30 Best Online Human Resources Degree Programs [2020 Guide]

Home » 30 Best Online Human Resources Degree Programs [2020 Guide]

Have you ever considered a career in human resources? Now’s a great time to work towards earning your online Human Resources degree. There are plenty of online degree programs available covering different branches of human resources.

Online Human Resources Degree

Choosing to pursue an associate’s, bachelor’s, or even an online master’s in human resources can mean a successful career. Businesses, big and small are always looking to fill positions in their human resource department.

Obtaining a human resources degree at any level can make you an excellent candidate for the career you’ve always wanted.

Best Online Human Resources Degree

human resource student studying on her computer

In human resources, you’ll be responsible for recruiting, training new hires, explaining employee benefits and company policies, managing payroll, and much more. Acting as a go-between for management and employees is another important part of the job. Good communication skills and the ability to mediate disputes is a desirable skill.

Some positions can include:

  • Human Resources Specialist
  • Coordinator or Manager
  • Benefits Specialist or Manager
  • Labor Relations Specialist
  • Development/Training Specialist or Manager
  • Recruiting Coordinator
  • Technical Recruiter
  • Health and Safety Specialist and many others.

Upon completion of your human resources program, you will find there are plenty of potential careers available in human resources and other business-related careers.

Why Earn Your Degree Online?

human resource student studying online at home

One of the biggest reasons to earn your human resources degree online is that it can be convenient.

Even if you have a full-time job, children, or other responsibilities, you can earn your degree because you do the work from home (or wherever you choose) at your own pace.

Human Resources Curriculum & Courses

human resource students studying in university classroom

When it comes to a human resources curriculum, there are several courses you’ll likely have to take. In addition to your basic human resources course, you will also take classes in business administration.

Introduction to Financial Accounting – This course will give you an overview of accounting for business purposes, budgeting, understanding business taxes, assessing risks, and more.

Fundamentals of HR – This is a core human resources course that teaches you all about the responsibilities you’ll have as a human resources employee.

Employment Law – You will receive a basic understanding of employment law, covering such topics as safe working conditions, how many hours an employee can work, OSHA regulations, etc.

human resource managers drafting a contract during a meeting

Compensation and Benefits – In this course, you’ll learn about different types of benefits companies may provide to their employees and appropriate compensation, as well as how to effectively explain these things to others.

Effective Recruiting Techniques – Part of your job as an HR employee may be to help recruit. This course will teach you the best practices in recruiting for business.

Operations Management – Here you’ll learn a bit about management and how it relates to planning and directing a department when it comes to services, products, and staff.

Labor Relations – This course examines various workplace policies and teaches you how to deal with conflicts and disputes in the workplace.

human resource managers welcoming a trainee

Effective Employee Training – This class will prepare you for another important aspect of HR: training new hires. You will learn to effectively train employees, evaluate training programs, assess new hires, and more.

Organizational Development – This class covers behavioral science principles and teaches you to use them to improve your organization.

Workplace Diversity – Here you’ll learn how to work with people from diverse backgrounds to improve the inclusivity and diversity of your organization. You’ll learn how to create a healthy diverse workplace, including training staff to work well with all types of people.

In addition to these classes, you’ll be required to take other classes, including general education classes, with the above-specialized classes being some of the essential classes you take.

Human Resources Concentrations & Specialties

Human Resources Consultant talking to a colleague

Earning your bachelor’s degree in human resources means you may be eligible for plenty of jobs in human resources. However, there are also some specialty areas on which you can focus your talents and potentially open up even more jobs.

Strategic Management – With this specialization, you’ll focus more on business strategy. You’ll learn the skills to help you become strategically minded. You’ll gain the knowledge you need to have an overall understanding of the organization and how to manage it.

Benefits Administration – Here you will learn about employee benefits. You will learn how to explain your company’s benefits to employees. You will learn how to conduct research to keep up with the best and most competitive benefits, how much they’ll cost your company, the laws concerning them, and more.

Compensation Management – Similar to benefits administration, this concentration focuses on effective compensation strategies and techniques. As well as the analysis and implementation of employees’ compensation and benefits.

hr managers in a meeting

Employment and Labor Law – This is an in-depth concentration on employment law at the local, state, and federal levels. You’ll cover such topics as gender pay equality, salary vs. hourly pay, employment contracts and agreements, overtime, annual and sick leave policies, and more.

Recruiting – Although all human resources degree programs have a recruitment component to them, if you choose to specialize in recruiting, you’ll learn advanced recruitment techniques, as well as designing incentives for new employees and more.

