SUNY at Albany was founded in May 1844 as New York State’s first chartered teachers college with an inaugural class of 29 at its State Street location. Reflecting Governor Nelson A. Rockfeller’s new vision, the College for Teachers at Albany changed its name, expanded to a four-year liberal arts model, and moved to Washington Avenue by 1959. Designed by Edward Durrell Stone, SUNY at Albany’s 586-acre Hudson River campus in Forbes 39th best city for education started growing online education 20 years ago. Now endowed for $59.3 million, the University at Albany is enrolling 14,150 undergrad and 4,930 post-grad Great Danes in the America East Conference. Its nine colleges have graduated noteworthy alums like Harvey Milk, Ed Burns, and Marcia Brown.

According to U.S. News & World Report, SUNY at Albany is the 151st best national university, 78th top public college, and sixth best online graduate education provider. According to Niche, the University at Albany stands as America’s 115th most diverse school, 271st best Common App college, and 339th most liberal university. Forbes ranked SUNY at Albany as the 140th best research institute and 131st top value. The University at Albany landed as the 257th best U.S. college on the Times Higher Education ranking. The Center for World University Rankings applauded Albany as the 165th best faculty and 202nd highest quality education. In Washington Monthly, SUNY at Albany is the 76th best national university and 86th top northeastern buck.

SUNY at Albany Accreditation Details

Under Provost James Stellar, PhD, the University at Albany had its 10-year regional accreditation renewed in 2015 by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Continuously since 1938, this agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education has reviewed Albany’s 50 bachelor’s and 125 graduate majors at the Guilderland, Rensselaer and online campuses. Online SUNY at Albany master’s programs also maintain specialized accreditation from the following:

  • Council on Education for Public Health
  • Teacher Education Accreditation Council

SUNY at Albany Application Requirements

Logging into the online SUNY at Albany classroom means passing the ‘selective’ admission rate of 54 percent that intensifies for post-grads. Master’s applicants need to certify their completion of baccalaureate study at a regionally accredited, four-year college. Equivalent foreign degrees are acceptable if students are fluent in English with a minimum TOEFL IBT score of 100 or PBT score of 600. Online master’s programs expect a 3.0 GPA or better in the last 60 undergrad hours, but GPAs of 275-2.99 are considered conditionally. On average, admitted graduates have a GRE score of 159 verbal and 161 quantitative. Most education programs online will also require K-12 teaching license from any state.

The University of Albany SUNY has gone paper-free for online graduate applications completed by username and PIN for a $75 non-refundable fee. If needed, supportive materials can be emailed to graduate@albany.edu or sent to UAB 121 at 1400 Washington Avenue in Albany, NY 12222. Graduate deadlines vary greatly; for example, the Master’s in Public Health program accepts applicants until April 1st while the Master’s in Childhood Education accepts applications until August 22nd or October 17th. Online master’s programs typically request the following:

  • Official transcripts of all schools attended
  • Typed statement of background and goals
  • Contact info for three professional references
  • Current résumé or curriculum vitae
  • Latest reports for GRE/MAT/Praxis scores
  • Teaching certification papers if applicable

Tuition and Financial Aid

Labeled Kiplinger’s 81st best public value, SUNY at Albany has affordable online master’s programs that cut transportation costs along with the $12,942 room and board. New York residents taking online master’s courses full-time pay $5,435 for tuition and $958 for fees with a $6,393 total per semester. Non-residents receive a break from the standard $12,063 rate by paying $6,520 for tuition and $570 for fees with a $7,090 total each term. Therefore, the annual cost of full-time attendance online is $12,786 in-state and $14,180 out-of-state.

The NCES reports that 64 percent of full-time SUNY at Albany Great Danes receive financial assistance for a mean amount of $7,760. The Student Financial Aid Center administers several institutional funds like the Carson Carr Diversity Fellowship, Tuition Scholarship Award, Arvid J. Burke Scholarship, Elizabeth Christen Scholarship, Ralph W. Harbison Fellowship, Dr. Kimberly E. Esterman Memorial Award, David Axelrod Fellowship, and Nancy Persily Memorial Scholarship for post-grads. The Graduate Opportunity Program offers need-based aid for former EOP and HEOP students. Graduates could claim half assistantships worth $4,692 or full assistantships worth $9,385. External awards, including the Javits Fellowship, James Madison Memorial Fellowship, or Bakari Lake-Sample Scholarship, may be accepted. Borrowing the Direct Unsubsidized or Grad PLUS loans is another backup plan.

Online Degrees Available

On Blackboard Learn, SUNY at Albany places ‘Quality Above All’ when delivering five master’s programs wholly online for flexibility. Nine graduate certificates like International Education Management and Public Health Surveillance are web-based along with a single Bachelors of Science in Informatics. Directed by Dr. Peter Shea, the Online Learning Division has an 18:1 student-faculty ratio for connecting with the university’s same esteemed professors. Student services, including 24/7 tech support, library services, and advisement, are available for 150+ online courses. Two sample online master’s programs from SUNY at Albany are Public Health Practice and Reading Education.

Public Health Practice 

Accredited by the CEPH, Albany’s Master’s in Public Health is a part-time, competency-based online program starting every spring, summer, and fall for post-bachelor’s students to develop the community leadership skills for promoting healthy disease control initiatives. Chaired by Dr. Brenda Kirkwood, the 51-credit master’s blends multidisciplinary knowledge with courses from emergency preparedness to statistical inference and epidemiology. Before the Master’s in Public Health capstone, aspiring practitioners complete 720-hour internships at pre-approved agencies, such as Albany Stratton VA or NYS Department of Health.

Reading Education

Launched in 2013 under Dr. Virginia Goatley, the Masters in Reading Education at the University of Albany is a full- or part-time, non-certification program where post-grads sharpen their strategies for teaching literacy outside of traditional K-12 districts. The 30-credit degree takes just 18 months for tackling online courses like media literacy, English language learning, education assessment, and child development. Two field practica are required in non-school settings, such as prisons, adult community centers, private tutors, and libraries, before the capstone research.

Related Resource: Top 30 Online MPA Degree Programs

Other online master’s degree programs from SUNY at Albany are Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology, Childhood Education, and Early Childhood.