By Joe Garvey

Old Dominion University has once again been rated as one of the nation's top schools for distance learning, according to U.S. News & World Report's 2021 Best Online Programs rankings, which were released Jan. 26.

Six ODU programs earned recognition. The University's online bachelor's and MBA programs ranked among the top 25% in the country. The online master's in engineering program moved up six spots to No. 45. It's the second straight year the engineering program improved its ranking. In 2020, it moved up 11 places. The master's in computer information technology program tied for 27th, up four spots from 2020. The master's programs in nursing and education were also cited.

The online rankings include public and private colleges and universities with degree-granting programs. Categories include bachelor's programs and graduate programs in business, information technology, criminal justice, education, engineering and nursing.

ODU's rankings are:

  • No. 86 (tie), Best Online Bachelor's Programs (out of 357)
  • No. 67 (tie), Best Online MBA Programs (out of 324)
  • No. 45, Best Online Master's in Engineering Programs (out of 105)
  • No. 27 (tie), Best Online Master's in Computer Information Technology Programs (out of 81)
  • No. 71 (tie), Best Online Master's in Nursing Programs (out of 194)
  • No. 108 (tie), Best Online Master's in Education Programs (out of 317)

"This recognition reaffirms ODU's commitment to excellence in online learning," said Austin Agho, provost and vice president for academic affairs. "This has always been important to us and has been especially crucial as we continue to provide high-quality education despite COVID-19 restrictions."

Old Dominion, which has been offering distance learning for over 30 years, has more than 100 online programs, the most of any state school in Virginia. It earned a 98% satisfaction rate in a survey of the University's online students.

"We owe our enduring success in distance learning to our dedicated faculty, supportive administration, and of course, our passionate and driven students," said Andy Casiello, associate vice president for distance learning. "We look forward to bringing even more affordable, high-quality online programs to students in the commonwealth and around the world."

U.S. News & World Report assessed schools based on criteria such as student engagement, student services and technology, admissions selectivity, faculty credentials and training, and peer reputation.

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