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38 Cheap Online Bachelor’s in Computer Science

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With a median wage of $91,250 in the computer science (CS) and information technology field, it’s no surprise that computer science is such a popular degree to pursue. A job in this industry may not only offer a higher wage, though. It may also offer job stability. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), computer and information technology jobs are projected to grow by about 11% from 2019 to 2029, which will add about 531,200 new jobs to the field. This is a much faster growth rate than the average. 

However, the upfront and long-term costs of a degree can be significant. If you’re looking for a program that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, you’ll find a list of the 38 cheapest best online computer science degrees in the entire country below, based on data from the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics. We’ve sorted the schools in declining order of cost, with the least expensive school at #1, according to the hourly tuition rate. Keep reading for all of the information you need on the cheapest online computer science degrees.

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    Program Offerings Number of program options 10%
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Have Questions About Online Bachelor’s in Computer Science Programs? We Have Answers.

  • What will I learn in a computer science bachelor’s program?

    When you enroll in a computer science degree program, you’ll learn theoretical and practical computer science skills, like how to develop computer software, how to write code in multiple programming languages, and how to solve a wide range of computing problems. As part of your degree program, you may also be able to specialize in areas like programming, operating systems, computer networks, systems architecture, data analytics, software engineering, and information security, though the specializations you will be offered will depend heavily on the program and school you enroll in.

  • Is a computer science degree a good investment?

    Yes, a computer science degree is a good investment — but as with any degree, it will only work to your benefit if it’s a good fit for your career goals, strengths, interests, and other factors unique to you. If you’re looking for a career with a wide range of employment opportunities, a high average entry salary, and you are strong in the STEM disciplines, you may want to consider this type of degree. According to PayScale, those with bachelor’s in computer science make an average of $85,000 annually — which is pretty high compared to a lot of other fields.

  • What can I do with a bachelor’s degree in computer science?

    If you get a bachelor’s degree in computer science, the options for employment after you graduate are wide-reaching. Almost all industries have a need for computer science experts. Depending on the route you take, some positions that may be open to you include:

    • Web developer
    • Software developer or software tester
    • AI and machine learning engineer 
    • Information security analyst
    • IT specialist
    • Software engineer
    • Data scientist
    • Systems or business analyst
    • Product or engineering manager
    • Network architect
    • Full-stack developer
    • User interface designer
    • Database administrator
    • Cloud computing engineer
    • Software quality assurance manager
    • Mobile application designer 
    • Mobile application developer
    • R&D scientist
    • Computer scientist 
    • Computer science researcher

Online Bachelor's in Computer Science Overview

If you enroll in a computer science degree online, you can expect to go learn the fundamentals of computing and may be able to specialize in areas of certain computer science, too.

Aside from the required core or general education classes you have to take to obtain a degree, you can also expect to take classes in artificial intelligence, game programming, ethics courses, information assurance, computational theory and architecture, and internet technologies.

You will be expected to learn programming languages and take advanced mathematics classes, such as calculus, linear algebra, and mathematics as it applies to computer science. During your final semesters, you may also be required to finish a senior project or capstone course in order to graduate.

Degree Requirements

In order to graduate with an online bachelor’s in computer science, you will likely need to complete at least 120 college credits, which include both degree-specific and general education classes. You will also likely need to maintain at least a 2.0 GPA or better in both your core and degree-specific classes to graduate. Keep in mind, though, that some degrees will require you to maintain a much higher GPA in order to stay in the program. 

Before you graduate with a degree in computer science, you will likely need to complete a senior project or capstone in order to show your professors that you understand the concepts you were taught and can apply them as well. You may also be required to complete an internship in the field, though the specific requirements will depend on your program and school.

Common Courses

Programming languages
In this course, you’ll learn one of the most important foundational pieces for your computer science career: programming languages. These courses will cover both the basics of programming languages as well as scope, assignment, encapsulation, and other related concepts. In a course like this, you’ll also learn how different programming languages construct will tie in to equational reasoning.
Calculus
With a degree in computer science, you’ll also need to take advanced mathematics courses like calculus. In this course, you’ll learn how to find derivatives, limits, applications, functions, and how to use integration to solve problems — all of which are concepts that will play into your other computer science classes.
Artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence is the way to the future, and many computer science programs will require that you take courses on it. In an artificial intelligence course, you’ll learn about propositional logic, approximate reasoning, machine problem solving, temporal reasoning, propositional logic, uninformed and informed searching, and other important concepts.
Information technology ethics
Computer science and information technology open a lot of doors, but as the saying goes, “with more power, comes more responsibility.” In a computer science and information technology ethics course, you’ll learn the importance and development of ethics as it relates to privacy, as well as the application of computer ethics.

Career Path

The world is your oyster once you’ve graduated from school with a computer science degree. You can specialize in artificial intelligence, IT support, or web development. With a bachelor’s degree, you can pursue a number of paths, whether that’s as a computer programmer, software developer, or computer network architect.

