U.S. Academic Quality per Dollar Ranking

The Best Value Colleges in America by Academic Quality per Dollar for 2021

Best Value Colleges in America by Academic Quality per Dollar

These colleges are CollegeCalc's 2021 ranking of the best value colleges in America based on academic value per tuition dollar. While many of these schools don't have low list prices, attractive net prices through generous financial aid combined with academic excellence offer students great returns on investment. In order to be considered, schools must possess high academic standing coupled with costs commensurate to the education provided. Harvard University leads the list with a 98/100 academic rating and a $18,030 average net price.

Academic Rating is a CollegeCalc rating of a college's overall academics and effectiveness. The score ranges from zero to one hundred, with fifty being the median for all eligible colleges. Dollar value is a measure of a school's academic rating compared with the average price paid by students. Colleges which are ranked "n/a" didn't report sufficient data to formulate a score. Learn more about our rating methodology.

All price data are reprinted from the U.S. Department of Education's 2019/2020 IPEDS Survey and reflect reported costs for the 2019/2020 academic year.

America's Best Value Colleges by Academic Quality per Dollar
College Net Price Rating Value
#1 Harvard University

Massachusetts, Private

$18,030 98 100
#2 Stanford University

California, Private

$16,779 99 99
#3 Yale University

Connecticut, Private

$18,073 98 99
#4 Amherst College

Massachusetts, Private

$16,339 96 99
#5 Williams College

Massachusetts, Private

$17,303 97 99
#6 Princeton University

New Jersey, Private

$18,712 99 99
#7 Pomona College

California, Private

$18,500 96 99
#8 Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts, Private

$20,465 98 99
#9 Wellesley College

Massachusetts, Private

$19,805 95 99
#10 Rice University

Texas, Private

$20,335 98 99
#11 Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, Private

$21,828 96 99
#12 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

North Carolina, Public

$10,085 88 99
#13 Colby College

Maine, Private

$19,592 91 98
#14 Duke University

North Carolina, Private

$24,386 99 98
#15 Swarthmore College

Pennsylvania, Private

$19,759 92 98
#16 Dartmouth College

New Hampshire, Private

$23,869 97 98
#17 University of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania, Private

$24,771 96 98
#18 Claremont McKenna College

California, Private

$24,456 96 98
#19 Northwestern University

Illinois, Private

$26,196 97 98
#20 University of Michigan

Michigan, Public

$17,357 91 98
#21 Colgate University

New York, Private

$23,503 94 97
#22 Haverford College

Pennsylvania, Private

$22,837 92 98
#23 Vanderbilt University

Tennessee, Private

$25,855 97 98
#24 Middlebury College

Vermont, Private

$23,367 94 98
#25 University of Virginia Main Campus

Virginia, Public

$17,579 86 97
#26 Washington and Lee University

Virginia, Private

$23,301 93 98
#27 California Institute of Technology

California, Private

$27,438 98 97
#28 Washington University in St Louis

Missouri, Private

$27,108 96 97
#29 Emory University

Georgia, Private

$25,942 95 97
#30 Skidmore College

New York, Private

$23,589 88 97
#31 Vassar College

New York, Private

$24,811 90 97
#32 Brown University

Rhode Island, Private

$27,218 97 97
#33 University of California Los Angeles

California, Public

$15,718 86 96
#34 Johns Hopkins University

Maryland, Private

$28,999 97 97
#35 Tufts University

Massachusetts, Private

$26,280 94 97
#36 Barnard College

New York, Private

$26,649 94 96
#37 Cornell University

New York, Private

$28,921 96 96
#38 Davidson College

North Carolina, Private

$27,714 93 96
#39 Georgetown University

District Of Columbia, Private

$28,442 94 96
#40 University of Florida

Florida, Public

$10,457 82 96
#41 University of Richmond

Virginia, Private

$25,282 91 96
#42 University of California Davis

California, Public

$15,886 81 96
#43 University of California San Diego

California, Public

$14,864 82 95
#44 Trinity College

Connecticut, Private

$27,829 90 96
#45 Hamilton College

New York, Private

$29,117 94 96
#46 Lehigh University

Pennsylvania, Private

$26,631 89 95
#47 University of California Irvine

California, Public

$15,268 81 95
#48 University of California Santa Barbara

California, Public

$16,767 77 94
#49 University of Chicago

Illinois, Private

$34,719 98 95
#50 University of Notre Dame

Indiana, Private

$30,536 92 95
#51 Grinnell College

Iowa, Private

$29,404 88 95
#52 Boston College

Massachusetts, Private

$28,354 89 95
#53 University of Tulsa

Oklahoma, Private

$23,940 78 95
#54 Lafayette College

Pennsylvania, Private

$26,810 86 95
#55 College of William and Mary

Virginia, Public

$18,551 88 95
#56 University of California Berkeley

California, Public

$18,522 85 94
#57 University of California Riverside

California, Public

$13,045 67 94
#58 Virginia Military Institute

Virginia, Public

$13,428 75 94
#59 University of Washington Seattle Campus

Washington, Public

$10,692 82 94
#60 University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign

