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2021 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in the Rocky Mountains Region

43 Colleges
$25,854 Avg Cost (With Aid)*
4.5 Years Avg Time to Graduate*

Choosing which college to attend may be one of the most important decisions in your life. College Factual was founded, in part, to help students make the decision as to what would be the best school for them. Our Best Rocky Mountains Region Schools For The Money For Those Getting Aid ranking is part of that endeavor.

Our analysis looked at 43 schools to determine which ones were the best for overall value for the money with aid in the Rocky Mountains Region. It's important to note that this isn't just a listing of colleges and universities with the lowest sticker price. Instead, this ranking identifies schools that offer a high quality educational experience at a lower-than-expected price. Thus, one college may rank better than another, but the second school could have a lower average cost.

Get more details on 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 Rocky Mountains Region

Learn more about these excellent schools below:

Our 2021 rankings named Brigham Young University - Provo the best school for overall value for the money with aid in the Rocky Mountains Region for students working on their bachelor’s degree. Brigham Young University - Provo is a large private not-for-profit school located in Provo, Utah that handed out 7,007 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at BYU graduates in less than 5.2 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $12,239 for students who receive aid. This means that the average student pays around $64,132 to get a bachelor’s degree from BYU. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The student loan default rate at the school is 1.5%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%. BYU also made our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list, coming in at #2.

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#2

University of Wyoming

Laramie, Wyoming

Out of the 43 schools in the Rocky Mountains Region that were part of this year’s ranking, University of Wyoming landed the #2 spot on the list. This fairly large public school is located in Laramie, Wyoming, and it awarded 2,387 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at U of Wyoming is 4.6 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school for students who receive aid is around $20,323. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from U of Wyoming is $94,299. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 4.9%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%. U of Wyoming excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#3

The College of Idaho

Caldwell, Idaho

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend The College of Idaho. It ranked #3 on our 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list. Located in Caldwell, Idaho, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 195 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at C of I about 4.2 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $19,113 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 C of I is $80,083. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Since the school has a student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1, those pursuing a bachelor’s degree will have more opportunities to interact with their professors.

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#4

Salish Kootenai College

Pablo, Montana

A rank of #4 on our Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list means Salish Kootenai College is a great place for students working on their bachelor’s degree. SKC is a small public school situated in Pablo, Montana. It awarded 49 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.2 years for the average student at SKC to complete their degree, and the average full-time cost to attend the school for students who receive aid is around $14,981. This means that the average student pays around $62,621 to get a bachelor’s degree from SKC. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

Since the school has a student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1, those pursuing a bachelor’s degree will have more opportunities to interact with their professors.

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The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Brigham Young University - Idaho helped the school earn the #5 place on this year’s ranking of the best schools for the money in the Rocky Mountains Region . Located in Rexburg, Idaho, the large private not-for-profit school handed out 5,537 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at BYU - I about 5.0 years to graduate, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $6,396 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from BYU - I be around $31,724. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

The student loan default rate at the school is 3.4%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%.

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#6

Neumont College of Computer Science

Salt Lake City, Utah

Neumont College of Computer Science landed the #6 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking. Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, the small private for-profit school handed out 83 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Neumont graduates in less than 4.1 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school for students who receive aid is around $26,432. 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 Neumont is $109,428. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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With a ranking of #7, Northwest Nazarene University did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. Located in Nampa, Idaho, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 340 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at NNU graduates in less than 4.4 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $24,167 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 NNU is $105,610. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The student loan default rate at the school is 2.6%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%.

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#8

Carroll College

Helena, Montana

With a ranking of #8, Carroll College did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Helena, Montana, and it awarded 363 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Carroll Montana is 4.3 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $28,238 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 Carroll Montana is $121,423. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 2.3%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%. In addition to its great value ranking, Carroll Montana is in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#9

Utah State University

Logan, Utah

Utah State University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #9. Located in Logan, Utah, the large public school awarded 4,531 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.8 years for the average student at USU to complete their degree, and it costs students who receive aid about $23,962 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from USU is $115,976. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#10

Colorado College

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Colorado College ranked #10 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. Colorado College is a private not-for-profit institution located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The school has a small population, and it awarded 581 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Colorado College, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.1 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $36,538 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Colorado College is $148,710. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The low student loan default rate of 2.2% 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%. Colorado College not only placed well in our value rankings, but it is also #1 on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#11

Rocky Mountain College

Billings, Montana

Rocky Mountain College landed the #11 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking. Rocky is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Billings, Montana. It awarded 245 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Rocky is 4.4 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $22,748 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Rocky be around $100,774. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 4.8%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

