Education

2021 Best Value Colleges for Education

593 Colleges
88,927 Bachelor's Degrees
$20,184 Avg Cost*

Finding the Best Value Education School for You

Best Value Colleges for EducationIn 2018-2019, 88,927 education students received their bachelor's degrees, making the major the #10 most popular in the country.

This year's Best Value Colleges for Education ranking analyzed 593 colleges that offered a bachelor's degree in education. To us, 'best value' doesn't just mean the school with the lowest overall costs. For this ranking, we are identifying those education schools that provide their students with a hiqh quality education at a price that is lower than other colleges and universities of the same caliber.

To determine the average cost, we look at total expenses - such as tuition, fees, room and board, books, and other related expenses - and then subtract the average financial award a student receives. Knowing this amount can help you determine how much you may have to borrow in loans or take out of savings. Depending on your income and other factors, the cost for you to attend a particular school may be more or less.

More Ways to Rank Education Schools

The education school you choose to invest your time and money in matters. To help you make the decision that is right for you, we've developed a number of major-specific rankings, including this list of the Best Value Education Schools.

In addition to our rankings, you can take two colleges and compare them based on the criteria that matters most to you in our unique tool, College Combat. Test it out when you get a chance! You may also want to bookmark the link and share it with others who are trying to make the college decision.

2021 Best Value Education Schools in the United States

Check out the education programs at these schools if you want to get the best value for your money.

Top 25 Best Value Education Schools

#1

Valley City State University

Valley City, ND

Valley City State University comes in at #1 in this year's ranking. Valley City State University is a small public school located in the town of Valley City. In addition to being on our best value list, Valley City State University has also earned the #3 rank in our Best Colleges for Education ranking.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at Valley City State University to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $16,715. This means that the average student pays around $73,713 to get a bachelor’s degree from Valley City State University. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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Our rankings recognize Brigham Young University - Provo as the #2 school in this year's rankings. BYU is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Provo. On top of its placing in our value rankings, BYU also did well on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in that analysis.

The average student at BYU graduates in less than 5.2 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $12,239. Putting this cost and the average time to graduate together, we find that the average amount you’ll pay to get a bachelor’s degree from BYU is $64,132. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#3

Martin Luther College

New Ulm, MN

The #3 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Martin Luther College. Located in the distant town of New Ulm, MLC is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. MLC did well in our quality rankings, too. It placed #2 on our Best Colleges for Education list.

At MLC, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.4 years, and it costs about $19,221 per year to attend the school. Putting this cost and the average time to graduate together, we find that the average amount you’ll pay to get a bachelor’s degree from MLC is $85,341. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#4

Harding University

Searcy, AR

Harding University comes in at #4 in this year's ranking. Located in the town of Searcy, Harding is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population. In addition to its great value ranking, Harding is in the top 5% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

It takes the average student at Harding about 4.4 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $20,917. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Harding is $90,989. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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University of Nebraska at Kearney earned the #5 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the distant town of Kearney, UNK is a public school with a medium-sized student population. On top of its placing in our value rankings, UNK also did well on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 5% of all schools reviewed in that analysis.

The average student at UNK graduates in less than 4.6 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $20,217. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from UNK be around $91,987. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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Western Carolina University earned the #6 spot in our 2021 rankings. WCU is a large public school located in the town of Cullowhee. In addition to its great value ranking, WCU is in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

The average student at WCU graduates in less than 4.4 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $15,387. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from WCU is $67,549. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#7

Wayne State College

Wayne, NE

Wayne State College landed the #7 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. Located in the distant town of Wayne, WSC is a public school with a small student population. WSC also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 20% of all schools in this category.

The average student at WSC graduates in less than 4.5 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $17,518. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from WSC be around $78,130. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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#8

University of South Dakota

Vermillion, SD

Our rankings recognize University of South Dakota as the #8 school in this year's rankings. U of South Dakota is a medium-sized public school located in the distant town of Vermillion. In addition to its great value ranking, U of South Dakota is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

The average student at U of South Dakota graduates in less than 4.4 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $20,860. This means that the average student pays around $90,950 to get a bachelor’s degree from U of South Dakota. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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The #9 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of Maine at Farmington. UMaine Farmington is a small public school located in the remote town of Farmington. UMaine Farmington also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at UMaine Farmington is 4.3 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $23,106. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the UMaine Farmington is $99,125. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#10

Chadron State College

Chadron, NE

Chadron State College comes in at #10 in this year's ranking. Located in the remote town of Chadron, Chadron State College is a public school with a small student population.

