West Virginia, nicknamed the Mountain State because of its Appalachian terrain, features a diverse array of public and private higher education institutions. These include 11 public baccalaureate and graduate institutions and a large selection of public community and technical colleges spread across the entire state. Private institutions in West Virginia include liberal arts colleges, faith-based colleges, and proprietary institutions, providing something for everyone. In addition, online education gives West Virginia students better access to a variety of high-quality colleges and universities inside and outside state lines.

West Virginia is home to a wide array of distance learning initiatives. Students attending the state’s public colleges, universities, community colleges, or technical colleges have access to the West Virginia Virtual Learning Network, a consortium of public state higher education institutions that offer online programs. In addition, West Virginia participates in the Southern Regional Education Board’s Academic Common Market/Electronic Campus Program, which allows students to take distance learning courses in participating states at in-state tuition rates. Even West Virginia’s K-12 students have access to online learning through West Virginia Virtual School, which lets students take courses online that are not available at their local schools. Aside from these options, students may enroll in a bachelors degree online in West Virginia through the following schools:

American Public University System

  • Number of Online Bachelor’s Degrees: 37
  • Fields Offered: Business Administration, Transportation and Logistics Management, Child and Family Development, Criminal Justice, Hospitality Management, Information Technology, Nursing, Sports and Health Sciences, Legal Studies, Psychology, Military History, Environmental Science, Space Studies, and many more.
  • Accreditor: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Higher Learning Commission (NCA, HLC)

American Public University, based in Charles Town, W.Va., makes earning a bachelors degree online convenient for the working adult. All courses are delivered over the Internet at this online-only university, and courses implement asynchronous virtual learning technology, which does not require professors and students to be online at the same time. Students who want to complete a degree more quickly can take advantage of APU’s intensive eight-week sessions rather than the standard 16-week sessions in pursuit of an accelerated bachelors degree online. Students also have unique academic options to choose from, including military management and program acquisition, reverse logistics management, security management, international relations, intelligence management, and more.

West Virginia University

  • Number of Online Bachelor’s Degrees: 3
  • Fields Offered: Multidisciplinary Studies, Nursing, Flexible Liberal Arts Program
  • Accreditor: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Higher Learning Commission (NCA, HLC)

West Virginia University, a nationally ranked public institution based in Morgantown, W.Va., offers three unique bachelor’s degrees primarily aimed at adults who started a degree program and did not get a chance to complete it. Perhaps the most unique virtual learning program is the Regents Bachelor of Arts, which allows students to not only transfer in relevant credits for work or military experience, but also to design their own program. Students may select an emphasis in advertising, American history, business, communications, and more. Other programs include an online RN-to-BSN program for registered nurses who want finish out a bachelor’s degree, and an online bachelor’s degree in multidisciplinary studies for students who want to take course work in a wide variety of areas, from business administration to religious studies.

Salem International University

  • Number of Online Bachelor’s Degrees: 7
  • Fields Offered: Business Administration, Crime Scene Investigation, Information Technology, Nursing
  • Accreditor: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission (NCA, HLC)

Salem International University, based in Salem, W.Va., is dedicated to offering high-quality degrees in growing fields. Utilizing the Blackboard course management system, SIU’s online programs allow students to log in and complete their course work at the time of day that works best for them, provided they meet the deadlines set by their instructor. SIU offers online bachelor’s degrees in business administration with specializations in accounting, international business, management, and sports management. Registered nurses may also finish out a four-year degree through SIU’s online RN-to-BSN program.


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