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Best Value Colleges & Universities
Top 100 Most Affordable Consensus Ranked Schools 2021

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When it comes to college, affordability isn’t cheap – keeping costs down and student loan debt low is every student’s worry. That’s why College Consensus is ranking the best value colleges and universities for 2021!

In the age of rapidly rising tuition – college costs have risen far faster than the rate of inflation in the 21st century, and even faster than financial aid – affordability is no joke. With our 2021 Consensus Ranking of the 100 Best Value Colleges & Universities, College Consensus is lighting up the way to a college education students can actually afford. With student debt representing the second-largest consumer debt class (after mortgages), earning a college degree without setting yourself up for a life of loan repayment – which never goes away, not even in bankruptcy – has turned into the Holy Grail: much sought, found by only a lucky few. If you’re interested in an affordable online degree, be sure to check out our ranking of the Best Value Online Colleges & Universities.

Recommended Online Colleges & Universities

To create our ranking of the 100 Best Value Colleges & Universities we started with schools that qualified for a College Consensus score and then ordered them from lowest to highest according to the most recent out-of-state tuition & fee information published by the National Center for Education Statistics. College Consensus is happy to show prospective students and their families where to find a school that not only won’t break the bank, but will also provide a quality, respected degree to take into the marketplace.

1

Brigham Young University-Provo
Provo, UT

provo byu
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
76.1
College Consensus
70
Publisher Consensus
82.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
5790

2

North Dakota State University-Main Campus
Fargo, ND

NDSU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
44.7
College Consensus
18.3
Publisher Consensus
71.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
13892

3

Eastern Illinois University
Charleston, IL

Eastern Illinois University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
72.8
College Consensus
73.7
Publisher Consensus
71.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
14269

4

CUNY City College
New York, NY

city college CUNY
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
53.6
College Consensus
42.5
Publisher Consensus
64.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15290

5

Truman State University
Kirksville, MO

truman
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
70.4
College Consensus
68.9
Publisher Consensus
71.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15314

6

CUNY Hunter College
New York, NY

Hunter College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.3
College Consensus
60.8
Publisher Consensus
63.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15332

7

CUNY Lehman College
Bronx, NY

CUNY Lehman College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.1
College Consensus
62.6
Publisher Consensus
65.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15360

8

CUNY Brooklyn College
Brooklyn, NY

Brooklyn College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
65.5
College Consensus
64.8
Publisher Consensus
66.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15390

9

CUNY Bernard M Baruch College
New York, NY

Baruch College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
68
College Consensus
70.7
Publisher Consensus
65.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15412

10

CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice
New York, NY

CUNY John Jay College Criminal Justice
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
72.9
College Consensus
73.1
Publisher Consensus
72.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15420

11

CUNY Queens College
Queens, NY

CUNY Queens College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.2
College Consensus
62.5
Publisher Consensus
63.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15488

12

University of Minnesota-Morris
Morris, MN

University of Minnesota Morris
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
60
College Consensus
44.6
Publisher Consensus
75.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15632

13

Winona State University
Winona, MN

Winona State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.7
College Consensus
55.9
Publisher Consensus
71.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15766

14

University of North Dakota
Grand Forks, ND

UND
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
40.3
College Consensus
11.2
Publisher Consensus
69.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
15895

15

Fitchburg State University
Fitchburg, MA

Fitchburg State
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
50.6
College Consensus
32.3
Publisher Consensus
68.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
16690

16

Westfield State University
Westfield, MA

Westfield State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
59.6
College Consensus
52.4
Publisher Consensus
66.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
16929

17

University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Stevens Point, WI

University Wisconsin Stevens Point
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
61.7
College Consensus
49.6
Publisher Consensus
73.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
16980

18

University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire
Eau Claire, WI

University Wisconsin Eau Claire
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
65.2
College Consensus
55.2
Publisher Consensus
75.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
17115

19

University of South Florida-Main Campus
Tampa, FL

University South Florida Main
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
60.6
College Consensus
50.4
Publisher Consensus
70.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
17324

