There is an entire world’s worth of careers out there, and pursuing one that fulfills you both materially and mentally isn’t always easy or cheap. If you’re the type of person that understands the complexity of human behaviors and can manage that complexity with relative composure, a career in human services is likely the perfect path for you.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most affordable online human services degree programs to help you get where you want to go in the human services industry. Through these programs, you can invest in your future, expand your professional know-how, and make the world a better place–all from the comfort of your own home.


All schools considered for these rankings

  • Are regionally or nationally accredited
  • Offer at least one fully online human services degree (with no more than two weeks of required in-person work)
  • Were collected from official accrediting agency websites.

Schools are ranked solely by the average net price as released in the most recent IPEDs database collected in July of 2023.

Online Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

2024 Most Affordable Online Colleges for Human Services Degrees

RankSchoolAverage Net Price
# 1University of Maine at Augusta$9,889
# 2East Central University$11,157
# 3SUNY Empire State College$11,615
# 4Granite State College$12,351
# 5Colorado State University Global$12,993
# 6Minot State University$13,515
# 7Fort Hays State University$14,019
# 8Troy University$14,584
# 9National Louis University$14,654
# 10University of the Cumberlands$14,753
# 11University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh$16,178
# 12Quincy University$16,178
# 13SUNY College of Technology at Alfred$17,248
# 14Saint Leo University Online$17,321
# 15Drury University$18,582
# 16Bluefield College$18,903
# 17University of Iowa$19,443
# 18Ohio University-Main Campus$19,695
# 19Southern New Hampshire University Online$22,873
# 20William Woods University$23,717

10 Best Affordable Colleges for Online Human Services Degrees

1. University of Maine at Augusta

Average Net Price: $9,889
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: NECHE
Acceptance Rate: 100%

With its main campus in the state capital and eight other centers throughout Maine, the University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) is one of the most flexible universities for students to attend. UMA offers career-focused programs tailored to meet the demands of the modern workplace. In collaboration with other institutions and businesses, UMA provides networking, seminars, and programs for professional development. The university emphasizes community involvement and encourages its students and faculty to participate in outside programs and opportunities that contribute to their local communities. With multiple locations, distance learning, and online classes, UMA offers students the flexibility to attend college on their own schedules.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Mental Health and Human Services (MHHS) program offers four different concentrations that cater to varying career paths and professional development: Adult Mental Health Rehabilitation, Addictions Counseling, Child and Family Services, and Mental Health and Human Services Generalist. Students who complete the program with the Adult Mental Health Rehabilitation concentration are eligible for the Mental Health Rehabilitation/Community (MHRT/C) credential, while all students meet the academic requirement for the Licensed Social Worker-Conditional (LSX) credential. Additionally, the Graduate Certificate offers current professionals a flexible way to obtain a graduate certificate that can lead to career advancement and serve as a pathway to a Master’s degree. The program is designed to accommodate the needs of returning students who have family and work commitments by offering the majority of the courses online. Upon completion, students will have developed skills in crisis management, caseload management, advocacy, psychosocial rehabilitation, counseling, job coaching, life and career skills teaching, educational support, support service coordination, problem identification and solving, and more.

2. East Central University

Average Net Price: $11,157
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 65%

Originally opening as a training college for teachers in 1909, East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma now offers over 70 degree programs. In addition to traditional classes on the main campuses at the Eastern Oklahoma State College in McAlester, and the University Center of Southern Oklahoma in Armored, the university also offers online courses as well as televised lectures. East Central University has developed into a School of Business, the College of Health and Science, the College of Education and Psychology, the College of Liberal Arts and Social Science, the School of Graduate Studies, and the School of Fine Arts. The week before classes start, freshmen are introduced to fellow students and have a chance to get to know East Central University when they attend the university’s annual Tiger Streak. The weekend before they start class students enjoy decorating their rooms and are invited to a block party with music and games, all on the university campus.

