Accredited colleges and universities have had their educational programs and faculty evaluated by an outside agency. Those agencies ensure that the school provides a high-quality education to its students, so to have your degree recognized by employers, it’s critical to attend an accredited institution. Below you’ll find information on higher education in the state and helpful resources on online colleges in Hawaii.
- School Search
- Accreditation Agencies
- Education Links
- Notable Schools
Accredited Online Colleges Database
The following agencies accredit schools in Hawaii. This list includes institution-wide accreditors. Other agencies, not included here, are responsible for program-specific accreditation. For details on program-specific accreditation, explore our subject pages.
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)
- Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)
- Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET)
- Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS)
- Council on Occupational Education (COE)
- Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)
- Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS)
Higher Education Links
For more information about higher education reforms and propositions in the state, you can explore Hawaii’s higher education boards and council websites.
Picking a school can be a daunting task, especially when considering the sheer number of institutions there are in the state. Our database below can help with narrowing down your options for online colleges in Hawaii. In addition, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most notable accredited online and campus-based schools in the state to help you begin your school search.
Hawaii has a single public university, but it is a large and well-established system encompassing many campus locations and curriculum programs. Learn more about it below.
University of Hawaii
The University of Hawaii System (UH) is the only public university in the state. UH includes ten campuses and dozens of educational, training,and research centers spread across six Hawaiian islands.The largest campus is in Manoa, with 20,426 students enrolled. One of the values UH espouses is “aloha,” which in the Hawaiian language stands for a code of ethics that includes living peacefully and expressing compassion for other living beings. Since UH is located in the Pacific Ocean, it provides opportunities for study, internship, and collaboration for students with Asia and the Pacific Rim, which can provide unique expertise and opportunities in a global economy.
Hawaii boasts a large private university as well as smaller, religiously-affiliated institutions. All are surround by the natural beauty of the Hawaiian islands. Learn more about Hawaii’s notable private universities below.
Hawaii Pacific University
Founded in 1965, Hawaii Pacific University is the largest private university in the state, with 7,463 students enrolled. The school’s location attracts a student body that is exceptionally varied and diverse, with students and faculty from all 50 states and more than 80 countries. The school is affiliated with the Oceanic Institute, a 56-acre aquaculture research facility. Hawaii Pacific is also climbing up the national rankings, rising 16 places in the U.S. News and World Report’s Best Regional Universities list between 2011 and 2013. Hawaii Pacific University offers more than 50 undergraduate degree programs, including a degree in Asian and Pacific studies.
Brigham Young University-Hawaii
Brigham Young University-Hawaii ranks 18th on the U.S. News and World Report Regional College List. BYUH enrolled 3,166 students for 2013-2014. Founded by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 1955 and incorporates both spiritual and secular elements in its educational system, including LDS mission opportunities for students and weekly campus-wide spiritual devotionals. Students at Brigham Young University-Hawaii enjoy 95 rural acres of campus surrounded by beautiful mountains and Pacific coastline.
Chaminade University of Honolulu
Chaminade University is the only Catholic university in Hawaii, and has 2,912 students enrolled. The university was founded by the Marianists in 1955, and has continued to espouse the progressive and inclusive ideals of that group ever since. Students at Chaminade University enjoy an average class size of 18 and a faculty-student ratio of 11 to 1. The school encourages its students to explore the intersection between faith and academics through open discussion and independent study, as well as focusing on academics through its liberal arts degree programs.