20

University of Wisconsin-Stout
Menomonie, WI

nathan dumlao ewGMqs2tmJI unsplash
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
53.4
College Consensus
30.7
Publisher Consensus
76.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
17430

21

Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
Tallahassee, FL

FAMU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
48.5
College Consensus
24.3
Publisher Consensus
72.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
17725

22

University of Wisconsin-La Crosse
La Crosse, WI

University Wisconsin La Crosse
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
69.1
College Consensus
61
Publisher Consensus
77.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
17946

23

University of Wyoming
Laramie, WY

Wyoming
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
53
College Consensus
32.4
Publisher Consensus
73.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18151

24

Birmingham-Southern College
Birmingham, AL

Birmingham Southern
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
53.7
College Consensus
38.9
Publisher Consensus
68.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18238

25

State University of New York at New Paltz
New Paltz, NY

new paltz
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
69
College Consensus
65.8
Publisher Consensus
72.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18412

26

SUNY Polytechnic Institute
Utica, NY

sunypoly exterior utica
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.5
College Consensus
65.7
Publisher Consensus
59.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18413

27

SUNY Maritime College
Throggs Neck, NY

backpacks college college students 1454360
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.6
College Consensus
67.5
Publisher Consensus
61.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18418

28

Farmingdale State College
Farmingdale, NY

Farmingdale State College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
67.5
College Consensus
73
Publisher Consensus
61.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18448

29

California State University-Fresno
Fresno, CA

Fresno State
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
68.9
College Consensus
67.8
Publisher Consensus
70
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18469

30

SUNY College at Brockport
Brockport, NY

SUNYBrockport
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.8
College Consensus
57.1
Publisher Consensus
70.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18590

31

SUNY College at Oswego
Oswego, NY

SUNY College Oswego
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.5
College Consensus
59.4
Publisher Consensus
67.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18627

32

California State University-Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA

Calstate LosAngeles
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
69
College Consensus
72.5
Publisher Consensus
65.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18648

33

SUNY Oneonta
Oneonta, NY

SUNY Oneonta
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.9
College Consensus
55.7
Publisher Consensus
70.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18650

34

California State University-Channel Islands
Camarillo, CA

nicole honeywill dGxOgeXAXm8 unsplash
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
74.5
College Consensus
74.3
Publisher Consensus
74.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18682

35

California State University-Long Beach
Long Beach, CA

California State University Long Beach
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
79.6
College Consensus
85
Publisher Consensus
74.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18714

36

SUNY Cortland
Cortland, NY

Cortland oldmain building
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.9
College Consensus
57
Publisher Consensus
68.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18716

37

California State University-San Bernardino
San Bernardino, CA

CSU San Bernardino 1
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
78
College Consensus
85.5
Publisher Consensus
70.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18765

38

SUNY College at Plattsburgh
Plattsburgh, NY

SUNY plattsburgh
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.8
College Consensus
57.9
Publisher Consensus
67.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18782

39

Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL

fsu
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
72.7
College Consensus
67.5
Publisher Consensus
78
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18786

40

California State University-Fullerton
Fullerton, CA

California State University Fullerton
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
70.9
College Consensus
72.2
Publisher Consensus
69.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18804

41

California State University-Dominguez Hills
Carson, CA

auditorium benches chairs 207691
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
76.9
College Consensus
82.8
Publisher Consensus
71.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18826

42

SUNY at Purchase College
Purchase, NY

bookcase books bookshelves 1850021
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
52.3
College Consensus
40.7
Publisher Consensus
63.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18833

43

SUNY College at Geneseo
Geneseo, NY

Geneseo SUNY
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.2
College Consensus
55.8
Publisher Consensus
72.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18837

44

California State University-Northridge
Northridge, CA

CSU Northridge
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
77.8
College Consensus
89.3
Publisher Consensus
66.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18857

