Four FSU online graduate programs place in Top 20 of latest U.S. News rankings

Four of FSU's online graduate programs are ranked among the Top 20 in the nation, including two in the Top 8.
Four of FSU's online graduate programs are ranked among the Top 20 in the nation, including two in the Top 8.

Florida State University’s online graduate programs continue to earn recognition as some of the best in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Best Online Programs.

Four of the university’s online graduate programs are ranked among the Top 20 in the nation, including two in the Top 8.

“These rankings are a reflection of our faculty’s dedication and hard work to deliver high-quality courses in online programs in a variety of disciplines,” said Sally McRorie, provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs. “This recognition demonstrates FSU’s commitment to providing our students an outstanding online education.”

The College of Communication and Information’s online graduate program in information technology jumped to No. 5 nationally and No. 2 among public universities. The Master of Science in Information Technology degree offered by the college’s School of Information is also ranked No. 3 for veterans.

“It is great to see this tangible recognition of the hard work of our faculty and staff for building an outstanding master’s in IT program,” said Larry Dennis, dean of the College of Communication and Information. “FSU’s program is one of the highest quality, most affordable IT master’s programs in the nation and is a tremendous asset for Florida residents.”

FSU’s online master’s degree in criminal justice retained its respective spots at No. 8 nationally and at No. 6 among public universities. For veterans, the online program checked in at No. 5. The College of Criminology and Criminal Justice’s online graduate program combines a first-rate faculty with the flexibility of the distance-learning environment.

“The college’s continued appearance among top-ranked graduate programs is an honor to our outstanding faculty,” said Thomas Blomberg, dean and Sheldon L. Messinger Professor of Criminology. “Their dedication to the success of our diverse student population as well as their high-quality scholarship shows their ongoing commitment to our intellectual community and the field of criminology.”

The College of Business’ online graduate programs in both management information systems and risk management and insurance took the No. 13 spot nationally and placed No. 9 among public institutions. The college’s online MBA program was listed at No. 40 overall and No. 27 among publics. The online MBA program ranked No. 23 overall for veterans.

“Our consistently high rankings among public universities are directly linked to our stellar faculty and staff,” said Michael Hartline, dean of the College of Business. “Despite the challenges of the pandemic, we’ve experienced accelerated enrollment growth, and our college continues to deliver individual attention and instruction that resonates with working professionals determined to navigate new industry demands.”

The college’s online MBA program also offers individual specialties that are ranked among the top in the nation. These specialty areas include business analytics (No. 16 overall and No. 11 among publics) and marketing (No. 14 overall and No. 8 among publics).

The College of Education’s online graduate program retained a No. 15 ranking and checked in at No. 14 among public universities. The college offers online programs in athletic coaching, curriculum and instruction, educational leadership and policy, educational psychology, instructional systems and learning technologies and school counseling. The college also secured the No. 7 spot for Best Online Master’s Education Programs for Veterans.

“We’re proud of our sustained position as one of the top online graduate programs in the country,” said Damon Andrew, dean of the College of Education. “Despite numerous challenges presented by COVID-19, the college came together and accomplished amazing things this past year. This perseverance in the face of difficulties speaks to our commitment to be student-focused and innovation driven no matter the circumstances.”

The college’s individual graduate specialty programs are ranked among the most-respected in the nation. These areas include educational/instructional media design (No. 1 overall and public), curriculum & instruction (No. 4 overall and public), educational administration and supervision (No. 7 overall and public) and special education (No. 7 overall and public).

“We continue to offer innovative online programs that meet the needs of current and future education professionals,” Andrew said. “Our programs provide students with an exceptional educational experience and prepare them to make a positive impact on future generations.”

The methodology for assessing online programs included factors such as student engagement, faculty credentials and training, student services and technology, peer reputation and admissions selectivity.

For more information on Florida State’s highly ranked online graduate programs, visit