Intersection of Life and Faith

Top 10 Online Bible Colleges and Universities

  • Caroline Madison Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
Top 10 Online Bible Colleges and Universities

Here are 10 of the top online Bible Colleges. Find the right online program to study the Word of God.

With so many great schools to choose from, deciding where to either begin or continue your higher education can be overwhelming. Here is a list of some of the best online Bible colleges in the country and an overview of what each one has to offer.

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1. The Master’s University

1. The Master’s University

Location: Santa Clarita, CA

Denominational Affiliation: Non-denominational

Enrollment: 1,399 (undergrad)

Average Tuition (after aid): $26,000

For More Information, visit https://www.masters.edu/online/

TMU, founded in 1927, is a non-denominational school located in California a mere 30 miles from Los Angeles. John MacArthur served as president from 1985 until June 2019 (longer than any other president) when he relinquished his role to John Stead. Retaining 85 percent of college freshman on average and awarding financial aid to 99 percent of all students, TMU is ranked #51 in Regional Universities West and #12 in Best Value Schools

TMU has 1,399 undergraduate students and 447 students enrolled exclusively online. Program courses start every 8 weeks in Business Administration, Christian Ministries, Biblical Studies, and Biblical Counseling. The school offers high school juniors and seniors dual credit and allows students to transfer up to 94 credits. 

Their website states, “The mission of The Master’s University is to empower students for a life of enduring commitment to Christ, biblical fidelity, moral integrity, intellectual growth and lasting contribution to the Kingdom of God worldwide.”

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2. Liberty University

2. Liberty University

Location: Lynchburg Virginia

Enrollment: 45,935 (undergraduate) 

Denominational Affiliation: Evangelical

Average Tuition (after aid): $25,000

For More Information, visit https://www.liberty.edu/online/

This private, evangelical Christian university in Lynchburg, Virginia, includes seventeen colleges and is one of the top five online universities according to BestColleges.com. It was founded in 1971 by Jerry Falwell and started offering distance learning fourteen years later. The school’s policy of Affordability, Accessibility, and Academic Quality has obviously paid off, resulting in an 83 percent average freshman retention rate.

With expansive transfer options, no standardized testing, and 289 online programs (2017), Liberty offers many opportunities for distance learners. Many of their online courses run for eight weeks and offer eight annual start dates, providing the flexibility working students need. Online resources include a writing center, tutorial videos, live webinars, and study aids. Of the more than 94,000 enrolled in their online programs, 87 percent receive financial aid. 

Liberty University states its mission clearly: “Hard work, courage, and integrity define our faith, so we don’t just equip students with a degree — we Train Champions for Christ who impact the world.”

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3. Regent University

3. Regent University

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Enrollment:  4,646 (undergraduate)

Denominational Affiliation: Interdenominational Evangelical

Average Tuition (after aid): $18,000

For More Information, visit https://www.regent.edu/programs/#programs-online

Located in Virginia Beach, Regent University is a private Christian Liberal Arts university comprising seven schools and two colleges. Founded by “Pat” Robertson in 1978, it is now ranked as the #18 Best Online College in America (Niche) and #2 Best Online College in Virginia. According to U.S. News, Regent is also growing faster than many of its competitors and boasts a 78 percent average freshman retention rate.

There are 4,646 undergraduates at Regent, both online and on-campus, and 81 percent of them receive need-based financial aid. Offering 135 areas of study, a generous transfer policy (up to 90 credit hours), and both eight and fifteen-week courses, Regent University is on a mission to raise up “Christian Leadership to Change the World.”

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4. The College at Southeastern

4. The College at Southeastern

Location: Wake Forest, North Carolina

Denominational Affiliation: Southern Baptist

Enrollment: 3,250 (including the College at Southeastern and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary)

Average Tuition: $12,000 (2015)

For more information, visit collegeatsoutheastern.com

In 1994, the College at Southeastern was established in Wake Forest, North Carolina, as the undergraduate school for Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Both seminary and college are associated with the Southern Baptist Convention. According to their website, “The College at Southeastern is more than a college—it’s a calling.” 

Through the online program, the school’s 650 students can complete an Associate of Arts, Associate of Divinity, Bachelor of Arts in Pastoral Ministry or Global Studies, a Master of Arts in Intercultural Studies, or three out of four years of all other Bachelor’s degrees. And it is through these studies that the school’s mission is achieved: “Equipping students to give their lives for the cause of Christ, in the Church, among the nations, and in every aspect of society.”

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5. Moody Bible Institute

5. Moody Bible Institute

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Enrollment:  2,826 Undergraduate (2016–17) 

Denominational Affiliation: Evangelical

Average Tuition (after aid): $20,000

For More Information, visit moodybible.org and moody.edu

Moody Bible Institute was founded in 1886 by the evangelist Dwight L. Moody. While the main campus is in Chicago Illinois, MBI also runs a school of aviation in Spokane, Washington and a theological seminary in Plymouth, Michigan. It’s worth noting that 83 percent of all freshman students return for their sophomore year. Niche rated the school at #18 of 358 Best Christian Colleges in America. 

