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2021 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in the Far Western US Region

142 Colleges
$25,834 Avg Cost (With Aid)*
4.4 Years Avg Time to Graduate*

When pursuing a degree in today's world, there are many different options to choose from. College Factual was founded, in part, to help students make the decision as to what would be the best school for them. Our Best Far Western US Region Schools For The Money For Those Getting Aid ranking is part of that endeavor.

After analyzing 142 schools, we came up with our list of those that were the best for overall value for the money with aid in the Far Western US Region. This ranking isn't just a listing of 'cheap' schools. Instead, it is noting which schools offer a high quality education for a reasonable price. Thus, one college may rank better than another, but the second school could have a lower average cost.

See what other factors we include in our ranking methodology.

To calculate the average cost amount, we sum up the total expenses to attend a school - such as tuition, fees, room and board, books and supplies, and other living expenses - and then subtract the average financial aid award a student receives. So it is an approximation of how much you will have to pay out-of-pocket each year on average.

Customizing Your List

Since one ranking on its own is not enough to give you a complete understanding of your educational options, you can refine this list by location and field of study. We've also developed a number of other tools and rankings based on other factors. These other rankings highlight colleges that excel in other factors such as overall quality or diversity as well as schools that excel in serving different groups of students such as veterans or returnings adults.

You can create your own custom comparison that focuses on the factors most important to you using our tool, College Combat. We encourage you to try it out and pit your favorite colleges and universities head to head!

Top Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in the Far Western US Region

Learn more about these excellent schools below:

#1

Soka University of America

Aliso Viejo, California

Soka University of America tops this year’s ranking as the best school for overall value for the money with aid in the Far Western US Region. Soka University of America is a small private not-for-profit school located in Aliso Viejo, California that handed out 118 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.0 years for the average student at Soka University to complete their degree, and it costs students who receive aid about $16,398 per year to attend the school. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Soka University be around $66,412. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 94%. In addition to its great value ranking, Soka University is in the top 10% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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#2

Pomona College

Claremont, California

Out of the 142 schools in the Far Western US Region that were part of this year’s ranking, Pomona College landed the #2 spot on the list. Claremont, California is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 449 students in 2018-2019.

At Pomona, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.1 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $24,580 for students who receive aid. 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 Pomona is $100,778. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 98%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. Pomona not only placed well in our value rankings, but it is also #3 on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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#3

Mills College

Oakland, California

The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Mills College helped the school earn the #3 place on this year’s ranking of the best schools for the money in the Far Western US Region . Mills is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Oakland, California. It awarded 178 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Mills about 4.2 years to graduate, and the average full-time cost to attend the school for students who receive aid is around $15,260. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Mills is about $64,702. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 3.5%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

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#4

Thomas Aquinas College

Santa Paula, California

A rank of #4 on our Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list means Thomas Aquinas College is a great place for students working on their bachelor’s degree. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Santa Paula, California, and it awarded 83 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at TAC about 4.2 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $24,861 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from TAC is about $103,670. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

With a freshman retention rate of 92%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. On top of its placing in our value rankings, TAC also did well on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#5

Stanford University

Stanford, California

The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Stanford University helped the school earn the #5 place on this year’s ranking of the best schools for the money in the Far Western US Region . Stanford is located in Stanford, California and has a fairly large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 1,892 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

At Stanford, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.2 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $27,464 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Stanford be around $116,722. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 98%. Stanford also took the #2 spot in our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region rankings.

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Brigham Young University - Hawaii came in at #6 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region ranking. BYU - H is a private not-for-profit institution located in Laie, Hawaii. The school has a small population, and it awarded 623 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at BYU - H graduates in less than 4.8 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $13,046 per year to attend the school. This means that the average student pays around $61,968 to get a bachelor’s degree from BYU - H. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#7

Corban University

Salem, Oregon

Corban University ranked #7 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list. Corban University is a small private not-for-profit school located in Salem, Oregon that handed out 244 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Corban graduates in less than 4.2 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $18,600 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Corban is $77,190. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The low student loan default rate of 4.0% is a good sign that students have an easier time paying off their loans than they might at other schools. For comparison, the national default rate is 10.1%.

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#8

Alaska Pacific University

Anchorage, Alaska

Alaska Pacific University ranked #8 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list. Alaska Pacific is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Anchorage, Alaska. It awarded 55 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Alaska Pacific graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $23,024 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Alaska Pacific is $98,312. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

With a student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1, it’s easy to see that the school is committed to helping their undergraduates succeed.

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#9

The Master's College and Seminary

Santa Clarita, California

The Master’s College and Seminary came in at #9 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region ranking. The Master’s College is a private not-for-profit institution located in Santa Clarita, California. The school has a small population, and it awarded 280 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at The Master’s College graduates in less than 4.3 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $25,094 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 The Master’s College is $108,155. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The student loan default rate at the school is 1.6%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%.

