Established in 1883, the University of Texas at Austin has 17 schools and more than 50,000 students, not including its 300,000 continuing education students. It is a public, Texas-based research university accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and is one of the largest universities in Texas and the nation. U.S. News & World Report ranks UT Austin as No. 45 in its list of best universities in the nation. In addition to its on-campus courses, it also offers online courses through its university extension program and online degrees through its Online Consortium. By way of the extension program, the University of Texas online classes offered consist of both self-paced online courses and cohort courses. The Online Consortium is part of the University of Texas System, and through it, undergraduate and graduate degree programs are offered in addition to non-credit courses. Its bachelor’s degrees are completion programs; however, its master’s programs are offered comprehensively online in subjects such as nursing, public administration, and education.
Founded as Southwest Texas State Normal School in 1903, the university changed its name in 2003 to Texas State University (Texas State). It offers its more than 30,000 students about 200 bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. Located about 30 miles outside of Austin in San Marcos, Texas State is accredited by the SACSCOC. Through its extended and distance learning office, Texas State offers online programs and courses for students in need of distance or flexible courses. Its distance programs, include those which are 25%, 50%, or 100% online in a variety of subjects. However, it is most well-known for its School of Social Work, which is ranked No. 7 in TheBestColleges.org’s Top Colleges for Online Social Work Programs category.
Accredited by the SACSCOC, Austin Community College (ACC) offers associate degrees and certificates. Founded in 1973, ACC now has eight campuses located around Austin, more than 45,000 students, and more than 235 educational programs. It also offers its students the option of hybrid and online classes during its summer, fall, winter, and spring semesters. To see a full list of ACC’s online courses, visit its Degrees & Certificates by Distance Learning page. Some of its associates degree online programs include business, government communications, journalism, archaeology, economics, and philosophy.
Some of Austin’s top industries are education and government; according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in May of 2012, these industries held 94,000 and 170,000 employees respectively. Another of Austin’s thriving industries is its technology industry, as it is home to Dell Inc., and companies like Intel Corp., AT&T, and Wireless Corp. have a business presence in the city. As such, online degrees in computer science, information technology, computer engineering, business administration, marketing, or sales will be beneficial for those who wish to join Austin’s technology industry.
Being the capitol of Texas, government jobs are also quite common in Austin. The federal, state, and city governments, in fact, are some of the city’s biggest employers. Given these government entities’ broad range of services, various post secondary degrees are pragmatic in attaining Austin governmental jobs. Accounting, finance, government, biology, chemistry, criminal justice, and law are just a few examples of these degrees. Those seeking jobs specifically in politics, government, or law enforcement will find internships commonly offered in the city, and completing an internship is a great way to make yourself more marketable after earning your online degree.
Finally, there are many post secondary educational institutions in the Austin area, making it an industry in which getting a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree is imperative. The University of Texas alone has more than 50,000 students; other colleges in the area are Texas State University, Saint Edward’s University, Concordia University, Austin Community College, Huston-Tillotson University. Those hoping to teach in these colleges will need to earn at least a master’s in education, or a particular education subject; a master’s degree is the minimum educational requirement for teaching at such an advanced level. Other than education-related degrees, some online degrees helpful in this industry are marketing, psychology, kinesiology, management, and human resources.