dcsimg

Online colleges in New Jersey

The idea that investing in college improves your career and financial prospects is real. Time and again studies show that states with highly-educated populations tend to attract more employers (read: jobs), higher earnings and more dynamic economies than states with lower-than-average college attainment.

This guide can help you determine whether the educational and career outlooks are up to par for your desired future. It contains:

Snapshot: Education in New Jersey

Interested in schools in New Jersey? Consider some quick facts:

  • New Jersey is home to some of the highest-ranked public and private universities in the United States.
  • The Census Bureau's American Community Survey found New Jersey the No. 5 most educated state in the country in 2015.
  • A full 37.6 percent of New Jersey adults had at least a bachelor's degree in that year. That's six points above the national average.
  • New Jersey bachelor's degree-holders also earned the second-highest median salary in the country.
  • A 2016 analysis by NerdWallet named Jersey City and Newark among the best U.S. cities for recent graduates, and an earlier NerdWallet report found that New Jersey ranked No. 4 nationally for college affordability.

Such impressive numbers can make the decision to go to college in New Jersey easier; deciding where and what to study is decidedly more challenging. Here's more to help you make your decision.

New Jersey's college towns

No two colleges are every truly alike, academically or culturally. The following tables highlight some of New Jersey's well-known colleges — and college towns:

City

Highlights

Featured local College

Institution type

Princeton

This quintessential Northeastern college town is an epicenter for coffee shops, restaurants and boutiques, and its local theater scene is world-known.

Princeton University

Private research university

Camden

Camden is perhaps best known for its extensive riverwalk featuring historical, art and aquatic centers, like Adventure Aquarium and the Battleship New Jersey. Those in need of a quick getaway need only cross a bridge into Philadelphia.

Rowan University

Public research university

New Brunswick

New Brunswick puts is pre-Revolutionary history front-and-center with its historic buildings and walking tours. It also offers unique playhouses, the American Repertory Ballet and more than 50 restaurants.

Rutgers University

Public research university

Madison

This vibrant community is a haven for beautiful Victorian and colonial architecture. Popular destinations include the Rose City's Shakespeare Theater of New Jersey, the massive community forest and many award-winning restaurants.

Drew University

Private 4-year college

Fairleigh Dickinson University

Private master's college

Montclair

This urban suburb is known for its eclectic art and culinary scene. Visit the Montclair Art Museum and the 7,000-square-foot Avis Campbell Gardens.

Montclair State University

Public research university

* Enrollment data is the most recent available at the time of this writing. Check out our source list for more information.

New Jersey schools to check out — online and on-campus

New Jersey's top colleges' reputations extend well beyond its borders. The Center for World University Rankings (CWUR) creates an annual ranking of the top 1,000 colleges in the world using factors like research publications, alumni employment, and overall quality of education and faculty. The following colleges in New Jersey made the cut:

University

Campuses

Enrollment
(2015)

Online learning options

Princeton University

Princeton

8,374

Princeton Online offers online courses, but the University also offers free, non-credit massive open online courses (MOOCs) through Coursera, edX, NovoEd and Kadenze.

Rutgers University

New Brunswick, Camden and Newark

New Brunswick: 53,943
Camden: 7,307
Newark: 13,563

Rutgers Online offers online bachelor's and master's degrees in areas like nursing ,education, business, information and biomedical engineering.

New Jersey Institute of Technology

Newark

10,646

Students can earn dozens of fully-online master's degrees, graduate certificates, and professional development programs through NJIT Online

Sources: Center for World University Rankings, 2016; Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, National Center for Education Statics

New Jersey's top public universities

Publications like U.S. News & World Report and Forbes place on-campus and online schools in New Jersey among the best in the nation. Its top-ranked public colleges:

University

National ranking, 2017, U.S. News & World Report

Statewide ranking, 2016, Forbes.com

Most popular majors in 2015

Online learning?

Rutgers University - New Brunswick

25

2

Psychology, Biology, Kinesiology and Human Resources Management

Yes

New Jersey Institute of Technology

64 (tie)

7

Engineering; Computer and Information Sciences; Engineering Technologies; and Business and Marketing

Yes

Rutgers University - Newark

64 (tie)

2

Accounting, Psychology, Criminal Justice, Finance and Air Force ROTC

Yes

Source: U.S. News & World Report, National Rankings, Top Public Schools, 2017

New Jersey's private colleges

Private colleges may cost more on average than public universities, but these New Jersey colleges prove how valuable that investment might be:

University

National ranking, 2017, U.S. News & World Report

Statewide ranking, 2016, Forbes.com

Most popular majors in 2015

Online learning?