Training and Development – This is an in-depth exploration of training new employees, developing and evaluating training programs, tracking organizational change, and conducting competency assessments of new hires.

Any of these concentrations can be beneficial when trying to figure out which area in human resources will lead you to the career of your dreams.

Online HR Degree Careers & Salaries

Online HR Degree Careers and Salaries

Whether your job title has the words “human resources” in it or not, there are a lot of jobs that are part of the human resources field and therefore, can potentially be had after earning a degree in human resources. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, these are nine of those jobs that pay the most.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Compensation and Benefits Managers $122,270
Human Resources Managers $116,720
Training and Development Managers $113,350
Administrative Services Managers $96,940
Labor Relations Manager $69,020
Labor Relations Specialists $69,020
Compensation, Benefits, and Job Analysis Specialists $64,560
Human Resources Consultant $61,920
Training and Development Specialist $61,210

Moving up into management level positions will generally pay the most money. However, even at the normal “specialist” range, the pay is quite good. Considering the national median salary for the average American right now is $48,672 a year, pursuing a career in human resources can be a very lucrative decision.

Accreditation

Online Human Resources Degree Accreditation

When you find a college or university in which you’re truly interested in enrolling, be sure to check if it’s regionally accredited. You can find out by visiting the school’s website or visiting the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs’ (DAPIP) website to see if your college of choice is regionally accredited.

Regional accreditation is a long-standing standard that shows future employers that your education has met the education’s industry requirements.

Regional accreditation also allows you to transfer class credits from one regionally accredited college to another. This is helpful when you decide to continue your education at another university, such as graduate school.

Human Resources Licensure & Certifications

human resource manager shaking hands with an applicant

There are licenses and certifications for which you can obtain which can make you a stronger candidate for your dream job. While none of these certifications are required for you to be hired into a human resources position, they can certainly give you an edge when going up against others for a new job in your field.

Professional in Human Resources (PHR) – This certification focuses on the actual operations of human resources and is meant for HR associates with both logistical and tactical HR experience.

Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) – This certification is usually sought by those who have earned their bachelor’s degree in human resources and are working to move into management positions.

Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR) – This certification has sections on the global development of human resources policies and global recruitment.

You can work towards earning one or all these certifications through the Human Resources Certification Institute, also known as the HRCI. A certification not only may help you get noticed by a future employer but it can help ensure your training is up-to-date.

Online Human Resources Degree Professional Organizations

human resource managers meeting other people during a seminar

There can be more than getting your degree if you want to build a successful human resource career. Joining a professional organization will allow you to network with other professionals who work in human resources.

Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) – provides those members with online learning and offline professional development workshops all over the world.

National Human Resources Association (NHRA) – the NHRA’s goal is to advance the careers of human resources professionals through networking, professional development services, and educational training.

Academy of Human Resource Development (AHRD) – seeks to develop the field of human resources through research and scholarly publications.

International Public Management Association for Human Resources (IPMA-HR) – provides HR professionals with professional development, education, resources, jobs, and human resources-related news.

International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) – is a non-profit professional association for human resources professionals that provides its members with the insights, skills, and knowledge they need to advance their HR careers.

In addition to networking, professional organizations can help you advance your career, keep you up-to-date with the most current laws, practices, techniques, and skills needed to stay at the top of your field.

Financial Aid

Financial Aid for Human resources degree students

There are quite a few financial aid options available to you if  you want to obtain your human resources degree.

You can apply for federal Pell Grants and federal loans from the federal government. Visit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid website to learn more about how you can qualify.

Pell Grants don’t need to be repaid. Federal loans must be paid back, along with accrued interest. Loans from the government sometimes have lower interest rates than other loans. You can also apply for loans from private banks, credit unions, or other loan institutions.

Another great option for getting financial help to pay for college is finding scholarships. You can find scholarships on your college’s website or by doing good old fashion research.

There are a lot of different types of scholarships out there. Some are awarded based on degree type, GPA, exceptional talent or ability, or a written paper on a specific topic.

While researching, look for businesses that award scholarships based on criteria that fit you. You may apply for as many scholarships as you need to apply for. In some cases, more than once.

Get a Human Resources Degree Online

Can You Get a Human Resources Degree Online?

Yes, you can get a human resources degree online.

There are many online and on-campus schools that offer online degree programs in human resources. In fact, you can pursue a human resources degree at all levels online. From an associates degree in human resources online all the way up to a doctoral degree.

What Is the Best Online School for Human Resources?

The best online school for human resources is the one that best fits your needs. Look for an accredited institution that has your desired major and fits your budget.

