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52 Most Affordable Online Computer Programming Associate’s Degrees

Cost rankings of online computer programming associate's degreeLooking for the best online computer programming associate’s degree from an accredited school at a truly affordable cost? With so many colleges offering such a rich variety of options, it’s easy to get lost in the search for the online computer programming associate’s degree that fits a student’s career aspirations as well as their current budget. An associate’s degree in and of itself comes with a myriad of options, from AA and AS transfer degrees to vocational AAS programs. Computer programming is an incredibly competitive field, with a BLS projected outlook of negative 9% throughout 2029. Web, game and software developers, however, have above average projected rates of increase in the marketplace. No matter which path a student decides to take, taking on an online computer programming associate’s degree can be one of the biggest financial challenges in this journey. The difference in tuition between the cheapest and most expensive associate programs can reach over $64,000.

GetEducated has compared 91 online computer programming associate’s degree programs from 67 regionally accredited schools to create this “Best Buy” list. Our rankings reveal the most affordable options in the United States—52 options with prices offered below the national average. Don’t let the financial burden of earning a degree keep you from attending college in a competitive marketplace.

ARTICLE NAVIGATION: Rankings Table | Career Guide

Average Cost (In-state): ~$13,300
Least Expensive: Cerro Coso Community College ~ $2,768
Most Expensive: Academy of Art University ~ $67,021

Our data-driven research creates a truly reliable system of scientific rankings. There are no fancy formulas here. We meticulously calculate total full-time tuition—including any fees—for the most accurate total cost. Our rankings cannot be bought, and therefore factually showcase the cheapest online computer programming associate’s degree. The online computer programming degrees listed above the gray dividing line are official 2020 “Best Buys” and cost less than the national average.