Stated simply and clearly, MBI’s hope is that “Together, we can impact and enrich the globe by actively living out God's Word.” With this goal in mind, they offer their 689 distance students many valuable programs including biblical, theological, and ministry studies. 

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6. Multnomah University

6. Multnomah University

Location: Portland, Oregon

Enrollment: 407

Denominational Affiliation: Interdenominational

Average Tuition (after aid): $20,000

For more information, visit multnomah.edu

Multnomah University is a small, private, Christian university founded in 1936. Through its campus in Portland, Oregon, it offers online bachelor’s degrees in Applied Psychology, Bible and Theology, and Business Management. Of the 407 undergraduates, 85 percent receive financial aid as MU pursues its mission to “equip Christian students through higher education to become biblically competent, academically proficient, spiritually formed, and culturally engaged servant leaders, shaped to be a transforming force in the church, community, and world.”

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7. Colorado Christian University

7. Colorado Christian University

Location: Lakewood, Colorado

Enrollment: 7,083 (Undergraduates)

Denominational Affiliation: Interdenominational

Average Tuition (after aid): $24,000

For more information, visit https://www.ccu.edu/ccu/online/

Located in Lakewood, Colorado, CCU is an interdenominational Christian college founded in 1914 by Clifton Fowler. Today, the school has more than 7,000 undergraduates and offers over 80 degree programs in their College of Adult and Graduate Studies, most of which are available online through courses ranging from 5 to 10 weeks. CCU offers financial aid to 99 percent of its students and has an average college freshman retention rate of 92 percent—much higher than the national average. 

The school’s website states that “CCU is first and foremost an academic community of committed Christian believers rooted in a profound respect for higher learning framed within the Christian worldview.” 

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8. Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Spurgeon College)

8. Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (Spurgeon College)

Location: Kansas City, Missouri

Enrollment: 448 (Undergraduates 2016-17)

Denominational Affiliation: Southern Baptist

Average Tuition (after aid): $14,000

For more information, visit https://www.mbts.edu/degrees/online-studies/

Founded in 1957, MBTS includes a graduate school, a school of doctoral programs, and an undergraduate college, Spurgeon College. The school offers a variety of online undergraduate programs including ministry, theology, psychology, and philosophy. There are seven eight-week terms available annually in these programs as well as several associate’s degree programs and an accelerated five-year program earning a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Divinity simultaneously. 

According to their website, “Spurgeon College exists to train men and women to be prepared to follow God’s call wherever it may lead.”

9. Grand Canyon University

9. Grand Canyon University

Location: Phoenix, Arizona

Enrollment: 49,556 (Undergraduates)

Denominational Affiliation: Interdenominational

Average Tuition (after aid): $21,000

For more information, visit https://www.gcu.edu/future-students/online-degree-programs.php

Founded in 1949 as a Baptist university, GCU is now an interdenominational, private Christian university in Phoenix, Arizona. It provides over 150 online academic programs for more than 60,000 online students at its nine colleges. Boasting enrollment numbers that have challenged and even outstripped Liberty University (long considered the largest Christian university in the world), the school has an average freshman retention rate of 66 percent. 

GCU’s mission, as stated on their website, is to “[prepare] learners to become global citizens, critical thinkers, effective communicators and responsible leaders by providing an academically challenging, values-based curriculum from the context of our Christian heritage.”

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10. Indiana Wesleyan University

10. Indiana Wesleyan University

Location: Marion, Indiana

Enrollment: 2,953 (Undergraduates)

Denominational Affiliation: Wesleyan Church

Average Tuition (after aid): $19,000 

For more information, visit Indwes.edu

IWU is a comprehensive Christian university associated with the Wesleyan Church. Its main campus is in Marion, Indiana, but the school also has a seminary as well as several education centers in two additional states. Founded in 1920, it now offers 2,853 undergraduates a variety of degree programs including biblical literature, youth ministries, worship, computer science, and accounting. U.S. News ranked IWU #14 in Best Undergraduate Teaching (2019).

With an 80 percent average freshman retention rate, IWU is an online Bible College worth considering. They offer accelerated degrees in management, technology, counseling, and nursing, to name a few. Class enrollment is limited to ensure a healthy student-to-teacher ratio. 

The school describes itself as, “a Christ-centered academic community committed to changing the world by developing students in character, scholarship, and leadership.”

(Photo from indwes.edu)


We hope this list has offered you some clarity on what your options are as a potential online student and wish you the best for this next step on your journey.

Caroline Madison is a freelance editor and writer with a passion for the written word and a special interest in telling and reading stories that present biblical truths in fresh ways. She also enjoys writing flash fiction, drawing pencil portraits, and playing piano.




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