Find Schools

Study Area & Zipcode

Find Schools Near

2021 Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania

111 Colleges
$24,383 Avg Cost*
4.2 Years Avg Time to Graduate*

With all of the options you have for higher education today, it can be tough to choose which direction to take. One of our goals at College Factual is to give you as much information as we can - such as our Best Value Pennsylvania Schools ranking - to help you make that decision.

We analyzed 111 colleges and universities to determine which were the best for overall value in Pennsylvania. 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. Because of this, it is possible for one college to rank better than another, even if the latter college has a lower average cost.

Get more details on our ranking methodology.

When determining average cost, we look at total expenses, such as tuition, fees, books and supplies, room and board, and other living expenses, and then deduct the average amount of financial aid awarded to a student. This estimate is meant to give you a better picture of how much money you'll have to pay each year, either through self-pay, loans, or external scholarships.

One Size Does Not Fit All

We know that one set of rankings doesn't always help you determine the best school for you, so we've created the ability to narrow your list by location and field of study as well as alternative rankings that prioritize different factors, such as those of importance to veterans and returning adults or those seeking diversity and overall quality.

One of our other unique offerings is College Combat. This tool lets you build your own customized comparisons utilizing the factors that are most important to you. If you're torn between two schools, you can use it to help you see how they stack up against one another!

Top Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania

Learn more about these excellent schools below:

#1

Elizabethtown College

Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania

Our 2021 rankings named Elizabethtown College the best school for overall value in Pennsylvania for students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 527 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

The average student at E - town graduates in less than 4.1 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $17,950. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from E - town is $73,236. 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%. E - town excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 20% of all schools on our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania list.

Read More…

Request Information

#2

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania

Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania

Out of the 111 schools in Pennsylvania that were part of this year’s ranking, Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania landed the #2 spot on the list. Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 1,807 students in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at SRU is 4.3 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $21,166. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the SRU is $90,802. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The student loan default rate at the school is 4.9%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%.

Read full report on Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania

Request Information
#3

Albright College

Reading, Pennsylvania

You’ll join some of the best and brightest minds around if you attend Albright College. The school came in at #3 in Pennsylvania on this year’s best value ranking. Reading, Pennsylvania is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 398 students in 2018-2019.

The average student at Albright graduates in less than 4.2 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $16,128. This means that the average student pays around $66,931 to get a bachelor’s degree from Albright. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

Full Albright College Report

Request Information

Out of the 111 schools in Pennsylvania that were part of this year’s ranking, University of Pittsburgh - Pittsburgh Campus landed the #4 spot on the list. Pitt is a public institution located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The school has a large population, and it awarded 5,451 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Pitt, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.2 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $28,264. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Pitt is $119,557. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 93%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. In addition to its great value ranking, Pitt is in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania list.

Read More…

Request Information
#5

University of the Sciences

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

You’ll join some of the best and brightest minds around if you attend University of the Sciences. The school came in at #5 in Pennsylvania on this year’s best value ranking. University of the Sciences is a small private not-for-profit school located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania that handed out 291 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At USciences, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.1 years, and it costs about $27,452 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 USciences is $111,730. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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%.

Read full report on University of the Sciences

Request Information
#6

West Chester University of Pennsylvania

West Chester, Pennsylvania

West Chester University of Pennsylvania landed the #6 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. WCUPA is located in West Chester, Pennsylvania and has a fairly large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 3,698 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

It takes the average student at WCUPA about 4.4 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $24,815. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from WCUPA is about $108,442. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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%.

Read full report on West Chester University of Pennsylvania

Request Information
#7

Westminster College Pennsylvania

New Wilmington, Pennsylvania

Westminster College Pennsylvania came in at #7 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania ranking. Westminster New Wilmington is a private not-for-profit institution located in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. The school has a small population, and it awarded 269 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.2 years for the average student at Westminster New Wilmington to complete their degree, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $24,777. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Westminster New Wilmington is $103,816. 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 4.7%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

Read full report on Westminster College Pennsylvania

Request Information
#8

Saint Vincent College

Latrobe, Pennsylvania

Saint Vincent College came in at #8 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania ranking. Located in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 394 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Saint Vincent about 4.1 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $27,193. This means that the average student pays around $111,491 to get a bachelor’s degree from Saint Vincent. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 86%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year.

Read full report on Saint Vincent College

Request Information
#9

Pennsylvania State University - University Park

University Park, Pennsylvania

With a ranking of #9, Pennsylvania State University - University Park did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania list. Penn State University Park is a public institution located in University Park, Pennsylvania. The school has a large population, and it awarded 10,893 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Penn State University Park, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.2 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $32,528. This means that the average student pays around $137,919 to get a bachelor’s degree from Penn State University Park. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 93%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. Penn State University Park excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 15% of all schools on our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania list.

