Established in 1882, the University of California – Los Angeles is a four-year, public, research institution and the second oldest campus of the 10 schools that make up the University of California system. The Los Angeles campus serves more than 38,000 students and has been regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges since 1949. UCLA offers only one fully online degree, a Master of Science in Engineering. This program was ranked among the top 25 for faculty credentials and training and student services and technology by U.S. News & World Report. However, to better serve a broader student body, the UCLA Extension campus was established. The programs offered through the extension campus offer distance learning opportunities to working adults and non-traditional students. Available online classes include areas of study such as architecture and interior design, business and finance, education, engineering and technology, health care, leadership, public policy, and technical management.
Originally founded as San Diego Normal School in 1897, San Diego State University is the largest and oldest institution in the city. The school has been regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges since 1949 and currently serves more than 29,000 students. In an effort to utilize the latest developments in technology and meet the diverse needs of a growing student population, San Diego State University has implemented a number of online degree programs through their College of Extended Studies. Online programs are available in art, business, education, health care, human resources, science and technology, and writing. SDSU is just one of a number of public universities in California making an effort to support the educational needs of working adults through these types of programs.
Founded in 1880, the University of Southern California is one of the most prestigious private research institutions in the country. Located in Los Angeles, the school has been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges since 1949 and currently serves nearly 37,000 students. At the University of Southern California, online programs in engineering, computer information technology, education, and social work provide working adults, and students unable to commute regularly to campus, the opportunity to pursue a flexible and yet rigorous course of study. The school's online education program was ranked second for student services and technology by U.S. News & World Report. Additionally, the graduate programs in computer information technology were ranked among the top 20 for faculty credentials and training and student engagement and accreditation.
Students have a number of California online universities to choose from, but many traditional universities are also utilizing the latest technological advances to provide top-tier online college courses and degree programs. Most programs work in an asynchronous format. This means students do not have a specific time they must log in to the virtual classroom. Instead, they can complete assignments on their own schedule, as fits with their personal and professional lives. Some schools, depending on the area of study, may have on-campus components, but the majority of assignments and course work can be completed remotely.
Trade, transportation, government, health care, education, and business services are some of the largest sectors of California's economy. Leisure and hospitality companies are also major job sources throughout the state. Some of California's largest employers include local government, the University of California system, Sharp Memorial Hospital, Cisco Systems, and Intel. Given the job market, students who graduate with online degrees in business, education, health care, engineering, and technology have the best opportunities for pursuing careers locally.