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Affordable Online Masters Degrees in Education and Library Science


Most Affordable Online Masters Programs in Education and Library Science

Teachers and librarians searching for online master’s degrees should look first at public universities.’s new online college affordability survey has found that 27 high-quality, affordable online degrees in education and library science are available for under $10,000.

We analyzed tuition and fees at 101 regionally accredited universities that offer 313 online master’s degrees to come up with national rankings of the 2009 Best Buys in online master’s for teachers and librarians.

Online Master’s Wide Variation in Costs and Affordability

Educators and librarians will find online education masters ranging in cost from $5,600 to $41,000. The average cost of a distance learning master’s for educators is $15,714. According to our online college cost rankings, the top 30 rated best buys all come in under $10,000—and they all are issued by public, nonprofit schools.

Online Education Costs Soaring

In our previous cost rankings for this category, done in 2005, we surveyed 101 colleges and found online master’s in education and library science tuition and fee costs ranged from $3,294 to $32,850, with the top 25 degrees all available for under $9,000. The increase in price from 2005 to 2009 is much higher than the rate of inflation for this same time period, showing how dramatically higher education prices have risen.

Today’s most affordable online graduate degree in education can be found at Appalachian State University in North Carolina. North Carolina residents can earn a master’s in educational media for just $5,535. (Non-residents will pay significantly more: $23,922.)

East Carolina University in North Carolina took second and third place for its master of education ($5,832 for residents; $24,048 for non-residents) and its master of library science ($6,318 for residents; $26,052 for non-residents).

The University of Wyoming Outreach offers the least expensive distance learning degrees for both in-state and out-of-state educators: a master of science in education/instructional technology and a master of arts in education/adult and post-secondary education. Both degrees cost about $7,000.

The first private college to crack the Best Buy rankings is Saint Joseph’s College of Maine with a cost of about $10,890 for its online master of science in education.

The most affordable for-profit, online education school in the rankings: Northcentral University, in Arizona. This online college received an affordability ranking grade of “B” for its master of education degree, priced at $12,260.

The most expensive online master’s in library science:

* Drexel University, Pennsylvania ($41,175)
* Syracuse University, New York ($40,212)
* University of Washington, Washington ($35,721)

The most expensive master’s in education degrees:

* Drexel University, Pennsylvania ($38,870)
* Columbia University, New York ($34,720)
* St. John’s University, New York ($31,065)
* Capella University ($30,456)

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