Read More…

Request Information
#10

University of Pittsburgh - Bradford

Bradford, Pennsylvania

University of Pittsburgh - Bradford landed the #10 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Located in Bradford, Pennsylvania, the small public school handed out 226 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at University of Pittsburgh - Bradford is 4.2 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $20,402. This means that the average student pays around $85,076 to get a bachelor’s degree from University of Pittsburgh - Bradford. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

The low student loan default rate of 3.4% 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%.

Full University of Pittsburgh - Bradford Report

Request Information
#11

Waynesburg University

Waynesburg, Pennsylvania

Waynesburg University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking, coming in at #11. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, and it awarded 308 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Waynesburg graduates in less than 4.1 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $24,506. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Waynesburg is $100,720. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 4.4%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%.

Read More…

Request Information
#12

Temple University

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Temple University landed the #12 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Temple is a large public school situated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It awarded 6,523 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at Temple to complete their degree, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $28,782. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Temple be around $126,353. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 90%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year.

Full Temple University Report

Request Information
#13

Lincoln University

Lincoln University, Pennsylvania

Lincoln University landed the #13 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Lincoln University is a small public school located in Lincoln University, Pennsylvania that handed out 358 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.5 years for the average student at Lincoln to complete their degree, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $15,535. This means that the average student pays around $69,597 to get a bachelor’s degree from Lincoln. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Read full report on Lincoln University

Request Information
#14

Messiah University

Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania

Messiah University did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking, coming in at #14. Messiah is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. It awarded 636 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Messiah about 4.1 years to graduate, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $32,513. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Messiah be around $132,003. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The low student loan default rate of 1.6% 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%. On top of its placing in our value rankings, Messiah also did well on our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania list. It’s in the top 20% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

Read More…

Request Information
#15

Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania

Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania came in at #15 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania ranking. Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania is a medium-sized public school located in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania that handed out 1,973 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

At Bloomsburg, the average time it takes a student to graduate is 4.4 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $22,632. This means that the average student pays around $100,033 to get a bachelor’s degree from Bloomsburg. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

Read full report on Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

Request Information
#16

Allegheny College

Meadville, Pennsylvania

Allegheny College landed the #16 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Allegheny is located in Meadville, Pennsylvania and has a small student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 452 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Allegheny is 4.1 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $33,108. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Allegheny is $136,405. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

The school has an impressive student loan default rate. It’s only 3.1%, which is much lower than the national rate of 10.1%. On top of its placing in our value rankings, Allegheny also did well on our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania list. It’s in the top 20% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

Read More…

Request Information
#17

Lycoming College

Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Lycoming College landed the #17 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Located in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 298 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.2 years for the average student at Lycoming to complete their degree, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $27,294. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Lycoming is $114,362. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

Read full report on Lycoming College

Request Information
#18

Washington & Jefferson College

Washington, Pennsylvania

Washington & Jefferson College landed the #18 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Washington, Pennsylvania, and it awarded 382 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at W&J graduates in less than 4.1 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $34,366. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the W&J is $139,526. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The low student loan default rate of 1.1% 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%. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, W&J also is in the top 15% of our Best Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking.

Full Washington & Jefferson College Report

Request Information
#19

Mansfield University of Pennsylvania

Mansfield, Pennsylvania

Mansfield University of Pennsylvania did quite well in the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking, coming in at #19. Mansfield, Pennsylvania is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 377 students in 2018-2019.

It takes about 4.3 years for the average student at Mansfield University to complete their degree, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $19,892. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from Mansfield University is $85,933. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

Read More…

Request Information
#20

University of Pittsburgh - Johnstown

Johnstown, Pennsylvania

University of Pittsburgh - Johnstown landed the #20 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. This small public school is located in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, and it awarded 524 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at University of Pittsburgh - Johnstown is 4.3 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $23,235. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from University of Pittsburgh - Johnstown is $101,072. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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%.

Full University of Pittsburgh - Johnstown Report

Request Information

With a ranking of #21, Pennsylvania State University - Erie - Behrend College did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania list. Pennsylvania State University - Erie - Behrend College is a small public school located in Erie, Pennsylvania that handed out 829 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average student at Penn State Erie graduates in less than 4.4 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $28,972. This means that the average student pays around $126,897 to get a bachelor’s degree from Penn State Erie. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

The student loan default rate at the school is 4.9%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1%.

Read full report on Pennsylvania State University - Erie - Behrend College

Request Information
#22

Edinboro University of Pennsylvania

Edinboro, Pennsylvania

Edinboro University of Pennsylvania came in at #22 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania ranking. