Releases 2015-2016 Ranking for Best Online Colleges

Share Article (AC Online), a leading resource for online education and college affordability information, has released its third annual ranking for the 2015-2016 Best Online Colleges.

Best Online Colleges

These schools are going above and beyond to drive innovative learning in the much-desired online environment

According to a 2014 Learning House survey, nearly ninety percent of online students report that online classes are equal to or better than classroom study, and about one-third say they had not considered classroom or hybrid programs. Further, the study shows that a higher percentage of online students rely solely on financial aid. This year, AC Online includes the percent of students receiving financial aid as part of their criteria.

"We want to highlight the schools that are meeting the demands of students and helping make online education programs more affordable," said Dan Schuessler, CEO and Founder of AC Online. "These schools are going above and beyond to drive innovative learning in the much-desired online environment."

The survey also reports that 66 percent of undergraduate online students choose their online program based on a balance of cost and quality. This year, AC Online has distinguished its ranking scale by the use of Peer-Based Value, or PBV. The PBV score compares the cost of each program to the cost of similar programs with the same qualitative score.

Ranked schools meet a number of criteria and metrics, including:

  • Must be a public or private, not-for-profit institution
  • Must offer at least one fully-online bachelor’s degree program
  • Academic and counseling services
  • Job placement for graduates

AC Online's ranking of the Best Online Colleges for the 2015-2016 school year and a complete look at the methodology can be found here:

About us: AC Online ( began in 2011 to provide quality data and information about pursuing an affordable higher education. Our free community resource materials and tools span topics such as financial aid and college savings, opportunities for veterans and people with disabilities, and online learning resources. We feature higher education institutions that have developed online learning environments that include highly trained faculty, new technology and resources, and online support services to help students achieve educational and career success. We have been featured by nearly 700 postsecondary institutions and nearly 100 government organizations.

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Dominic Silva-Martin
since: 03/2013
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