45

California State University-East Bay
Hayward, CA

nicole honeywill dGxOgeXAXm8 unsplash
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64
College Consensus
66
Publisher Consensus
61.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18880

46

University of Minnesota-Duluth
Duluth, MN

University of Minnesota Duluth
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
61.8
College Consensus
53.2
Publisher Consensus
70.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18880

47

Florida International University
Miami, FL

FIU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
58.9
College Consensus
46.4
Publisher Consensus
71.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18963

48

California State University Maritime Academy
Vallejo, CA

California Maritime Academy
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
65.6
College Consensus
74.4
Publisher Consensus
56.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
18996

49

California State University-Monterey Bay
Seaside, CA

backpacks college college students 1454360
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
70.3
College Consensus
75.6
Publisher Consensus
65
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19023

50

SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry
Syracuse, NY

ESF campus
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.6
College Consensus
54.4
Publisher Consensus
70.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19040

51

San Francisco State University
San Francisco, CA

San Francisco State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
69.2
College Consensus
73.5
Publisher Consensus
65
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19146

52

The University of West Florida
Pensacola, FL

University West Florida
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
61.5
College Consensus
49.5
Publisher Consensus
73.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19241

53

California State University-Sacramento
Sacramento, CA

CSU Sacramento
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
76.3
College Consensus
85.9
Publisher Consensus
66.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19248

54

Texas Tech University
Lubbock, TX

Texas Tech University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
50.3
College Consensus
25.4
Publisher Consensus
75.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19260

55

California State Polytechnic University-Pomona
Pomona, CA

CalyPoly Pomona
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
72.7
College Consensus
72.9
Publisher Consensus
72.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19276

56

California State University-Bakersfield
Bakersfield, CA

nathan dumlao ewGMqs2tmJI unsplash
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.1
College Consensus
61.7
Publisher Consensus
62.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19299

57

San Diego State University
San Diego, CA

sdsu 1
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
57.5
College Consensus
45.4
Publisher Consensus
69.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19390

58

California State University-Stanislaus
Turlock, CA

CSU Stanislaus
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
82.9
College Consensus
89.7
Publisher Consensus
76.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19422

59

University of Maine at Farmington
Farmington, ME

Maine Farmington
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
68.8
College Consensus
65.5
Publisher Consensus
72.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19514

60

California State University-San Marcos
San Marcos, CA

CSU San Marcos
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
66.9
College Consensus
64.4
Publisher Consensus
69.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19597

61

College of the Ozarks
Point Lookout, MO

chapel college of the ozarks orig
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
80.2
College Consensus
92.3
Publisher Consensus
68
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19660

62

California State University-Chico
Chico, CA

California State University Chico
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
82.6
College Consensus
89.7
Publisher Consensus
75.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19686

63

San Jose State University
San Jose, CA

San Jose State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
66.6
College Consensus
67
Publisher Consensus
66.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19732

64

Sonoma State University
Rohnert Park, CA

Sonoma State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.9
College Consensus
59.3
Publisher Consensus
68.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
19760

65

Salisbury University
Salisbury, MD

Salisbury University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
67
College Consensus
62.8
Publisher Consensus
71.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
20110

66

University of Alabama at Birmingham
Birmingham, AL

UAB
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
49.4
College Consensus
24.1
Publisher Consensus
74.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
20400

67

Montclair State University
Montclair, NJ

Montclair State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64
College Consensus
59.4
Publisher Consensus
68.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
21033

68

University of Northern Iowa
Cedar Falls, IA

U Northern Iowa
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
73.9
College Consensus
71.3
Publisher Consensus
76.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
21222

69

University of North Carolina Wilmington
Wilmington, NC

unc Wilmington
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
48.2
College Consensus
19.9
Publisher Consensus
76.6
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
21246

70

University of Houston
Houston, TX

University of Houston
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
47.4
College Consensus
26.9
Publisher Consensus
67.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
21749

71

Appalachian State University
Boone, NC

App state
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
73.1
College Consensus
68.3
Publisher Consensus
77.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
22216

