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National Ranking: UMass Lowell is a Leader in Online Ed

U.S. News & World Report Gives High marks to Bachelor’s, Graduate Programs

Students work on a laptop on South Campus Photo by Jim Higgins
UMass Lowell's online programs are national leaders in key metrics including quality and affordability, according to the latest U.S. News & World Report ranking.


Media contacts: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209 or and Nancy Cicco, 978-934-4944 or

LOWELL, Mass. – UMass Lowell is a national and regional leader in online education, according to new rankings released today by U.S. News & World Report. 

UMass Lowell’s online graduate programs in education, information technology and criminal justice are ranked in the top 15 in the nation and are No. 1 among all public institutions in New England. 

The university’s online bachelor’s degrees also got high marks, coming in at No. 3 in New England and No. 22 of more than 200 public and private programs ranked nationwide, up more than 30 spots over last year.  

“These rankings are the latest validation of the superior educational opportunities UMass Lowell online students across the country experience every day,” said Chancellor Jacquie Moloney, an internationally recognized expert in online education who founded UMass Lowell’s successful online program more than 20 years ago. 

“UMass Lowell has proven itself to be a national leader in online education, a partner to businesses seeking to advance the education of their employees, and the solution many adults are seeking as they advance their careers by earning a degree that fits their schedules,” Moloney added.

Among the high rankings for UMass Lowell are the College of Education’s graduate programs, which are No. 8 in the nation and No. 1 in Massachusetts and New England. Online programs in the college – led by Dean Eleanor Abrams – include degrees in policy, leadership, administration, and curriculum and instruction with options such as teaching individuals with autism and subjects such as science, technology, reading and language.

“I am gratified by the recognition of the College of Education online programs by U.S. News and World Report. Our highly respected faculty are passionate about offering online programs that are academically rigorous and relevant for today’s schools,” said Abrams, adding that the college recently added several online programs, all of which integrate the latest research, technology and innovation in teaching to support student success.

UMass Lowell’s graduate degree in information technology is ranked No. 13 in the nation and, among public programs, is No. 6 in the U.S. and No. 1 in New England. It is offered through the university’s Kennedy College of Sciences, headed by Dean Noureddine Melikechi. 

At No. 14 in the nation, UMass Lowell’s online graduate programs in criminal justice and criminology are the top-ranked among those offered by public institutions in New England and Massachusetts and No. 2 in the region. The degrees – including options in cybersecurity, homeland defense and international security – are offered through the School of Criminology and Justice Studies, part of the College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences led by Dean Luis Falcon.

The university’s online programs in the Manning School of Business, led by Dean Sandra Richtermeyer, also ranked highly. Graduate degrees in subjects including accounting and finance were the top-ranked public programs in Massachusetts, No. 3 in New England and No. 30 in the nation. Among online MBAs, one of the most competitive rankings, UMass Lowell’s program is No. 3 in New England and No. 47 of more than 260 nationwide. 

The university’s online graduate degrees in engineering are ranked in the top 100 in the U.S. and the highest of any public program in Massachusetts. Online graduate options in the Francis College of Engineering, led by Dean Joseph Hartman, include a new master’s degree in engineering management. 

“The strengths of UMass Lowell’s online programs are numerous and include being overseen by the same colleges and departments that are responsible for on-campus programs. These rankings are a testament to UMass Lowell’s commitment to excellence and value across the board,” said Catherine Kendrick, dean of the Division of Online and Continuing Education, which sees more than 25,000 online enrollments annually.

UMass Lowell offers more than 50 online programs, including associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees, as well as a range of undergraduate and graduate certificates. In addition to being available directly through UMass Lowell, the university’s award-winning online programs are available through UMassOnline. For details, visit

The rankings were determined based on factors such as affordability, effectiveness in delivering programs, technology that provides flexibility and ease for students, strong support services for learning assistance, financial aid and career guidance, and a strong reputation that adds value to a degree from the institution, according to U.S. News & World Report.

UMass Lowell is a national research university located on a high-energy campus in the heart of a global community. The university offers its more than 18,000 students bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in business, education, engineering, fine arts, health, humanities, sciences and social sciences. UMass Lowell delivers high-quality educational programs, vigorous hands-on learning and personal attention from leading faculty and staff, all of which prepare graduates to be ready for work, for life and for all the world offers.