Louisiana Online Colleges & Universities – Top Online Schools for 2014

AC Online: Ranking the Most Affordable Online Colleges in Louisiana

Louisiana combines southern hospitality with convenient distance learning through its numerous fully online four-year colleges. The state takes pride in its accredited schools that boast curriculum matching what is offered at on-campus universities. These flexible programs sacrifice none of the esteemed professors or admissions requirements, and therefore grant equivalent degrees and certifications. Most even offer similar tuition assistance. To assist you in your online college search in Louisiana, we’ve compiled a list of the very best online schools in the state. We know that affordability is often a primary concern, so we’ve ordered the programs from lowest tuition to highest. All of these ranked schools are an excellent choice when pursuing an Louisiana online college.

Click here to see our methodology.

Southern University at New Orleans

6400 Press Drive, New Orleans, Louisiana 70126

The Southern University at New Orleans Online, or SUNO Online, offers a Bachelor of General Studies with a concentration on the humanities and a Master of Arts in Museum Studies. Online college classes are run with Blackboard software and MyCampus. The University has an E-Learning Department to help those interested in online and distance learning.


McNeese State University

4205 Ryan St, Lake Charles, Louisiana 70605

McNeese State University has online programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate level in addition to certificates. There are accelerated online college courses for adult learners through the Center for Adult Learning in Louisiana Program. The University offers a SmarterMeasure test for those interested in finding out if distance learning is right for them. Some on-campus meetings or tests may be required.


Louisiana State University-Shreveport

One University Place, Shreveport, Louisiana 71115-2399

Louisiana State University-Shreveport's eCampus provides online college courses and master's degree programs. On-campus test proctoring is available for students in the area, though distance learners can use ProctorU for a fee and be monitored with a webcam. Students can access class material with smartphones and tablets. Courses are run with Moodle software.

Approach to Online Learning

How would you describe your institution's approach to online learning?

We recognize the importance of online learning that's why we have a designated department for two years. "Center for Online Learning& Faculty Development" under LSUS Continuing Education. My role is to prepare faculty to teach online courses and degree programs. I teach How to Teach Online Course each semester and certify faculty so they can offer online courses for LSUS. We use MOODLE online course learning management software. I train faculty on MOODLE if they lack technical skills. I offer brown bag lunch sessions and offer a variety of training and development programs to faculty. We increased our online course offerings and 100% online degree programs tremendously. I work closely with the departments and help them transition their face-to-face classes into 100 % online courses. Faculty members are eager to take on this task and develop their online courses. During 2012 and 2013, our number of online courses grew from 147 to 299. I add all our online course offerings into Electronic Campus website so, students can find us all over the world because we offer a very high quality of online courses and degree programs with a very affordable price.

What makes your online programs so valuable to students?

Our experienced faculty are now offering their courses in online format with a very reasonable price that our students can afford and register anywhere anytime. We constantly evaluate the needs of our students and offer degree programs to meet their needs. Currently we are offering eight week accelerated on campus and 100% online courses and degree programs to our online students. This way, our students can complete their degree programs lot shorter time period and attain a profession in their field of study. We have a partnership with Academic Partnerships Inc. and currently have two accelerated Masters Degrees offered and students can graduate within a year with a very affordable price. These degrees are in Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction and Masters in MBA.

Where do you see your online programs in the next five years? Beyond?

I see our online degree programs grow in numbers of students and new degree programs to meet the demand in our region. We do not want to duplicate programs, but offer very competitive degree programs to meet the economic needs of our region so our students can get a high paying jobs and be part of the economic growth. We know that online learning starts way before higher education, therefore, we will continue to offer variety of degree programs that are innovative and in demand occupations.


Southeastern Louisiana University

548 Western Ave., Hammond, Louisiana 70402

Students at Southeastern Louisiana University can complete a bachelor's of science degree in nursing completely online when they already have registered nurse credentials. The university, accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, allows students to complete the online college program in as little as three semesters.


Nicholls State University

University Station La Hwy 1, Thibodaux, Louisiana 70310

Nicholls State University Online has accredited undergraduate and graduate level programs. The University also offers certificates. Courses are eight weeks in length, and students can obtain a bachelor's degree in as few as three years. All online college course work is available online with no required visits to campus. Virtual advising is available through Google Hangout.

Approach to Online Learning

How would you describe your institution's approach to online learning?

The Nicholls approach to online learning is to offer students an accelerated, affordable and accessible alternative to a traditional education—one that allows them to adapt their educational experience to their life, not the other way around.

Our accredited online degree programs offer students the same high-quality education and personal attention for which our university is so well known. All faculty members who teach online courses must first complete training so that they can better understand and are better prepared for the unique challenges and teaching practices of the online classroom.

What makes your online programs so valuable to students?