You’ll also want to check out reviews of the school to see if the teachers’ teaching styles and the online schedule work for you. If you find a school that matches your needs and your budget, that’s the best online school for you.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Human Resources Degree?

human resources manager meeting with colleagues

It generally takes 60 credit hours to earn an associate’s degree and 120 hours to earn a bachelor’s degree in human resources. Traditionally, this takes two years and four years respectively. Depending on a number of factors, it could take you less time or more.

For example, if you only take one or two classes a semester, it can take you longer. However, if you take a full load of classes each semester and then take summer classes too, you’ll likely finish faster.

What Kind of Degree Do You Need for Human Resources?

human resource managers interviewing a job applicant

The type of degree you’ll want to pursue (i.e. – associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, etc.) will depend on what type of job you hope to get after graduation. Some of the upper-level management positions will require bachelor’s degrees. If you want to move into a director’s position, that may take as much as a master’s degree.

However, if you just want a job as a specialist or general human resources employee, an associate’s degree will likely suffice for that. The key is to do your research. Find your dream job and look up the typical qualifications for someone who holds that job.

If you already work in human resources and are trying to advance your career, talk to your boss or immediate supervisor. Ask them what type of degree you’ll need to advance to the next few levels in the field.

What Kind of Topics Will I Focus on in Human Resources?

human resource managers in a meeting

In a human resources degree program, your courses should focus mostly on the types of responsibilities you’ll be required to perform in a human resources career.

These include employment law, labor relations, employee training, benefits and compensation, recruiting, workplace disputes/mediation, and other similar topics.

How Much Does an HR Degree Online Cost?

Different colleges will have different tuition rates. However, the average cost per credit hour for an online human resources degree is about $315.

Assuming a bachelor’s degree takes about 120 hours to earn, you’re looking at an average tuition cost of about $37,800.

What Kind of Job Can I Get With a Human Resources Bachelors Degree Online?

There are plenty of potential jobs you could get with a bachelor’s degree in human resources.

These include human resources manager, benefits and compensation manager, labor relations specialist, operations manager, human resources consultant, technical recruiter, training and development specialist, and many more.

Universities Offering Online Human Resources Degrees

Each of the universities included below are regionally accredited and offers human resources bachelor’s degree online.

#1  Bellevue University

Bellevue University

As a leader in Online learning, Bellevue University began in 1966, and over time many changes in developments have thrust this university into the forefront of public education. Bellevue University has a wide array of bachelor’s and master’s degree programs that allow students a flexible education in a variety of curriculum options.

  • BS in Management – Human Resources

Bellevue University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#2  Brenau University

Brenau University

Beginning as a way for women to have access to higher education, Brenau University started in 1878 as a private educational institution. Today, Brenau University serves both men and women seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees in various academic programs. Students attending BU have the option to learn online or on-campus.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

Brenau University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#3  Colorado Christian University

Colorado Christian University

Built in 1914 in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, Colorado Christian University is among the top private education facilities in the nation. Offering a variety of educational paths that lead to undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, and professional degrees, Colorado Christian University strives to meet the needs of all learners.

  • BS in Human Resource Management

Colorado Christian University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

#4  Columbia College

Columbia College

As a co-educational institution for higher learning, Columbia College began in 1854 and was initially designed to provide educational options to women. With growth and development, this private, faith-based college paves the way for both women and men to obtain an undergraduate or graduate degree in various academic areas.

  • BA in Human Resource Management
  • BS in Human Resource Management

Columbia College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#5  Concordia University – St Paul

Concordia University St Paul

Concordia University-St Paul is a private Christian school that was founded in 1893. Serving more than 5,000 students annually through e-learning and campus-based learning options, CU-St. Paul has over thirty academic programs that help students obtain an undergraduate or graduate degree. Students from all over the globe look to CUSP for educational needs.

  • BA in Human Resource Management

Concordia University – Saint Paul is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

#6  Davenport University

Davenport University

Davenport University opened its doors in 1866 as a private learning facility that assist learners in accessing vocational and personal education goals.

Providing an assortment undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees in many program areas, Davenport University allows students to participate in the education process via online or face to face learning options.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

Davenport University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#7  Dickinson State University

Dickinson State University

Dickinson State University began in 1918 and became a part of the North Dakota public education system in 1987. Known for its leadership programs, museums, and renowned learning facilities, Dickinson State University offers students a means to earn an associate, bachelor’s, or graduate degree.

