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Most Popular Online Doctor's Degree Schools

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2021 Most Popular Online Doctor's Degree Schools

426 Schools Ranked
$99,654 Avg Student Debt

When it comes to higher education, there are a lot of options for students. With more and more schools offering online options, you could even register for a great program on the other side of the country. Alternatively, you may choose a trade school or bootcamp that prepares you to enter the workforce with knowledge in a specific field.

To help you arm yourself with the information you need to make your decision, Course Advisor has developed this Most Popular Online Doctor's Degree Schools ranking. Our analysis looked at 426 schools in the United States to see which online doctor's degree programs were the most popular for students. To create this ranking we looked at how many students graduated from schools with online programs.

Learn more about these popular schools with online programs:

#1

Walden University

Minneapolis, Minnesota
1,634 Total Awards
$12,539 Average Tuition & Fees
$133,111 Avg Student Debt

Our 2021 rankings named Walden University the most popular school in the United States for students working on their doctor’s degree. This large private for-profit school is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and it awarded 1,634 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $133,111 in student loans. Around 68% of those degree recipients were women.

Walden University is one of the schools on our list that is primarily online. Each graduate student at the school took at least one class online.

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#2

Capella University

Minneapolis, Minnesota
1,126 Total Awards
$15,233 Average Tuition & Fees
$105,034 Avg Student Debt

A rank of #2 on this year’s list means Capella University is a great place for students working on their doctor’s degree. Capella University is a large private for-profit school situated in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It awarded 1,126 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $105,034 in student loans. Around 75% of those degree recipients were women.

Since the graduate programs at Capella University are online, the school is an excellent choice for graduate students who need more flexibility than what is offered at some other schools.

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#3

Northcentral University

San Diego, California
804 Total Awards
$18,095 Average Tuition & Fees
$56,987 Avg Student Debt

You’ll be in good company if you attend Northcentral University. The school came in at #3 on this year’s Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools list. San Diego, California is the setting for this fairly large institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out doctor’s degrees to 804 students in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from Northcentral University accumulate an average of $56,987 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Around 64% of those degree recipients were women.

Since the graduate programs at Northcentral University are primarily online school, so it is a great choice for returning adults and students who work full time.

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549 Total Awards
$17,864 Average Tuition & Fees
$60,128 Avg Student Debt

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences. It ranked #4 on our 2021 Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools list. Located in San Marcos, California, the small private for-profit school handed out 549 doctor’s degree awards in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from USAHS accumulate an average of $60,128 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Around 57% of those degree recipients were women.

USAHS is one of the schools on our list that is primarily online. Each graduate student at the school took at least one class online.

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#5

University of Florida

Gainesville, Florida
1,965 Total Awards
$12,737 Average Tuition & Fees
$80,094 Avg Student Debt

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend University of Florida. It ranked #5 on our 2021 Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools list. University of Florida is a large public school located in Gainesville, Florida that handed out 1,965 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $80,094 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 58% were women.

During the 2017-2018 year, about 29% of the graduate students at the school took at least one online course.

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#6

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, California
1,859 Total Awards
$47,107 Average Tuition & Fees
$187,765 Avg Student Debt

University of Southern California ranked #6 on this year’s Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools list. This large private not-for-profit school is located in Los Angeles, California, and it awarded 1,859 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $187,765 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 55% were women.

To give an idea of how popular online courses are at the school, 29% of graduates took at least one course online in 2017-2018.

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#7

Nova Southeastern University

Fort Lauderdale, Florida
1,835 Total Awards
$21,206 Average Tuition & Fees
$166,771 Avg Student Debt

Nova Southeastern University landed the #7 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. Located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the large private not-for-profit school handed out 1,835 doctor’s degree awards in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $166,771 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 65% were women.

In 2017-2018 about 49% of the graduate students at the school chose to take one or more online courses.

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837 Total Awards
$37,486 Average Tuition & Fees
$162,104 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #8, A T Still University of Health Sciences did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. A T Still University of Health Sciences is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Kirksville, Missouri. It awarded 837 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $162,104 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 56% were women.

During the 2017-2018 year, about 41% of the graduate students at the school took at least one online course.

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#9

Pacific College of Health and Science

San Diego, California
432 Total Awards
$12,463 Average Tuition & Fees

Pacific College of Health and Science landed the #9 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. This small private for-profit school is located in San Diego, California, and it awarded 432 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Around 73% of those degree recipients were women.

To give an idea of how popular online courses are at the school, 65% of graduates took at least one course online in 2017-2018.

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345 Total Awards
$16,752 Average Tuition & Fees
$71,692 Avg Student Debt

University of Phoenix - Arizona landed the #10 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. UOPX - Arizona is a private for-profit institution located in Tempe, Arizona. The school has a large population, and it awarded 345 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from UOPX - Arizona accumulate an average of $71,692 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Around 70% of those degree recipients were women.

Around 98% of the graduate population registered for at least one online class in 2017-2018.