The average student at Chadron State College graduates in less than 4.5 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $15,794. This means that the average student pays around $71,705 to get a bachelor’s degree from Chadron State College. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#11

Elizabethtown College

Elizabethtown, PA

The #11 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Elizabethtown College. Located in the suburb of Elizabethtown, E - town is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population.

It takes about 4.1 years for the average student at E - town to complete their degree, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $17,380. This means that the average student pays around $70,910 to get a bachelor’s degree from E - town. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#12

SUNY Potsdam

Potsdam, NY

SUNY Potsdam landed the #12 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. SUNY Potsdam is a small public school located in the town of Potsdam. SUNY Potsdam also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

At SUNY Potsdam, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.4 years, and it costs about $22,914 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Potsdam is $99,676. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#13

Mercer University

Macon, GA

Mercer University earned the #13 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the midsize city of Macon, Mercer is a private not-for-profit school with a medium-sized student population.

At Mercer, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.3 years, and it costs about $19,614 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Mercer is $84,144. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#14

Wartburg College

Waverly, IA

Wartburg College landed the #14 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. Located in the distant town of Waverly, Wartburg is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population. Wartburg excels when it comes to quality. It's ranked in the top 5% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

It takes about 4.1 years for the average student at Wartburg to complete their degree, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $26,205. Putting this cost and the average time to graduate together, we find that the average amount you’ll pay to get a bachelor’s degree from Wartburg is $106,916. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#15

Lee University

Cleveland, TN

Lee University landed the #15 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. Lee University is a medium-sized private not-for-profit school located in the city of Cleveland. On top of its placing in our value rankings, Lee University also did well on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in that analysis.

The average student at Lee University graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $22,599. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Lee University is $97,628. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#16

Winona State University

Winona, MN

Winona State University landed the #16 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. Winona State is a medium-sized public school located in the town of Winona. Winona State excels when it comes to quality. It's ranked in the top 10% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

The average student at Winona State graduates in less than 4.5 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $21,880. Putting this cost and the average time to graduate together, we find that the average amount you’ll pay to get a bachelor’s degree from Winona State is $98,022. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#17

Eastern Illinois University

Charleston, IL

Our rankings recognize Eastern Illinois University as the #17 school in this year's rankings. EIU is a medium-sized public school located in the town of Charleston.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at EIU to complete their degree, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $16,976. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from EIU is about $75,034. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#18

Freed - Hardeman University

Henderson, TN

Freed - Hardeman University comes in at #18 in this year's ranking. Located in the town of Henderson, Freed - Hardeman is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population.

At Freed - Hardeman, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.2 years, and it costs about $21,207 per year to attend the school. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Freed - Hardeman is $88,645. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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Louisiana Tech University landed the #19 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value education schools. Louisiana Tech is a large public school located in the town of Ruston.

It takes the average student at Louisiana Tech about 4.4 years to graduate, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $18,308. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Louisiana Tech is about $80,372. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#20

Northern State University

Aberdeen, SD

Northern State University comes in at #20 in this year's ranking. Located in the remote town of Aberdeen, NSU is a public college with a small student population. NSU excels when it comes to quality. It's ranked in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

It takes the average student at NSU about 4.5 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $19,908. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from NSU be around $89,785. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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Northwest Missouri State University comes in at #21 in this year's ranking. Northwest is a medium-sized public school located in the remote town of Maryville.

It takes the average student at Northwest about 4.5 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $17,341. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Northwest is $78,035. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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University of South Florida - Main Campus comes in at #22 in this year's ranking. USF Tampa is a very large public school located in the large city of Tampa. In addition to its great value ranking, USF Tampa is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

The average student at USF Tampa graduates in less than 4.3 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $23,095. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from USF Tampa is $99,309. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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Our rankings recognize Appalachian State University as the #23 school in this year's rankings. Located in the town of Boone, Appalachian State is a public college with a fairly large student population. Appalachian State also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Appalachian State is 4.3 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $22,137. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Appalachian State is $95,410. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#24

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Florida State University comes in at #24 in this year's ranking. Located in the medium-sized city of Tallahassee, Florida State is a public college with a fairly large student population. Florida State excels when it comes to quality. It's ranked in the top 5% of all schools on our Best Colleges for Education list.

The average student at Florida State graduates in less than 4.2 years, and it costs about $27,233 per year to attend the school. This means that the average student pays around $115,196 to get a bachelor’s degree from Florida State. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#25

SUNY Geneseo

Geneseo, NY

Our rankings recognize SUNY Geneseo as the #25 school in this year's rankings. SUNY Geneseo is a medium-sized public school located in the distant town of Geneseo. On top of its placing in our value rankings, SUNY Geneseo also did well on our Best Colleges for Education list. It's in the top 5% of all schools reviewed in that analysis.

