Residents of Texas who are interested in pursuing educational and career advancement by enrolling in a master’s degree program have a range of options for earning a master’s degree online. There are numerous accredited, non-profit public and private colleges and universities in Texas that offer online master’s programs in fields like business, counseling, education, nursing, and social work. There are also out-of-state schools that offer online master’s programs in these fields and other fields, many of which accept applicants from Texas. On this page, we provide an overview of Texas schools that offer online master’s programs in many of the more common areas of master’s level study in the state, as well details about online master’s program in these fields that are offered by schools in neighboring and regional states.
Texas has an expansive system of publicly funded colleges and universities that are organized into six affiliations. The Texas State University System (TSUS) is comprised of four schools: Texas State University in San Marcos, Lamar University in Beaumont, Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, and Sul Ross State University, which has its main campus in Alpine. The University System of Texas, or UT System, encompasses the state’s largest public university, The University of Texas at Austin, as well the University of Texas at Arlington, The University of Texas at Dallas, and five other UT schools located around the state. The Texas Tech System features Texas Tech University, Angelo State University, and Texas Tech Health Centers located in Lubbock and El Paso. In addition, there is the Texas A&M System with its flagship campus in College Station; the University of North Texas System with campuses in the Dallas-Fort Worth region; and the University of Houston System (UH System), which is comprised of four universities in the greater Houston metropolitan area.
Most of the public colleges and universities in Texas offer online courses and many offer online degree programs, including master’s programs. The 20 largest state universities in Texas, based on enrollment data collected by the US Department of Education for its Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), are listed in the table below, along with their location and whether or not they offer online degree programs.
|School||Location||Online Degree Programs|
|The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin)||Austin||Yes|
|University of Houston (UH)||Houston||Yes|
|Texas State University (Texas State)||San Marcos||Yes|
|University of North Texas (UNT)||Denton||Yes|
|The University of Texas at Arlington (UT Arlington)||Arlington||Yes|
|Texas Tech University (Texas Tech)||Lubbock||Yes|
|The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV)||Edinburg||Yes|
|The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA)||San Antonio||Yes|
|The University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas)||Richardson||Yes|
|The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)||El Paso||Yes|
|Sam Houston State University (SHSU)||Huntsville||Yes|
|Texas Woman's University (TWU)||Denton||Yes|
|University of Houston-Downtown (UH-Downtown)||Houston||Yes|
|Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA State)||Nacogdoches||Yes|
|Texas A&M University (TAMU)||College Station||Yes|
|West Texas A&M University (WTAMU)||Canyon||Yes|
|Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TAMUK)||Kingsville||Yes|
|University of Houston-Clear Lake (UH-Clear Lake)||Houston||Yes|
|The University of Texas at Tyler (UT Tyler)||Tyler||Yes|
There are also many non-profit private colleges and universities in Texas that have regional accreditation and that offer online degree programs. The five largest private degree-granting institutions in Texas, based on IPEDS enrollment data, are listed in the table below.
|School||Location||Online Degree Programs|
|Southern Methodist University||Dallas||Yes|
|Texas Christian University||Fort Worth||Yes|
|University of the Incarnate Word||San Antonio||Yes|
One of the advantages of earning a master’s degree online is that it does not require students to relocate in order to be near a college campus or to commute in order to attend classes. Most out-of-state schools accept applicants from Texas to their online master’s programs, although there may be some restrictions based on state authorizations, licensure requirements in particular fields, and internship and practicums that are integral to certain types of degree programs. Arizona State University (ASU), the University of Arkansas (U of A), Arkansas State University (A-State), Louisiana State University (LSU), and Tulane University are among the regional schools that offer an array of online master’s degree programs and that accept students from Texas.
Located in Phoenix, ASU is a public research university that consistently ranks as one of the largest schools by enrollment in the US. Through ASU Online, the school offers online master’s degrees in field as diverse as art and design, business and communication, engineering and computer science, health and nutrition, and education and social work. ASU Online also boasts highly specialized online graduate degree programs, including a Master of Science (MS) in Digital Audience Strategy, a Master of Arts (MA) in Emergency Management & Homeland Security, and a Master of Education (MEd) in Educational Leadership (Principalship).