Popular programs at DSU include human resources, business, and education.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

Dickinson State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#8  DeSales University

DeSales University

DeSales University was opened in 1964 by the Catholic Church as a private educational facility. With an emphasis on personal development and character education, each undergraduate and graduate degree offered at DU allows students to understand themselves and their global community better.

Some programs offered at DU include health care, human service, and business.

  • BA in Human Resource Management

DeSales University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#9  Florida International University

Florida International University

Florida International University was established in 1965 as a public research facility for higher learning. Offering a range of degree programs that lead to an undergraduate or graduate degree, FIT works with students worldwide to engage in discovery and innovation in health, science, and space exploration.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

Florida International University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#10  Florida Tech

Florida Tech

Born in 1958, the Florida Institute of Technology is a world-renowned private research-based facility where students can learn and discover through research-driven academics. Practical learning and technological advances at Florida Tech allow students to become industry leaders as they pursue an undergraduate or graduate degree.

  • BA in Human Resources Management

Florida Tech is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#11  Fort Hays State University

Fort Hays State University

Fort Hays State University began its extensive educational journey in 1902. As a public postsecondary school, Fort Hays gives students a dynamic college education at an affordable tuition rate.

Offering numerous undergraduate and graduate degree programs, FHSU allows students to choose a degree path that best fits their needs by including hybrid and e-learning options to its learning portfolio.

  • BBA in Management – Human Resource Management

FHSU is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#12  Geneva College

Geneva College

Offering a private education that is based on the Christian worldview, Geneva College opened in 1848 and has been serving as a liberal arts educational facility since.

With more than 1,400 students annually taking part in the numerous undergraduate and master’s programs offered at Geneva College, each student is immersed in humanities as part of their program.

  • BPS in Human Resources

Geneva College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

#13  Golden Gate University

Golden Gate University

Paving the way for higher education since 1901, Golden Gate University gives students access to private education at an affordable tuition rate. Thousands of students around the globe take part in the many undergraduate and graduate degrees offered at Golden Gate University.

Online programs at GGU allow more flexibility for military members and busy adults.

  • BA in Management – Human Resources Management
  • BS in Business – Human Resources Management

Golden Gate University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

#14  Hampton University

Hampton University

Offering an array of undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degree programs, Hampton University strives to blend hands-on learning with character building and real-world solutions to gives students a well-rounded education.

This historically black, research institution has been offering a world-class education since opening in 1868. Popular programs include education, human resource, and healthcare.

  • BS in Systems Organization and Management – Human Resources Management

Hampton University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#15  Indiana State University

Indiana State University

Indiana State University begin Offering public education in 1865. Offering more than 100 academic programs, Indiana State University helps students obtain an undergraduate, graduate, or doctoral degree. Indiana State University has a diverse student body that can engage in Campus activities or complete their studies through online learning.

  • BS in Human Resource Development for Higher Education and Industry

Indiana State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#16  LeTourneau University

LeTourneau University

LeTourneau University began in 1946 to assist in educating military veterans but now serves thousands of students each year through online and traditional learning.

Students enrolled in LeTourneau University Have access to various academic majors as they pursue an undergraduate or graduate degree. This faith-based, private school serves students of all religious denominations.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

LeTourneau University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#17  Liberty University

Liberty University

Liberty University has had a long-standing commitment to providing private, spiritual education to students around the world. Opening in 1771, Liberty has more than 600 academic programs for students to utilize in order to pursue an undergraduate, graduate, or doctoral degree.

Some of the programs available at Liberty include law, religious studies, engineering, and human resources.

  • BS in Business Administration – Human Resource Management

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#18  McKendree University

McKendree University

Seeking to educate others since 1828, McKendree University Is a private college that serves students throughout the nation and across 25 other countries. As the longest standing university in Illinois, McKendree University’s academic portfolio is profound.

Offering a variety of undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees, students at MU, have the ability to excel in their study area.

  • BBA in Human Resource Management

McKendree University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

#19  Metropolitan State University

Metropolitan State University

Allowing students to reach higher education since 1971, Metropolitan State University is a public postsecondary school with a high achievement record. Students attending Metropolitan State University have access to an array of academic fields leading to undergraduate, graduate, in doctoral degrees.

MSU offers a virtual learning format as well as traditional campuses.

  • BS in Human Resource Management

Metropolitan State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#20  Park University

Park University

Leading the way in education for those seeking careers in health care, technology, or business, Parker University is a private educational facility that opened in 1982. Parker University offers an array of associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and professional degrees and helps individuals gain practical skills during the education process.

