2022 Best Schools for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa

45 Colleges
$12,457 Avg Net Price (With Aid)*
38% Discount Rate*

There are lots of options to choose from today when trying to decide which school to attend. Our mission at College Factual is to arm you with as much information as we can to help you make that decision. Our Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking is one tool we have developed to help in this regard. You may be surprised that some normally high-priced schools offer very generous financial aid packages to those who qualify.

In This Year's Value Report:

Finding Your Best College Match

Our analysis looked at 45 schools in Iowa to determine which ones have the best value programs. Our ranking for the best value schools is based on objective factors. We steer clear of subjective measures since they don't give a clear picture when determining how one school compares to another. We explain more about what we look at and why we do so below.

Our Methodology

When determining the value of a school in our Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking, we first look at its average net price, which is defined as the sum of room and board, tuition, and fees minus any financial aid that the student receives. In addition, the overall quality of a school is important to ensure a quality education, not just how much it costs.

To make it into this list a school must offer a quality education like the schools in our Best Colleges ranking. This ranking considers factors such as graduation rates, overall graduate earnings and other educational resources to identify great colleges and universities.

We go into more detail on these factors on our best value ranking methodology page.

More Rankings to View

You can scroll down to see the top schools for this ranking, but you may also want to view some of the other ranking methods listed below.

To get a better picture of the best value schools for your income range or for whether or not you'll receive aid, click on one of the tiles above. You may also want to narrow this list by location to find the best value schools nearest you. In addition, we've put together a number of other college rankings that may help you in your search.

Know what field you want to major in? Make sure you check out our best value schools by major. In addition, you can select one of the links below to see the best value colleges for other degree levels.

Best Value Schools (With Aid) in Iowa

Learn more about these excellent schools below:

#1

Southeastern Community College

West Burlington, Iowa

Southeastern Community College tops this year’s ranking as the best value (with aid) school in Iowa for overall quality. West Burlington, Iowa is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. It is a public school.

Not only is Southeastern Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #33 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $6,719.

Read full value report on Southeastern Community College

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Des Moines Area Community College. It ranked #2 on our 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. DMACC is located in Ankeny, Iowa and has a large student population. It is a public school.

Not only is Des Moines Area Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #11 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $9,296.

Full Des Moines Area Community College Value Report

#3

Kirkwood Community College

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

The quality degree programs at Kirkwood Community College helped the school earn the #3 place on this year’s ranking of Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa. Kirkwood Community College is a public institution located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Kirkwood Community College has the honor of being ranked #21 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $8,727 a year.

Learn More About Value at Kirkwood Community College

#4

Marshalltown Community College

Marshalltown, Iowa

The quality degree programs at Marshalltown Community College helped the school earn the #4 place on this year’s ranking of Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa. Marshalltown Community College is located in Marshalltown, Iowa and has a small student population. It is a public school.

Not only is Marshalltown Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #32 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $7,199.

Full Marshalltown Community College Value Report

A rank of #5 on our Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list means North Iowa Area Community College is a great place for students working on their degree. Mason City, Iowa is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. It is a public school.

In addition to being included on this ranking as a good value, North Iowa Area Community College is ranked #29 for quality in the state of Iowa. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $8,456 a year.

Full North Iowa Area Community College Value Report

With a ranking of #6, Northeast Iowa Community College did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Located in Calmar, Iowa, the school is a small public institution.

Northeast Iowa Community College has the honor of being ranked #31 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $8,218.

Learn More About Value at Northeast Iowa Community College

#7

Iowa State University

Ames, Iowa

Iowa State University ranked #7 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. This large public school is located in Ames, Iowa.

In addition to being included on this ranking as a good value, Iowa State University is ranked #2 for quality in the state of Iowa. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $16,105 a year.

Read full value report on Iowa State University

Indian Hills Community College landed the #8 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Located in Ottumwa, Iowa, the school is a small public institution.

Not only is Indian Hills Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #34 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $8,048.

Read full value report on Indian Hills Community College

Northwest Iowa Community College ranked #9 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Northwest Iowa Community College is a small public school located in Sheldon, Iowa.

Northwest Iowa Community College has the honor of being ranked #19 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $10,395 a year.

Learn More About Value at Northwest Iowa Community College

Western Iowa Tech Community College ranked #10 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Western Iowa Tech Community College is a medium-sized public school located in Sioux City, Iowa.

Western Iowa Tech Community College has the honor of being ranked #35 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $8,784.