Princeton University

1

1

Public Policy Analysis, Computer Engineering, Economics, History and Psychology

Yes

Stevens Institute of Technology

71

4

Mechanical Engineering; Business Administration and Management; Civil Engineering; Chemical Engineering and Computer Science

Yes

Seton Hall University

118

6

Registered Nursing, Biology, Humanities, Finance and Psychology

Yes

The best community colleges in New Jersey

The decision to focus college-planning efforts on four-year colleges and universities can be a common mistake, even when those schools play an influential role in your home or community. Students who start their educations in community college before transferring to a bachelor's program can save hundreds-to-thousands of dollars on their final college bills while taking advantage of university guaranteed transfer agreements and other simplified admissions programs. Here are some of the best community colleges in New Jersey:

College

Ranking

Main campus

Online learning options

Raritan Valley Community College

1

Branchburg

Online courses and degrees

Warren County Community College

2

Washington

Online courses and certificates

Rowan College at Burlington County

3

Pemberton Township

Online courses and certificates

Source: Schools.com, Best community colleges in New Jersey

Online education in New Jersey

Online education redefined college accessibility for millions of students nationwide, and continues to do so as more schools — from small private colleges to major universities — add more web-based programs. New Jersey schools launched some of the nation's first online classes, degrees and, thanks to Princeton, massive open online courses (MOOCs) in the country. Online schools in New Jersey put the state's high-quality learning options and its tech-savviness center stage. Below are some of the best online programs in New Jersey.

Top online colleges in New Jersey

U.S. News & World Report's 2017 rankings highlight the notable diversity — and quality — of online colleges in New Jersey:

University

Ranking category

National ranking*

Featured online degrees

Rutgers University - New Brunswick

Online Bachelor's Degrees

73

BA in Business Administration
BS in Nursing

Rutgers University - Newark

Online Graduate Business Programs

14

MBA
Mini-MBAs
MS in Supply Chain Management
Master of Accountancy

College of St. Elizabeth

Best Online Graduate Criminal Justice Programs

30

M.A. in Justice Administration and Public Services

Stevens Institute of Technology

Best Online Graduate Computer Information Programs

10

Master's in Computer Engineering
Master's in Computer Science
Master's in Enterprise and Cloud Computing
Master's in Information and Data Engineering
Master's in Information Systems

Monmouth University

Best Online Graduate Nursing Programs

78

MSN in Forensic Nursing
Doctor of Nursing Practice
Graduate Certificate in Forensic Nursing

*Source: U.S. News & World Report, Rankings, Best Online Bachelor's Degrees, 2016

New Jersey careers and majors

Some prospective college students know what they want to study even before they begin researching colleges; others have known most of their lives. For the rest of us, however, choosing the "right" program is as much an economic decision as it is an evaluation of talents or interests. This section sheds light on some of New Jersey's most promising careers and majors.

New Jersey's leading industries

New Jersey in a word: dynamic. It is a Mecca of innovation and diversity — traits WalletHub says contribute to a more successful economy. Curious about which New Jersey industries offer the most career potential? Investopedia suggests the following industries drive New Jersey's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) today:

Industry

Why it's thriving

Major employers

Health care

New therapies and an aging population increase demand for New Jersey health care professionals.

Johnson & Johnson
Barnabas Health
Meridian Health

Biological science and engineering

Investopedia reports New Jersey is home to major medical research laboratories and 14 of the world's 20 biggest biopharmaceutical companies. Biomedical engineering jobs are also prevalent.

Novo Nordisk
Merck
Bayer HealthCare
Becton Dickinson

Retail trade

The retail industry already composes a notable share of New Jersey's economy, and demand for retail workers and sales managers is projected to grow over the next decade.

Toys "R" Us, Inc.
Home Depot
Wakefern Food Corporation
Target

Food and hospitality

Investopedia suggests New Jersey tourists' and residents' higher-than-average disposable income generates demand for culinary, hospitality and leisure professionals in upper-scale venues.

The Westin Company
Borgata Hotel, Casino & Spa
Caesar's Entertainment

Financial services

New Jersey's high population density and proximity to New York City and Philadelphia make it a magnet for financial services firms: 14 of the state's 75 largest employers are in the industry.

Bank of America
Chubb Group
Wells Fargo
Goldman Sachs

Information technology

Technological advances increase demand for IT professionals in a national level, and New Jersey has the second-highest concentration of them in the United States

Cognizant Technologies
Quest Diagnostics
Automatic Data Processing

Engineering

Engineering is yet another area in which the Garden State shines: New Jersey has the largest number of scientists and engineers, per capita, in the nation.

Honeywell International
Lockheed Martin
NRG Energy

Aerospace and defense

Major military air bases and a highly-educated workforce drives demand for aeronautical and mechanical engineers in New Jersey.