Illinois, Public

$14,660 77 94
#61 Boston University

Massachusetts, Private

$29,479 84 93
#62 Carleton College

Minnesota, Private

$31,547 91 94
#63 Carnegie Mellon University

Pennsylvania, Private

$30,618 88 94
#64 Elizabethtown College

Pennsylvania, Private

$28,198 68 93
#65 The University of Texas at Dallas

Texas, Public

$10,455 66 94
#66 Florida State University

Florida, Public

$12,568 69 93
#67 Bellarmine University

Kentucky, Private

$23,158 68 93
#68 University of Rochester

New York, Private

$32,939 87 93
#69 Allegheny College

Pennsylvania, Private

$24,227 71 93
#70 Purdue University Main Campus

Indiana, Public

$12,684 80 93
#71 University of Southern California

California, Private

$37,521 92 92
#72 Mercer University

Georgia, Private

$21,696 68 92
#73 DePauw University

Indiana, Private

$29,557 80 92
#74 Babson College

Massachusetts, Private

$28,325 80 92
#75 St Catherine University

Minnesota, Private

$20,172 66 91
#76 North Carolina State University at Raleigh

North Carolina, Public

$14,958 79 92
#77 Reed College

Oregon, Private

$32,069 84 91
#78 Trinity University

Texas, Private

$30,505 85 92
#79 University of Connecticut

Connecticut, Public

$20,042 81 90
#80 Howard University

District Of Columbia, Private

$21,428 70 91
#81 University of Miami

Florida, Private

$33,102 87 91
#82 Georgia Institute of Technology Main Campus

Georgia, Public

$16,883 78 90
#83 Illinois Institute of Technology

Illinois, Private

$26,708 72 91
#84 Indiana University Bloomington

Indiana, Public

$13,036 71 89
#85 Centre College

Kentucky, Private

$24,226 71 91
#86 University of Detroit Mercy

Michigan, Private

$18,338 70 90
#87 Macalester College

Minnesota, Private

$31,458 81 90
#88 St Olaf College

Minnesota, Private

$27,779 75 89
#89 Rutgers University New Brunswick

New Jersey, Public

$16,873 78 90
#90 CUNY Hunter College

New York, Public

$3,957 66 90
#91 Yeshiva University

New York, Private

$33,953 87 90
#92 Wofford College

South Carolina, Private

$28,033 76 90
#93 Austin College

Texas, Private

$23,824 69 89
#94 The University of Texas at Austin

Texas, Public

$15,502 80 90
#95 University of Vermont

Vermont, Public

$19,185 72 90
#96 Lawrence University

Wisconsin, Private

$26,162 71 90
#97 Occidental College

California, Private

$35,362 84 89
#98 Illinois Wesleyan University

Illinois, Private

$28,912 75 88
#99 Case Western Reserve University

Ohio, Private

$35,890 87 89
#100 Rhodes College

Tennessee, Private

$30,632 78 89
#101 Westminster College

Utah, Private

$22,971 69 88
#102 Beloit College

Wisconsin, Private

$24,493 66 89
#103 University of Georgia

Georgia, Public

$15,961 75 86
#104 University of Illinois at Chicago

Illinois, Public

$12,322 68 88
#105 Saint Mary's College

Indiana, Private

$26,906 71 85
#106 Drake University

Iowa, Private

$30,265 77 85
#107 Simmons University

Massachusetts, Private

$30,841 78 86
#108 University of Missouri Columbia

Missouri, Public

$15,850 66 87
#109 Missouri University of Science and Technology

Missouri, Public

$13,954 70 86
#110 Saint Louis University Main Campus

Missouri, Private

$31,098 77 86
#111 New York University

New York, Private

$37,739 91 86
#112 Stony Brook University

New York, Public

$15,605 77 86
#113 The College of Wooster

Ohio, Private

$28,209 70 86
#114 Muhlenberg College

Pennsylvania, Private

$33,603 79 85
#115 University of Dallas

Texas, Private

$26,761 72 87
#116 Texas A & M University College Station

Texas, Public

$19,237 78 87
#117 University of Arizona

Arizona, Public

$16,580 67 84
#118 University of California Santa Cruz

California, Public

$17,889 68 84
#119 University of the Pacific

California, Private

$33,178 78 83
#120 Scripps College

California, Private

$39,702 89 83
#121 University of Delaware

Delaware, Public

$17,539 74 83
#122 College of the Holy Cross

Massachusetts, Private

