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2021 Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa

9 Colleges
1,568 Bachelor's Degrees
$28,202 Avg Cost*

Finding the Best Value Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies School for You

Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in IowaParks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies is one of the most popular subjects to study in Iowa. With 1,568 bachelor's degrees handed out in 2018-2019, it ranked 5th out of all the majors we track in the state. This means that colleges and universities in the state were responsible for awarding 2.9% of all the parks and rec bachelor's degrees in the country.

For this year's Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa ranking, we looked at 9 colleges that offer a bachelor's in parks and rec. Note that the phrase 'best value' does not mean the absolute lowest-priced. For this ranking, we are identifying those parks and rec 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.

Average cost figures start with estimating tuition, fees, room and board, books, and other related expenses. We then subtract the average amount of financial aid that a student receives. You can use this as a gauge to estimate how much you may need to pay out of pocket to cover costs when financial aid isn't enough. Keep in mind that the net cost for you may be higher or lower, depending on your income and other factors.

One Size Does Not Fit All

Since the program you select can have a significant impact on your future, we've developed a number of rankings, including this Best Value Parks & Rec Schools list, to help you choose the best school for you.

To further help you make the college decision, we've developed a unique tool called College Combat that allows you to compare schools based on the factors that matter the most to you. Go ahead and give it a try, or bookmark the link so you can check it out later.

2021 Best Value Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools in Iowa

The colleges and universities below are the best for the money for parks and rec majors.

Best Value Parks & Rec Schools in Iowa

#1

University of Northern Iowa

Cedar Falls, IA

University of Northern Iowa comes in at #1 in this year's ranking. Located in the small city of Cedar Falls, UNI is a public college with a large student population. UNI not only placed well in our value rankings. It is also #2 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa list.

It takes the average student at UNI about 4.4 years to graduate, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $24,198. This means that the average student pays around $107,439 to get a bachelor’s degree from UNI. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#2

Loras College

Dubuque, IA

Loras College comes in at #2 in this year's ranking. Loras is a small private not-for-profit school located in the city of Dubuque. Loras did well in our quality rankings, too. It placed #6 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa list.

At Loras, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.1 years, and it costs about $25,100 per year to attend the school. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Loras is about $103,663. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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Iowa State University landed the #3 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies schools. Located in the small city of Ames, Iowa State is a public school with a fairly large student population. As a testament to the quality of education offered at Iowa State, the school also landed the #3 rank in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa ranking.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at Iowa State to complete their degree, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $26,749. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State be around $118,231. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#4

Coe College

Cedar Rapids, IA

The #4 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Coe College. Located in the city of Cedar Rapids, Coe is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. Coe also made our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa list, coming in at #5.

It takes the average student at Coe about 4.1 years to graduate, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $27,920. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Coe is about $113,076. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#5

Simpson College

Indianola, IA

The #5 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Simpson College. Simpson College is a small private not-for-profit school located in the town of Indianola. Simpson College also took the #4 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa rankings.

The average student at Simpson College graduates in less than 4.1 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $30,430. 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 Simpson College is $124,459. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#6

University of Iowa

Iowa City, IA

University of Iowa landed the #6 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies schools. Iowa is a very large public school located in the small city of Iowa City. Iowa also took the #1 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa rankings.

The average student at Iowa graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $34,062. This means that the average student pays around $146,807 to get a bachelor’s degree from Iowa. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#7

Grand View University

Des Moines, IA

Our rankings recognize Grand View University as the #7 school in this year's rankings. Located in the city of Des Moines, Grand View University is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. Grand View University also took the #8 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa rankings.

It takes the average student at Grand View University about 4.3 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $25,792. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Grand View University is $111,937. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#8

Saint Ambrose University

Davenport, IA

Saint Ambrose University comes in at #8 in this year's ranking. St. Ambrose University is a small private not-for-profit school located in the midsize city of Davenport. St. Ambrose University also made our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa list, coming in at #7.

It takes about 4.2 years for the average student at St. Ambrose University to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $29,816. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the St. Ambrose University is $125,525. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#9

University of Dubuque

Dubuque, IA

Our rankings recognize University of Dubuque as the #9 school in this year's rankings. UD Iowa is a small private not-for-profit school located in the small city of Dubuque. UD Iowa not only placed well in our value rankings. It is also #9 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in Iowa list.

The average student at UD Iowa graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $29,753. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the UD Iowa is $128,235. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Full Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies at University of Dubuque Report

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Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges in the Plains States Region

Explore all the Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges in the Plains States Area or other specific states within that region.

State Degrees Awarded
Missouri 1,197
Minnesota 931
Kansas 576
South Dakota 204
Nebraska 346
North Dakota 231

Parks & Rec Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Health & Physical Education 1,446
Parks, Recreation & Leisure Studies 122

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Majors Similar to Parks & Rec

Related Major Annual Graduates
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement & Firefighting 512
Public Administration & Social Service 464
Legal Professions 32

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 9 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 NPS Photo/Zurbuch.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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