Lakehurst Naval Air Base
Boeing
McGuire Air Force

High-potential careers and programs

College is a major endeavor, but an often expensive one. For students looking for a healthy return-on-investment, knowing which fields have the best career prospects pays off. Here's a snapshot of New Jersey's most in-demand careers along with their education requirements and recommended majors:

Occupation

Projected growth,
2014-2024

Minimum degree-level required

Recommended programs

Occupational Therapy Assistant

37%

Associate*

Occupational therapy assistant

Physical Therapist Assistant

36%

Associate*

Physical therapy assistant

Diagnostic Medical Sonographers

22%

Associate*

Ultrasound technology

Operations Research Analysts

36%

Bachelor's

Data analytics
Statistics

Biomedical Engineers

19%

Bachelor's

Biomedical engineering

Software Developers, Applications

19%

Bachelor's

Computer science
Software engineering

Statisticians

35%

Master's

Statistics
Mathematics
Economics

Physical Therapists

29%

Doctorate

Doctor of Physical Therapy

Nurse Practitioners

28%

Master's

Chosen Advanced Practice Registered Nursing (APRN) specialty*

* May require additional licensing or certification
Source: CareerOneStop, U.S. Department of Labor, State Profile: New Jersey

Featured colleges in New Jersey

You likely know by now how diverse and successful New Jersey colleges and universities are. If not, the following featured schools drive the point home:

College

Institution type

Tuition, 2016*

Popular majors, 2015*

Fairleigh Dickinson University

Private master's university

$36,910

Liberal arts
Humanities
Business
Psychology
Health professions

Monmouth University

Private master's university

$35,364

Business
Education
Homeland security
Psychology

Drew University

Private 4-year liberal arts university

$47,752

Economics
Psychology
Business
Biological sciences
Theater arts

Seton Hall University

Private research university;

Catholic affiliation

$39,258

Registered Nursing
Biology
Humanities
Finance
Psychology

Montclair State University

Public research university

$11,771

Business administration
Psychology
Family services
Biology
Interdisciplinary studies

Rutgers University - New Brunswick

Public research university

$13,829

Psychology, Biology
Exercise Science
Human Resources Management

New Jersey Institute of Technology

Public research university

$16,108

Engineering
Computer Science
Engineering Technology
Business

Thomas Edison State University

Public master's university

$6,266

Not available

Kean University

Public master's university

$11,581

Psychology
Biology
Business
Criminal Justice

Rowan University

Public research university

$12,864

Business
Education
Psychology
Biology

How to enroll in an online or on-campus program in New Jersey

Choosing a college may be research-intense, but it need not be difficult. Start your journey by reviewing this list of top campus and online colleges in New Jersey, or use the map to browse schools geographically.

Sources:
1. Center for World University Rankings, CWUR World Rankings, accessed October 12, 2016, http://cwur.org/2016/usa.php
2. Choose New Jersey, Inc., Stats & Facts, New Jersey Profile, accessed October 23, http://www.choosenj.com/stats-and-facts/new-jersey-profile
3. Forbes.com, America's Top Colleges: 2016, "600 Schools Worth the Investment," accessed October 25, 2016, http://www.forbes.com/top-colleges
4. Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, National Center for Educational Statistics, U.S. Department of Education, https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/datacenter/
5. Investopedia, "New Jersey's Economy: The 9 Industries Driving GDP Growth," accessed October 23, http://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/011316/new-jerseys-economy-9-industries-driving-gdp-growth.asp
6. NerdWallet, Studies, Best Cities for Recent Grads 2016, Jasthi Sreekar, Laura McMullen, accessed October 22, 2016, https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/studies/best-cities-for-recent-grads-2016/
7. New Jersey Business, New Jersey Business & Industry Association, "42nd Annual Top 100 Employers," Anthony Bucci, accessed October 23, 2016, http://www.choosenj.com/stats-and-facts/new-jersey-profile
8. U.S. Census Bureau, Fact Finder, 2015 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, Educational attainment, New Jersey, accessed October 25, 2016, http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/15_1YR/S1501/0400000US34
9. U.S. Department of Labor, CareerOneStop, State Profile: New Jersey, accessed October 32, 2016, https://www.careerinfonet.org/state1.asp?id=1,11&nodeid=12&stfips=34
10. U.S. News & World Report, Rankings, Colleges in New Jersey, accessed October 22, 2016, http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/nj
11. Visit NJ, Division of Travel and Tourism, Department of State, State of New Jersey, Off Campus: New Jersey's College Towns, http://www.visitnj.org/article/campus-new-jersey%E2%80%99s-college-towns
12. College websites, accessed October 22, 2016: Online Learning, Princeton University, accessed October 22, 2016, https://www.princeton.edu/main/academics/online/; Rutgers Online, Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey, accessed October 22, 2016, http://online.rutgers.edu/; NJIT Online, New Jersey Institute of Technology, accessed October 22, 2016. http://www5.njit.edu/online
13. Unites States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, accessed October 22, 2016; Web Developer, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/web-developers.htm; Physical Therapist Assistants and Aides, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/physical-therapist-assistants-and-aides.htm; Occupational Therapy Assistants and Aides, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Occupational-therapy-assistants-and-aides.htm; Nurse Anesthetists, Nurse Midwives, or Nurse Practitioners, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm; Software Developers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/software-developers.htm; Biomedical Engineers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/biomedical-engineers.htm; Operations Research Analysts, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/math/operations-research-analysts.htm; Statisticians, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/math/statisticians.htm; Physical Therapists, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/physical-therapists.htm

Explore Online Colleges and Universities near New Jersey