2020 Most Affordable Online Software Engineering Degrees

By the OnlineU team | Updated 9/14/2021
2020 Most Affordable Software Engineering Bachelors Degrees Badge
By the OnlineU team | Updated 9/14/2021

These schools represent the least expensive options for obtaining an online bachelor's degree in software engineering. In first place, the University of the Potomac is the most affordable school, with a tuition rate of $7,785. Classes for University of the Potomac's Bachelor of Science in Computer Science-Software Engineering include Agile Software Development, Applied Network and Security, and Software Testing. Middle Georgia State University comes in second place, with an affordable tuition rate of $8,670 per year.

You can read more about our ranked schools below or browse our rankings of the most affordable online master's in software engineering. View our methodology or learn more about OnlineU.

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All tuition numbers were manually collected and verified
Rank School Annual Tuition
# 1 #1 University of the Potomac $7,785
# 2 #2 Middle Georgia State University $8,670
# 3 #3 University of Maine at Augusta $9,269
# 4 #4 Champlain College $9,540
# 5 #5 Southern New Hampshire University Online $9,600
# 6 #6 Saint Leo University Online $11,100
# 7 #7 Park University $12,450
# 8 #8 MidAmerica Nazarene University $12,570
# 9 #9 The College of Saint Scholastica $12,640
# 10 #10 St. Petersburg College $12,773
# 11 #11 Rogers State University $13,330
# 12 #12 Bellevue University $13,600
# 13 #13 Herzing University $13,730
# 14 #14 Tiffin University $14,260
# 15 #15 Pennsylvania State University-World Campus $14,594
# 16 #16 Lakeland University $15,600
# 17 #17 Arizona State University $15,900
# 18 #18 Capella University $18,495
# 19 #19 Hodges University $20,700
#1
#1

University of the Potomac

Multiple Locations
Annual Tuition: $7,785
Annual Tuition: $7,785
Annual Tuition: $7,785
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 31%
  • Graduation Rate: 80%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 56
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 42
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: MSCHE

Example Classes: Agile Software Development, Applied Network and Security, Software Testing

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - Software Engineering
#2
#2
Annual Tuition: $8,670
Annual Tuition: $8,670
Annual Tuition: $8,670
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 91%
  • Graduation Rate: 23%
  • Acceptance Rate: 94%
  • Average SATs: 880 -1090
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 1,852
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 268
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
  • Phone #: (478) 471-2700

Example Classes: C++ Programming, Computer Architecture, Robot Programming, Software Testing and Quality Assurance

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS in Information Technology - Software Engineering
#3
#3
Annual Tuition: $9,269
Annual Tuition: $9,269
Annual Tuition: $9,269
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 90%
  • Graduation Rate: 13%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 2,342
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: NECHE
  • Phone #: (207) 621-3000

Example Classes: Advanced Java Programming, Principles of Human Computer Interaction and User Design, Programming in C# and .NET, Software Quality Assurance

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS in Computer Information Systems - Software Development
#4
#4

Champlain College

Burlington (VT)
Annual Tuition: $9,540
Annual Tuition: $9,540
Annual Tuition: $9,540
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 65%
  • Acceptance Rate: 75%
  • Average SATs: 1110 -1320
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 1,669
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 625
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: NECHE
  • Phone #: (802) 860-2700

Example Classes: Discrete Mathematics, Global IT & Ethics, Software Re-Engineering

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Software Development
#5
#5
Annual Tuition: $9,600
Annual Tuition: $9,600
Annual Tuition: $9,600
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 77%
  • Graduation Rate: 44%
  • Acceptance Rate: 78%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 86,849
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 19,526
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: NECHE
  • Phone #: (603) 668-2211

Example Classes: Computational Graphics and Visualization, Emerging Systems Architectures & Technologies, Mobile Architecture and Programming, Secure Coding, Software Development Lifecycle, Software Reverse Engineering