Most Affordable Online Computer Programming Associate’s Degrees

RankSchool / DegreeStatePriceNote
1
Cerro Coso Community College
(CA)
$2,768.00
$19,748.00
In-State
Out-of-State
2
Palomar College
(CA)
$2,864.00
$20,264.00
In-State
Out-of-State
3
Rio Salado College
(AZ)
$4,140.00
$11,060.00
In-State
Out-of-State
4
Wake Technical Community College
(NC)
$5,092.00
$17,956.00
In-State
Out-of-State
5
Trident Technical College
(SC)
$5,095.40
$21,497.60
In-State
Out-of-State
6
Guilford Technical Community College
(NC)
$5,109.00
$17,589.00
In-State
Out-of-State
7
Wayne Community College
(NC)
$5,124.00
$17,604.00
In-State
Out-of-State
8
Guilford Technical Community College
(NC)
$5,185.00
$17,857.00
In-State
Out-of-State
9
Wake Technical Community College
(NC)
$5,244.00
$18,492.00
In-State
Out-of-State
10
Bladen Community College
(NC)
$5,255.00
$17,735.00
In-State
Out-of-State
11
Pitt Community College
(NC)
$5,382.00
$18,246.00
In-State
Out-of-State
12
Isothermal Community College
(NC)
$5,438.00
$18,494.00
In-State
Out-of-State
13
Pitt Community College
(NC)
$5,458.00
$18,514.00
In-State
Out-of-State
14
Central Piedmont Community College
(NC)
$5,583.00
$18,639.00
In-State
Out-of-State
15
Nash Community College
(NC)
$5,796.00
$19,428.00
In-State
Out-of-State
16
Cochise County Community College District
(AZ)
$5,824.00
$9,792.00
In-State
Out-of-State
17
Southwestern Community College - NC
(NC)
$6,106.00
$19,738.00
In-State
Out-of-State
18
Seminole State College of Florida
(FL)
$6,793.80
$23,443.20
In-State
Out-of-State
19
Metropolitan Community College Area
(NE)
$7,029.00
$10,296.00
In-State
Out-of-State
20
College of Southern Nevada
(NV)
$7,030.25
$10,293.75
In-State
Out-of-State
21
Great Basin College
(NV)
$7,035.00
$10,245.00
In-State
Out-of-State
22
Florida State College at Jacksonville
(FL)
$7,192.80
$14,013.00
In-State
Out-of-State
23
St. Petersburg College
(FL)
$7,605.00
$24,114.00
In-State
Out-of-State
24
Hinds Community College
(MS)
$7,800.00
$13,900.00
In-State
Out-of-State
25
Southeastern Technical College
(GA)
$7,950.00
$14,650.00
In-State
Out-of-State
26
Dallas College
(TX)
$8,100.00
$12,000.00
In-State
Out-of-State
27
Saint Johns River State College
(FL)
$8,265.00
$34,980.00
In-State
Out-of-State
28
Waubonsee Community College
(IL)
$8,400.00
All Students
29
Northern Wyoming Community College District
(WY)
$8,580.00
$20,460.00
In-State
Out-of-State
30
Community Colleges of Spokane
(WA)
$8,853.00
$10,779.00
In-State
Out-of-State
31
Volunteer State Community College
(TN)
$9,044.00
$15,680.00
In-State
Out-of-State
32
Madison Area Technical College
(WI)
$9,468.27
All Students
33
Moraine Park Technical College
(WI)
$9,529.60
All Students
34
Moraine Park Technical College
(WI)
$9,976.30
All Students
35
Moraine Park Technical College
(WI)
$9,678.50
All Students
36
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
(WI)
$10,093.60
$14,399.50
In-State
Out-of-State
37
Danville Community College
(VA)
$10,205.00
$17,062.50
$11,732.50
In-State
Out-of-State
Military
38
St. Philip's College
(TX)
$10,380.00
$28,140.00
In-State
Out-of-State
39
Ivy Tech Community College
(IN)
$10,473.00
$12,022.80
In-State
Out-of-State
40
Northcentral Technical College
(WI)
$10,604.80
$15,049.60
In-State
Out-of-State
41
Illinois Central College
(IL)
$10,962.00
All Students
42
Bismarck State College
(ND)
$11,389.20
$16,205.40
In-State
Out-of-State
43
Cincinnati State Technical and Community College
(OH)
$11,444.40
$21,562.80
In-State
Out-of-State
44
Lone Star College System
(TX)
$11,700.00
$15,000.00
In-State
Out-of-State
45
Stark State College
(OH)
$11,800.60
$19,669.60
In-State
Out-of-State
46
Roane State Community College
(TN)
$12,299.00
$45,311.00
In-State
Out-of-State
47
Macomb Community College
(MI)
$12,390.00
$15,614.00
In-State
Out-of-State
48
Minnesota State College Southeast
(MN)
$12,438.00
All Students
49
Minnesota State Community and Technical College
(MN)
$12,738.00
All Students
50
Macomb Community College
(MI)
$12,780.00
$16,108.00
In-State
Out-of-State
51
Northwest Iowa Community College
(IA)
$12,870.00
All Students
52
Riverland Community College
(MN)
$13,083.60
All Students
NOTE: The following schools did not make our Best Buy ranking but are also great online options.
School / DegreeStatePriceNote
Atlantic Cape Community College
(NJ)
$14,277.00
$17,277.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Lewis-Clark State College
(ID)
$14,864.00
$41,376.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Lake Superior College
(MN)
$15,044.40
All Students
Vincennes University
(IN)
$15,356.00
$17,754.80
In-State
Out-of-State
Western Iowa Tech Community College
(IA)
$15,396.00
All Students
Harrisburg Area Community College
(PA)
$16,320.00
$19,320.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Austin Community College District
(TX)
$17,160.00
$21,180.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Community College of Allegheny County
(PA)
$17,381.00
$24,461.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Amridge University
(AL)
$17,900.00
All Students
Front Range Community College
(CO)
$18,249.40
$24,132.40
In-State
Out-of-State
Southeast Technical Institute
(SD)
$18,538.00
All Students
Champlain College
(VT)
$19,230.00
$15,150.00
In-State/Out-Of-State
Military
Dakota State University
(SD)
$21,075.00
$22,390.20
$15,000.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Military
Dakota State University
(SD)
$21,075.00
$23,047.80
$15,000.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Military
University of Toledo
(OH)
$21,892.80
$21,992.80
In-State
Out-of-State
Purdue University Global
(IN)
$25,200.00
$35,460.00
$14,850.00
In-State
Out-of-State
Military
Fisher College
(MA)
$25,900.00
All Students
Limestone College
(SC)
$27,467.00
$15,191.00
In-State/Out-Of-State
Military
MidAmerica Nazarene University
(KS)
$28,242.00
All Students
Florida National University
(FL)
$34,360.00
$16,360.00
In-State/Out-Of-State
Military
Central Penn College
(PA)
$39,094.00
All Students
Academy of Art University
(CA)
$67,021.00
All Students

14 Program is no longer accepting new students.

Accreditation Note

To qualify for a ranking, a program must be regionally accredited. Additional programmatic accreditation is noted in the rank table.

Rankings Note

These online college rankings are based on a GetEducated Fall 2020 review of regionally accredited online computer programming associate’s degree programs. Associate ranks include Associate of Science, Associate of Arts and Associate of Applied Science degrees from both 4 & 2 year schools. AS & AA are typically best for transfer, while the AAS degree is career-oriented. Total cost includes full-time tuition and fees and was valid at the time of collection and specific to the online learning program. School profiles for the online associate degree programs in our directory may reflect a slightly different cost based on different editorial update schedules.

The published cost is an estimated sticker price for the entire online degree including fees. Actual costs may vary by student. Factors such as transfer credits, prerequisite courses, professional licensing and financial aid availability will affect final cost.