At Nicholls, we understand that students have obligations and challenges to meet in their daily lives, so we’ve developed flexible online degree programs that help them achieve their education goals while living life. Five, 8-week sessions are offered each year and students can start and stop classes as life allows. The 8-week format allows students to see the "light at the end of the session tunnel" as they make progress toward course completion and, ultimately, their degree.

By taking just two classes each 8-week session, a student can complete a 120-hour bachelor’s degree in four years. Students taking three classes per session can earn the same degree in less than three years!

To help relieve student anxiety in the enrollment, scheduling and payment process, Nicholls Online provides a "one stop shop" for advising, registration and financial aid. There are no hidden fees, as the cost is set per credit hour ($250/credit hour for undergraduate courses and $350/credit hour for graduate courses for the 2013-14 year). Textbook and class material costs vary, depending on course.

Where do you see your online programs in the next five years? Beyond?

With technology and higher ed changing so rapidly, it's difficult to predict exactly where online programs will be in the future, but providing accessible, accredited education with a personal touch will always be Nicholls number one priority. The university’s online programs will continue to develop to meet the needs of our students.


University of Louisiana at Lafayette

104 University Circle, Lafayette, Louisiana 70503

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette's -- ULearn -- online college program has online nursing, health, and education programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels. Courses are taught using the Moodle platform. The University offers a SmarterMeasure test for those interested in finding out if distance learning with ULearn is right for them.


Grambling State University

403 Main Street, Grambling, Louisiana 71245

Grambling State University has entirely online as well as blended programs for undergraduate and graduate students. Online college classes are run with the Moodle Learning System and many instructors utilize video conferencing. The University offers a free Student Online Readiness Tool, or SORT, through their website to help students understand how distance-learning programs work.


Northwestern State University of Louisiana

University Parkway, Natchitoches, Louisiana 71497-0002

Northwestern State University of Louisiana's distance learning program, known as eNSU, offers 34 accredited online college degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Students can also obtain certificates and specialist degrees through eNSU. There are also five degree programs specifically for mature adults that can be taken at an accelerated pace. Some classes require students to come to campus for midterm or final exams.


Southern University and A & M College

Southern Branch Post Office, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70813

Southern University, a historically black college, offers associate, bachelor's, master's, and executive master's programs taught completely online. The University's library, bookstore, and other student services can be accessed through an online portal. Students can also access course materials at any time. Southern University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


University of Louisiana-Monroe

700 University Avenue, Monroe, Louisiana 71209-0000

University of Louisiana-Monroe's GOLD program, or ULMGOLD, offers associate, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs online. Courses are taught in four, eight, or 16-week formats and students are expected to participate five to seven days per week. Some degrees can be obtained on accelerated track. Classes are run using the Moodle platform.


University of New Orleans

2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, Louisiana 70148

The University of New Orleans offers a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy program online with more programs coming soon. The University also offers individual online courses. Online college classes may include web conferencing or a virtual campus with Second Life. Students can also participate in compressed videos, meaning that students at remote classroom sites can interact live with students at other classrooms and the instructor via television. The majority of classes utilize the Moodle platform.


New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary

3939 Gentilly Blvd, New Orleans, Louisiana 70126

The New Orleans Baptist Theological Online Seminary provides students with accredited undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as certificates. Students can get their degree completely online or can choose to take some in-person courses. No enrollment is required and students can take online college courses on a non-credit or credit basis. The Seminary also offers Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOC, for free.


Louisiana Tech University

305 Wisteria, Ruston, Louisiana 71272

Louisiana Tech University offers undergraduate and graduate level education to students who want to advance their knowledge through online college learning. Bachelor's and master's degrees can be found in subjects such as English, general studies, and organizational leadership. The school, which is accredited through the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, also provides various e-learning certificates.


Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College

156 Thomas Boyd Hall, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803-2750

Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College offers an online graduate education leading to master’s degrees in Education, Business Administration, Human Resource Education, Construction Management, and Educational Leadership with most programs taking 24 months to complete. These online college programs are designed to serve the needs of professionals who require a flexible learning schedule.

Approach to Online Learning

How would you describe your institution's approach to online learning?

Our approach is to utilize our LSU teaching faculty and, working together, become the premier provider of online education delivery in the state of Louisiana by offering the highest quality programs. By leveraging the LSU brand and our highly qualified faculty, we are proud to provide distance-learning opportunities to students all around the globe.

What makes your online programs so valuable to students?

LSU Online extends access to higher education by offering the highest quality online programs, taught by highly qualified LSU faculty. LSU Online seeks to provide distance-learning opportunities to students regardless of geographic location. Extending the opportunity to earn a LSU degree is invaluable to the marketplace.

Where do you see your online programs in the next five years? Beyond?

I believe in the next five years, and beyond, LSU will be offering many more online degrees at both the graduate and undergraduate level. We will also see growth in hybrid programs and the ability to take our highly rated LSU programs to all corners of the world with multiple delivery methods.


