January 27, 2022

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

VSU Ranked Among the Nation’s Best by U.S. News and World Report

VALDOSTA — Valdosta State University is once again one of the best colleges and universities in the nation when it comes to distance education, according to U.S. News and World Report’s 2022 Best Online Programs rankings.

This is the 11th year U.S. News and World Report has numerically ranked online degree programs, with the annual rankings being described as one of the most extensive evaluations of United States-based public, private, and for-profit institutions of higher education ever published.

VSU earned ranked spots on the publication’s 2022 Best Online Bachelor’s in Psychology Programs (No. 25), Best Online Bachelor’s in Business Programs (No. 61), Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans (No. 78), Best Online Bachelor’s Programs (No. 147), Best Online Master’s in Education Programs (No. 147), and Best Online MBA Programs (No. 159).

“Valdosta State University is very pleased to receive this recognition from U.S. News and World Report,” said Dr. Robert T. Smith, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at VSU. “We are very proud of the hard work and dedication of our faculty in developing and maintaining outstanding online programs that meet the changing needs of students living throughout Georgia and beyond. We are especially proud that we continue to make a low-cost but high-quality VSU education available to meet students’ needs, particularly in rural areas of Georgia.”  

“We are thankful for the continued recognition of our online programs,” said Marsha B. Dukes, associate director of VSU’s Center for eLearning. “At VSU, we care about our students, and we strive to remove barriers by creating a campus culture focused on individual student success.  As outlined in our strategic plan, our mission is to produce an ever-growing, confident, and knowledgeable student body who complete their degree in a timely manner, think creatively, and contribute both regionally and globally. The latest ranking of online programs from U.S. News and World Report reflects our commitment to providing innovative, high-quality online education and recognizes the expertise of our faculty and their dedication to student learning.”

VSU offers nearly 200 academic programs, including more than 60 fully online and 10 hybrid, leading to associate, bachelor, master, specialist, and doctoral degrees as well as to certifications, minors, endorsements, and certificates — and it provides students with real-world experiential learning opportunities along the way.

VSU’s unique model of education — one centered on individualized mentorship and support — empowers students to find genuine happiness and fulfillment after graduation and throughout their life.

Keeping pace with the changing face of higher education, VSU recently expanded its reach by establishing an Online College for Career Advancement for nontraditional students who want to have the opportunity to earn a degree and reach their personal and professional goals. This new college builds upon lessons learned from well-known national online providers to create a best-in-class option in Georgia — at a lower cost.

A Look at How U.S. News and World Report Determined the Rankings

To determine this year’s rankings, U.S. News and World Report looked at the following:

• Engagement: Quality online graduate and undergraduate programs promote participation in courses, allowing students opportunities to readily interact with their instructors and classmates, as is possible in a campus-based setting. In turn, instructors are not only accessible and responsive, but they are also tasked with helping to create an experience rewarding enough that students stay enrolled and complete their degrees in a reasonable amount of time.

• Services and Technology: Programs that incorporate diverse online learning technologies allow greater flexibility for students to take classes from a distance. Outside of classes, strong support structures provide learning assistance, career guidance, and financial aid resources commensurate with quality campus-based programs.

• Student Excellence: Students entering with proven aptitudes, ambitions, and accomplishments are better equipped to handle the demands of rigorous coursework. Furthermore, online degrees that schools award judiciously will have greater legitimacy in the job market.

• Faculty Credentials and Training: Strong online programs employ instructors with academic credentials that mirror those of instructors for campus-based programs, and they have the resources to train these instructors on how to teach distance learners.

• Expert Opinion: A survey of high-ranking academic officials helps account for intangible factors affecting program quality that are not captured by statistics. Also, degrees from programs that are well respected by academics may be held in higher regard among employers.

Call the Center for eLearning at (229) 245-6490 to learn more about online education opportunities available at VSU.

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