Penn State World Campus, ranked first by TheBestSchools.com and ninth by BestCollegeReviews.com), and Northern Arizona University, ranked 20th and first respectively, are some of the highest-ranked online colleges. The rankings were determined by affordability, quality education, and range of programs offered, among other things.
In 2005, over 2 million students were enrolled in online colleges. As of 2015, the number has nearly quadrupled to over 7 million students in online colleges. Many students choose online colleges for the increased affordability and flexibility. However, online colleges still require discipline to be successful, so students should not expect online colleges to be easier than traditional colleges.