Our Lady of Holy Cross College

4123 Woodland Drive, New Orleans, Louisiana 70131-7399

Our Lady of Holy Cross College offers an online R.N. to B.S.N. degree program in addition to a variety of individual online college courses from different departments. Courses are run using Blackboard software. Our Lady of Holy Cross College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.


Loyola University-New Orleans

6363 Saint Charles Ave, New Orleans, Louisiana 70118-6143

Loyola University New Orleans Online provides regionally accredited bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees. The school also offers a BLEND, or Bridge to Leadership Education for Nurses at a Distance, an online college program for students who plan to pursue a graduate degree at Loyola in the Health Care Systems Management program.

Finding an Affordable Higher Education in Louisiana

Louisiana has more than just the bayou and the excitement of New Orleans, and the residents of this great state know that quite well. Louisiana is a beautiful place with friendly people who want to make the most of their lives. They know that getting a good education is going to be a large part of that and they put quite a bit of emphasis on that fact. 82.2% of the residents of the state have a high school diploma and 21.4% of them have a bachelor’s degree or higher. Only 6.9% of the population has an advanced degree, but that could change thanks to technology. The tech that we have today is making it possible to us affordable online schools in Louisiana to get a higher education.

Pursuing a Degree in Louisiana

The state of Louisiana has a large number of colleges of the brick and mortar type in the state. In fact, they have 65 two-year or more schools, and 32 four-year or more schools. While the residents and students coming into the state will have a number of schools, which they are going to be able to choose from they are also going to find that they have some other options as well. Affordable online colleges in Louisiana are a great choice, and they are an option that is gaining popularity every day. The quality of the schooling today is much higher than it used to be, and the technology is now making it a very feasible option. If you have a web connection, you can start learning and earning that degree. You are going to be able to get an associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, and even a doctorate online.

Benefits of Choosing Online Classes in Louisiana

If you are on the fence about going to a traditional school or choosing affordable online colleges in Louisiana, it is time to look at the benefits the online classes can offer. One of the biggest things that you are going to enjoy about online learning is the fact that you can do it on your own time. You do not have to hurry to your classes on campus because you are going to be learning right from the privacy of your own home. This is going to save you frustration, money, and time. When you learn online, you will also find that you are going to be able to keep your current job and work your schooling in around it in most cases. Students who start looking into online classes also find that the number of options they have is impressive. They can choose from many options, including art, business, and computer science.

Saving Money with Online Education

Another great thing about online colleges is that they are often going to be the more affordable and cost effective way to go. The cost of a two-year public school in Louisiana is $3,001, while the cost for an average four-year school is going to be $5,812 on average. Getting a degree online is going to be much cheaper in most cases, and you do not have to pay room and board.

Getting your education through affordable online colleges in Louisiana is a great option for many students today. They have a wide range of classes, and you can do it without spending a fortune. Keep in mind that you need to check the veracity of the school though and make sure that they have a good reputation in the field, as well as accreditation. Choose a school that is going to help you make a real difference in life.

Previous Rankings
AC Online: Ranking the Highest ROI Colleges in Louisiana
AC Online: Ranking the Highest ROI Colleges in Louisiana

A college education builds the framework upon which graduates build successful careers. Not all colleges are expensive and the top schools in Louisiana on this list met our criteria that balance cost with long-term earnings potential. We used data from the Carnegie Foundation, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), and the Integrated Post-Secondary Education Data System (IPEDS) to measure net tuition/fees costs against wages released in PayScale.com's 2013 College Earnings Report.

Click here to see our methodology.
Louisiana Colleges Analyzed: 132
Louisiana Colleges Ranked: 13
# College Name City ROI Tuition Type Photo
1 Louisiana Tech University Ruston $804,100 $6,574 Public (In-State)
2 Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College Baton Rouge $749,400 $6,989 Public (In-State)
3 McNeese State University Lake Charles $596,200 $5,088 Public (In-State) McNeese State University
4 University of New Orleans (UNO) New Orleans $556,500 $5,850 Public (In-State)
5 Xavier University of Louisiana New Orleans $535,900 $18,700 Private not-for-profit
6 University of Louisiana - Monroe Campus Monroe $469,700 $5,443 Public (In-State) University-of-Louisiana-Monroe
7 Southern University and A&M College Baton Rouge $404,800 $5,810 Public (In-State)
8 Northwestern State University Natchitoches $388,100 $5,557 Public (In-State)
9 Southeastern Louisiana University Hammond $385,000 $5,242 Public (In-State)
10 University of Louisiana (UL) at Lafayette Lafayette $361,000 $5,374 Public (In-State)
11 Nicholls State University Thibodaux $349,500 $5,679 Public (In-State)
12 Dillard University New Orleans $287,400 $14,770 Private not-for-profit
13 Grambling State University Grambling $65,350 $5,273 Public (In-State)