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#10

Claremont McKenna College

Claremont, California

Claremont McKenna College came in at #10 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region ranking. Claremont McKenna is a private not-for-profit institution located in Claremont, California. The school has a small population, and it awarded 453 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Claremont McKenna graduates in less than 4.1 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $34,515 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Claremont McKenna is about $141,512. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The impressive student-to-faculty rate of 8 to 1 means that students may have more opportunities to work more closely with their professors than they would at other schools. Claremont McKenna did well in our quality rankings, too. It placed #5 on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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California State University Maritime Academy did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #11. Located in Vallejo, California, the small public school awarded 257 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

The average student at Cal Maritime graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $27,900 for students who receive aid. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Cal Maritime is $119,412. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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#12

Warner Pacific College

Portland, Oregon

Warner Pacific College did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #12. Warner Pacific is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Portland, Oregon. It awarded 76 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Warner Pacific graduates in less than 4.3 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $19,585 per year to attend the school. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Warner Pacific be around $84,216. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

With a student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1, it’s easy to see that the school is committed to helping their undergraduates succeed.

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#13

California Institute of Technology

Pasadena, California

California Institute of Technology landed the #13 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking. Caltech is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Pasadena, California. It awarded 241 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Caltech graduates in less than 4.2 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $35,263 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Caltech is about $146,694. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

With a freshman retention rate of 98%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. Caltech not only placed well in our value rankings, but it is also #1 on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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#14

California State University - Long Beach

Long Beach, California

California State University - Long Beach landed the #14 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking. Cal State Long Beach is a public institution located in Long Beach, California. The school has a large population, and it awarded 8,950 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 5.0 years for the average student at Cal State Long Beach to complete their degree, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $24,708 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Cal State Long Beach is about $122,552. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 88%.

Full California State University - Long Beach Report

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#15

Pacific Union College

Angwin, California

Pacific Union College did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #15. Located in Angwin, California, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 206 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

The average student at PUC graduates in less than 4.4 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $26,407 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from PUC be around $115,399. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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California State University - Fresno did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #16. Fresno, California is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 4,921 students in 2018-2019.

At Fresno State, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 5.0 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $20,188 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Fresno State is about $100,132. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#17

Western Washington University

Bellingham, Washington

Western Washington University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #17. WWU is located in Bellingham, Washington and has a fairly large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 3,785 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The average student at WWU graduates in less than 4.5 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $28,912 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 WWU is $130,104. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The low student loan default rate of 2.7% is a good sign that students have an easier time paying off their loans than they might at other schools. For comparison, the national default rate is 10.1%.

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With a ranking of #18, California Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list. This large public school is located in San Luis Obispo, California, and it awarded 5,185 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.5 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $32,197 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo is $143,921. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

With a freshman retention rate of 95%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. Cal Poly San Luis Obispo also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools in this category.

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#19

Pitzer College

Claremont, California

Pitzer College landed the #19 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking. Claremont, California is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 310 students in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.1 years for the average student at Pitzer to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $35,553 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Pitzer is $145,056. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 95%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. In addition to its great value ranking, Pitzer is in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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#20

Washington State University

Pullman, Washington

Washington State University ranked #20 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list. Pullman, Washington is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 5,827 students in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.5 years for the average student at Wazzu to complete their degree, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $29,249 for students who receive aid. 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 Wazzu is $130,451. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 4.1%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

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With a ranking of #21, California State University - Chico did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in the Far Western US Region list. Chico State is a fairly large public school situated in Chico, California. It awarded 4,417 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Chico State, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.7 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $25,192 per year to attend the school. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Chico State is $118,654. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#22

Pacific Lutheran University

Tacoma, Washington

Pacific Lutheran University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #22. Located in Tacoma, Washington, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 728 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at PLU graduates in less than 4.0 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $33,002 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from PLU is about $133,328. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 3.4%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

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#23

Northwest University

Kirkland, Washington

Northwest University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking, coming in at #23. Kirkland, Washington is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 250 students in 2018-2019.

The average student at Northwest University graduates in less than 4.2 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $26,740 for students who receive aid. This means that the average student pays around $112,308 to get a bachelor’s degree from Northwest University. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

With a student-to-faculty rate of 8 to 1, it’s easy to see that the school is committed to helping their undergraduates succeed.

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University of Hawaii at Hilo landed the #24 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking. UHH is a public institution located in Hilo, Hawaii. The school has a small population, and it awarded 774 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at UHH is 4.7 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $22,045 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from UHH is about $103,832. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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University of Washington - Seattle Campus landed the #25 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Far Western US Region ranking. Located in Seattle, Washington, the large public school handed out 9,269 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at UW Seattle is 4.2 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $36,058 for students who receive aid. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from UW Seattle is $152,886. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The low student loan default rate of 2.8% is a good sign that students have an easier time paying off their loans than they might at other schools. For comparison, the national default rate is 10.1%. UW Seattle excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 10% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Far Western US Region list.

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View Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) Nationwide >

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Honorable Mentions

These schools also performed well in our Best Colleges for the Money ranking:

Rank College Location
26 California State University - Monterey Bay Seaside, CA
27 Reed College Portland, OR
27 University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA

More Rankings >

Notes and References

Footnotes

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • For our state-specific rankings, we use in-state tuition to calculate average cost. For our national and regional rankings, we use a weighted average of in-state and non-resident tuition.

References

  • 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 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).
  • Information about the national average student loan default rate is from the U.S. Department of Education and refers to data about the 2016 borrower cohort tracking period for which the cohort default rate (CDR) was 10.1%.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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