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2021 Best Education Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region

161 Colleges
23,063 Bachelor's Degrees
$26,089 Avg Cost*

Finding the Best Education Schools for Non-Traditional Students

Best Education Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region In 2018-2019, 88,927 education students received their bachelor's degree, making the major the #10 most popular in the country. Out of all those awarded degrees, 23,063 went to undergraduates in the Southeast region of the United States.

This year's Best Education Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region ranking analyzed 161 colleges that offered a bachelor's degree in education. Not only do the schools that top this list have excellent education programs, but they also offer a lot of support to non-traditional students.

Some of the factors we look at when determining these rankings are overall quality of the education program at the school, affordability, and non-traditional population. For more information, check out our ranking methodology.

One Size Does Not Fit All

The education school you choose to invest your time and money in matters. To help you make the decision that is right for you, we've developed a number of major-specific rankings, including this list of the Best Education Schools for Non-Traditional Students.

To further help you make the college decision, we've developed a unique tool called College Combat that allows you to compare schools based on the factors that matter the most to you. When you have some time, check it out - you may want to bookmark the link so you don't forget it.

2021 Best Education Schools for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region

Check out the education programs at these schools if you want to see which ones are the best for non-traditional students.

Top 15% Best Education Schools for Non-Traditional Students

Athens State University has taken the #1 spot in this year's education ranking for non-traditional students. Athens State University is a small public school located in the town of Athens.

About 7.5% of Athens State University students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. 2,049 of Athens State University students are exclusively distance learners. 1,815 students are part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#2

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

Our rankings recognize University of Florida as the #2 school in this year's rankings. Located in the midsize city of Gainesville, UF is a public college with a fairly large student population. UF did well in our major quality rankings, too. It placed #1 on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 1.5%. There are approximately 21,513 students at UF that take at least one class online. 8,083 students are part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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University of Central Florida earned the #3 spot in our 2021 rankings. UCF is a fairly large public school located in the suburb of Orlando. In addition to being on our best for non-traditional students list, UCF has also earned the #2 rank in our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 2.4%. There are approximately 29,001 students at UCF that take at least one class online. 21,900 of UCF students are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#4

Lee University

Cleveland, TN

Lee University earned the #4 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the city of Cleveland, Lee University is a private not-for-profit college with a medium-sized student population. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, Lee University also is in the top 10% of our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

The student loan default rate at Lee University is lower than is typical, just 8.2% of students default in three years. 540 students at Lee University are exclusively online. 1,411 of Lee University students are attending part time.

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#5

Florida Atlantic University

Boca Raton, FL

The #5 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Florida Atlantic University. Located in the city of Boca Raton, FAU is a public school with a very large student population. In addition to being on our bet for non-traditional students list, FAU is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

About 3.2% of FAU students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. There are approximately 9,807 students at FAU that take at least one class online. There are roughly 11,210 part time students in attendance at FAU. FAU does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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The #6 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Florida International University. FIU is a very large public school located in the suburb of Miami. On top of its placing in our non-traditional rankings, FIU also did well on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list. It's in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in that analysis.

About 3.7% of FIU students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. Approximately 25,978 students take at least one class online at FIU. About 23,256 of the students at FIU are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#7

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Florida State University comes in at #7 in this year's ranking. Florida State is a very large public school located in the medium-sized city of Tallahassee. As a testament to the quality of education offered at Florida State, the school also landed the #4 rank in our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

About 2.4% of Florida State students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. Approximately 14,515 students take at least one class online at Florida State. 6,270 of Florida State students are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#8

University of Louisville

Louisville, KY

University of Louisville landed the #8 spot in our 2021 best education schools for non-traditional students. UofL is a very large public school located in the large city of Louisville. UofL also made our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list, coming in at #7.

The student loan default rate at UofL is lower than is typical, just 6.4% of students default in three years. There are approximately 3,004 students at UofL that take at least one class online. 5,494 students are part time. UofL does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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#9

East Carolina University

Greenville, NC

East Carolina University comes in at #9 in this year's ranking. ECU is a very large public school located in the city of Greenville. ECU also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list. It's in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

About 5.6% of ECU students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. 6,812 of ECU students are exclusively distance learners. There are roughly 6,631 part time students in attendance at ECU. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#10

Western Carolina University

Cullowhee, NC

The #10 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Western Carolina University. Located in the town of Cullowhee, WCU is a public college with a large student population. WCU also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list. It's in the top 15% of all schools in this category.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 6.0%. 2,151 of WCU students are exclusively distance learners. 2,258 students are part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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North Carolina State University comes in at #11 in this year's ranking. Located in the city of Raleigh, NC State is a public school with a fairly large student population. In addition to being on our best for non-traditional students list, NC State has also earned the #3 rank in our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 2.8%. Approximately 11,555 students take at least one class online at NC State. About 7,111 of the students at NC State are attending part time. NC State does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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Appalachian State University earned the #12 spot in our 2021 rankings. Appalachian State is a large public school located in the town of Boone. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, Appalachian State also is in the top 10% of our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 3.6%. Approximately 2,750 students take at least one class online at Appalachian State. 1,817 of Appalachian State students are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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The #13 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of Southern Mississippi. Southern Miss is a large public school located in the city of Hattiesburg.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 8.7%. There are approximately 7,417 students at Southern Miss that take at least one class online. About 3,353 of the students at Southern Miss are attending part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#14

Jacksonville State University

Jacksonville, AL

Jacksonville State University landed the #14 spot in our 2021 best education schools for non-traditional students. Jacksonville State University is a medium-sized public school located in the suburb of Jacksonville.

