Frequently Asked Questions: Online Colleges in Indiana

Does Indiana have good online colleges and universities?

Yes, Indiana’s online bachelor’s and graduate degree programs are generally well-regarded. For instance, U.S. News & World Report ranks Indiana University Online’s bachelor’s degree program No. 29 in the country, Purdue University Northwest’s No. 39, and Ball State University’s No. 47. At the graduate level, many online programs at institutions in Indiana rank highly as well, including Ball State University’s online computer information technology, education, and MBA degrees. IU Online earned the No. 1 spot in a variety of online business and finance graduate degrees, including MBA, non-MBA business, and MBA in marketing, and its online graduate education degrees also rank highly.

Do online college credits in Indiana cost more than in-person classes?

The answer to this question depends on which college you attend. Some colleges offer discounted rates for online courses regardless of where you live, while others charge an additional fee for online courses to help cover the cost of software licenses, technical support, etc. At Indiana universities, online out-of-state students tend to pay more than online in-state students. Likewise, at the community college level, out-of-state students pay more than in-state students.

Why should you choose Indiana for online higher education?

Indiana has online bachelor’s and graduate degree programs that consistently rank at the top of nationwide comparisons, particularly at the graduate level. This tells you that as an online student, you will get a flexible education that does not sacrifice anything in the way of quality. Indiana’s wide range of online degree programs also means it’s more likely you’ll find an affordable option.

The Cost of Online College in Indiana

How much does an online degree in Indiana cost?

The cost of an online degree in Indiana depends on which institution you attend as well as the type of degree you choose to pursue. For example, undergraduate courses are usually more affordable than graduate degrees. Also, you may find yourself paying more for your degree if you major in a STEM field rather than the humanities.

Regardless of the cost per credit, you should also consider that you may be able to save a lot of money on indirect expenses, such as transportation and housing, by earning your college degree online.

To give you a sense of exactly how much you should expect to pay for your online education, we’ve listed the current rates for earning an online bachelor’s degree in Indiana below:

  • Most affordable online college in Indiana: University of Southern Indiana, $275 per credit
  • Most expensive online college in Indiana: Marian University (IN), $850 per credit

Average College Tuition Cost

Source: Education Data Initiative

How long do you have to live in Indiana to get in-state tuition rates?

Establishing Indiana residency typically requires you to have resided in Indiana for at least 12 months prior to declaring Indiana residency. You must prove you are in the state for a reason other than education.

Who qualifies for reduced tuition costs in Indiana?

Indiana offers several ways to reduce your tuition costs. One is through participation in the Midwest Student Exchange Program (MSEP), which caps tuition for out-of-state Midwest students at 150% of in-state tuition at public universities in participating Midwestern states. This can save you thousands, if not tens of thousands, on your degree. The state also sponsors the Frank O’Bannon Grant, which awards need-based aid to Indiana students who attend accredited public, private, or technical colleges in the state. Eligibility is determined based on FAFSA application data, so it’s important to file early and accurately. The FAFSA will also show if you are eligible for Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), and other financial aid awards.

College Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Grant Programs in Indiana

In addition to MSEP tuition reciprocity agreements and the Frank O’Bannon Grant, there are a number of other programs available that can help you cover the cost of college. Some of these programs are also based on financial need, while others are awarded based on factors such as demographics or academic merit. We’ve reviewed a few of the most prominent financial aid options for you below:

Workforce Ready Grant

This state-sponsored grant covers the cost of tuition and fees for Indiana students enrolled in eligible high-value certificate programs at Ivy Tech Community College, Vincennes University, Indiana Institute of Technology, or other approved providers.

Who’s eligible? Indiana residents who are U.S. citizens and enrolled in an eligible certificate program in one of the following fields: Advanced Manufacturing, Building & Construction, Health Sciences, IT & Business Services, or Transportation & Logistics.

Contact information: [email protected] | 888-528-4719

Learn more

Indiana Department of Transportation Engineering Scholarship

Sponsored by the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), this scholarship program awards $3,125 per semester, paid summer internships, and priority hiring within the agency after graduation to students majoring in engineering at an accredited university in Indiana.

