associate programs.  Online students must be at least 23 years old. The Associate of Arts is designed for students wanting a biblical framework for majors not available at Welch. The Associate of Science in Business is designed for students looking to become bookkeepers and business managers for denominational offices, and emphasizes a Bible-based business curriculum. The Associate in Science in Ministry is aimed to support and advance the Christian ministries of bi-vocational pastors and lay workers. The BS in Theological Studies focuses on general Christian ministry and prepares students for a variety of local ministries including outreach, preaching, overseeing, and faith development.

  • Annual Tuition: $15,292
  • Median Salary: $53,300
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: McKenzie
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Bethel University is located in McKenzie in the Northwest part of the state, and is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. They offer more than a dozen online associate, bachelor's, and master's programs. The associate programs feature Liberal Arts and Customer Relations Management. Several BS degrees are offered including Emergency Management, Fitness and Wellness, and Criminal Justice. Other undergraduate programs include an RN to BSN, and BA programs in Healthcare and Customer Relations Management. Graduate programs include an MS in Criminal Justice and an MEd in Educational Leadership. The MBA program has several concentrations including Healthcare Management, Academic Practitioner, Executive MBA, and Human Relations. The Academic MBA is for students with no executive experience, and the Executive MBA is for students with such experience.

  • Annual Tuition: $12,000
  • Median Salary: $40,500
  • Accreditation: SACS COC and ABHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Locations: Knoxville
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Johnson University, located in Knoxville, offers more than 40 online associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and certificate programs. All of the university's programs are designed to reflect a Christian and Kingdom perspective. This is based on the belief that students in their personal lives and professional careers will advance the coming kingdom. Associate degrees feature Applied Linguistics and Ministry Studies. Undergraduate degrees include a BS in Nonprofit Administration and the BA/BS options in Applied Linguistics. Graduate options include the MA in New Testament and an MA in Intercultural Studies with concentrations including Ministry, Translation, Engagement, and Church Planning. The MBA includes Christian ethics and has concentrations including Nonprofit Management. Certificates include Biblical Interpretation, Christian Ministries, and Translation Consultancy.

Online Associate Degrees (4)

Online Bachelor's Degrees (15)

Online Master's Degrees (15)

Online Doctoral Degrees (5)

Online Certificate Programs (8)

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Comprehensive List of Accredited Online Schools in Tennessee (58)

References

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