U.S. News & World Report recognized UF Online, the University of Florida’s online bachelor’s degree program, as No. 1 in the nation in its rankings released on Tuesday.
The announcement, which comes at the heels of UF being named the No. 5 public university in the country in September, marks the first time UF has earned the top spot for online bachelor’s degree programs. Several of UF’s online master’s programs also ranked among the top in the country, including Education (No. 2), Master of Business Administration (No. 5), Engineering (No. 12) and UF’s non-MBA Business programs (No. 21), according to a UF press release.
Additionally, U.S. News recognized UF’s online programs as among the top in the country for veterans, with the MBA program earning the No. 1 spot nationally. UF also ranked No. 2 on the list of best online bachelor’s degree programs for veterans.
UF tied for first place for best online bachelor’s programs with another Florida school—Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide, which is located in Daytona Beach.
“Due to a sustained state investment as well as institutional focus, UF provides a high level of excellence in online education for students that is recognized by our comprehensive national rankings,” Joe Glover, UF’s provost and senior vice president of academic affairs, said in a statement. “Online education is not simply a matter of transferring in-person classes to an online format. Rather, our nationally recognized faculty and staff have established an impactful, fulfilling and supportive online educational environment that results in exceptional student outcomes.”
UF Online offers 25 degree options from 10 colleges with several academic specializations Nearly 4,300 students are enrolled in UF Online and more than 3,900 have graduated since the program was founded in 2013.
“High-quality online opportunities can be of particular importance for students who work full-time or have children and other family responsibilities,” said Andrew McCollough, UF associate provost for teaching and technology. “During a time when the economy is fast-changing, online education plays a very important role meeting students where they are and helping them be successful in their lives and careers.”
The announcement provides a much-needed lift to UF, which has faced recent public criticism over its conflict of interest policy for professors.