72

West Chester University of Pennsylvania
West Chester, PA

West Chester University Pennsylvania
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.3
College Consensus
61.4
Publisher Consensus
67.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
22245

73

University of Central Florida
Orlando, FL

University Central Florida
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.6
College Consensus
55.4
Publisher Consensus
73.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
22467

74

Lincoln Memorial University
Harrogate, TN

Lincoln Memorial University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
42.9
College Consensus
12.6
Publisher Consensus
73.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
22740

75

Concordia University-Saint Paul
Saint Paul, MN

auditorium benches chairs 207691
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
59.7
College Consensus
47.1
Publisher Consensus
72.2
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
22800

76

Rhode Island College
Providence, RI

rhode island college
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
52.5
College Consensus
43
Publisher Consensus
62
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23043

77

Radford University
Radford, VA

bookcase books bookshelves 1850021
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.7
College Consensus
56.2
Publisher Consensus
73.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23432

78

Brescia University
Owensboro, KY

brescia University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.4
College Consensus
55.9
Publisher Consensus
72.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23500

79

East Carolina University
Greenville, NC

East Carolina University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
55
College Consensus
31.6
Publisher Consensus
78.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23515

80

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology
Socorro, NM

new mexico tech campus
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
70.1
College Consensus
67.8
Publisher Consensus
72.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23524

81

Keene State College
Keene, NH

keene state college
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
72.4
College Consensus
71.9
Publisher Consensus
72.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23756

82

California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo
San Luis Obispo, CA

CalPoly
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
76.5
College Consensus
76.3
Publisher Consensus
76.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23833

83

Mississippi State University
Mississippi State, MS

Mississippi State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
46.5
College Consensus
15
Publisher Consensus
78.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23950

84

Central Washington University
Ellensburg, WA

Central Washington University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
67
College Consensus
65.5
Publisher Consensus
68.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23954

85

Wesleyan College
Macon, GA

Wesleyan College
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
54.2
College Consensus
38
Publisher Consensus
70.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
23970

86

Ramapo College of New Jersey
Mahwah, NJ

ramapo university
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
59.9
College Consensus
52.9
Publisher Consensus
66.8
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
24229

87

Towson University
Towson, MD

towson university
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.2
College Consensus
59.7
Publisher Consensus
68.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
24334

88

Iowa State University
Ames, IA

ISU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
66.3
College Consensus
56.8
Publisher Consensus
75.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
24508

89

Western Washington University
Bellingham, WA

WesternWashingtonU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
75.5
College Consensus
77.3
Publisher Consensus
73.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
24690

90

Massachusetts Maritime Academy
Buzzards Bay, MA

nicole honeywill dGxOgeXAXm8 unsplash
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
79.4
College Consensus
94.5
Publisher Consensus
64.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
25752

91

University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus
Denver, CO

University of Colorado DenverAnschutz Medical Campus
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
51.8
College Consensus
30.8
Publisher Consensus
72.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
25823

92

University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE

unl
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
54.7
College Consensus
38.8
Publisher Consensus
70.5
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
25828

93

Illinois State University
Normal, IL

Illinois State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.9
College Consensus
55.1
Publisher Consensus
70.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
26356

94

Washington State University
Pullman, WA

Washington State University
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
62.6
College Consensus
51.5
Publisher Consensus
73.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
26419

95

University of Michigan-Dearborn
Dearborn, MI

Michigan Dearborn
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
69.8
College Consensus
68
Publisher Consensus
71.7
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
26420

96

University of Oklahoma-Norman Campus
Norman, OK

ou
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
60.6
College Consensus
45.3
Publisher Consensus
75.9
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
27144

97

Howard University
Washington, DC

howard u
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.9
College Consensus
59.5
Publisher Consensus
70.3
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
27206

98

University of Utah
Salt Lake City, UT

University of utah
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
63.1
College Consensus
54.1
Publisher Consensus
72
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
27220

99

Indiana Wesleyan University-Marion
Marion, IN

IWU
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
64.2
College Consensus
54.1
Publisher Consensus
74.4
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
27296

100

University of Missouri-St Louis
Saint Louis, MO

University of Missouri St Louis
AVG: 0 AVG: 0
41
College Consensus
15.9
Publisher Consensus
66.1
Student Consensus
Last Accessed: March, 2021
Out-of-state tuition & fees
27342

What Makes the Most Affordable Colleges and Universities?

