2016 Most Affordable Online Colleges for Public Health Degrees

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Our top 17 most affordable online colleges offering public health degrees have an average annual tuition of just over $10,000, with the lowest tuition of $4,950 offered by Columbia Southern University. Concentrations include community, occupational, environmental, and global health. For those looking to start or enhance a career in nursing, Grand Canyon University offers online MSNs with a focus on public health. All schools considered for this ranking offer fully online public health degrees at the bachelor's level or higher.

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All tuition numbers were manually collected and verified
Rank College Annual Tuition Public Health Degree Levels Offered
#1 #1 Columbia Southern University Annual Tuition $4,950 Public Health Degrees: Associate, Bachelor's, Master's, and Certificate
#2 #2 Youngstown State University Annual Tuition $6,480 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's and Master's
#3 #3 American Public University System Annual Tuition $8,100 Public Health Degrees: Associate, Bachelor's, and Master's
#4 #4 Kent State University at Kent Annual Tuition $8,692 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's, Master's, and Certificate
#5 #5 Cleveland State University Annual Tuition $8,902 Public Health Degrees: Master's
#6 #6 South Dakota State University Annual Tuition $9,056 Public Health Degrees: Master's
#7 #7 University of Illinois at Springfield Annual Tuition $9,294 Public Health Degrees: Master's and Certificate
#8 #8 Concord University Annual Tuition $9,438 Public Health Degrees: Master's
#9 #9 Southern New Hampshire University Online Annual Tuition $9,600 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's and Master's
#10 #10 University of South Dakota Annual Tuition $10,255 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's, Master's, and Certificate
#11 #11 Grand Canyon University Annual Tuition $10,558 Public Health Degrees: Master's
#12 #12 Liberty University Online Annual Tuition $11,340 Public Health Degrees: Master's and Certificate
#13 #13 University of Massachusetts - Amherst Annual Tuition $12,705 Public Health Degrees: Master's, Doctoral, and Certificate
#14 #14 Kaplan University Annual Tuition $12,942 Public Health Degrees: Master's
#15 #15 New Mexico State University Annual Tuition $13,988 Public Health Degrees: Master's and Certificate
#16 #16 University of Phoenix Annual Tuition $14,400 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's
#17 #17 Excelsior College Annual Tuition $14,700 Public Health Degrees: Bachelor's and Master's
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  • Annual Tuition: $4,950
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: DEAC
  • Columbia Southern University offers an online graduate program in public health for professionals already working in the field. Enrolled students can earn a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) with a general concentration or an M.P.H. with a concentration in community health education. The general concentration track offers courses in biostatistics, epidemiology and law, preparing students to work in public sector, non-governmental and international health environments. The community health education concentration trains students to be health educators and provides courses in health program planning and assessment and health promotion strategies. The 36-credit program costs under $5,000 annually. CSU also offers related degrees in occupational safety and health.
  • Annual Tuition: $6,480
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Students interested in earning the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) credential can pursue an online Bachelor of Science in Applied Science (B.S.A.S.) in Public Health at Youngstown State University. The undergraduate curriculum, which can be completed in eight semesters, covers core public health competencies and requires a public health internship. Students can further their public health studies by enrolling in the university’s Master of Health and Human Services program. This program, offered jointly with the Warren P. Williamson, Jr. College of Business Administration, prepares students for management positions in community health.
  • Annual Tuition: $8,100
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Students can enroll at American Public University to earn online Associate of Science (A.S.), Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Public Health, or Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degrees. The bachelor’s and master’s degree-level programs are designed for professionals already practicing in the public health field. Each degree level provides students with courses covering social and behavioral science theories, health crisis mitigation, organizational structures, and public policy. Courses at the bachelor’s and master’s degree levels are taught by professionals practicing in the field, including attorneys and public health experts.
  • Annual Tuition: $8,692
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Costing $8,692 annually, Kent State University at Kent is an affordable option for students interested in earning bachelor’s or master’s degrees in public health online. The university offers a Bachelor of Science in Public Health (B.S.P.H.), with concentrations in allied health, health promotion and education, and health services administration. Undergraduate students can also earn an 18-credit undergraduate certificate in public health to increase their knowledge of public health and advance their careers. Graduate students can enroll in the university’s Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) in Health Policy and Management. The M.P.H. takes just two years to complete. Qualified applicants can apply for a GRE waiver.
  • Annual Tuition: $8,902
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Cleveland State University’s online Master of Education (M. Ed.) in Community Health Promotion gives students a multidisciplinary background in public health. The program typically attracts students with undergraduate degrees in nursing, sociology, psychology, and allied health. CSU offers students enrolled in its Community Health Promotion program a range of coursework including health education program implementation and evaluation, substance abuse, consumer health, nutrition, disease prevention, and law. Students can complete this 34-credit program for less than $9,000 in tuition costs each year.
  • Annual Tuition: $9,056
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Graduate students can earn a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degree emphasizing the needs of rural communities for only $9,056 per year at South Dakota State University. The 36-credit online M.P.H. program, offered in partnership with the University of South Dakota, engages students with coursework in five areas: biostatistics, epidemiology, health services administration, social and behavioral sciences, and environmental health. To gain practical knowledge of rural health issues, SDSU’s M.P.H. students get hands-on experiences at agencies such as South Dakota Area Health Education Center (AHEC), Indian Health Services, and the South Dakota Department of Health.