In neighboring Arkansas, Texas residents can explore options for online master’s programs offered by two publicly funded universities. U of A offers online master’s programs through many of its divisions, including the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food, and Life Sciences; the J. William Fulbright College of Arts & Sciences; the Sam M. Walton College of Business; the College of Education & Health Professions; and the College of Engineering. A-State offers online MS degree programs in several education specializations, an online Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree program, and an online Master of Engineering Management program.
LSU and Tulane are two of the schools in neighboring Louisiana that offer online degree programs. LSU Online offers an online Master of Business Administration (MBA) program through its E.J. Ourso College of Business, as well as online master’s programs in Construction Management, Higher Education Administration, Sports Management, and Social Work. And Tulane offers online Master of Professional Studies (MPS) programs in Information Technology Management, Health & Wellness Management, and Homeland Security Studies.
Through independent analyses of IPEDS data, OnlineEducation.com has identified the 15 areas of study with the highest number of graduates from colleges and universities in Texas. While the IPEDS system of classification does not line up precisely with online master’s degree programs, the data provides an indication of the types of master’s degrees most commonly conferred in Texas. The 15 areas in which the number of master’s program graduates is the highest in Texas are as follows:
In each of the sections below, we provide details on some of the in-state and out-of-state schools that offer online master’s programs in several of the fields listed above.
There are two schools in the Texas A&M System that offer online MBA programs: Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi (TAMUCC) and West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) in Canyon. TAMUCC, in the South Texas coastal city of Corpus Christi, offers an online MBA that can be completed in just 12 months by students who hold a bachelor’s degree in business administration (BBA), and in 16 to 20 months by students who have a bachelor’s degree in a field other than business. The program has a general track and concentrations in Accounting, Finance, and Healthcare Administration. The WTAMU program is offered through the university’s Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business and can be completed in less than two years. WTAMU’s program features concentrations in Management, Marketing, Healthcare, and Computer Information Systems.
There are several schools in the UT System that offer online MBA programs. Through the Soules College of Business, UT Tyler offers an MBA program that can be completed online by taking courses that are taught over traditional 15-week semesters or in shorter seven-week terms. The program features specializations in Cybersecurity, Healthcare Management, and Marketing. The University of Texas at the Permian Basin (UTPB), which is located in Odessa, has an online MBA program that can be completed in a few as 12 months by students who hold a BBA degree, and in 16 months or more by students who have a bachelor’s degree in a field other than business. It features Finance and Accounting specializations. And UT Dallas offers an online Professional MBA (PMBA) program with flexible enrollment options designed to accommodate students who may be working part-time or full-time while earning their degree. The UT Dallas online PMBA program features 15 specializations, including Business Analytics, Energy Management, and Real Estate.
In the neighboring state of Louisiana, there are several options for earning an MBA degree online. Louisiana State University (LSU) has an MBA program that is offered in several formats, including a fully online format that can be completed in 18 months by students who enroll full-time. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette (UL Lafayette) offers an online MBA program that can be completed in 15 months by full-time students, and that has concentrations in Entrepreneurship, Finance, Global Management, Healthcare Administration, Sales Leadership, Project Management, Human Resource Management, and Hospitality Management.
Educators in Texas have numerous options for master’s level online programs in various teaching specializations, including educational leadership, English for speakers of other languages (ESOL), instructional technologies, and special education. UH System schools offer online MEd programs in Adult and Higher Education, Early Childhood Education, Educational Technology, Elementary Education, Health Science Education, Literacy Studies, Mathematics Education, and Reading, Language Arts, & Literature. UH-Victoria offers an online MEd program in Special Education with specialized tracks in Applied Behavioral Analysis and Autism Spectrum Disorder. For those who have not yet qualified for a Texas teaching certification, UH-Downtown offers a hybrid MA in Teaching (MAT) program that includes some online and some campus-based coursework and that prepares students for state certification.
