15 Best Online Software Engineering Degrees

software engineering degrees

Software engineering is a rapidly growing field that’s very much in demand today. Software engineers offer many services, which makes them a valuable part of almost any business or industry. Earning a software engineering degree can be a big decision that requires a full commitment, but the benefits are more than worth the work both in pay and career choices.

If attending college seems time-consuming, ever considered an online degree? There are a number of colleges offering some of the best online software engineering degrees. In most colleges, these degree programs are a part of the computer science school, and are considered a subset or specialist part of computer science. Learn everything you need to know to find the best online software engineering degrees as well as what the career entails.

What is a Software Engineering Degree?

A software engineering degree is the most common path towards becoming a software engineer. Earning this degree can also lead to jobs as software developers, software testers, or quality assurance analysts. There is just no limit to what a software engineer can do. A bachelor’s in software engineering is the degree level most often chosen by aspiring software engineers. However, some also choose to go to software engineering boot camps to qualify for entry-level positions in the field.

Some also choose to advance their education and pursue graduate degrees in software engineering. Software engineering certificate programs are also offered at some schools. Choosing the right options depends on the individual’s career goals, skills, time, and budget.

Who Needs an Online Software Engineering Degree?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of software engineers should grow about 25% during the 2022-2032 decade. This growth is much faster than for other occupations. Individuals interested in becoming part of this growing industry often choose to earn a software engineering degree.

However, many individuals discover attending college daily is more than they can handle. Online software engineering degrees are often the most ideal choice. The following individuals fall into the category of those who might need an online software engineering degree.

  • Students who can’t attend college every day
  • Students who must continue to work
  • Students who live a great distance from school and would have to commute
  • Students who want their choice of college without worrying about location
  • Students who need more flexibility in these courses and studies

15 Best Online Software Engineering Degrees

We’ve taken a look at hundreds of software engineering programs to determine 15 we find the ‘best.’ You can look at our methodology here, and each program must have open or easy admissions, be completely online and meet certain curriculum requirements to make it onto our list.

1. Southern New Hampshire University

Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with Software Engineering Concentration

This 120-credit online program allows students to transfer up to 90 credits. Students learn about computer science while also obtaining an education in software engineering. This is a very convenient program that allows students to set their own class time. You can also earn math credits, which are an important part of an engineering program.

2. Western Governors University

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

The software engineering undergraduate program at WGU is an online program that teaches students about programming, application development, and software engineering principles and practices. It offers a choice of a Java track or a C+ track. This program offers affordable tuition, flexible scheduling, and a third-party certification upon completion.

3. Arizona State University

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

The online bachelor’s degree in software engineering is a 120-credit program that includes 41 classes, each of which is 7.5 to 15 weeks in duration. This program helps students build strategies and skills in various areas, including mechanics and physics, engineering calculus, database management, and more. The faculty consists of engineering professionals.

4. St. Cloud State University

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

St. Cloud State University offers an online bachelor’s degree in software engineering in addition to its on-campus program. Students can choose on-campus, online, or both. They can also choose whether to take one or two courses per semester or a full load if they want to finish sooner. Students must complete 122 credits to graduate.

5. Penn State World Campus

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

The online software engineering program offered through Penn State World Campus teaches students about all aspects of software engineering, including programming, application development, technology, and coding, among others. Students must complete 126 credits. In addition to the courses, students must complete a capstone course to demonstrate what they’ve learned. Students can also obtain financial aid through the school.

6. Champlain College

Bachelor of Science in Software Development

The Bachelor of Science in Software Development program at Champlain College is an online program that requires completion of 120 credits, which typically takes 14 terms. Students interested in completing the program sooner can take more credits. They can also transfer up to 90 credits. In addition to earning the degree, students can earn several certifications in this area of study. The program’s $335/per credit tuition is one of the cheapest around while still providing students with the knowledge they need.

7. Saint Leo University

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

Saint Leo University has a bachelor’s degree in a software engineering program that focuses on not just software engineering but also information technology and how it fits into software engineering. This 120-credit program generally takes four years to complete but can be completed in more or less time depending on the student’s time and commitment. Students learn through a practice and theory curriculum. This program is offered both online and on campus.

8. Eastern Florida State College

Bachelor of Arts in Computer Information Systems with Program and Software Development Concentration

The CIS program at Eastern Florida State College offers a concentration in software development and a format that’s 100% online. Students can choose from a variety of specializations. Students can choose to pursue an associate degree in computer information systems as well. This program offers a very flexible schedule and affordable tuition. The school also offers credits for work or life experiences, which can save the student both money and time.