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#11

Creighton University

Omaha, Nebraska
833 Total Awards
$17,898 Average Tuition & Fees
$150,815 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #11, Creighton University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. This medium-sized private not-for-profit school is located in Omaha, Nebraska, and it awarded 833 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $150,815 in loans while pursuing their degree. Around 59% of those degree recipients were women.

Of all the graduate students enrolled at the school during the 2017-2018 academic year, around 46% took at least some of their classes online.

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#12

Liberty University

Lynchburg, Virginia
531 Total Awards
$8,400 Average Tuition & Fees
$70,022 Avg Student Debt

Liberty University did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular places for students to get a doctor’s degree. It came in at #12 on the list. Located in Lynchburg, Virginia, the large private not-for-profit school awarded 531 diplomas to qualifed doctor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from Liberty University accumulate an average of $70,022 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 50% were women.

In 2017-2018 about 96% of the graduate students at the school chose to take one or more online courses.

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#13

Arcadia University

Glenside, Pennsylvania
316 Total Awards
$28,922 Average Tuition & Fees
$83,782 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #13, Arcadia University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. Located in Glenside, Pennsylvania, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 316 diplomas to qualifed doctor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $83,782 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 65% were women.

Around 50% of the graduate population registered for at least one online class in 2017-2018.

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941 Total Awards
$13,448 Average Tuition & Fees
$211,532 Avg Student Debt

Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular places for students to get a doctor’s degree. It came in at #14 on the list. Located in Erie, Pennsylvania, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 941 diplomas to qualifed doctor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $211,532 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 49% were women.

Of all the graduate students enrolled at the school during the 2017-2018 academic year, around 7% took at least some of their classes online.

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#15

Chamberlain University - Illinois

Addison, Illinois
287 Total Awards
$13,940 Average Tuition & Fees
$39,671 Avg Student Debt

Chamberlain University - Illinois ranked #15 on this year’s Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools list. Chamberlain - Illinois is located in Addison, Illinois and has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 287 doctor’s degrees to qualified students.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $39,671 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 90% were women.

Interested in an online degree? Then you definitely want to check out Chamberlain - Illinois. Every graduate student at the school took at least one class online.

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#16

Regent University

Virginia Beach, Virginia
355 Total Awards
$16,952 Average Tuition & Fees
$90,033 Avg Student Debt

Regent University landed the #16 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. Regent is a fairly large private not-for-profit school situated in Virginia Beach, Virginia. It awarded 355 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $90,033 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 50% were women.

In 2017-2018 about 94% of the graduate students at the school chose to take one or more online courses.

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#17

Utica College

Utica, New York
248 Total Awards
$22,030 Average Tuition & Fees
$41,323 Avg Student Debt

Utica College landed the #17 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. Utica, New York is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out doctor’s degrees to 248 students in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $41,323 in student loans. Around 62% of those degree recipients were women.

Around 86% of the graduate population registered for at least one online class in 2017-2018.

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732 Total Awards
$8,069 Average Tuition & Fees
$123,579 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #18, University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. Located in Denver, Colorado, the large public school awarded 732 diplomas to qualifed doctor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from CU Anschutz accumulate an average of $123,579 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 60% were women.

Of all the graduate students enrolled at the school during the 2017-2018 academic year, around 29% took at least some of their classes online.

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318 Total Awards
$25,575 Average Tuition & Fees
$40,827 Avg Student Debt

Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular places for students to get a doctor’s degree. It came in at #18 on the list. Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network is a fairly large private not-for-profit school situated in Boston, Massachusetts. It awarded 318 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $40,827 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 63% were women.

To give an idea of how popular online courses are at the school, 63% of graduates took at least one course online in 2017-2018.

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#20

Rush University

Chicago, Illinois
350 Total Awards
$37,116 Average Tuition & Fees
$122,077 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #20, Rush University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. Rush University Medical Center is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Chicago, Illinois. It awarded 350 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from Rush University Medical Center accumulate an average of $122,077 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Around 74% of those degree recipients were women.

Of all the graduate students enrolled at the school during the 2017-2018 academic year, around 54% took at least some of their classes online.

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#21

Shenandoah University

Winchester, Virginia
210 Total Awards
$22,665 Average Tuition & Fees
$102,981 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #21, Shenandoah University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. Shenandoah is located in Winchester, Virginia and has a small student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 210 doctor’s degrees to qualified students.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $102,981 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 68% were women.

In 2017-2018 about 51% of the graduate students at the school chose to take one or more online courses.

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#22

Grand Canyon University

Phoenix, Arizona
512 Total Awards
$11,074 Average Tuition & Fees
$64,951 Avg Student Debt

Grand Canyon University landed the #22 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular doctor’s degree programs. This large private for-profit school is located in Phoenix, Arizona, and it awarded 512 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On average, doctor’s degree students take out $64,951 in loans while pursuing their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 77% were women.

Of all the graduate students enrolled at the school during the 2017-2018 academic year, around 94% took at least some of their classes online.