The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) offers online programs in education in a format that uses seven-week terms instead of traditional 15-week semesters. UTRGV’s online MEd offerings include master’s programs in Elementary Math and Science Education, Mathematics Education, Science Education, Educational Leadership, and Special Education. The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) offers online MEd programs in Curriculum and Instruction with concentrations in Bilingual Education and Early Childhood Education. And Sam Houston State University (SHSU) has a wide selection of online MEd programs, including programs with specializations in Teaching ESOL, Reading and Language Arts, Instructional Systems Design and Technology, Instructional Leadership, Curriculum and Instruction, and Educational Administration.
Texas residents may also want to explore options for earning a master’s degree in an education specialization through out-of-state schools that accept applicants from Texas, including Arizona State University (ASU), The University of Alabama (U of A), and Arkansas State (A-State). ASU Online offers MEd in Curriculum and Instruction programs with specializations in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Early Childhood Education, ESOL, and Gifted Education, as well as MEd programs in Educational Leadership (Principalship) and Educational Technology. In addition, ASU Online has MA degree programs in Special Education (Applied Behavioral Analysis) and Indigenous Education. U of A Online features MEd programs in six specializations: Adult and Lifelong Learning; Educational Leadership; Educational Technology; Human Resource and Workforce Development Education; Physical Education; and Special Education. And A-State has seven online MEd options: Curriculum and Instruction; Educational Leadership; Gifted, Talented, and Creative; Educational Theory and Practice; Reading; Special Education (K-12); and Early Childhood Education.
Note: Many MEd and other types of master’s in education programs are designed for teachers who are already certified in their state of residence. A master’s degree is typically not a requirement for certification. However, students who have not yet qualified for state teaching certification may be able to qualify by earning an MAT degree provided the program’s curriculum meets state requirements for teacher training and education. Students who intend to enroll in an out-of-state master’s in teaching or education program with the aim of applying for certification in Texas should make sure an online program meets the state requirements and that the program accepts applicants from Texas.
In addition to offering an online MBA program, UT Dallas offers several online MS degree programs in business specializations, including an online MS in Accounting degree program. The program is offered through the Naveen Jindal School of Business, which provides students in the program with a choice of two program formats. The MS Accounting Flex program allows students to take online accounting courses at their own pace and complete the program in two years or more. The two-year MS Accounting Cohort program has a set sequence of courses that students complete as a group. Both of UT Dallas’ online MS in Accounting programs can prepare students to meet Texas requirements to sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam.
Auburn University in Alabama is one of the out-of-state schools that offers an online master’s in accounting degree program that accepts applicants from Texas. Auburn’s online Master of Accountancy (MAcc) degree program includes a required three-day residency on the school’s campus. It can be completed in 12 months of full-time, year-round enrollment. Colorado State University (CSU), though CSU-Global Campus, offers a Master of Professional Accounting (MPAcc) degree program online that is designed for students who have an undergraduate degree in accounting. CSU’s MPAcc program has ten required courses, an optional internship, and flexible enrollment plans.
Note: While a master’s degree is not required for CPA licensure, some master’s in accounting programs are designed to prepare students who are not licensed to meet state eligibility requirements. These requirements vary by state. Texas residents who are considering out-of-state online master’s in accounting programs and who intend to seek CPA licensure should make sure that these programs meet Texas CPA eligibility requirements and that they accept applicants from Texas prior to submitting an application.
The School of Library and Information Studies at Texas Woman’s University (TWU), a co-educational school in Denton, offers a Master of Library Science (MLS) degree program that can be completed entirely online. The program includes specialized tracks in the following areas: Academic Libraries; Public Libraries; School Libraries; Special Libraries; Health Science Libraries; Information Technology; Technical Services; and Community Informatics. Another in-state option for a master’s in information science program is the online MS in School Library and Information Science offered by UH-Clear Lake. The UH-Clear Lake program is only open to applicants who hold a Texas teaching certification.
