We are a rankings- and ratings-obsessed nation. Nielsen ratings help determine which TV shows stay on the air, and the ratings that reviewers post online help us decide which products to purchase.
Higher education is certainly no stranger to the rankings universe – U.S. News & World Report has been ranking colleges since 1983. But this is only the second year that the news magazine has ranked online education programs.
Nearly 860 online education programs (up more than 20 percent from the 2012 list) were evaluated by U.S. News for 2013. Only degree-granting programs that met the federal standard of 100 percent online course delivery were evaluated – no blended learning here. As U.S. News has stated from the start, it is ranking programs, not schools. Also note that the rankings make no distinction between nonprofit and for-profit schools’ programs.