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#23

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, Maryland
683 Total Awards
$57,556 Average Tuition & Fees
$66,845 Avg Student Debt

Johns Hopkins University came in at #23 in this year’s edition of the Most Popular Online Doctor’s Degree Schools ranking. Johns Hopkins University is a large private not-for-profit school located in Baltimore, Maryland that handed out 683 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

By the time they get their doctor’s degree, students from this school have racked up an average of $66,845 in student loans. Of those students who received their degree, 51% were women.

During the 2017-2018 year, about 54% of the graduate students at the school took at least one online course.

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#24

University of South Carolina - Columbia

Columbia, South Carolina
919 Total Awards
$14,137 Average Tuition & Fees
$89,299 Avg Student Debt

University of South Carolina - Columbia did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular places for students to get a doctor’s degree. It came in at #24 on the list. Carolina is located in Columbia, South Carolina and has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 919 doctor’s degrees to qualified students.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from Carolina accumulate an average of $89,299 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Around 56% of those degree recipients were women.

Around 32% of the graduate population registered for at least one online class in 2017-2018.

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#25

The College of Saint Scholastica

Duluth, Minnesota
190 Total Awards
$15,306 Average Tuition & Fees
$90,945 Avg Student Debt

With a ranking of #25, The College of Saint Scholastica did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for students working on their doctor’s degree. St. Scholastica is a private not-for-profit institution located in Duluth, Minnesota. The school has a small population, and it awarded 190 doctor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Doctor’s Degree recipients from St. Scholastica accumulate an average of $90,945 in student debt by the time they complete their degree. Of those students who received their degree, 74% were women.

During the 2017-2018 year, about 45% of the graduate students at the school took at least one online course.

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Not only did these schools make the top most popular online list, but they also landed in the top 15% of this year’s ranking:

#26

University of South Alabama

Mobile, Alabama
#27

Frontier Nursing University

Hyden, Kentucky
#28

University of the Cumberlands

Williamsburg, Kentucky
#29

Concordia University - Portland

Portland, Oregon
#31

Auburn University

Auburn, Alabama
#32

American Sentinel University

Aurora, Colorado
#33

University of Lynchburg

Lynchburg, Virginia
#34

Trevecca Nazarene University

Nashville, Tennessee
#36

George Washington University

Washington, District of Columbia
#37

University of Arizona

Tucson, Arizona
#37

Wilmington University

New Castle, Delaware
#39

Brandman University

Irvine, California
#40

Chatham University

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
#41

Boston University

Boston, Massachusetts
#42

Kaplan University-Indianapolis

Indianapolis, Indiana
#43

University of North Florida

Jacksonville, Florida
#44

Virginia Commonwealth University

Richmond, Virginia
#44

East Carolina University

Greenville, North Carolina
#46

University of Michigan - Flint

Flint, Michigan
#47

Idaho State University

Pocatello, Idaho
#48

Wilkes University

Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
#48

The University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, Alabama
#50

Arizona State University - Skysong

Scottsdale, Arizona

To learn more about the schools below, just click on their names:

Rank School Location
51 Old Dominion University Norfolk, VA
51 The University of Tennessee-Health Science Center Memphis, TN
53 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC
53 University of New England Biddeford, ME
55 University of Kentucky Lexington, KY
56 Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science North Chicago, IL
56 University of the Incarnate Word San Antonio, TX
58 The Chicago School of Professional Psychology at Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA
59 Indiana State University Terre Haute, IN
60 California Intercontinental University Irvine, CA
61 University of Minnesota - Twin Cities Minneapolis, MN
61 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
63 University of Southern Mississippi Hattiesburg, MS
64 Ashford University San Diego, CA

Honorable Mentions

These schools also performed well in our most popular online schools ranking:

Rank School Location
65 Howard University Washington, DC
66 University of South Florida - Main Campus Tampa, FL
67 Concordia University - Chicago River Forest, IL
67 University of Kansas Lawrence, KS
69 Taft University System Denver, CO
69 Lamar University Beaumont, TX
69 University of St Francis Joliet, IL
72 Andrews University Berrien Springs, MI
72 Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Edwardsville, IL
74 Saybrook University Oakland, CA
75 Keiser University - Ft Lauderdale Fort Lauderdale, FL
76 American College of Education Indianapolis, IN
77 Samford University Birmingham, AL
77 Azusa Pacific University Azusa, CA
77 Columbia University in the City of New York New York, NY
80 Texas A&M University - College Station College Station, TX
80 Claremont School of Theology Claremont, CA
82 University of Nebraska - Lincoln Lincoln, NE
82 Augusta University Augusta, GA
82 Trident University International Cypress, CA
85 Salus University Elkins Park, PA
85 Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant, MI

Notes and References

Footnotes

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

References

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Information about the national average student loan default rate is from the U.S. Department of Education and refers to data about the 2016 borrower cohort tracking period for which the cohort default rate (CDR) was 10.1%.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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