Online and Distance Programs

World-class programs taught by NC State faculty in varying formats to best suit your lifestyle and learning objectives.
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Economically Relevant

Our Online and Distance Education programs are designed to help you advance your career and life objectives. Courses are steeped in our philosophy of Think and Do and a wide variety of business partnerships help keep course material current and forward-focused.

As a result of NC State’s commitment to innovation, you learn the latest skills and knowledge in your field, whether you are enrolled in a certificate or a degree program.

Life Friendly

Online or distance education programs give you a level of flexibility that on-campus programs do not. And, at NC State you don’t sacrifice quality. Our online courses are taught by the same professors who teach the subject on campus.

NC State offers online or distance education programs of study that lead to a variety of credentials such as graduate degrees (both master’s and doctoral), graduate certificates, Teacher licensure, undergraduate certificates, and a bachelor’s degree completion program.

These programs represent many of NC State’s academic disciplines, which are organized within the university by college. On the Explore Programs page, you can filter by college. The following colleges offer online or distance education programs: Agriculture and Life Sciences, Design, Education, Engineering, Humanities and Social Sciences, Management, Natural Resources, Sciences, and Textiles.

NC State’s distance education programs mostly are offered online, but a few meet at a specific location away from campus (site-based distance education) and others are hybrid, meaning that some program classes are delivered online and some are delivered via site-based distance education. Site-based programs are identified by a  icon in program listings, and hybrid programs are identified by a  icon.

NC State is authorized to deliver distance education in all 50 states and in U.S. territories. Some programs of study may lead to professional licensure in North Carolina and other states.

Most program courses are asynchronous, in other words, students do not have to be online at any particular time. Some courses are synchronous, meaning all students and the instructor gather online on a specified schedule. Whichever model is used, all online courses follow the same university calendar as on-campus courses, and you should expect to have specific due dates for class assignments and exams.

Tuition and fees vary by program, academic career (undergraduate or graduate level), and whether or not a student is a resident of North Carolina. Students are billed tuition and fees each term based on the number of credit hours taken. Choose a program to see its tuition and fees.

Schedule FlexibilityLearning that Better Fits Your Life

Online and Distance Education programs are offered and supported using three delivery formats — fully online, onsite (at locations away from NC State campus), or a hybrid of online and onsite. 

More About Program Formats

Non-Degree Studies Options

For those interested in taking courses without enrolling in a degree program at NC State, Online and Distance Education offers courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels to fit higher education needs in a demanding and busy world. Students may apply to the university to be approved as a Non-Degree Studies (NDS) student. However, admission as an NDS student does not imply admission to an NC State degree program.

NDS students are classified as non-degree-seeking. Grades earned as an NDS student will go toward the student’s NC State University GPA and may be transferred to another institution based on that institution’s transfer policy. Students enrolled in Undergraduate Certificate programs are classified as NDS students.

Non-Degree Student Classifications

Professor and Student mix hops

Undergraduate Studies (UGS)

The Undergraduate Studies (UGS) classification is assigned to NDS students who have not earned a bachelor’s degree. UGS students take courses as prerequisites for admission to degree programs, to transfer to another institution or for professional and career development. Students enrolled in Undergraduate Certificate programs are classified as NDS.

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Post-Baccalaureate Studies (PBS)

The Post-Baccalaureate Studies (PBS) classification is assigned to students who have earned a bachelor’s degree. This is an excellent way to explore different fields of study to fulfill your personal and career goals, to pursue a teacher licensure program or to prepare to enter master’s, doctoral or graduate certificate programs.

Are You Already Enrolled at NC State?

On-campus degree-seeking and Non-Degree Studies (NDS) students may enroll in Online and Distance Education courses in a wide variety of subject areas. Online and Distance Education courses are identified by their section number; a section number of 600 or above indicates an Online and Distance Education course. While many of these courses are open to any student who meets course prerequisites, some are restricted to students enrolled in the degree or certificate program (such as Engineering Online, MBA Online, etc.) offering the course. WolfWare Course Detail Pages indicate whether a course is open to all students (Flexible Access) or part of an Online and Distance Education program.

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