Full Western Iowa Tech Community College Value Report

#11

University of Northern Iowa

Cedar Falls, Iowa

University of Northern Iowa came in at #11 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. UNI is a medium-sized public school situated in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

In addition to being included on this ranking as a good value, University of Northern Iowa is ranked #5 for quality in the state of Iowa. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $16,166.

Learn More About Value at University of Northern Iowa

Eastern Iowa Community College District landed the #12 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Davenport, Iowa is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. It is a public school.

Not only is Eastern Iowa Community College District a great value, but it is also ranked #37 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $9,278.

Full Eastern Iowa Community College District Value Report

#13

Iowa Central Community College

Fort Dodge, Iowa

With a ranking of #13, Iowa Central Community College did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Iowa Central Community College is a public institution located in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Iowa Central Community College has the honor of being ranked #30 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $9,931 a year.

Learn More About Value at Iowa Central Community College

#14

Iowa Western Community College

Council Bluffs, Iowa

Iowa Western Community College ranked #14 on this year’s Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Iowa Western Community College is located in Council Bluffs, Iowa and has a medium-sized student population. It is a public school.

Not only is Iowa Western Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #26 in Iowa for overall quality. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $10,995 a year.

Read full value report on Iowa Western Community College

#15

University of Iowa

Iowa City, Iowa

University of Iowa landed the #15 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Iowa City, Iowa is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. It is a public school.

Not only is University of Iowa a great value, but it is also ranked #4 in Iowa for overall quality. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $17,452 a year.

Full University of Iowa Value Report

#16

Hawkeye Community College

Waterloo, Iowa

With a ranking of #16, Hawkeye Community College did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Hawkeye Community College is a medium-sized public school located in Waterloo, Iowa.

Hawkeye Community College has the honor of being ranked #38 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $10,581 a year.

Learn More About Value at Hawkeye Community College

#17

Ellsworth Community College

Iowa Falls, Iowa

Ellsworth Community College landed the #17 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Ellsworth is located in Iowa Falls, Iowa and has a small student population. It is a public school.

Ellsworth Community College has the honor of being ranked #39 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $10,983 a year.

Read full value report on Ellsworth Community College

#18

Iowa Lakes Community College

Estherville, Iowa

Iowa Lakes Community College came in at #18 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Iowa Lakes Community College is a small public school situated in Estherville, Iowa.

Iowa Lakes Community College has the honor of being ranked #41 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $9,804 a year.

Full Iowa Lakes Community College Value Report

Southwestern Community College came in at #19 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Located in Creston, Iowa, the school is a small public institution.

Not only is Southwestern Community College a great value, but it is also ranked #42 in Iowa for overall quality. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $9,182 a year.

Learn More About Value at Southwestern Community College

#20

Simpson College

Indianola, Iowa

Simpson College landed the #20 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Simpson College is a small private not-for-profit school located in Indianola, Iowa.

In addition to being included on this ranking as a good value, Simpson College is ranked #9 for quality in the state of Iowa. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $20,457 a year.

Read full value report on Simpson College

#21

Buena Vista University

Storm Lake, Iowa

Buena Vista University came in at #21 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Buena Vista University is a small private not-for-profit school located in Storm Lake, Iowa.

Not only is Buena Vista University a great value, but it is also ranked #18 in Iowa for overall quality. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $18,300 a year.

Learn More About Value at Buena Vista University

With a ranking of #22, Graceland University - Lamoni did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Located in Lamoni, Iowa, the school is a small private not-for-profit institution.

Not only is Graceland University - Lamoni a great value, but it is also ranked #25 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $18,434.

Learn More About Value at Graceland University - Lamoni

#23

Central College

Pella, Iowa

With a ranking of #23, Central College did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. Pella, Iowa is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. It is a private not-for-profit school.

Central College has the honor of being ranked #13 in Iowa for overall quality on top of being a good value. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $21,690 a year.

Full Central College Value Report

With a ranking of #24, Maharishi International University did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa list. MIU is a private not-for-profit institution located in Fairfield, Iowa.

In addition to being included on this ranking as a good value, Maharishi International University is ranked #44 for quality in the state of Iowa. The average net price of the school for those who receive financial aid is about $13,802 a year.

Full Maharishi International University Value Report

#25

Loras College

Dubuque, Iowa

Loras College landed the #25 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges for the Money (With Aid) in Iowa ranking. Loras is located in Dubuque, Iowa and has a small student population. It is a private not-for-profit school.

Not only is Loras College a great value, but it is also ranked #8 in Iowa for overall quality. For those students who receive financial aid, the yearly average net price of the school is around $22,418.

Learn More About Value at Loras College

Best Value Schools (With Aid) in the Plains States Region

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Notes and References

Footnotes

*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 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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