The average student at SUNY Geneseo graduates in less than 4.1 years, and it costs about $25,828 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Geneseo is $106,411. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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Rest of the Top 50 Schools for Best Value Colleges for Education

#27

Mayville State University

Mayville, ND
#28

SUNY Cortland

Cortland, NY

#33

Ouachita Baptist University

Arkadelphia, AR

#35

Bemidji State University

Bemidji, MN
#37

CUNY Hunter College

New York, NY
#38

University of Northern Iowa

Cedar Falls, IA
#40

University of Central Missouri

Warrensburg, MO
#41

William Carey University

Hattiesburg, MS

#45

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL
#46

Pittsburg State University

Pittsburg, KS
#47

Emporia State University

Emporia, KS

Additional Award Winners

This section shows the remainder of the schools awarded a Best Value Colleges for Education badge. Showing in this list means the college was ranked in the top 15% of the 593 different United States education schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
51 Concordia University - Nebraska Seward, NE
52 University of Central Arkansas Conway, AR
53 Minnesota State University - Mankato Mankato, MN
54 Ball State University Muncie, IN
55 Anderson University Indiana Anderson, IN
56 Augustana University Sioux Falls, SD
57 Augustana College Rock Island, IL
58 Western Michigan University Kalamazoo, MI
59 SUNY Fredonia Fredonia, NY
60 University of Sioux Falls Sioux Falls, SD
61 Concordia College at Moorhead Moorhead, MN
62 Mount Vernon Nazarene University Mount Vernon, OH
63 Mississippi College Clinton, MS
64 Morningside College Sioux City, IA
65 University of North Florida Jacksonville, FL
66 Corban University Salem, OR
67 University of Central Florida Orlando, FL
68 Wingate University Wingate, NC
69 Dickinson State University Dickinson, ND
70 Minnesota State University - Moorhead Moorhead, MN
71 Texas Lutheran University Seguin, TX
72 University of Wisconsin - La Crosse La Crosse, WI
73 Indiana Wesleyan University Marion, IN
74 The University of Tennessee - Martin Martin, TN
75 University of North Carolina at Greensboro Greensboro, NC
76 Kutztown University of Pennsylvania Kutztown, PA
77 Bob Jones University Greenville, SC
78 Kent State University at Kent Kent, OH
79 Salisbury University Salisbury, MD
80 Valparaiso University Valparaiso, IN
81 Western Illinois University Macomb, IL
82 University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point Stevens Point, WI
83 Berry College Mount Berry, GA
84 University of Wisconsin - Whitewater Whitewater, WI
85 Carson - Newman University Jefferson City, TN
86 University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire Eau Claire, WI
87 Northern Arizona University Flagstaff, AZ
88 John Brown University Siloam Springs, AR

Honorable Mentions

Here are some additional great schools for Education students that almost earned our Best Value Colleges for Education award.

Rank College Location
89 Trinity Christian College Palos Heights, IL
90 SUNY New Paltz New Paltz, NY
91 College of the Ozarks Point Lookout, MO
92 Saint Cloud State University Saint Cloud, MN
93 Evangel University Springfield, MO
94 SUNY Oswego Oswego, NY
95 Utah State University Logan, UT
96 Taylor University Upland, IN
97 East Carolina University Greenville, NC
98 Dakota State University Madison, SD
99 Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant, MI
100 Jacksonville State University Jacksonville, AL
101 Pacific Lutheran University Tacoma, WA
102 The University of Montana - Western Dillon, MT
103 Ashland University Ashland, OH
104 University of North Dakota Grand Forks, ND
105 Bridgewater State University Bridgewater, MA
106 Florida International University Miami, FL
107 Oklahoma Baptist University Shawnee, OK
108 University of Minnesota - Morris Morris, MN
109 Olivet Nazarene University Bourbonnais, IL
110 Southwest Minnesota State University Marshall, MN
111 Cedarville University Cedarville, OH
112 University of Wisconsin - River Falls River Falls, WI
113 Missouri State University - Springfield Springfield, MO
114 University of Georgia Athens, GA
115 University of Wyoming Laramie, WY
116 Franciscan University of Steubenville Steubenville, OH
117 University of Nebraska at Omaha Omaha, NE
118 Morehead State University Morehead, KY

Education by Region

View the Best Value Colleges for Education for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Education Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Teacher Education Grade Specific 50,540
Teacher Education Subject Specific 21,322
Special Education 8,866
General Education 4,523
Other Education 1,730

View All Education Related Majors >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Social Sciences 154,751
Psychology 123,980
Communication & Journalism 96,549
History 25,943
Family, Consumer & Human Sciences 24,420

View All Education Related Majors >

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to Horadrim.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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