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS Computer Science - Software Engineering
#6
#6
Annual Tuition: $11,100
Annual Tuition: $11,100
Annual Tuition: $11,100
  • Online Degrees: 2
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 49%
  • Acceptance Rate: 58%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 8,242
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 4,720
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
  • Phone #: (352) 588-8200

Example Classes: Database Concepts and Programming, Introduction to Information Security, Network Theory & Design, Theoretical Foundation of CS

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • B.S. in Software Engineering
  • BA: Software Engineering
#7
#7

Park University

Parkville (MO)
Annual Tuition: $12,450
Annual Tuition: $12,450
Annual Tuition: $12,450
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 93%
  • Graduation Rate: 62%
  • Acceptance Rate: 69%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 5,473
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 1,358
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (816) 741-2000

Example Classes: Computer Systems Analysis and Design, Data Structures, Information Security, Programming Concepts, User Interface Design, Web Programming

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Information and Computer Science - Software Development
#8
#8
Annual Tuition: $12,570
Annual Tuition: $12,570
Annual Tuition: $12,570
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 99%
  • Graduation Rate: 43%
  • Acceptance Rate: 66%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 286
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 418
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (913) 782-3750

Example Classes: Algorithms, Operating Systems, Probability and Statistics

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems - Software Engineering
#9
#9
Annual Tuition: $12,640
Annual Tuition: $12,640
Annual Tuition: $12,640
  • Online Degrees: 2
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 99%
  • Graduation Rate: 69%
  • Acceptance Rate: 68%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 441
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 621
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (218) 723-6000

Example Classes: Computer Architecture, Database Modeling, Programming I with Java, Systems Analysis and Design, Systems Development Internship

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BA in Computer Information Systems - Software Development
  • BS in Computer Information Systems - Software Development
#10
#10

St. Petersburg College

Clearwater (FL)
Annual Tuition: $12,773
Annual Tuition: $12,773
Annual Tuition: $12,773
  • Online Degrees: 2
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 73%
  • Graduation Rate: 33%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 10,306
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
  • Phone #: (727) 341-4772

Example Classes: Algorithmic Design and Development, Legal Aspects of Managing Technology, Software Design Methodologies

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • B.A.S. in Technology Development and Management - Software Assurance
  • B.A.S. in Technology Development and Management - Software Development
#11
#11

Rogers State University

Claremore (OK)
Annual Tuition: $13,330
Annual Tuition: $13,330
Annual Tuition: $13,330
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 22%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 674
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 35
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (918) 343-7777

Example Classes: Advanced Web System Development, Computer Graphics Programming, Introduction to 3D Modeling

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • B.S. in Business Information Technology - Software Development and Multimedia
#12
#12

Bellevue University

Bellevue (NE)
Annual Tuition: $13,600
Annual Tuition: $13,600
Annual Tuition: $13,600
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 84%
  • Graduation Rate: 24%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 7,352
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 3,151
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (402) 291-8100

Example Classes: Information Security, Information Technology Project Management, Intermediate Database and Database Connectivity, Intermediate Java Programming, Management and Design of Database Systems, Server-Side Scripting with Ruby on Rails

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Software Development
#13
#13

Herzing University

Multiple Locations
Annual Tuition: $13,730
Annual Tuition: $13,730
Annual Tuition: $13,730
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 99%
  • Graduation Rate: 31%
  • Acceptance Rate: 75%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 2,229
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 731
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC

Example Classes: C# Programming, C++ Programming, Database Concepts and Applications, Discrete Structures for Computer Science, Internet Foundation, Object-Oriented Programming

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Software Development
#14
#14

Tiffin University

Tiffin (OH)
Annual Tuition: $14,260
Annual Tuition: $14,260
Annual Tuition: $14,260
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 39%
  • Acceptance Rate: 69%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 420
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 613
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (800) 968-6446

Example Classes: Information Systems for Managers, Organizational Strategy, Programming for Application Development