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#12

Colorado State University - Fort Collins

Fort Collins, Colorado

Colorado State University - Fort Collins did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #12. Located in Fort Collins, Colorado, the large public school handed out 5,498 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at Colorado State to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $32,008 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Colorado State be around $141,155. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

The student loan default rate at the school is 3.1%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%. In addition to its great value ranking, Colorado State is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

Full Colorado State University - Fort Collins Report

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#13

University of Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

With a ranking of #13, University of Utah did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. U of U is a public institution located in Salt Lake City, Utah. The school has a large population, and it awarded 5,236 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at U of U is 4.7 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $31,168 per year to attend the school. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the U of U is $146,801. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 90%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. In addition to its best value ranking, and one of the reasons why the school is on the list, U of U is ranked #5 for overall quality in the Rocky Mountains Region .

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#14

University of Idaho

Moscow, Idaho

University of Idaho came in at #14 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking. Located in Moscow, Idaho, the fairly large public school awarded 1,848 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Idaho about 4.5 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $29,080 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Idaho is $131,151. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Idaho excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#15

Southern Utah University

Cedar City, Utah

Southern Utah University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #15. Southern Utah University is a public institution located in Cedar City, Utah. The school has a fairly large population, and it awarded 1,203 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.6 years for the average student at Southern Utah University to complete their degree, and it costs students who receive aid about $23,783 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 Southern Utah University is $110,115. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#16

Westminster College Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

Westminster College Utah ranked #16 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. Westminster College Salt Lake is a private not-for-profit institution located in Salt Lake City, Utah. The school has a small population, and it awarded 540 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Westminster College Salt Lake graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school for students who receive aid is around $31,254. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Westminster College Salt Lake be around $134,392. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1 is a sign that students will have more opportunities to engage with their professors one-on-one. In addition to its great value ranking, Westminster College Salt Lake is in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#17

Fort Lewis College

Durango, Colorado

Fort Lewis College ranked #17 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. FLC is a small public school situated in Durango, Colorado. It awarded 667 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at FLC graduates in less than 4.5 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $21,522 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from FLC is about $96,634. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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The University of Montana - Western ranked #18 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. The University of Montana - Western is a small public school located in Dillon, Montana that handed out 264 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at The University of Montana - Western graduates in less than 4.6 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $20,712 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from The University of Montana - Western is about $94,654. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

Full The University of Montana - Western Report

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#19

University of Northern Colorado

Greeley, Colorado

University of Northern Colorado did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #19. University of Northern Colorado is a fairly large public school situated in Greeley, Colorado. It awarded 2,026 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at University of Northern Colorado is 4.5 years, and it costs students who receive aid about $25,905 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from University of Northern Colorado is $116,054. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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#20

University of Denver

Denver, Colorado

University of Denver did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #20. U of Denver is a fairly large private not-for-profit school situated in Denver, Colorado. It awarded 1,626 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at U of Denver about 4.1 years to graduate, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $40,425 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 U of Denver is $167,360. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 87%. U of Denver not only placed well in our value rankings, but it is also #4 on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list.

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#21

Lewis - Clark State College

Lewiston, Idaho

Lewis - Clark State College ranked #21 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money in the Rocky Mountains Region list. This small public school is located in Lewiston, Idaho, and it awarded 626 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Lewis - Clark State College is 4.4 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $22,681 for students who receive aid. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Lewis - Clark State College is about $99,343. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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#22

Colorado School of Mines

Golden, Colorado

Colorado School of Mines did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #22. Golden, Colorado is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 1,108 students in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Mines about 4.3 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $43,109 for students who receive aid. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Mines be around $185,369. 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 93%. Mines also took the #3 spot in our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region rankings.

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#23

University of Colorado Boulder

Boulder, Colorado

University of Colorado Boulder did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #23. University of Colorado Boulder is a large public school located in Boulder, Colorado that handed out 6,744 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at CU - Boulder is 4.4 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $39,951 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the CU - Boulder is $175,385. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 3.2%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%. CU - Boulder also claimed a spot on our Best Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region list. It’s in the top 15% of all schools in this category.

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Montana Tech of the University of Montana landed the #24 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking. Located in Butte, Montana, the small public school handed out 453 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Montana Tech, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.8 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $27,468 for students who receive aid. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Montana Tech is $130,473. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

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Montana State University - Northern did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in the Rocky Mountains Region ranking, coming in at #25. Located in Havre, Montana, the small public school awarded 141 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.5 years for the average student at Montana State University - Northern to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $22,143 for students who receive aid. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Montana State University - Northern is $99,644. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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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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