Approximately 3,981 students take at least one class online at Jacksonville State University. About 2,772 of the students at Jacksonville State University are attending part time. Jacksonville State University does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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#15

Mississippi State University

Mississippi State, MS

Mississippi State University landed the #15 spot in our 2021 best education schools for non-traditional students. Mississippi State is a very large public school located in the remote town of Mississippi State. In addition to being on our bet for non-traditional students list, Mississippi State is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

The student loan default rate at Mississippi State is lower than is typical, just 7.6% of students default in three years. Approximately 1,874 students take at least one class online at Mississippi State. 3,265 of Mississippi State students are attending part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#16

University of North Florida

Jacksonville, FL

The #16 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of North Florida. Located in the large city of Jacksonville, UNF is a public school with a fairly large student population. UNF excels when it comes to major quality. It's ranked in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 1.3%. There are approximately 7,429 students at UNF that take at least one class online. There are roughly 5,380 part time students in attendance at UNF. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#17

Auburn University

Auburn, AL

Auburn University comes in at #17 in this year's ranking. Auburn is a fairly large public school located in the city of Auburn. As a testament to the quality of education offered at Auburn, the school also landed the #5 rank in our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region ranking.

About 3.6% of Auburn students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. There are approximately 5,589 students at Auburn that take at least one class online. There are roughly 4,634 part time students in attendance at Auburn. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#18

Harding University

Searcy, AR

Harding University earned the #18 spot in our 2021 rankings. Harding is a small private not-for-profit school located in the town of Searcy. Harding also took the #6 spot in our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region rankings.

The student loan default rate at Harding is lower than is typical, just 3.8% of students default in three years. Approximately 263 students take at least one class online at Harding. About 741 of the students at Harding are attending part time. Harding does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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University of South Carolina - Upstate earned the #19 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the midsize suburb of Spartanburg, USC Upstate is a public college with a moderately-sized student population.

The student loan default rate at USC Upstate is lower than is typical, just 8.0% of students default in three years. Approximately 2,156 students take at least one class online at USC Upstate. 1,431 of USC Upstate students are attending part time.

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#20

The University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, AL

The University of Alabama comes in at #20 in this year's ranking. Located in the medium-sized city of Tuscaloosa, UA is a public school with a very large student population. In addition to being on our bet for non-traditional students list, UA is in the top 10% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

About 5.1% of UA students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. There are approximately 11,148 students at UA that take at least one class online. About 5,352 of the students at UA are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#21

Carson - Newman University

Jefferson City, TN

Carson - Newman University earned the #21 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the small suburb of Jefferson City, Carson - Newman is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

There are approximately 718 students at Carson - Newman that take at least one class online. About 721 of the students at Carson - Newman are attending part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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University of Alabama at Birmingham comes in at #22 in this year's ranking. UAB is a fairly large public school located in the city of Birmingham. In addition to being on our bet for non-traditional students list, UAB is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education in the Southeast Region list.

The student loan default rate at UAB is lower than is typical, just 5.7% of students default in three years. There are approximately 6,935 students at UAB that take at least one class online. 7,703 students are part time. UAB does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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#23

William Carey University

Hattiesburg, MS

The #23 spot in this year's ranking belongs to William Carey University. Located in the small city of Hattiesburg, William Carey University is a private not-for-profit college with a medium-sized student population.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 7.1%. 1,070 students at William Carey University are exclusively online. About 1,939 of the students at William Carey University are attending part time. William Carey University does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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#24

Northern Kentucky University

Highland Heights, KY

Northern Kentucky University landed the #24 spot in our 2021 best education schools for non-traditional students. NKU is a large public school located in the large suburb of Highland Heights.

The student loan default rate at NKU is lower than is typical, just 6.5% of students default in three years. Approximately 4,827 students take at least one class online at NKU. There are roughly 5,261 part time students in attendance at NKU. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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Rest of the Top Schools for Best Education Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Here are some additional great schools for Southeast Region non-traditional students studying Education that almost earned our Best Education Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Southeast Region award.

Rank College Location
25 Clemson University Clemson, SC
26 University of Georgia Athens, GA
27 University of South Florida - Main Campus Tampa, FL
28 Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, KY
29 Lipscomb University Nashville, TN
30 University of North Carolina at Greensboro Greensboro, NC
31 John Brown University Siloam Springs, AR
32 Georgia State University Atlanta, GA

Best for Non-Traditional Students Education Colleges by State

Explore the best for non-traditional students education schools for a specific state in the Southeast region.

State Degrees Awarded
Mississippi 1,213
Florida 4,383
Virginia 1,712
Georgia 2,694
North Carolina 2,584
Alabama 2,026
Tennessee 1,699
West Virginia 586
South Carolina 1,665
Louisiana 1,415
Kentucky 1,884
Arkansas 1,199

Education Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Teacher Education Grade Specific 23,259
Teacher Education Subject Specific 10,270
Educational Administration 8,242
Special Education 4,879
General Education 3,862

View All Education Related Majors >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Social Sciences 35,630
Psychology 34,990
Communication & Journalism 25,261
Family, Consumer & Human Sciences 8,415
History 7,565

View All Education Related Majors >

Notes and References

Footnotes

*Avg Cost is 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 the rest 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).
  • Veteran-specific data can be found at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to Horadrim.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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