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - Software Development
#15
#15
Annual Tuition: $14,594
Annual Tuition: $14,594
Annual Tuition: $14,594
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 72%
  • Graduation Rate: 29%
  • Acceptance Rate: 67%
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: MSCHE
  • Phone #: (814) 865-5403

Example Classes: Digital Design: Theory and Practice, Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science, Matrices, Microprocessors, Object-Oriented Software Design and Construction

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering
#16
#16

Lakeland University

Plymouth (WI)
Annual Tuition: $15,600
Annual Tuition: $15,600
Annual Tuition: $15,600
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 48%
  • Acceptance Rate: 52%
  • Average SATs: 905 -1060
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 185
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 98
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (920) 565-1000

Example Classes: Artificial Intelligence, Computer Architecture, Game Design and Development, Mobile Application Development, Networking and Telecommunications

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - Software Design
#17
#17

Arizona State University

Tempe (AZ) (and 4 others)
Annual Tuition: $15,900
Annual Tuition: $15,900
Annual Tuition: $15,900
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 96%
  • Graduation Rate: 54%
  • Acceptance Rate: 76%
  • Average SATs: 1091 -1301
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 33,410
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 10,843
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC

Example Classes: Calculus for Engineers, Discrete Mathematical Structures, Microcomputer Architecture and Programming, Operating Systems and Networks, Principles of Database Management, Software Enterprise: Design and Process

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS in Software Engineering
#18
#18

Capella University

Minneapolis (MN)
Annual Tuition: $18,495
Annual Tuition: $18,495
Annual Tuition: $18,495
  • Online Degrees: 2
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 0%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 10,503
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 27,356
  • School Type: For-Profit
  • School Accreditation: HLC
  • Phone #: (888) 227-3552

Example Classes: Advanced Website Design, DevOps Practices for Cloud Computing, Ethics for the Information Technology Professional, Mobile Cloud Computing Application Development

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS in Information Technology - Software Development - Cloud Application Development
  • BS in Information Technology - Software Development - Programming and Application Development
#19
#19

Hodges University

Naples (FL)
Annual Tuition: $20,700
Annual Tuition: $20,700
Annual Tuition: $20,700
  • Online Degrees: 1
  • Financial Aid Recipients: 92%
  • Graduation Rate: 26%
  • Acceptance Rate: 58%
  • Undergrad Online Enrollment: 388
  • Graduate Online Enrollment: 121
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • School Accreditation: SACS COC
  • Phone #: (239) 513-1122

Example Classes: Advanced Computer Applications, Enterprise Applications, Fundamentals of System & Network Security, Mobile Application Development, Networks & Telecommunications, Systems Analysis & Solutions Architectures

Online Bachelor's Degrees

  • BS in Software Development

Is an Online Bachelor's in Software Engineering Worth it?

In today's tech-based economy, a bachelor's in software engineering may be a worthwhile endeavor. As with any investment, however, the degree’s value depends on personal circumstances, including finances and career expectations.

Software engineers develop a set of skills that are valued across multiple sectors, which means that software engineers are often well paid. In fact, the median annual income for a software engineer is $110,140, which is more than double the median wage of $41,950 for all occupations. Furthermore, the number of software jobs is expected to increase by 22% through 2029, making it likely that a degree in software engineering would be a beneficial long-term investment.

In fact, the median annual income for a software engineer is $110,140, which is more than double the median wage of $41,950 for all occupations.

Still, an above-average salary and favorable job outlook may not be the only important issues to consider. Listed below are some potential pros and cons that can help you determine whether an online bachelor's in software engineering is the right choice for you:


Potential Advantages:

  • Since software engineering involves coding and working with data, pursuing the degree in-person may have limited advantages. An online degree may be a cheaper and more flexible alternative.
  • Software engineers tend to enjoy their work. According to a 2020 Statistica survey, roughly 65% of software developers worldwide reported that they were either "slightly satisfied" or "very satisfied" with their job.
  • Since workers are increasingly expected to freelance, a software engineering degree is valuable when finding employment in the global gig economy.