East Central University Online’s Bachelor of Arts in Human Services Counseling program provides students with practical counseling skills and hands-on learning experiences. This program is the only human services counseling degree offered in Oklahoma, and it features an accelerated curriculum that is delivered through interactive online classes. In addition to coursework, students have access to exclusive internship opportunities where they can apply their skills in a professional setting. The program offers two concentrations – Counseling and Rehabilitation – and focuses on integrating counseling theory with practice through career-driven courses. With guidance from expert faculty, students gain the skills necessary to develop service plans and positively impact the lives of others. Upon completion of the B.A. in Human Services Counseling program, graduates are equipped with the tools and knowledge to make a difference in their communities.

3. SUNY Empire State College

Average Net Price: $11,469
School Type: Public Liberal Arts
School Accreditation: MSCHE
Acceptance Rate: 100%

SUNY Empire was founded in 1971 offering an environment with nontraditional teaching and a focus on unconventional learning. The college is committed to learning through experience and awards students credit for learning through work experiences. The majority of students attending SUNY Empire are working adults seeking degrees for job advancement. With 35 locations and the availability of online classes, students stay in control of their schedules. SUNY Empire also offers affordable tuition and flexibility, so the learner can customize their education to meet their personal and career goals. SE partnerships with organized labor and all military branches, educating employees and members of the military, to meet licensing requirements and mandates that help them adapt to the new technology, and open paths for promotions. Students who graduate with a human service degree from SUNY Empire are prepared to compete in today’s global marketplace.

The School of Human Services at SUNY Empire State College prioritizes equipping students with the skills and knowledge needed to advocate for social justice and work effectively with marginalized, underserved, and vulnerable populations. Its programs strive to integrate diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging constructs into the learning experience. The college provides focus in the helping professions, serving children and families, senior citizens, veterans, the homeless, immigrants and refugees, disabilities, addictions, mental illness, and those involved in the criminal justice system. Faculty members possess significant field experience, ranging from direct service to program evaluation, and remain committed to developing relevant initiatives and programs for students. The college offers a BS in Addiction Studies and a BS in Public Health which can be completed through online, independent study, blended, and/or face-to-face study.

4. Granite State College

Average Net Price: $11,615
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: NECHE
Acceptance Rate: 100 %

Granite State College has offered affordable and convenient college courses for busy and working adults for more than 40 years. GSC embraces the goal of making education available to anyone motivated to pursue it. They offer a wide range of courses with flexible options. Students can seek virtual support, as well as in-person guidance. GSC is the leading provider of online programs in N.H. and emphasizes courses that are responsive to employ advancement, by offering associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and post-baccalaureate programs. GSC partnerships with employers to increase the range of opportunities that the businesses can offer to strengthen N.H.’s economy, by enhancing individual employees’ skills. It is the college’s mission to expand access and availability of higher education to all adults of all ages.

At Granite State College, students have the opportunity to tailor their degree program to their interests and career goals. With a range of concentrations available, students can choose the area that best aligns with their career aspirations. Whether it’s Addictions Studies, Adult Court Advocacy, Child Court Advocacy, Counseling Foundations, Education Advocacy, Family Studies, Psychology, or Wellness and Prevention, students will take core degree requirements and specific courses in their chosen concentration to complete their degree program.

5. Colorado State University Global

Average Net Price: $12,351
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 96%

Colorado State University Global (CSU Global) furnishes a fully virtual Bachelor of Science in Human Services degree. The curriculum aims to equip learners with the expertise and capabilities to aid individuals, families, and groups across diverse human services settings like social work agencies, mental health clinics, and academic institutions.

CSU Global’s Human Services program boasts accreditation from the prestigious Higher Learning Commission, one of six premier regional accrediting entities in the United States. Regional accreditation represents the highest echelon of endorsement, widely recognized by all employers and postsecondary institutions.

The comprehensive 120-credit CSU Global Human Services curriculum encompasses a blend of foundational degree courses, general education, electives, and optional specializations and certificates. Core topics traverse human development, social work practice, and research methodologies.

CSU Global proffers abundant electives enabling students to hone expertise in particular human services spheres like child welfare, mental health, or substance abuse counseling. Learners can also elect to earn focused certificates in areas like addiction counseling or gerontology.

