There are a number of online colleges and universities in Virginia available to students looking for accredited degrees in a distance-learning environment. Virginia online schools range from programs affiliated with large state schools to smaller, private, for-profit institutions.Virginia has more than 147 post-secondary institutions. Of these, 27 offer online programs. A total of eight are public four-year colleges or universities and two are public community or technical colleges and 17 are private colleges, universities, or career and vocational schools. These schools offer 359 online certificate programs, 2,515 online associate programs, 5,516 online bachelor’s programs, 2,143 online master’s programs, 2,787 online professional programs, and 644 online doctoral programs. Architecture, civil engineering, and mechanical engineering are examples of subjects offered by these programs.
Based on the total gross state product for Virginia, which was $419.193 billion in 2010, Virginia has the 10th strongest economy amongst the states in the nation.
The Commonwealth of Virginia’s economy has weathered the economic storm well, with unemployment holding steady at just above five percent since 2012. The state has a total workforce of approximately 3.5 million employees. Trade, utility and transportation make up huge portions of the state’s non-farm workforce, as do professional and business services. Unsurprisingly, given Virginia’s close proximity to Washington, D.C., government is the state’s largest employer, with 718,000 people as of April 2013. The fastest growing jobs in Virginia include software developer, market research analyst, marketing specialist, interpreter and translator, and network and computer system administrators.
The average wage in Virginia is more than the national average. The national average annual income is $42,871, while employees in Virginia earn an average annual income of $47,840. The median income for employees is $35,740 per year, with the top 10 percent earning over $95,470 per year and the bottom 10 percent earning under $17,520 per year.
Tuition for online college courses varies depending on factors such as the type and location of the institution as well as the program. In Virginia, the average in-state tuition at the public four-year colleges and universities was $5,700 per year. Public community and technical colleges charged students an average of $3,009 per year. Private accredited online college tuition ranged from $4,000 to $27,000 per year.
Online degree programs in Virginia are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Look for school accreditation from this formally recognized government body, or a regional equivalent, whenever you look at online universities in Virginia. Accreditation information should be easily located when you research an online school.
Distance Learning Resources
- Electronic Campus of Virginia allows you to search for online courses offered in the state of Virginia. The site allows you to filter your search by course or by preferred institution.
- State Council of Higher Education for Virginia provides current and future college students with resources like lists of available financial aid and research on higher education institutions. Use this as a starting point on your investigation of online learning in Virginia.
- Virginia Job Outlook Projected to 2018 offers a quick, informative look at the projected job growth of certain sectors over the next five years. This PDF includes forecasts for job growth and decline, as well as average salaries for nearly 100 different occupations.
- Virginia Employment Commission provides you with links to important information about unemployment, lists upcoming job fairs, and provides useful information about working in the state of Virginia.
- The Library of Virginia allows you, with a library card, to check out scholarly articles, journals, and do general research for your studies.
Virginia, which is located in the Southeast region of the United States, is named in honor of Elizabeth, “Virgin Queen” of England. With an area of 42,775 square miles, it is the 17th smallest state in the country. The average annual temperature in the state is approximately 57°F.
Of the states in the country, Virginia has the 12th largest population. It has an estimated population of 8,001,024 residents residing in its 135 counties. Approximately 40 percent of those living in Virginia are less than 30 years old. With approximately 35 percent of its population identifying itself as belonging to a racial or ethnic minority group, the state’s population diversity is average when compared with that of other states in the US.
Virginia’s capital city is Richmond. However, the state’s largest city is Virginia Beach, which has a population of 437,994 residents. Approximately 18.27 percent of the state’s residents live in the Virginia Beach metropolitan area. Some of the other populous cities in Virginia are Norfolk, Chesapeake, Arlington, and Richmond.
As compared to residents in other states around the nation, Virginia residents generally have a lower than average level of education. According to the 2010 Census, approximately 17 percent of the state’s residents over the age of 25 have graduated from high school, 5.1 percent have at least an associate degree, 3.9 percent have degrees at the bachelor’s level or higher, and 1 percent hold a graduate level degree.