Skip Navigation

What’s it like to learn online?

That’s a really good question. You’ll find the answers here.

Learning online has its benefits.

Taking an online class is similar to in-person learning, but there are additional benefits to learning online, like being able to:

  • Learn on your time and in your environment.
  • Interact with other students who share your interests rather than your geography.
  • Study with expert professors who can stay active in their fields because they are located in their own work environments.
  • Complete your course assignments even when you’re on an extended business trip or deployed to a remote base.

Let’s Compare

  In-Person Learning Online Learning
Class format Attend and participate during scheduled class times – this is considered “synchronous” learning. Work on your own time according to a pre-determined assignment schedule. This is known as “asynchronous” learning and is what you’ll experience here.
Professors Typically one professor teaches you face-to-face in a physical classroom. One professor interacts with you online via visual presentations, message boards, and videos.
Student body Students are typically local to the university campus and surrounding area Students participate from around the globe and are primarily working adults with an age range of 24 to 44. This means you’ll interact with a variety of ages, experiences and cultures.
Learning tools Professor uses an online learning management system (LMS) to post and collect assignments, announce scores, and more. Students use computers to research and complete assignments. Exactly the same as in-person learning, so if you have attended any college courses, or high school within the last 10 years, you should be comfortable working in an LMS.

Program levels at a glance.

Associate Degree

  • 60-64 credit hours: avg. 21 courses
  • 2 years: avg. time to complete (full time)
  • 7 years: total time allowed to complete
  • 46: max transfer credits accepted

Explore all Associates

Bachelor's Degree

  • 121-126 credit hours: avg. 41 courses
  • 4 years: avg. time to complete (full time)
  • 10 years: total time allowed to complete
  • 91: max transfer credits accepted

Explore all Bachelor's

Master's Degree

  • 36-47 credit hours: avg. 13 courses
  • 2 years: avg. time to complete program (full time)
  • 7 years: total time allowed to complete
  • 15: max transfer credits accepted

Explore all Master's


  • 18-27 credit hours: avg. 6 courses
  • 1 year: avg. time to complete (full time)
  • 3 years: total time allowed to complete
  • 9: max transfer credits accepted

Explore all Certificates


Get help when you need it.

Everyone here wants to see you succeed — from start to finish

Like schools with physical classrooms, here you'll find field-tested professors who teach you, other working adult students who relate to you, and understanding academic and career coaches who guide you. Plus, our award-winning e-library and helpful blogs and newsletters are always right at your fingertips. You may be learning online, but you won’t feel alone.

Have questions right now?

Here's how we can help.

Getting started with online learning.

One of our helpful admission representatives will guide you through the application, transfer credit, and class registration process. After that, our experienced academic advisors serve as your support team.

1. Choose your program.

Choose from 190+ degrees and certificates. If you are unsure which program is right for you, call for advice before you start the application.

2. Apply online.

There is no fee to apply. This easy online application takes about 20 minutes to complete.

3. Complete all admission requirements.

An admissions representative will walk you through all the required steps you need to get started.

4. Register for Classes.

Our classes start monthly, so you can begin soon after being admitted to the university.

Apply Now

Request Info

Proof positive. It's nice to know how others feel.


of seniors evaluated their experience as positive

National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), 2016


of employers would hire another one of our graduates

APUS Alumni Employer Survey, January 2010-December 2015


of seniors would choose us again

National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), 2016


of our students return for another degree

American Public Education Fact Sheet, June 2013