6. Minot State University

Average Net Price: $12,993
School Type: Regional Public
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 88%

Minot State University (MSU) is a public university located in Minot, ND. It was founded in 1913 as a two-year normal school to train teachers for the region, and has since evolved into a comprehensive institution offering undergraduate and graduate programs in various fields online. MSU offers over 60 majors in areas such as business, education, arts and sciences, nursing, and human services. The university prides itself on its small class sizes and personalized attention to students, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 13:1. Additionally, MSU is known for its affordable tuition rates and high-quality education. The university also offers over 100 online courses and flexible schedules to accommodate working students. MSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and has been ranked as one of the best regional universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.

Minot State University offers a Master of Science in Disability Human Services, Bachelor of Science in Human Services with a Major in Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities, and Associate of Science in Human Services with a Major in Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities. All these can be done online. With the online Master of Science in Disability Human Services degree, you will gain the skills and knowledge necessary to lead and support other professionals in a human services agency. You will receive comprehensive instruction in strategic management, disability law and policy, human resources, and accounting. Additionally, the program will cover the latest trends in serving individuals with severe disabilities across their lifespan and will equip you with the research skills needed to effectively address complex problems. The Bachelor of Science in Human Services with a major in I/DD at MSU can serve as a career advancement option for those who have completed the Associate of Science in Human Services with a major in I/DD degree. However, students without an Associate degree or prior experience in the I/DD service industry can also enroll in this four-year program. The online program offers numerous paid, hands-on opportunities for students to work in the I/DD service industry while pursuing their degree. Upon graduation, individuals will be equipped to assume the responsibilities of a Qualified Intellectual Disabilities Professional (QIDP), and the degree’s learning objectives are in line with the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals (NADSP) skill areas.

7. Fort Hays State University

Average Net Price: $13,515
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 90%

Fort Hays State University offers a wide range of degree options on-campus and online through a student-friendly Blackboard learning interface. With approximately 200 online degree options, Fort Hayes State University has options for everyone. Students seeking their bachelor’s degree will find options in marketing, management, finance, criminal justice, computer science, business education, and accounting. FHSU students seeking a master’s degree can choose courses in education, special education, business administration, and history. In addition to financial aid, Fort Hays State University offers online distance learners special tuition rates. FHSU supports online students with technical support, online tutoring, and access to library resources, making education possible where ever you are. Fort Hayes State University is a community of diversity, with members of all backgrounds and ages, that support each student’s success in acquiring a human services degree online or on campus.

Two human services degrees are available through FHSU. The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program is a flexible program that is available both on-campus and online, designed to prepare students for a career in social work practice as a generalist. The program curriculum requires both liberal arts and professional foundation courses, with the social work core courses offering students a specific set of knowledge, values, and skills to work with individuals, groups, families, organizations, and communities. The Masters of Social Work program offers two pathways, the Regular MSW Pathway and the Advanced Standing MSW Pathway, which provide students with the necessary clinical training and educational requirements to become licensed clinical social workers. While the Regular MSW Pathway spans four regular semesters and one summer semester, the Advanced Standing MSW Pathway can be completed in one calendar year of academic coursework and two semesters of field practicum experience, exclusively for students who hold a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from a Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited social work program.

8. Troy University

Average Net Price: $14,019
School Type: Public
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 95%

Troy University is a traditional college founded in 1887 and is committed to teaching excellence. TSU was originally established to train instructors for Alabama schools. Students choosing Troy State University can make the most of their stories, by enjoying learning opportunities through TSU’s International Art Center, Davis Theatre, Confucius Institute, W.A, Gayle Planetarium, and Rosa Parks Museum. Every student has the opportunity to acquire practical field experiences through on-hand participation at TSU’s top-ranked media groups, including Troy University Public Radio, Tropolitan Newspaper, and the Palladium yearbook. TSU students also enjoy dynamic recreational facilities, intramural sports, special events, and a wide range of dining options. Students attending TSU are provided with safe accommodations both on and off-campus, clerical amenities, civil services, and top-notch health care. With over 100 student organizations, Troy State University can prepare you for success with a human services degree online or on campus.