9. Kennesaw State University

Software Engineering Certificate

Kennesaw State University in Georgia offers an online software engineering certificate aimed at students with a strong background in computer science or engineering. This is a graduate program best chosen by students with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in any of those fields. Students must complete 24 credits to earn the certificate. Earning this certificate can be an excellent addition to a resume.

10. Hodges University

Bachelor of Science in Software Development

Hodges University is said to offer some of the best online software engineering degrees around, and this includes its Bachelor of Science in Software Development program. Whether the student wants to learn web design, programming, software development, or gaming, this program offers it all in its customizable curriculum. Unlike some engineering programs, this one does not require completion of a boot camp. It’s also an affordable yet flexible program.

11. University of Maryland Global Campus

Bachelor of Science in Software Development and Security

This bachelor’s degree in software development and security is a great option for students who already have a degree but also wish to enhance their programming skills. The program offers both online and on-campus courses. Students can transfer in up to 90 of the 120 required credits. They take courses in a specific sequence. Completion of this program can lead to industry certifications. This program has reasonable tuition for in-state and out-of-state students.

12. Davenport University

Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

The Bachelor of Science in Computer Science program at DU is an online program that offers a few different areas of specialization, which students can keep in mind when choosing their course load. This program is 100% online but also offers assistance from faculty. Students also have the opportunity to earn credits by obtaining industry certifications. Many people feel this is a very good program that has a lot to offer. Students learn through online interactions such as 3-D printers, A1 labs, networking, and more.

13. Limestone University

Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with a concentration in programming

This bachelor’s degree in computer science program offers a concentration in computer programming. Students can transfer credits from other programs and can do their assignments at their convenience. The program requires completion of 120 credits. Course topics include game production, C# programming, information systems analysis, and programming. A capstone project is also required.

14. Husson University

Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering

Located in Maine, Husson University features a Bachelor of Science in Software Engineering program that can be completed in 12-24 months. The duration varies according to the student’s time and commitment. The student must complete 121-124 credits to graduate. Students benefit from affordable tuition and the option of transferring in credits. The program also comes with multiple start dates so students can enroll at a time that’s convenient for them.

15. Brigham Young University

Bachelor of Science in Software Development

Brigham Young University offers an online bachelor’s degree in software development through its BYU-Pathway Worldwide. This program helps students enhance their programming skills and develop software and software apps. Students can complete this program in three years. Any certificate programs or courses taken by the student can be credited toward the program and degree requirements. This allows the students to choose the courses that best meet their interests and goals while still earning the degree.

Salary and Employment Options for Graduates

Salary and job prospects for software engineering degree graduates appear to be very good. Earning an online software engineering degree is not only one of the best degrees for remote work, it will prepare you to work as a software engineer and several other positions as well. Below are a few of the many potential jobs a graduate might find as well as the possible average annual wages and job growth according to a 2022 BLS report.

Admissions Requirements

As is the case with most college and program admission requirements, they are going to vary from one school to another as well as from one program to another. It’s important to research the school’s requirements as well as the program requirements.

Typically, the admission requirements for an online program are fewer than for an on-campus program. Students enrolling in an online software engineering program are generally required to meet these admission requirements.

  • Strong background in math and science if pursuing a bachelor’s degree
  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field if pursuing a master’s degree
  • Official transcripts from schools attended
  • Online application submitted
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement indicating the student’s career goals
  • GMAT or GRE scores may be required

Why an Online Software Engineering Program?

Online education has made it so much easier for people to earn a degree than ever before. There are so many reasons why an aspiring software engineer might benefit from choosing an online program.

  • Tuition may be cheaper
  • Less commuting time
  • Savings on fuel, lodging, and meals
  • Students can continue to work while earning the degree.
  • Students can study and login to the school site from anywhere at their convenience.
  • With extra commitment, programs can often be completed in less time than traditional on-campus programs.

Getting Started

Once you’ve decided you want to become a software engineer, you’re halfway there. There are, however, certain steps you should follow.

  • Research different schools to find one that offers the program you want.
  • Find schools that are academically accredited.
  • Make sure the engineering program is accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). You can find a list of ABET-accredited programs on their website.
  • Research what type of career and student service the school offers.
  • Check out the courses offered in the program you’re considering. Courses can vary from one engineering program to another. It’s important to find the one that meets the requirements for your career goals.