If you choose to obtain your master’s degree in computer science, you may find that even more doors can open for you. Once you get your master’s degree, you’ll be eligible for jobs such as computer and information research scientist positions. 

Job Outlook & Salary 

Once you graduate with your computer science degree, you can find work in a number of fields, including web development and IT. Some of the most in-demand positions are in software development and information security analysis

The median wage for a person working in the computer science field was about $91,250 as of 2019, according to BLS. This industry is projected to grow by about 11% from 2019 to 2029, which will add about 531,200 new jobs to the field. This rate of job growth is much higher than the average.

Scholarships & Financial Aid for Computer Science Students

Looking for information on scholarships for these types of programs? You may want to look into the following options:

  • (ISC)² Undergraduate Cybersecurity Scholarship: If you obtain the (ISC)² Undergraduate Scholarship, you can receive funds anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000. To qualify for this scholarship, you must be planning to pursue, or be in the process of pursuing, a degree in cybersecurity or information assurance. Other requirements include: being a senior in high school or an undergraduate student with a minimum 3.3 GPA.
    • Deadline: March 8, 2022
    • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • African American Network of the Carolinas: The African American Network – Carolinas chapter offers scholarships to students from North and South Carolina who are getting a major in engineering, math, science, computer science, accounting, finance, or business administration. To apply, you must be a senior at a North Carolina or South Carolina high school and attend a four-year college or university in the Carolinas.
    • Deadline: March 6, 2022
    • Amount: Varies
  • Betty Stevens-Frecknall Scholarship: To be eligible to apply for the Betty Stevens-Frecknall Scholarship, you must be a full-time student who is pursuing a degree in the information technology field. You must have a GPA of at least 3.0 and must have completed at least one semester of college before applying.
    • Deadline: May 31, 2021
    • Amount: $2,000

Certifications Available for Computer Science Careers 

If you’re looking to boost your career prospects, you may want to consider enrolling in computer science certification courses. This can demonstrate a mastery of a specialized skill as well as ambition in your field. 

Not sure where to start? Here are a few courses you can take to to get further certification in this field:

ISACA Certified Information Systems Auditor

Obtaining this certification process is seen as a prestigious accomplishment. By taking this bootcamp, you’ll attain certification in a world-renowned program known for setting the standard for IT professionals.

CompTIA Cloud Essentials

This certification is offered by Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), a non-profit that issues certifications in the tech industry. As part of this certification process, you’ll learn cloud computing and visualization skills to ensure that you understand the basics that make up a company’s cloud storage service.

Apple Certified Support Professional

You can become an expert at supporting Apple computers by taking and passing this certification course. This certification process covers how to provide technical expertise for Apple users. Once you finish the coursework, you’ll know the ins and outs of macOS core functionality, as well as how to provide basic troubleshooting and general support for Apple computers.

Related Degrees


  • Computer Information Systems As part of earning a degree in computer information systems, you’ll learn how to manage and operate companies’ IT systems. While this degree is similar to computer science, this degree is more focused on working with IT systems, while computer science is a bit more broad.

    That said, there is overlap. As with a computer science degree, you’ll have to take mathematical, robotics, and computer science courses to obtain this degree. Post-graduation, you can pursue a career as a computer systems analyst, systems software developer, or as a software applications developer.


  • Information technology If you graduate with a bachelor’s degree in information technology, you’ll have the knowledge to maintain operating systems and customize programs for businesses. Once you step into the workforce, you’ll have the skillset to manage projects from conception to completion.

    An information technology degree is more business-focused than a computer science degree. There is quite a bit of crossover, however. You can expect to take computer science courses, learn programming and information storage management, and take business and finance classes as well. Once you graduate with this degree, you may pursue a position as a computer user support specialist, computer and information systems manager, or network and computer systems administrator.


  • Information science If you want to learn more about technology and how it plays a role in business, you may want to consider a degree in information science. Information scientists know computing and programming, and also know the importance of making technology user-friendly. This may be in the form of user experience (UX) or developing an app or website.

    Not only will you take classes in computer science and programming to obtain this degree, but you’ll also take classes in web design and business. Graduates with this degree typically pursue roles as computer and information research scientists, system software developers, or computer and information systems managers.


The 38 Most Affordable Online Computer Science Degrees of 2021

  1. Georgia Southwestern State University
    Location

    Americus, GA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Georgia Southwestern State University has an online bachelor of science in information technology degree that is a 120 credit hour program, which includes the following coursework: technical communication; systems analysis and design; programming practice and ethics; information assurance and security; programming and problem solving; and information technology project management. With a student to faculty ratio of 17 to 1, the program calls for SAT or ACT scores. Georgia Southwestern State University offers an online, undergraduate tuition rate of $199 per credit hour for this BS in information technology. This public university has a graduation rate of 38%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.