$34,627 83 85
#123 Michigan Technological University

Michigan, Public

$17,814 68 84
#124 Saint Johns University

Minnesota, Private

$27,126 68 83
#125 Clarkson University

New York, Private

$29,891 69 83
#126 CUNY Bernard M Baruch College

New York, Public

$3,931 72 83
#127 New York Institute of Technology

New York, Private

$22,197 70 85
#128 St Lawrence University

New York, Private

$34,047 76 83
#129 Kenyon College

Ohio, Private

$37,940 86 84
#130 Ohio Northern University

Ohio, Private

$24,821 70 83
#131 Ohio State University

Ohio, Public

$18,706 74 82
#132 University of Utah

Utah, Public

$13,739 72 84
#133 John Brown University

Arkansas, Private

$21,912 67 81
#134 Azusa Pacific University

California, Private

$27,707 70 80
#135 Connecticut College

Connecticut, Private

$40,707 86 81
#136 Indiana Wesleyan University

Indiana, Private

$21,619 67 80
#137 University of Maryland College Park

Maryland, Public

$17,723 81 82
#138 Brandeis University

Massachusetts, Private

$37,264 82 80
#139 Michigan State University

Michigan, Public

$16,579 70 82
#140 University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Minnesota, Public

$17,279 77 80
#141 New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

New Mexico, Public

$14,908 69 81
#142 University at Buffalo

New York, Public

$17,264 78 81
#143 Oklahoma City University

Oklahoma, Private

$24,264 70 80
#144 Linfield College McMinnville Campus

Oregon, Private

$29,521 71 82
#145 Ursinus College

Pennsylvania, Private

$30,421 69 82
#146 Villanova University

Pennsylvania, Private

$36,840 84 81
#147 Clemson University

South Carolina, Public

$21,482 77 80
#148 Furman University

South Carolina, Private

$35,621 80 81
#149 Southern Methodist University

Texas, Private

$40,404 86 82
#150 Southwestern University

Texas, Private

$27,757 70 81
#151 Eastern Mennonite University

Virginia, Private

$24,936 67 82
#152 Mills College

California, Private

$25,417 69 79
#153 University of San Diego

California, Private

$35,936 80 79
#154 Westmont College

California, Private

$32,663 74 78
#155 University of Denver

Colorado, Private

$37,263 81 78
#156 George Washington University

District Of Columbia, Private

$38,829 83 79
#157 Wheaton College

Illinois, Private

$28,795 75 77
#158 University of Iowa

Iowa, Public

$17,008 69 80
#159 Northeastern University

Massachusetts, Private

$36,479 79 77
#160 Bethel University

Minnesota, Private

$26,468 66 77
#161 College of Saint Benedict

Minnesota, Private

$28,177 67 79
#162 New Jersey Institute of Technology

New Jersey, Public

$18,359 68 78
#163 SUNY at Binghamton

New York, Public

$17,424 76 77
#164 SUNY Institute of Technology at Utica Rome

New York, Public

$14,420 69 76
#165 Denison University

Ohio, Private

$36,650 80 79
#166 Bucknell University

Pennsylvania, Private

$39,493 85 76
#167 Sewanee The University of the South

Tennessee, Private

$34,971 80 79
#168 Texas Christian University

Texas, Private

$37,509 82 76
#169 University of Wisconsin Madison

Wisconsin, Public

$16,103 79 79
#170 Santa Clara University

California, Private

$42,114 88 75
#171 Bradley University

Illinois, Private

$26,791 69 73
#172 University of Kansas

Kansas, Public

$19,195 67 73
#173 St Mary's College of Maryland

Maryland, Public

$20,996 74 72
#174 Creighton University

Nebraska, Private

$32,145 76 75
#175 Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

New York, Private

$30,358 76 72
#176 State University of New York at New Paltz

New York, Public

$15,496 66 73
#177 Union College

New York, Private

$39,527 82 74
#178 University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Campus

Pennsylvania, Public

$22,600 75 74
#179 Lipscomb University

Tennessee, Private

$26,013 68 73
#180 Union University

Tennessee, Private

$31,980 72 74
#181 Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Virginia, Public