  • BS in Management – Human Resources

Park University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

#21  Regent University

Regent University

As a private Christian school that opened in 1977, Regent University seeks to serve individuals looking to excel in their personal and professional goals.

Offering a wide array of academic programs, Regent University has a path for students to earn an associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree. RU serves students around the nation and throughout the world.

  • BS in Human Resource Management

Regent University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#22  Regis University

Regis University

In 1877 Regis University found its beginning as a private Jesuit school. Today, Regis University has a diverse student population and serves students throughout the world. It offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees that can be accessed through e-learning and in-person learning formats.

Some programs offered at are you include human resources, health care, and technology.

  • BS in Business – Human Resource Management
  • BS in Human Resource Management

Regis University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

#23  Saint Leo University

Saint Leo University

Saint Leo University was opened by the Catholic Church in 1889. This private, faith-based school provides a fundamental education to a diverse student body. Saint Leo University applies practical learning activities to each of the undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees offered.

With numerous academic programs to choose from students at SLU are able to reach their full potential.

  • BA in Human Resource Management

Saint Leo University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#24  Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University opened in 1932 and has hundreds of academic programs for students looking to gain higher education or meet personal career goals.

As a public University, SNHU has high standards for each of their associate, bachelor’s, and graduate degree programs. Allowing online access to many degree paths is just one way that SNHU helps students succeed.

  • BSBA in Human Resource Management

Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education, Inc.

#25  Thomas Edison State University

Thomas Edison State University

Founded in 1972, Thomas Edison State University has an array of options to assist students seeking to obtain an associate, bachelor’s, or graduate degree.

Students at this public University are allowed to submit comprehensive portfolios, professional experience, or participate in exams to prove their academic field competence. Online study options are also available at TESU.

  • BSBA in Human Resources Management/Organizational Management

Thomas Edison State University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#26  University of Alabama at Birmingham

University of Alabama at Birmingham

The University of Alabama at Birmingham began in 1969, severing as a public, academic facility. Today, UAB enrolls more than 22,000 students each year and offers over 140 academic majors and minors.

Each undergrad and graduate degree obtained from UAB is packed with research and practical skills to help students become leaders in their prospective fields.

  • BS in Human Resource Management

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#27  University of Maryland Global Campus

University of Maryland Global Campus

Opening in 1947, the University of Maryland Global Campus works to serve students who need flexibility in the educational process.

Offering an assortment of undergraduate and graduate degree options, students at UMGC are given the opportunity to turn personal skills and experiences into college degree credits. This public facility provides online in campus-based learning.

  • Bachelor’s in Human Resource Management

UMGC is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#28  University of the Incarnate Word

University of the Incarnate Word

Lying between San Antonio and Alamo Heights, Texas, The University of the Incarnate Word has been giving students a faith-based education since opening in 1881.

This private University believes that education starts at a young age and therefore operates several secondary schools as well as providing a means to earn an undergraduate or graduate degree.

  • BA in Human Resources

The University of the Incarnate Word is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

#29  Western Governors University

Western Governors University

Western Governors University was established in 1997 with the idea the education Can be achieved without walls or boundaries.

Offering students at private education at an affordable price, western governors University has access to a plethora of academic options that lead to bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Its technology-rich programs help students to prepare for 21st-century careers.

  • BSBA in Human Resource Management

Western Governors University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

#30  Wilmington University

Wilmington University

Founded in 1968, Wilmington University is based out of Pennsylvania but serves students throughout the world. This private educational facility has an assortment of academic programs that lead to an associate, bachelor’s, or graduate degree. Students attending Wilmington University have access to both online and campus-based program options.

  • BS in Human Resource Management

Wilmington University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Getting Your Human Resources Degree

training manager discussing during a company seminar

If you’re serious about earning your degree in human resources, there’s never been a better time than right now.

There are so many colleges out there offering online programs in human resources, some of which are 100% online, meaning you don’t have to come to a campus for anything, not even exams or finals. This is the most convenient way to earn a degree.

Furthermore, there are a ton of financial aid options out there as well. The federal Pell Grant just went up from $6,195 a year to $6,345, and there are also tons of scholarships for which you could potentially be eligible. Loans are another option. There’s no reason to let a lack of money stop you from enrolling.

Finally, the average base rate of pay for people in human resources careers – especially people with bachelor’s degrees in these careers – is higher than the national average, so this could potentially be a very lucrative degree for you to pursue.

Don’t waste any more time debating whether you should enroll. If a career in human resources is your dream, you should definitely enroll today.

Sarah Walker
WRITTEN BY
Sarah Walker