Washington, California rank as the top states for online college students; Alaska finishes last

FOSTER CITY, Calif., Sept. 1, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Combining solid educational and economic prospects, Washington ranked first on this year's list of the best states for online college students, according to a new study by OnlineColleges.com. The analysis evaluated economic factors, educational availability, and Internet quality to assess which areas offer online students the best chance to set themselves up for success.

Washington had relatively high scores across the board but performed especially well in job growth, earning potential and the cost of education. California, which also boasts high job growth to go with its relatively low student debt, came in a close second, demonstrating that a high cost of living need not be a deterrent for prospective students who choose their degrees wisely. The list of worst states backs that up, including not just expensive states like Alaska but also inexpensive ones that are relatively lacking in economic opportunity for graduates, such as West Virginia and Mississippi.

Using data from sources including the Department of Education, the National Center for Education Statistics, the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Federal Communications Commission, OnlineColleges.com ranked all 50 states on five factors:

  • Internet quality and availability
  • Earning potential
  • Job growth
  • Student debt
  • Educational opportunity

Based on these rankings, the top 5 states are:

  1. Washington
  2. California
  3. Utah
  4. Georgia
  5. Kansas

To see the full list of the 10 best states and how they ranked on specific data points, as well as the list of the 10 worst states, please visit OnlineColleges.com's article on the "Best States for Online College Students."

CONTACT: Michael Kushman 650-578-6865 mkushman@quinstreet.comSource:OnlineColleges.com