Out-of-state options for earning an online master’s in information science include the MA in Library and Information Science (MA-LIS) offered by the University of Arizona (UA). Students in UA’s online program can choose from the following specializations: Academic Librarianship; Archival Studies; Digital Information Management; Law Librarianship; Legal Information and Scholarly Communication; Medical and Community Health Information; Public Librarianship; and Special Librarianship. The University of Alabama’s Bama By Distance program offers an online Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree program that can be completed in two years by students who enroll in two courses per semester.
There are a number of schools in Texas that can provide residents with professional training in social work through an online MSW program. The University of Houston (UH) offers an online MSW program with tracks in clinical and macro practice social work. Graduates from bachelor’s in social work (BSW) programs can apply to UH’s Advanced Standing track, which can be completed in one year of full-time enrollment. The traditional online MSW program offered by UH takes most students two years to complete.
The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) offers an online Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW) degree program, which is the equivalent of an MSW program. UTRGV’s program has two specializations: Administration and Community Practice, and Direct Practice with Latino Individuals, Families, and Groups. Applicants who hold a BSW degree can apply to be admitted into UTRGV’s Advanced Standing MSW program.
Texas State’s School of Social Work offers an MSW program with an Advanced Practice Leadership focus. The program includes training in macro and clinical practice. Full-time students in the Texas State program take three courses per semester, while part-time students enroll in two courses per semester. Texas State has an Advanced Standing track for students who hold a BSW degree.
Baylor University’s Diana R. Garland School of Social Work offers an online MSW degree program with community practice and clinical social work specializations. It includes additional clinical social work concentrations in Physical and Mental Health, and Children and Families.
In the bordering state of New Mexico, New Mexico State University offers an online MSW that provides a mix of clinical and macro practice training for work with populations in the Southwest. Online students are required to enroll full-time in the New Mexico State University program, which requires students to complete four academic courses per semester for two years while engaging an average of 16 and 24 hours of field education per week during the second year of the program. Louisiana State University (LSU) offers a full-time online MSW program that can be completed in two years by students with a bachelor’s degree in a field other than social work and one year by Advanced Standing students who hold a BSW. The LSU program gives students the option of completing a master’s thesis or capstone experience prior to graduating.
Note: Texas residents interested in applying to online MSW programs offered by out-of-state schools should check to ensure the program admits applicants from Texas and that they will be able to fulfill the field education requirements in Texas prior to filing an application. Applicants who intend to seek licensure in clinical social work after completing their degree should examine Texas state licensure requirements to ensure an out-of-state program’s curriculum aligns with those requirements.
Registered Nurses (RNs) who are looking to further their careers through the training provided by a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program have many online options in the state of Texas. The University of Houston’s College of Nursing offers an online MSN with a specialization in Nursing Administration. UT Arlington offers two MSN program specializations online: Nurse Educator and Nursing Administration. The School of Nursing at The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) has an online MSN program with specializations in Nursing Education and Nursing Systems Management, as well as an online Nurse Practitioner (NP) MSN program with several tracks: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Pediatric Nurse Practitioner-Primary Care (PCPNP), and Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner-Acute Care (AGACNP). Stephen F. Austin State University also offers an online MSN program with an FNP specialization. And Baylor offers an online MSN program with a specialization in Leadership and Innovation.
RNs who are interested in out-of-state schools that offer online MSN programs may want explore the University of Arkansas, which offers an online MSN program with a Nursing Educator concentration. The University of Arizona (UA), another regional school that is active in offering online degree programs, has an online MSN program with a Clinical Systems Leadership focus that can be completed by RNs who hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree in a few as 15 months. UA’s MSN program also has a track for RNs who do not hold a BSN degree, which students can graduate from in 24 months.
RNs in Texas may also want to explore the options for earning an MSN degree in an NP specialization through the online program offered by Maryville University, a private school located in St. Louis, MO. Maryville’s online MSN program features five NP specializations: Family NP (FNP); Adult-Gerontology Primary Care NP (AGPCNP); Adult-Gerontology Acute Care NP (AGACNP); Pediatric NP (PNP); and Psychiatric Mental Health NP (PMHNP).