$18,449 75 73
#182 University of St Thomas

Minnesota, Private

$29,645 69 69
#183 Hobart William Smith Colleges

New York, Private

$37,761 74 69
#184 SUNY at Albany

New York, Public

$16,769 67 69
#185 Saint Joseph's University

Pennsylvania, Private

$35,242 75 69
#186 Providence College

Rhode Island, Private

$35,796 77 71
#187 Seattle University

Washington, Private

$35,569 76 70
#188 Samford University

Alabama, Private

$30,695 73 67
#189 Colorado School of Mines

Colorado, Public

$26,856 77 68
#190 University of Maryland Baltimore County

Maryland, Public

$17,094 66 66
#191 Calvin College

Michigan, Private

$27,952 66 65
#192 Saint Anselm College

New Hampshire, Private

$34,164 71 64
#193 Ramapo College of New Jersey

New Jersey, Public

$16,823 66 67
#194 Seton Hall University

New Jersey, Private

$30,909 68 67
#195 The College of New Jersey

New Jersey, Public

$23,945 78 66
#196 Manhattan College

New York, Private

$29,943 69 65
#197 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

New York, Private

$41,006 79 67
#198 Sarah Lawrence College

New York, Private

$40,630 78 66
#199 Saint John Fisher College

New York, Private

$28,468 70 67
#200 Miami University

Ohio, Public

$22,989 69 64
#201 University of Oklahoma Norman Campus

Oklahoma, Public

$21,804 67 66
#202 Lewis & Clark College

Oregon, Private

$36,026 72 65
#203 University of Portland

Oregon, Private

$36,051 74 64
#204 Drexel University

Pennsylvania, Private

$38,025 76 68
#205 Rhode Island School of Design

Rhode Island, Private

$39,791 81 64
#206 Whitman College

Washington, Private

$41,822 83 66
#207 Pepperdine University

California, Private

$42,135 77 60
#208 University of San Francisco

California, Private

$38,422 75 63
#209 University of Hawaii at Manoa

Hawaii, Public

$15,441 71 62
#210 Bentley University

Massachusetts, Private

$41,582 82 62
#211 University of Massachusetts Amherst

Massachusetts, Public

$22,927 72 61
#212 Stevens Institute of Technology

New Jersey, Private

$40,770 78 62
#213 Adelphi University

New York, Private

$28,130 68 62
#214 Fordham University

New York, Private

$39,558 76 61
#215 Hofstra University

New York, Private

$32,975 70 63
#216 University of Dayton

Ohio, Private

$33,372 69 61
#217 Duquesne University

Pennsylvania, Private

$30,732 67 60
#218 The University of Tennessee

Tennessee, Public

$21,024 67 61
#219 Baylor University

Texas, Private

$38,372 76 61
#220 Hampden Sydney College

Virginia, Private

$34,853 69 61
#221 Gonzaga University

Washington, Private

$36,578 74 61
#222 Chapman University

California, Private

$43,767 79 55
#223 Saint Marys College of California

California, Private

$36,613 68 55
#224 University of Colorado Boulder

Colorado, Public

$22,077 70 54
#225 Fairfield University

Connecticut, Private

$39,546 76 58
#226 American University

District Of Columbia, Private

$40,469 80 56
#227 Molloy College

New York, Private

$28,500 69 54
#228 Rochester Institute of Technology

New York, Private

$33,744 71 56
#229 George Mason University

Virginia, Public

$20,157 68 56
#230 Loyola Marymount University

California, Private

$47,292 86 51
#231 SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

New York, Public

$20,215 67 51
#232 Oberlin College

Ohio, Private

$43,612 75 50
#233 Xavier University

Ohio, Private

$32,429 66 51
#234 James Madison University

Virginia, Public

$18,708 68 52
#235 California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo

California, Public

$21,232 75 48
#236 Loyola University Chicago

Illinois, Private

$36,388 70 49
#237 University of Scranton

Pennsylvania, Private

$36,235 68 48
#238 University of South Carolina Columbia

South Carolina, Public

$21,787 69 47
#239 Marquette University

Wisconsin, Private

$34,120 66 49
#240 Rose Hulman Institute of Technology

Indiana, Private

$45,356 77 42
#241 Syracuse University

New York, Private

$43,111 74 42
#242 Penn State Main Campus

Pennsylvania, Public

$24,724 72 44
#243 Butler University

Indiana, Private

$39,923 72 40
#244 Elon University

North Carolina, Private

$36,564 76 40
#245 University of the Sciences

Pennsylvania, Private

$34,888 74 36
#246 Emerson College

Massachusetts, Private

$46,381 72 26
#247 Pratt Institute Main

New York, Private

$45,880 72 26
#248 The New School

New York, Private

$50,377 75 24
#249 Brigham Young University Provo

Utah, Private

$13,340 76 84