Troy University offers a Bachelor of Science in Human Services online. The program is designed to prepare students for a variety of professional roles in the human services field, such as:

  • Social worker
  • Counselor
  • Case manager
  • Policy analyst
  • Advocate

The online program is taught by the same experienced faculty who teach the on-campus program, and students have access to the same resources and support services. The program is also accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).


The Bachelor of Science in Human Services online program covers a wide range of topics, including:

  • Human behavior and development
  • Social problems and social welfare policy
  • Research methods and program evaluation
  • Counseling and intervention skills
  • Diversity and multiculturalism
  • Ethics and professional practice

Admission Requirements

To be admitted to the Bachelor of Science in Human Services online program, students must have a high school diploma or GED and meet the following academic requirements:

  • GPA of 2.0 or higher
  • SAT total score of 980 or higher

Tuition and Financial Aid

Troy University offers competitive tuition rates for its online programs. Students are also eligible for a variety of financial aid options, including federal grants and loans, state scholarships, and private loans.

9. National Louis University

Average Net Price: $14,584
School Type: Private
School Accreditation: HLC
Acceptance Rate: 97%

National Louis University was founded in 1886 with a vision to prepare women for early childhood education work, a radical stance for that generation. Elizabeth Harrison, the founder of the school, believed that the future of a community lies in the quality of the education of its youngest members. It has now expanded to studies in business, psychology, hospitality management, and culinary arts. NLU now offers a Bachelor’s program in Human Services to help students become well-versed in public service. This degree includes courses in client relations, administration, conflict resolution, and interpersonal communications.

National Louis University’s Bachelor of Arts in Human Services degree program provides you with the knowledge and skills needed to support individuals, families, and communities. This program offers a variety of internship experiences to give you hands-on experience actually working in the field. The B.A. in Human Services/Psychology combines human services coursework with behavioral science classes to give you a deeper understanding of human behavior and motivation. With this degree, you’ll be prepared for entry-level positions in social service agencies, community health centers, and health clinics. The program offers various concentrations and minors, including an Entrepreneurship Concentration that equips you with the knowledge and skills required to start your own business or organization. This degree is available in online, campus-based, and blended class formats, including evening classes, allowing you to earn your degree while juggling a busy schedule.

10. University of the Cumberlands

Average Net Price: $14,654
School Type: Private Non-Profit
School Accreditation: SACS COC
Acceptance Rate: 85%

Originally the Williamsburg Institute, the University of the Cumberlands began in 1888 as a modest establishment in Kentucky with the goal of preparing young leaders to teach, serve, and help others with their skills and knowledge. After acquiring Highland College in 1913, Williamsburg Institute became Cumberland College.  In 2005, Cumberlands College became the University of the Cumberlands. UC offers four different Human Services concentrations within its Bachelor of Science degree program, one Bachelor of Arts with a Human Services Major, and an Associate of Science option, also with a Major in Human Services. These programs help students to graduate with a firm grasp of how to help individuals and families through social services and charities. Each program gives students people skills for better communication and an understanding of how the public sector operates to help the less fortunate.

The University of the Cumberlands’ online Bachelor’s in Human Services degree equips students with the necessary knowledge and skills to work in the human services field. The curriculum is designed to foster self-awareness, encourage appreciation of diversity, and develop an understanding of personal value. The program offers both Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees in Human Services, which can be completed online or on-campus. Students are taught to practice ethical standards, set professional boundaries, and apply their skills post-graduation. Classes include Survey of Human Services, Individual and Family Assessment, Case Management, and more. Potential career paths include community service manager, counselor, life skills instructor, and public health educator. Also in the human services online degree you can earn a Bachelor of Science in Applied Science. The available areas of concentration under the Applied Science degree umbrella include Accounting Business Administration, Coaching, Gaming, Information Technology, Missions & Ministries, and more.

Online Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.