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  • Annual Tuition: $9,294
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • The University of Illinois-Springfield has several online options for graduate students seeking a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) or a public health certificate. Students can enroll in a general concentration M.P.H. track or earn the degree with a concentration in environmental health. The university also offers joint M.P.H./M.P.A. degrees and a fast-track option for medical doctors and other health professionals with doctoral degrees. Graduate certificates in public health concentrations include epidemiology, emergency preparedness and homeland security, community health education, environmental health, and environmental risk assessment.
  • Annual Tuition: $9,438
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Concord University’s Master of Arts (M.A.) in Health Promotion prepares graduates for careers public health agencies, schools and other health organizations. The 33-credit online program enhances undergraduate degrees such as sociology, psychology, and allied health, and includes coursework on health subjects such as obesity, epidemiology, and interventions. Students also complete a foundations course, study trends and issues in public health, and participate in a practicum. Program completion qualifies graduates to take the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) credentialing exam.

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  • Annual Tuition: $9,600
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: NEASC CIHE
  • Undergraduate and graduate students can earn online bachelor’s and master’s degrees in public health at Southern New Hampshire University. Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Public Health students take courses such as program evaluation methods, ethical and legal considerations in public health and healthcare delivery systems. Master of Science (M.S.) in Public Health students take courses such as biostatistics, health policy and management, and public health biology. Graduate students can complete the M.S. in Public Health program in as few as 15 months.
  • Annual Tuition: $10,255
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Graduate students can earn a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degree emphasizing the healthcare needs of rural communities for only $10,255 at University of South Dakota. The 42-credit, online M.P.H. program, offered in partnership with the South Dakota State University, engages students with coursework in five areas: biostatistics, epidemiology, health services administration, social and behavioral sciences, and environmental health. Electives include courses in bioinformatics, strategic management of healthcare organizations ,and social justice in rural communities.
  • Annual Tuition: $10,558
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Professionals whose work intersects with public health, such as nurses, attorneys and journalists, may be interested in Grand Canyon University’s Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) online degree program. Courses focus on the psychological and social factors influencing health disparities, epidemiology, public health administration, and economics. GCU’s M.P.H. program also provides courses on professional networking in the healthcare industry and healthcare innovations. This program requires 48 credits for completion.
  • Annual Tuition: $11,340
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
  • Liberty University Online offers a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) with three concentration areas: global health, nutrition, and health promotion. Students take a variety of courses including epidemiology, public health administration, disease prevention and nutritional health. LU’s M.P.H. requires 42 credits for completion and costs $11,340 per year. Students can enhance their existing degrees with related certificates like Health Promotion, or earn the certificates prior to transitioning to the M.P.H. degree program.
  • Annual Tuition: $12,705
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: NEASC CIHE and CEPH
  • Priced at just $12,705 per year, students can enroll in the University of Massachusetts - Amherst’s online program to earn a Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) with a concentration in Public Health Practice or an M.P.H. with a concentration in Nutrition. The university also offers an online Graduate Certificate in Global Health. UMassAmherst typically admits working professionals such as medical doctors, nurses, registered dieticians, allied health professionals, and other health care workers to its M.P.H. programs. The 15-credit certificate program provides courses in international health, infectious diseases, and human rights.
  • Annual Tuition: $12,942
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Students enrolled in Kaplan University’s online M.P.H. program can take courses such as health care statistics, health behavior, and epidemiology to complete the degree. Electives such as disaster management, grant writing, chronic disease epidemiology, and data management systems also count toward the degree. An on-site practicum is required to complete this 56-credit degree program. KU’s M.P.H. courses carry four academic credits each.

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  • Annual Tuition: $13,988
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC and CEPH
  • Students enrolled in New Mexico State University’s online Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) program can complete the 48-credit course of study in about three years on a part-time basis. Students can also earn the university’s online, 15-credit Graduate Certificate in Public Health program. NMSU’s public health courses include community and psychosocial aspects of public health, epidemiology, health system administration, and organization and environmental public health issues.

Online Master's Degrees (1)

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  • Annual Tuition: $14,400
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • The University of Phoenix offers a 120-credit Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Human Services online for under $15,000 in annual tuition costs each year. The program offers concentrations in addiction counseling, family and child services, management, and gerontology, with certificate options for all concentrations. Online classes include Health Care Delivery in the U.S., Health Care Ethics And Social Responsibility, and Human Resources in Health Care.
  • Annual Tuition: $14,700
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: MSCHE
  • The Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Health Sciences, Public Health emphasis, at Excelsior College costs $14,700 a year. The curriculum is designed to be completed in four years and prepares students for employment in hospitals, community colleges, or nonprofits. The online B.S. program leadership, management, communication, and ethics skills necessary for success in the public health field. For students wishing to continue their public health education, Excelsior College also offers an online Master’s degree program.
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This indicates that a school has an annual tuition of $15,000 or less as reported to the National Center for Education Statistics or based on the school's website.