  2. Fort Hays State University
    Location

    Hays, KS

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Fort Hays State University has an online bachelor of science in computer science degree that is a 120 credit hour program and includes the following major courses: software engineering; assembly language; object-oriented programming; and data structures. With a student to faculty ratio of 16 to 1, this affordable BS in computer science degree requires official transcripts and a $30 application fee. Fort Hays State University offers an online, undergraduate tuition rate of $218.67 per credit hour. This public university has a graduation rate of 43%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

  3. Central Washington University
    Location

    Ellensburg, WA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Central Washington University has an online bachelor of science in information technology and administrative management degree that is a 74-78 credit hour, degree-completion program, which offers the following five specializations: administrative management; cybersecurity; FlexIT/computing-based retail/management and technology or administrative management; project management; and retail management and technology. With a student to faculty ratio of 19 to 1, the program requires official transcripts and ACT or SAT scores. Central Washington University offers an online, undergraduate tuition rate of $230 per credit hour, for 10-18 hours. This public university has a graduation rate of 58% and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

  4. Kennesaw State University
    Location

    Kennesaw, GA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Kennesaw State University has an online bachelor of applied science in information technology degree that is an 80-hour degree-completion program designed for students who have an associate of applied science in computing from a member institution of the Technical College System of Georgia. Kennesaw State University offers an online, undergraduate tuition rate of $232 per credit hour for this BS in information technology degree. With a student to faculty ratio of 20 to 1, the program requires 2-3 years of full-time study. This public university has a graduation rate of 46%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.

  5. Limestone College
    Location

    Gaffney, SC

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Limestone University, which was formerly Limestone College, has an online bachelor of science in computer programming degree that is a 123 credit hour program, which includes the following coursework: microcomputer applications; operating systems; networking fundamentals; analysis and design; and project management. With a student to faculty ratio of 16 to 1, the program requires a $25 application fee and SAT or ACT scores. Limestone College offers an online, undergraduate tuition rate of $243 per credit hour for this BS in computer programming degree. This private university has a graduation rate of 33%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.

  6. Lamar University
    Location

    Beaumont, TX

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Lamar University has an online bachelor of science in computer science degree that is a 121 credit hour program and includes the following coursework: introduction to computer game development; programming fundamentals; microcomputers; discrete structures; and computer law/ethics. With a student to faculty ratio of 18 to 1, the program has a $60 application fee and requires official transcripts and ACT or SAT scores. Lamar University offers an online tuition rate of $248 per credit hour for this BS in computer science. This public university has a graduation rate of 34%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.

  7. Southern New Hampshire University
    Location

    Manchester, NH

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Southern New Hampshire University has an online bachelor of science in computer science degree that is a 120 credit hour program, with coursework that may include computer science's role in industry, introduction to structured query language, and computer platform technologies. With a student to faculty ratio of 30 to 1, the online BS in computer science program offers a tuition rate of $320 per credit hour. This private university has a graduation rate of 44%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education.

  8. Colorado Technical University-Colorado Springs
    Location

    Colorado Springs, CO

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Colorado Technical University has an online bachelor of science in computer science that is a 183 credit hour program that includes the following courses: principles of programming languages; C++ programming; parallel computing; foundations of Big Data Analysis; and security risk management. With a student to faculty ratio of 28 to 1, the program has no application fee but requires official transcripts. Colorado Technical University charges an online tuition rate of $325 per credit hour for this BS in computer science degree. This private university has a graduation rate of 26%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

  9. University of Illinois at Springfield
    Location

    Springfield, IL

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    The University of Illinois Springfield has an online bachelor of science in computer science degree that is a 120 credit hour program, eligibility for which includes the following: two semesters of Java Programming experience; and one semester each of calculus, discrete math or finite math and statistics. With a student to faculty ratio of 13 to 1, the BS in Computer Science program requires transcripts and submission of a statement of purpose form. The University of Illinois Springfield offers an online tuition rate of $358.50 per credit hour. This public university has a graduation rate of 54%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

  10. Saint Leo University
    Location

    St. Leo, FL

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Saint Leo University has an online computer science, bachelor of science-information assurance degree that is a 120 credit hour program and includes the following coursework: computer systems; programming logic and design; computer forensics; database concepts and programming; and network defense and security. Saint Leo University offers an online undergraduate tuition rate of $360 per credit hour. With a student to faculty ratio of 16 to 1, the online computer science, bachelor of science-information assurance program requires a $45 application fee and official transcripts. This private university has a graduation rate of 49%, and it will take you about four years to complete the bachelor’s program. The school is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges.

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Amanda Push

CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Amanda Push is a freelance writer who covers education topics for Best Value Schools, Grad School Hub, and Criminal Justice Degree Schools, and others. Her writing has also been featured at TheSimpleDollar.com, Interest.com, MyMove.com, and Safety.com.

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Angelica Leicht

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Angelica Leicht is the schools editor at Best Value Schools who oversees our college rankings, school profiles, and other higher education coverage. She previously served as an education reporter at Kearney Hub, and an editor at the Dallas Observer and Houston Press. Her writing has appeared in Affordable Colleges Online, Bankrate, The Simple Dollar, and elsewhere.

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