Tool December 2016

Kiplinger's Best College Values

Compare the 200 top values in liberal-arts colleges or private universities, or create your own custom lists of colleges from our rankings or schools from a particular state.

Use the arrows at the top of any column of data to rank any list of colleges by cost and financial-aid measures. For more information on a particular college, click the college's name.

SEE ALSO: College Finder Map| SPECIAL REPORT: Kiplinger's College Rankings| How We Rank the Best College Values| FAQs on Our Rankings of Best College Values

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Liberal Arts Colleges

Rank
Name
State
Admit
rate
4-yr
grad.
rate
Total
cost
per yr.
Avg
need-
based aid
Avg
non-need-
based aid
% of
non-need-
based aid
Avg
debt at
graduation
Salary
yardstick#
1Swarthmore College, SwarthmorePA12%87%$64,840$44,256$43,5642%$18,262$48,500
2Davidson College, DavidsonNC229062,92340,14021,0911819,92951,800
3Washington and Lee University, LexingtonVA248861,44742,32233,7561321,68372,900
4Thomas Aquinas College, Santa PaulaCA758132,50014,9770016,90130,200
5Wellesley College, WellesleyMA308665,01644,2180012,45556,500
6Middlebury College, MiddleburyVT179265,33241,7780017,79755,100
7Pomona College, ClaremontCA109165,85742,0640013,38151,400
8Amherst College, AmherstMA148867,44649,1340015,75656,300
9Williams College, WilliamstownMA188866,28046,0070016,59354,200
10Wesleyan University, MiddletownCT229266,06241,24446,841124,86048,400
11Bowdoin College, BrunswickME158664,34041,5821,000520,88355,300
12Colby College, WatervilleME239164,79542,468394223,34252,300
13Vassar College, PoughkeepsieNY268666,39045,1090017,84749,300
14Grinnell College, GrinnellIA257961,63838,61217,5335515,98243,100
15College of the Holy Cross, WorcesterMA378962,86533,71437,530225,61363,100
16Hamilton College, ClintonNY258765,25041,1700017,65454,800
17University of Richmond, RichmondVA318361,98038,98524,1233126,25059,900
18Colgate University, HamiltonNY278666,07043,3210020,85960,300
19Haverford College, HaverfordPA258567,91945,3900014,75056,600
20Colorado College, Colorado SpringsCO178263,80840,5399,3601122,06839,700
21Carleton College, NorthfieldMN219164,89336,4823,0781420,06349,500
22Hillsdale College, HillsdaleMI506436,9228,0795,9939326,225NA
23Wheaton College, WheatonIL718144,41021,3806,2284226,59342,500
24Scripps College, ClaremontCA288667,46436,44416,9272618,69247,800
25Barnard College, New YorkNY208567,14240,6610020,00856,800
26Macalester College, St. PaulMN398663,02835,88712,9573021,93746,500
27Bates College, LewistonME228366,55039,9330019,91751,600
28Kenyon College, GambierOH248465,23039,62815,2042127,00044,700
29Bryn Mawr College, Bryn MawrPA397865,16038,63712,4053922,91453,600
30Smith College, NorthamptonMA388264,71438,04014,1781120,51444,400
31Pitzer College, ClaremontCA138367,19240,2204,808221,95145,100
32Lafayette College, EastonPA308765,10537,49524,7701231,15468,800
33St. Olaf College, NorthfieldMN368455,26030,18214,2916529,61745,000
34Centre College, DanvilleKY718350,75026,88619,6579028,51543,300
35Claremont McKenna College, ClaremontCA117767,88540,78116,0591025,42266,400
36Whitman College, Walla WallaWA438061,17230,7219,5955221,19243,800
37Principia College, ElsahIL757140,01026,23921,7928520,068NA
38Harvey Mudd College, ClaremontCA138670,51737,87411,3324627,48367,200
39Sewanee: The University of the South, SewaneeTN417455,70025,91710,9395422,36240,600
40Bucknell University, LewisburgPA258565,51625,00011,7641622,50069,100
41Mount Holyoke College, South HadleyMA507860,25631,10118,0494025,33944,100
42Berea College, BereaKY36457,742*2,910007,92833,400
43Rhodes College, MemphisTN477657,13527,93820,9728528,00851,800
44Franklin & Marshall College, LancasterPA328166,81041,6598,650326,16252,700
45Skidmore College, Saratoga SpringsNY368365,66439,30013,500122,55743,000
46DePauw University, GreencastleIN657659,60832,44616,4839225,99047,700
47Oberlin College, OberlinOH297566,94234,55713,6716825,01840,300
48Union College, SchenectadyNY388265,87435,5009,5005531,82064,000
49Denison University, GranvilleOH487863,13034,81220,0899227,77349,500
50Kalamazoo College, KalamazooMI727754,85628,29418,3178428,76451,700
