5 top e-schools

The best online programs blend quality with flexibility.

Western Carolina University
Western Carolina University
Cullowhee, NC
Tuition: N.A.

Why we chose it: This five-semester program addresses topics such as small-business finance, and how best to protect your company from fraud. Western Carolina students are required to take part in an online business discussion with a professor and classmates at least twice a week - a habit that becomes addictive, according to program director Frank Lockwood. "In the chat rooms, it almost gets to the point where the classes are self taught," he says. "If you post a question, one of your classmates usually has the experience to answer you." Though much of online learning involves reading, students can purchase DVDs to supplement their weekly lectures. "If you miss something, you can back up the DVD - you can't do that in a classroom," says graduate Charles Bartlett, 58. The breadth of information covered helps students who enter the program with varying levels of business creation experience. "This program is designed for the person who wants to think like, and become, an entrepreneur," says Bartlett.

Boston University

Grand Canyon University

University of Houston at Victoria

University of Wyoming

Western Carolina University
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