The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ranks first on Kiplinger’s list of best values for public colleges for the 12th year in a row. UNC- Chapel Hill has topped the list for as long as the financial and business magazine Kiplinger has ranked the country’s top schools by value.
The University of Virginia (UVA); the University of Florida; the College of William and Mary; the University of Maryland, College Park; the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); New College of Florida; the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley); State University of New York (SUNY)- Geneseo; and the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), round out the top 10.
UNC Chapel Hill also topped the Princeton Review’s list of Best Value Colleges for public schools.
Kiplinger ranked the schools based 45% on cost factors and 55% on quality factors. The list factored in tuition, fee, and room and board costs; the number of students who receive need-based and non-need-based aid; the amount of aid the average student receives; and average student debt upon graduation. Rankings were also determined based on admissions competitiveness, four-year and six-year graduation rates, and the academic support available to students.
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Most of the schools on the list of Kiplinger’s top 100 schools offer four-year graduation rates that far surpass the national average of 31%. The University of Virginia boasts the highest four-year graduation rate, at 87%, followed by the College of William and Mary, at 85%, and UNC- Chapel Hill, at 77%.
Rankings also provided insight into the best values in public colleges for out-of-state students. First on the list is SUNY-Geneseo, followed by UNC-Chapel Hill, SUNY-Binghamton, College of New Jersey, College of William and Mary, UCLA, UC Berkeley, SUNY- Stony Brook, and University of Maryland College Park.
Many top schools on the list also offer online degree programs. UNC Chapel Hill offers a variety of master’s and certificate programs, primarily in the fields of health and business. The University of Virginia offers an online bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies as well as graduate degrees in fields such as engineering and physics education, and more than 20 certificates in business, criminal justice, e-marketing, and public administration. The University of Florida offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in business, agriculture, fine arts, fire science, health, and criminal justice, and offers specialized master’s degree programs in music education, urban and regional planning, and agroecology. The University of Maryland’s flagship campus in College Park offers online and blended degree programs in economics, public health, leadership education, and journalism.
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