Who’s eligible? Students enrolled at the School of Engineering at an accredited college or university in Indiana who maintain an average GPA of at least 2.8 and have completed at least one year of college.

Contact information: [email protected] | 317-234-7930

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Association for Iron & Steel Technology Midwest Member Chapter Scholarships

This program offers 14 different engineering-related scholarships you can apply for using one application. The award amount is usually $3,000 per year.

Who’s eligible? Members of the AIST Midwest chapter or dependents of members of the AIST Midwest chapter. Applicants must be studying or plan to study engineering at an accredited North American college or university.

Contact information: [email protected] | 724-814-3000

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William A. Crawford Minority Teacher Scholarship

This state-sponsored program awards funding to minority (Black and/or Hispanic/Latinx) students planning to teach in an accredited school in Indiana upon graduation. The scholarship must be reapplied for each year, and participants must agree in writing to teach at an Indiana public school for at least three years after graduation.

Who’s eligible? Indiana residents who are minority students and commit to becoming teachers in the state of Indiana for at least three years. You must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 and attend college full time.

Contact information: [email protected] | 888-528-4719

Learn more

5 Fastest Growing Careers in Indiana

If you’re still in the process of assessing your college options, you may also be undecided on your major. When selecting a major, one of the most important factors to consider is your future employability. Thinking about which industries and careers are growing the fastest in Indiana can make it easier to find a job once you graduate, and being in demand should also help you earn a higher salary.

By consulting the U.S. Department of Labor’s Long-Term Occupational Projections 2018–2028, we’ve determined that the following five careers have some of the highest projected growth rates in Indiana:

​​Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists

Market research analysts and marketing specialists use data to understand consumer preferences and tailor a company’s marketing campaigns to what will bring the greatest return on investment. In Indiana, market research analysts and marketing specialists make an average salary of $62,520 per year.

Substance Use Disorder, Behavioral Disorder, and Mental Health Counselors

Indiana, like most states in the U.S., is experiencing a mental health and substance use disorder epidemic. There is a growing need to provide more professional support around addiction, behavioral issues, and mental health. In Indiana, counselors in this field earn an average salary of $48,760 per year.

  • Growth: 26.3%
  • Degree options:Bachelor’s in Clinical/Medical Social Work, Bachelor’s in Psychology, Bachelor’s in Substance Abuse/Addiction Counseling, Master’s in Clinical/Medical Social Work, Master’s in Clinical Psychology, Master’s in Substance Abuse/Addiction Counseling

Occupational Therapy Assistants

Occupational therapy assistants (OTAs) support occupational therapists in their patient care, helping people regain the ability to carry out their daily activities. OTAs typically have at least an associate degree and earn an average yearly salary of $54,510 in Indiana.

  • Growth: 38.6%
  • Degree options: Associate in Occupational Therapy Assistance

Nurse Practitioners

NPs are advanced practice registered nurses who specialize in diagnosing and treating patients with an emphasis on preventative care and health education. They are quickly becoming many Americans’ preferred primary care professionals. NPs tend to be well-compensated; in Indiana they earn an average salary of $113,490 per year.

Personal Care Aides

As Indiana’s population ages and chronic and acute medical conditions become more prevalent, the state is in increasing need of personal care aides to assist patients, often older adults or disabled people, with tasks such as cooking, cleaning, and bathing. In Indiana, personal care aides make an average annual salary of $25,920.

Our Research

Our list of the best online colleges in Indiana features educational institutions of all sizes — from small Christian and liberal arts colleges to large public universities. Tuition costs, credits needed to graduate, and course formats were taken into consideration when selecting schools. All the colleges on this list are accredited, which is imperative for educational excellence and credit/degree transfer.

The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) is a federally recognized regional accreditor that accredits all the schools on this list. The HLC’s accreditation process is based on five principles, which include mission, integrity, excellence in teaching and learning, and overall institution excellence. This organization uses peer review to guarantee quality accreditation.

  • 60hours to write this article
  • 93universities and colleges we assessed
  • 170education programs we compared

The Top 50 Online Colleges in Indiana

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