Editorial Note

Online schools do NOT pay to be included in any GetEducated online degree ranking. These rankings are editorially independent, open to any regionally accredited or candidate college that offers an associate degree that is available at least 80 percent through online learning and that is open to enrollment by the public. If your online college is regionally accredited and not currently reviewed by GetEducated, please contact us for inclusion.

These rankings of the cheapest online schools for computer programming may NOT be re-posted online or reprinted in any format without a license from GetEducated ®. Consumer finance bloggers and writers can contact our editors for a free custom article on the best online computer programming associate’s degree for use on your website. Our mission: Help consumers GetEducated ® about the best online colleges for cost and credibility.

Online Computer Programming Associate’s Degree Career Guide

We use applications, software, and websites on a daily basis. With the rapid growth of connected technology, there is an ever-growing need for programmers, designers, and developers. If you love technology, then consider an online computer programming associate’s degree from a leading institution!

Computer Programming, Game, Web, and Software Design Associate’s Program Overview

The specific classes and themes taught during an online computer programming associate’s degree can vary, but in general you can expect to learn the fundamentals and principles of software, interactive games, websites, and other tech-related topics. Much of the focus for these programs will be on the specific tools and applications that are used to develop computer programs and websites. Once complete, you will have a strong understanding for C++ programming, Java script, HTML coding, and any other programming language that may be appropriate for your career goals.

Learning to work as part of a team will also be important to your education. Whether you are focused on developing complex websites, advanced applications, or the latest hit video games, you can’t do it alone, so learning the various roles and how to work efficiently will also be important.

The exact classes will vary depending on your specific courses, but you can likely expect to learn about…

Game Development:

  • Game engines
  • Game programming
  • Game theory
  • 3D modeling
  • Game marketing

Programming:

  • Operating systems
  • Programming logic
  • Networks
  • IT security
  • System analysis

Software Development:

  • Web applications
  • Object-oriented programming
  • System analysis
  • Database design
  • Database management

There can, of course, be a lot of overlap. Programming and software development can seem extremely similar and may cover many of the same topics, yet there are subtle and important differences between the two.

Best Careers for Programming, Game, Web & Software Design

When you complete an online computer programming associate’s degree, you’ll be prepared for a wide range of careers, including…

Software Developer

  • Salary: $107,510
  • Education: Bachelor’s
  • Training/Experience: None
  • Growth: 22%

Software development is a high-demand, well-paying field that gives you the chance to create the applications and systems that people use every day. While a bachelor’s degree is usually needed, there are career options for people with only an online associate’s degree in computer programming. (However, you can likely expect earnings to be lower.) An associate’s degree in computer programming also gives you a foundation of knowledge that can be used towards an eventual bachelor’s degree.

Besides the massive potential for pay, there is also a reality that software developers enjoy a career field that is expected to grow by 22%.

Web Developer

  • Salary: $73,760
  • Education: Associate’s
  • Training/Experience: None
  • Growth: 8%

Few associate-degree jobs bring incomes as high as a web developer. With only two years of study (or less if you work extremely hard), you can graduate with a college degree and enter a field that has a median salary over $73,000. In fact, the top 10% can expect earnings over $142,000!

A web developer is focused specifically on websites. They are responsible for the overall look and functionality of sites, and develop the site’s technical and visual aspects. In this career, you would likely work on teams that include graphics designers and programmers, depending on the size and complexity of the project.

Multimedia Artist & Animator

  • Salary: $75,270
  • Education: Bachelor’s
  • Training/Experience: None
  • Growth: 4%

While the vast majority of multimedia animators and artists will need bachelor’s degrees, there may be available jobs for people who only hold an associate’s degree. These professionals create the design and appearance of digital media and entertainment, enhancing the visual appeal of video games, television shows, movies, and more.

The pay for this career is strong, but if you work your way into the top 10% you can expect annual salaries over $139,000.

Additional Requirements, Including Licensing and Exams

Most of these careers do not require licensing or certifications. Essentially, as long as you have the appropriate skills, you are perfectly within your legal right to working as a computer programmer, software designer, or game developer.

However, you may find that job options are limited if you don’t have a bachelor’s degree, so many people who complete these associate-level programs will transition (either right away or after a few years of work) to a four-year program. Fortunately, many of the prerequisites may have already been completed, so completing the bachelor’s will likely take less than four years if you already have an associate’s.

Informal education is also important. Technology changes rapidly, so staying up to date on software changes, programming innovations, or consumer demands is critical for maintaining your career success. But it can all begin with an affordable online computer programming associate’s degree!

GetEducated.com is a consumer group that publishes online college rankings along the dimensions that matter most to online students themselves: affordability and credibility. All of our information is sourced directly from college and university websites as well government websites such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Our mission:

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