Online Degrees in Illinois
The Illinois Public Agenda for College and Career Success provides a blueprint for the state’s educational policies. In particular, the state aims to increase the rate of educational attainment as well as college affordability. This agenda is of significant importance -- the Lumina Foundation, a private entity committed to increasing the number of college graduates, reports that 64 percent of jobs in the state will require some form of college credential by 2018. However, only 46 percent of Illinois’ adult population is expected to hold a college degree by that same year.
Levels of Educational Attainment for Illinois Adults (age 25-64) in 2010
Percentage with Degree
Some college, no degree
Some college, no degree
Graduate or professional degree
Data reported by the Illinois Virtual Campus shows that the state is pushing to make online degree programs more accessible to a variety of students. Throughout higher learning institutions within the state, the spring 2012 term saw a 16 percent increase in online course offerings over the 2011 spring term. Providing working adults, parents, and others who cannot reach a college campus the opportunity to earn a postsecondary degree through online learning could help the state close the college achievement gap.
Online Associate Degrees - Associate programs are generally two-year curriculums that provide students with targeted training, allowing graduates to enter the workforce more immediately than those pursuing a bachelor’s degree. Associate degrees may help graduates qualify for entry-level positions, such as medical records and health service technicians. Students in an associate health care administration program are taught skills such as how to record patient information, categorize data for insurance reimbursement, and maintain the medical and treatment histories of patients. According to the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), the field of medical records and health information technicians is expected to grow by about 7 percent statewide from 2010 through 2020.
To browse schools offering online associate degree programs in Illinois, click here.
Online Bachelor’s Degrees - Online bachelor’s programs help supply highly adaptable skills that can benefit an assortment of careers. Prospective students in Illinois can choose from a number of online bachelor’s degrees, including a bachelor’s in accounting. This program covers topics in business law, economics, statistics and auditing. Graduates may go on to pursue careers as accountants or financial analysts. According to the IDES, statewide employment of accountants and auditors is expected to grow by roughly 11 percent, while employment of financial analysts is estimated to grow by about 21 percent from 2010 through 2020.
To browse schools offering online bachelor’s degree programs in Illinois, click here.
Online Master’s Degrees - Those seeking master's degrees typically receive instruction on both the theory and applications of their chosen field. Among its benefits, online master’s programs can help professionals progress in their career and attain more work responsibilities. For example, professionals in the information technology (IT) sector may earn a master’s in network and communications management to enhance their leadership skills.
This program trains students in the new ideas and innovations impacting IT services, strengthens their knowledge of security issues inherent in complex computer networks, and provides insight on management techniques in the workplace. The gained leadership abilities and advanced knowledge of IT systems may help graduates attain managerial positions as network and computer systems administrators or database administrators. Both of these careers are expected to grow, according to the IDES, by over 20 percent statewide from 2010 through 2020.
To browse schools offering online master’s degree programs in Illinois, click here.
Online Doctoral Degrees - These degrees typically include two to three years of coursework, followed by a dissertation proposal, research and defense. Individuals pursuing doctoral degrees are often looking to begin careers in research or postsecondary teaching. Doctorates can also be used to help students prepare to move into top management positions in their current line of work.
Social service professionals who want to develop and lead community-based programs may be interested in earning a Doctor of Social Work (DSW) degree. The DSW can provide students with the knowledge and training needed to implement and guide social programs, manage clinical facilities, or enter the teaching profession in order to educate future social workers.
To browse schools offering online doctoral degree programs in Illinois, click here.
- The University of Illinois offers a number of degree completion programs. Prospective students will need to have completed at least 30 credit hours of lower-division coursework from an accredited institution in order to be considered for admission. Among the offerings is a bachelor’s degree completion program in English. Students learn how to analyze and interpret various literary works, including poetry, fiction, and plays. Students also learn to express and substantiate ideas in essay format by using textual evidence. The online format allows students to strengthen their written communication skills, as most interactions are conducted through email or forum postings.
- Southern Illinois University offers a few online bachelor’s and master’s degree completion programs geared toward different kinds of students. The online bachelor’s in business and administration, for example, is segmented to aid both full-time and part-time students. Most students can finish the program in 24 months, although it may be possible for some to complete the requirements in 18. Students interested in the program need to have at least 60 credit hours of completed coursework, including all of the business prerequisites for the Southern Illinois College of Business.
- Greenville College offers a handful of master’s programs for working professionals that are administered fully online. One of these is a Master of Science in Management Practice, where students learn organization theory, marketing management, and how to analyze global business practices. The program culminates in an action-learning project where students study the company they work for, compile a list of relevant books and journal articles, and use what they’ve learned to implement changes to their workplace. Students then present a final paper about the effects and consequences of the changes to their company, both foreseen and unintended.
For more information on degree options, please browse through the online colleges below. A counselor will contact you to discuss specifics and answer any questions you may have.
Distance Education Enrollments at Illinois Colleges and Universities, Illinois Virtual Campus and the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois 1998-2012
Illinois, Lumina Foundation, 2012
Illinois Public Agenda for College and Career Success, Illinois Board of Higher Education, 2008
Long-term Statewide Employment Projections, Illinois Department of Employment Security, 2010-2020
The Illinois Institute of Technology
The University of Illinois
Online Degree Programs in IllinoisThis list also contains online schools that accept students from Illinois.
Earn a Certificate, Associate, Bachelor, Master's or Doctorate for less at Baker College Online.
Make a difference with a graduate degree from DeVry University's Keller Graduate School of Management.
Continue your education with Strayer University.
At University of Phoenix, we believe everyone deserves access to higher education.
Online. Accelerated. Affordable. Accredited.
Capella courses focus on real-world application, so you’ll gain skills and knowledge you can apply right away.
Earn your degree online with Grand Canyon University. We offer approximately 100 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs in a variety of fields that can be completed 100% online.