51Gustavus Adolphus College, St. PeterMN678253,14027,43518,35510035,24748,900
52Dickinson College, CarlislePA478165,12935,34310,5173128,10853,300
53Muhlenberg College, AllentownPA488360,70031,25912,0576530,52756,300
54Christendom College, Front RoyalVA967035,22010,68512,1375129,069NA
55Illinois Wesleyan University, BloomingtonIL627855,12024,22016,9369235,21954,400
56Gettysburg College, GettysburgPA408063,50033,13912,0164330,54452,600
57Wofford College, SpartanburgSC727753,08030,03215,3236629,25249,700
58Occidental College, Los AngelesCA458266,78035,81411,6383229,94748,500
59College of Wooster, WoosterOH557858,90029,84220,9589227,94646,400
60Transylvania University, LexingtonKY937046,69023,66316,4499426,93739,700
61Reed College, PortlandOR356966,35039,3040019,01035,200
62Trinity College, HartfordCT338167,44042,96926,799630,60954,700
63Connecticut College, New LondonCT407966,00035,8470034,09851,700
64Hope College, HollandMI726542,17018,6808,1605932,18842,900
65William Jewell College, LibertyMO495643,01023,55915,7638231,58142,300
66Lawrence University, AppletonWI686355,39829,62219,9888433,34341,100
67St. Lawrence University, CantonNY468266,04034,22820,1518326,75645,500
68Agnes Scott College, DecaturGA626150,99227,33624,4767433,05038,800
69Furman University, GreenvilleSC657960,29833,77418,7257032,59446,700
70Austin College, ShermanTX547150,46227,00119,7943933,51447,800
71Beloit College, BeloitWI697056,20628,19920,1497331,30837,900
72Southwestern University, GeorgetownTX446951,39027,58018,7119333,09347,400
73University of Dallas, IrvingTX516650,02625,11318,3978833,51144,800
74Cornell College, Mount VernonIA716649,96426,00719,5199230,79040,900
75Augustana College, Rock IslandIL497150,65821,73818,0429335,48847,900
76Knox College, GalesburgIL647153,51529,39318,3048432,64441,700
77College of the Atlantic, Bar HarborME765953,88932,64011,1495623,00226,400
78Hendrix College, ConwayAR826655,12028,92925,7249330,21340,500
79College of Saint Benedict, Saint JosephMN757753,80627,26016,6207939,11047,200
80Earlham College, RichmondIN626056,07029,46017,2225225,78433,400
81Wabash College, CrawfordsvilleIN617051,65025,19219,1579032,91652,600
82Lewis & Clark College, PortlandOR636659,48429,83614,5716426,25741,100
83Luther College, DecorahIA676949,58023,80018,3373335,81441,800
84Willamette University, SalemOR787159,76727,84319,1205726,64349,300
85Goshen College, GoshenIN665343,42021,11214,1996725,40337,800
86Houghton College, HoughtonNY946640,09011,35113,3866930,49441,800
87Spelman College, AtlantaGA486942,10912,27627,768232,55046,000
88Birmingham-Southern College, BirminghamAL535347,6798,14520,2529520,38744,200
89Hanover College, HanoverIN616547,56423,47918,0849528,52641,900
90Saint John's University, CollegevilleMN746852,62426,77815,7097340,06756,100
91Washington College, ChestertownMD547155,49627,16616,7667436,99144,000
92Millsaps College, JacksonMS535952,03025,65222,0489231,41945,600
93Wheaton College, NortonMA657662,45230,39411,8786632,34444,100
94St. John's College, AnnapolisMD786362,87132,34719,1308434,21235,200
95Lake Forest College, Lake ForestIL556454,92630,27017,5559533,01847,100
96Ripon College, RiponWI666047,66126,64316,4938439,49142,000
97Hollins University, RoanokeVA615550,23528,50924,1898134,16132,100
98University of Puget Sound, TacomaWA797259,35224,25315,3899533,13049,400
99Presbyterian College, ClintonSC626248,45626,87717,0006227,16940,800
100Shimer College, ChicagoIL841946,68614,2578,7755725,125NA
Cost Data - through November 11, 2016
# - Based on the median earnings of workers who started at a particular college 10 years earlier and who received federal financial aid. The data don't consider whether the student graduated or went on to graduate school.
† - Percentage of all undergraduates without need who received non-need-based aid.
‡ - Number of students who received non-need-based aid is less than 0.5%.
NA - Not available.
* All students admitted receive a 4-year tuition scholarship of $24,900 for the 2016-17 academic year.


SOURCES - Peterson's Undergraduate Database (© 2016 Peterson's/Nelnet LLC. All rights reserved.), U.S. Department of Education College Scorecard.