2018 Directory of Online Colleges and Universities in Illinois

Students looking for online universities and colleges in Illinois have a large number of options available to them at both the public and private level. Many of the public higher education institutions in the state offer full online degree programs in Illinois. The University of Illinois’ system, the largest in the state, offers online degree programs through three of their campuses. They also provide a number of student services to online students. Even Northwestern University, one of the most selective colleges in the state, offers four online master’s degrees through their school of continuing studies.

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Job Outlook

Illinois, much like the nation at large, is still in the midst of an economic recovery. Unemployment sits at 9.5 percent, up half a point in the last six months. Trade, transportation and utilities are the state’s primary industries, excluding farming, but growth in these sectors has slowed as of late. Construction, a bellwether for economic growth, has dropped almost seven percent since November 2012. In fact, no non-agricultural industry boasts a rate of growth higher than three percent. Next to trade, transportation and utilities, education and health services, professional and business services, and government make up the largest employers in the state. Tellingly, jobs in education, health, and technology are among the fastest growing industries in the state.


Tuition may vary for online college courses depending on factors such as the type and location of the institution as well as the program. The average in-state tuition at the public four-year colleges and universities in Indiana was $7,599 per year. Tuition at public community and technical colleges was $3,137 per year on average. Annual tuition at private accredited online colleges ranged from $8,520 to $28,590.

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Online colleges and universities in Illinois receive their school accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools via the Higher Learning Commission (NCAHLC). This governing body ensures online degree programs in Illinois meet a certain set of educational standards. School accreditation  gives your degree credence, enabling other academic institutions and any future employers to recognize your degree. Be very wary of any Illinois online schools without easily accessible accreditation information.

Distance Learning Resources

  • Illinois Board of Higher Education, the governing board for higher education in Illinois, has a number of useful resources, including a downloadable degree program inventory.
  • Illinois Student Assistance Commission helps Illinois students find, apply to and pay for college. This website provides financial planning tools and the opportunity to apply for a number of grants.
  • What’s Next Illinois explores different college programs and will help you set up a payment plan for your tuition.
  • Illinois Online Network (ION) website provides featuring articles, studies, and guides to online education. They have a very insightful questionnaire for prospective online students, along with a list of best practices in online education.
  • Illinois State Library’s online database during your studies to search books, scholarly articles, and periodicals aiding in your studies and research projects.
  • Illinois Economy at a Glance allows you to mine employment data to determine a major which will work best for you financially. Use search parameters to view hiring patterns in a specific city or metropolitan area.

More Information

Indiana, named from the Latin word for “land of Indians”, is located in the Ohio Valley region of the United States. The 14th smallest state in the country, it has an area of 36,420 square miles. It has an average annual temperature of about 52°F.

Of the states in the country, Indiana has the 15th largest population. The state has 92 counties and 6,483,802 residents living in these counties. Approximately 41 percent of Indiana’s population is under the age of 30. With approximately 18 percent of its population identifying itself as belonging to a racial or ethnic minority group, the state has one of the least diverse populations in the US.

With a population of 820,445 residents, Indiana’s capital city, Indianapolis, is the largest city in the state. An estimated 7.9 percent of the state’s residents live in the Indianapolis metropolitan area. Indiana’s other big cities are Fort Wayne, Evansville, South Bend, and Hammond.

Indiana residents normally have a higher than average level of education as compared to those around the US. According to the 2010 Census, approximately 23.5 percent of the state’s residents over the age of 25 have completed high school, 5.3 percent have at least an associate degree, 4.1 percent have degrees at the bachelor’s level or higher, and 1 percent hold a graduate level degree.