OnlineU Ranks DCTC #16 in Nation

2021 Best Online Associate Degrees

OnlineU has ranked Dakota County Technical College #16 nationally for colleges with the highest return on investment for 2021 Best Online Associate Degrees. OnlineU is the new flagship product of Optimal, a leading higher education data research company.

“Our rankings are the first to be based on the median salary and mean debt numbers found in the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard,” reported Adria Vaughan, Optimal representative. “In order to reflect mid-career ROI, we ranked schools based on graduates’ salaries and debt payments for 10 years after graduation, accounting for standard salary growth and interest on debt payments. This formula gives each school a percentile ‘ROI score’ that reflects how the salary and debt of each school’s programs compare to similar ones. The ranking list also includes a manually researched tuition rate for each school.”

Online Courses at DCTC

Dakota County Technical College offers several programs and courses online. Online learning is designed for students who need a convenient schedule and flexibility. Online credit courses follow the traditional semester schedule and offer the same coursework as an on-campus course, but provide flexibility for completing the work via the internet.

Course Types

  • Online courses are delivered with one or less on-campus meetings. Some courses may require exams to be proctored either on campus or other proctor location. View online course schedule
  • Hybrid or blended courses are a combination of both on-campus classroom meetings and online coursework. They will have fewer meeting times than a traditional classroom course, but will require students to review course materials, participate in discussion and complete assignments via the internet. View blended/hybrid course schedule.

Online programs offered by DCTC

Registration for courses

  • Future students can begin the registration process at Apply to DCTC.
  • Current students can register online at Register for Courses.
Optimal launches OnlineU to lead students through new remote education landscape

The new site will contain 2021 rankings of the best online colleges for ROI, as well as a new online magazine tackling emerging issues.

KIRKLAND, Washington • (PRWEB) • October 14, 2020

As online learning continues to gain prevalence as a result of the pandemic, it is more important than ever for prospective students to have access to comprehensive, quality resources that can help guide and inform their decision-making process.

In order to answer that call, today, higher education data research company Optimal is announcing the launch of its new flagship product OnlineU (formerly Guide to Online Schools) as a premier authority and ultimate destination to help students navigate through this new remote landscape. To better address student needs, Optimal has extensively upgraded the new site with a complete redesign, new rankings for best online colleges for ROI, and numerous thought-leadership articles, all providing students with the data, information and insights needed to make the best possible decisions for their circumstances.

“The pandemic has significantly accelerated the growth of online learning and delivered us into a territory where there is not a lot of qualitative or quantitative information yet,” said Optimal founder and CEO Sung Rhee. “OnlineU is looking to fill this space with our data-driven articles and outcomes-based rankings focused specifically on return on investment, so students are able to vet the value and outcome of their choices rather than playing the guessing game.”


DCTC ranked #5 in Minnesota

OnlineU also ranked DCTC #5 on 2020 Best Online Community Colleges in Minnesota. The rankings included technical colleges, community colleges, and community & technical colleges in the state.

According to OnlineU: “Annual tuition numbers for these schools were manually researched and represent in-state tuition at the associate degree level. Unless otherwise stated, associate programs were assumed to require two years to complete.”

Fully Online Status

Schools with programs that require some on-campus coursework were still considered for our rankings if all in-person work could be completed in two weeks or less. This allows students to retain their current employment or attend to other personal responsibilities.

Data Sources

Program data including available degrees, tuition rates, and details about program coursework were collected from schools’ official websites, reflecting data for the 2019-2020 school year. Programmatic accreditations and profit statuses of schools were collected from official websites of the accreditation agencies or from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).

Learn more about OnlineU methodology…

Learn more about online learning at DCTC by contacting:


Need to know more about learning online? Visit: New to Online Classes?