Note: Nursing licensure takes place at the state level and the requirements vary by state. Most online MSN programs require applicants to hold an active and unencumbered RN license issued by the state in which they practice. Many online MSN programs require internships and practicums that students must complete in person at a site approved by the program. For these reasons, it is important to examine admissions and clinical requirements carefully to ensure that an out-of-state program admits applicants from Texas and that a location for completing clinical hours can be found.
Lamar University is one of the schools in Texas that offers an online master’s in counseling degree program. The College of Education and Human Development at Lamar has an online MEd degree program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling that requires students to attend two on-campus seminars during the program. Lamar also has an online MEd in Counseling and Development program that has a track for School Counseling and a track for Marriage, Couple, and Family counseling. Both tracks require students to attend one five-day campus residency session. Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) in San Antonio also offers an online MEd in School Counseling program.
There are many online counseling programs offered by schools in other states that Texas residents can explore. One of those schools is Adams State University in Colorado. Adams State offers an online MA in Counselor Education that has tracks for Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling. The program requires students to attend a one-week session on the Adams State campus in Alamosa.
Note: Online master’s in counseling degree programs require internships that typically must be completed in person at a site approved by the program. Completing a master’s in counseling degree is a requirement for licensure in counseling, a process that is administered by state boards. Texas residents who are interested in earning an online master’s in counseling from an out-of-state school should check to make sure the program accepts applicants from Texas and that the program meets the requirements for licensure in Texas.
There are two schools in Texas currently offering online master’s in finance degree programs. West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) offers an online MS in Finance and Economics degree program that is designed to be completed in roughly two years. And UH-Clear Lake’s College of Business offers an online MS in Finance that can be completed in a few as 18 months by students who take two courses per semester.
Outside of Texas, there are a number of schools that offer online master’s in finance degree programs, including Colorado State University (CSU) and the University of Miami. CSU-Global Campus offers an online Master of Finance degree program that consists of eight core courses, a capstone project, and electives in areas like accounting, applied business management, and fraud management. The University of Miami’s online MS in Finance program can be completed in as few as 16 months and features an optional on-campus orientation session for students who are interested in spending time on the school’s campus.
UT Arlington, Sam Houston State University (SHSU), and Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA State) are three of the universities in Texas that offer online Master of Public Administration (MPA) programs. UT Arlington’s program takes 24 months to complete and includes an internship in which students gain professional experience in the public sector. The internship can be waived for students who enter the program with at least one year of professional experience in public administration. The SHSU program has a flexible, part-time enrollment format to accommodate working professionals and a curriculum that focuses on disaster and emergency management. And the SFA State program includes a capstone project and an optional internship experience.
For professionals with at least five years of experience in the public sector, the Bush School of Government & Public Service at Texas A&M University (TAMU) offers an Executive Master of Public Service and Administration (EMPSA) program that has two one-week residencies on the university’s campus and three tracks: Homeland Security; Nonprofit Management; and Public Management.
Several schools in nearby states offer online MPA programs that Texas residents may want to explore. Arizona State University (ASU) offers an Executive MPA (EMPA) that takes 19 months to complete and includes three executive sessions in Phoenix and Washington DC. The program is designed for professionals with at least five years of experience in the public sector. Arkansas State University offers an online MPA with two tracks: Public Management and Non-Profit Management. Both tracks can be completed in 18 months by students who enroll full-time.
Texas Tech’s Health Science Center offers an online Master of Science in Healthcare Administration (MSHA) program that features electives in medical sociology, patient safety and risk management, healthcare business innovation and entrepreneurship, and more. In contrast to the Texas Tech MHSA program, which is fully online, UH-Clear Lake offers a hybrid Master of Health Administration (MHA) program that provides roughly half of its instruction online and requires students to attend certain courses at the UH-Clear Lake Medical Center.
There are online master’s in health and healthcare administration programs offered by a number of schools outside of Texas, including Oklahoma State University (OK State) and Colorado State University (CSU). OK State’s School of Health Care Administration offers an online Master of Science in Health Care Administration that gives students a choice between tracks in Administration and Leadership/Entrepreneurship. And CSU-Global Campus offers a Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA) program that features coursework in healthcare organizational management, healthcare finance, and healthcare information systems.