Which HBCUs Offer Online Degrees? 12 Options to Consider

Trish Sammer Updated on June 30, 2020

Maybe you've dreamed of graduating from a Historically Black College or University (HBCU), but you can't find a way to go full-time. Or, maybe your preferred school is too far away from you live now, and it would be too expensive to relocate or commute. 

Good news: You can still earn your degree and participate in the HBCU experience by earning your degree online. With an online degree, you may not have the campus experience but you'll still enjoy many of the benefits of attending an HBCU, including specialized courses of study, the name recognition of your alma mater, and access to alumni networks.



1. Howard University

Howard University, based in Washington DC, is probably one of the best-known HBCUs. As a research university, Howard is a leader in STEM fields and has several nationally ranked science programs. The school also has noted programs in social work, cinematography, business, and communication sciences and disorders. 

The university offers a wide range of degrees, with a small but significant handful that can be completed online. Those include:

  • RN to BSN - This program is for registered nurses (RNs) who have completed their associate's degree and want to go on to earn their Bachelor's or Science in Nursing (BSN). The program can be completed in 12 months for students who are able to take a full-time class load. There are also part-time programs available. Learn more here. 
  • EMBA - Howard's Executive Master's of Business Administration degree can be completed 100% online in only 18 months. This program is geared toward working professionals who are looking to expand their career prospects to the executive level. Bonus: No GMATs required for admission.
  • Online MBA — This program is for early- and mid-career professionals who want to grow as business leaders while completing the MBA program in a flexible way.  Learn more about Howard's online MBA programs here


2. Albany State University

Albany State University, in Albany, GA, is the largest HBCU in Georgia. It was founded by Joseph Winthrop Holley, the son of former slaves. The school became part of the university system of Georgia in 1932.

ASU has an extremely wide selection of online degree programs. Choose from professional certificate, undergraduate, or graduate courses of study. 

For a complete list of all the online programs the school has to offer, click here



3. Hampton University

Hampton University in Hampton, VA,  was founded after the Civil War to provide education for freedmen and women. Booker T. Washington was a student at the school in 1872, when it was known as Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute.

Today, the school offers an extensive list of online programs at all levels, including doctoral, master's, bachelor's and associate.  Hampton also offers certificate programs in disciplines such as entrepreneurship, human resource management, and paralegal studies.

Click here for a complete list of degree programs that can be completed online, through the Hampton Online U portal. 



4. Bluefield State College

Bluefield State College in Bluefield, WV, is is West Virginia's only non-residential four-year college. While it holds a federal designation as an HBCU and was originally called the Bluefield Colored Institute, the student population today is more than 80% white. 

Bluefield offers fully online degree programs in several disciplines, including:


5. Morgan State University

Morgan State University in Baltimore, MD, is the largest HBCU in Maryland. It was founded in 1867 as the Centenary Biblical Institute.

In 2017, it was designated as Maryland's pre-eminent public urban research university

Online degree programs include: 
  • Community College Leadership Doctoral Program
  • Master of Education in Community College Administration and Instruction
  • Master of Business Administration
  • Master of Project Management 
  • Master of Public Health
  • Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Sustainable Urban Communities
  • Master of Social Work 

MSU also has non-credit online programs focusing on business and technology. Learn more about all of MSUs online programs here



6. Lincoln University

Lincoln University is located in Jefferson City, MO. According to its website, the school was founded in 1866 by the men of the 62nd and 65th United States Colored Infantries and their white officers, for the special benefit of freed African Americans.  

Throughout its history, the school has been known for offering innovative programs that serve a diverse student body. 

It currently has two graduate online degree programs. They are the MBA with an emphasis in Management, or the MBA with an emphasis in Public Administration/Policy. Learn more here


7. West Virginia State University

West Virginia State University, located near Charleston, WV, prides itself on being one of the most-affordable institutions in the region. Note: While the school is considered an HBCU and prides itself on that heritage, the current student population is over 75% white. 

WVSU has an impressive selection of online degree programs. Undergrad offerings include:

  • Business Accounting
  • Business Management
  • Criminal Justice
  • Health Sciences
  • English: Technical Writing
  • Bachelor of Arts

Grad programs include:

  • Master of Education in Instructional Leadership

Learn more about WVSU's online degree programs here



8. North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University

North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, NC, has one of the largest offerings in terms of online degrees and certificates. It also happens to be one of the biggest HBCUs in the country in terms of enrollment.

Students can earn online bachelor's, masters, or doctoral degrees, as well as professional certificates. The school has been particularly noted for its STEM offerings. Explore their many program options here.  


9. Tuskegee University

Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, AL, was cofounded by distinguished author, orator and presidential advisor, Booker T. Washington. 

The school has two online-only options for grad degrees. Working professionals can earn a master's in environmental science or environmental management. Note that these programs are specifically designed to be completed by people who are already working full-time. Learn more here.



10. Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical A&M University

Alabama A&M University, located near Hunstville, AL, was originally called the Huntsville State Normal School for Negroes when it was founded in 1875. Along with six other universities, AAMU participates in a joint venture with NASA to promote collaboration between academia, research, and industry.

AAMU currently has one undergrad degree option in management. Grad degrees include:

  • Computer Science
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Educational leadership.
Learn more here.



11. Delaware State University

Delaware State University is located in Dover, DE. The school's origins date back to 1891, when it was founded as the State College for Colored Students. The current student body consists of about 63% black students. The school reports increasing enrollment among white, Hispanic, Asian and international students as well. 

Undergrad programs include:

What's your next step?

If you're considering investing in your future with an online degree, learn more about how to pay for college

Published in: Online Colleges

About the Author
Trish Sammer

Trish Sammer is Nitro's managing editor. Her work has appeared in Woman’s Day, Redbook, Huffington Post, TechCrunch, and Forbes. She has also written for various corporate clients, including the tech giant SAP, The Franklin Institute, and PSE&G. When Trish isn’t busy acting as a writing ninja for other people, you can find her … well, writing about other stuff, like divorce and blended family life. She lives outside of Philadelphia with her husband, their combined brood, and the world’s laziest dog. Read more by Trish Sammer

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