Potential Drawbacks:

  • A bachelor's degree isn't always necessary for a software engineer to get hired. Coding bootcamps and work experience can be suitable alternatives, especially if you want to avoid student debt.
  • Software engineers have a unique skill set. You may need additional managerial experience and a graduate-level degree if your goal is to become a C-suite executive.
salary potential with a master's in computer science
Data Source: Statista

Common Bachelor's in Software Engineering Courses

A bachelor's degree in software engineering prepares students for careers in IT. Students learn the principles of designing, testing, and implementing software, so they can pursue roles in sectors such as government, financial services, utilities, entertainment, and healthcare. A software engineering degree also prepares students for research careers in software security, reliability, verification, and even artificial intelligence.

  • Data Structures: This course reviews how data is organized, stored, and managed. Students learn about data structure types, including how to apply them and measure their efficiency. By the end, students should also understand how to analyze algorithms.
  • Object-Oriented Design: This intermediate-level course teaches students to solve problems with programming, from debugging software to utilizing algorithms. Object-Oriented Design covers a key approach to software development.
  • Principles of Database Management: This course teaches students how to develop and maintain databases. Students learn about data mining, security, and analytics while being able to differentiate between database types. With an emphasis on data science, this course helps students develop applicable skills across several industries.
  • Programming Languages: Since there are hundreds — if not thousands — of programming languages, this course focuses on the underlying principles involved with their design. It provides an overview of common language types: procedural, object-oriented, functional, and declarative. With this knowledge, students can pursue careers as data scientists, coders, or web developers.
  • Software Engineering: This course often involves working on a team project, where students collaborate to develop and test their software. Ultimately, the aim is to help students gain experience implementing software for a third party.

Funding an Online Software Engineering Program

If you plan on pursuing an online software engineering bachelor's at an accredited university, you can apply for financial aid. Online students can apply for federal, state, and private scholarships as well as work-study programs and student loans. Most of this funding is free, except for student loans, which have a wide range of repayment plans based on the lender involved, so it’s important to consider your options carefully before accepting.

Online students can apply for federal, state, and private scholarships as well as work-study programs and student loans.

It’s recommended that you contact your prospective school's financial aid office to verify whether you qualify for university-based aid programs and confirm that they accept any aid you've already received.

Applying for Aid

The easiest way to apply for financial aid is by filling out the Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) form. The Department of Education uses this application to provide colleges and universities with an overview of your financial need. This way, they can determine what kind of assistance you qualify for. If you're a veteran or a student on active duty, you could potentially apply the GI Bill’s educational benefits to help pay for your degree.

Requirements related to in-state residency and enrollment status can vary based on the funding pool. To minimize confusion and leave enough time to verify your eligibility for a program, apply for financial aid before you enroll in a degree program or begin a new semester. This is especially important for online students who might need to meet additional requirements to qualify for a particular funding program.


Where to Look for Additional Financial Assistance

Many tech companies offer scholarships to students pursuing four-year degrees related to software engineering. Below is a brief list of scholarships for students pursuing an undergraduate degree in software engineering:

The ESA Foundation Computer and Video Game Arts and Sciences Scholarship

Women and minority students can apply for this scholarship, which is awarded by the Entertainment Software Association Foundation. Applicants must be U.S. citizens pursuing a four-year degree in the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) field, especially if your concentration or interest relates to video games.

The Honeywell Scholarship

The Society of Women Engineers makes three annual awards of $5,000 each to underrepresented candidates who require financial aid. Applicants must be U.S. citizens enrolled in a software engineering bachelor's degree program with a minimum GPA of 3.5.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Scholarship

Hewlett Packard Enterprise offers ten students a one-time award of $7,000 ($3,500/semester). Awards are based on financial need and open to African American sophomores pursuing four-year STEM degrees.