So how does College Consensus determine what makes the most affordable colleges and universities? It’s pretty easy to say what makes a college affordable: low tuition, obviously. But as for what makes an affordable college really worthwhile – that takes a little more explanation. After all, it’s no secret that college is more expensive than ever. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average tuition rate for public universities in 2017-2018 academic year was more than $20,000; by contrast, 30 years earlier, the same education would have cost $3800. But everything was cheaper in 1985 – except that, adjusted for inflation, 1985 tuition was less than $8500 in 2018 dollars. That means tuition is going up insanely fast – way faster than inflation.

That raises the question: is a college degree still worth it? The short answer is, yes, almost without a doubt. Why? Because, on average, people still make a lot more money with a college degree than without – more than 60% higher, according to NCES data. Male and female, young and old, every race, the stats hold true: a college degree holder makes more money than a worker without a college degree. However, that average can be a bit misleading. For one, a Georgetown University study shows that the major you choose – and, therefore, the career you go into – makes a huge difference. Engineering and science majors make far more than the average, while social work and education majors make far lower; business majors fall right along the median. Some jobs just make more money than others.

Meanwhile, the average recent graduate is more than $37,000 in student debt, and considering that many people have no student debt, thanks to loans, grants, or helpful parents, that means plenty of graduates are entering with workforce with far more debt than that. So, when you’re thinking about an affordable college degree, the most affordable colleges and universities aren’t just the ones with the lowest tuition – they’re the ones with the most value.(And almost as good as a tuition-free college). So plan carefully; think very seriously about how you are preparing for college, because financial smarts are just as important as book smarts. Reasonable costs, market-ready skills, in-demand professions: these are the things that make the most affordable colleges in the US a smart investment for tomorrow’s professionals and leaders.

How Do We Rank the Most Affordable Colleges & Universities?

College Consensus is the most unique college ranking site you’re likely to see. The Consensus method combines two different sets of data: first, we gather results from the most reputable rankings, including Money, Wall Street Journal, US News & World Report, Wallethub, and Washington Monthly. Then, we pull together the most legitimate, verified student reviews from sites like Students Review, My Plan, Cappex, and others. Combining the Publisher Rating and the Student Review Rating, we calculate the Consensus Rating, which provides a solid average that we use to rank colleges and universities across a wide range of specializations, regions, and other categories.

For the Consensus ranking of the Best Value Colleges & Universities, College Consensus took a long, detailed look at the colleges and universities with the lowest tuition rates. That makes for a highly diverse assortment of colleges, including large regional public universities, small liberal arts colleges, evangelical and Catholic colleges, military academies, historically black colleges and universities, and even some of the fastest-growing up-and-coming universities in the US. The most affordable colleges and universities recognize that college students are real people with real needs, real dreams, and real futures, and they work to make sure students can live up to their potential without being dragged down by debt. They’re the heroes in the higher education landscape, and with the College Consensus ranking, they get to stand on their own merits, recognized not only for excellence and reputation, but for being the most affordable colleges in the US.

What’s Different About the College Consensus Ranking?

Most college rankings don’t take the long view – they look at their own particular criteria and make their rankings from a narrow set of qualifications. That’s precisely where College Consensus is different. Instead of working from its own subjective standards, College Consensus aggregates rankings and reviews to take in all of the perspectives. College Consensus brings together the expert assessment and the lived experience, all treated on an equal plane so that no voice gets the priority. With the Consensus method, every college and university gets its due place in the higher education landscape. Read more about our ranking methodology and sources on our about page.

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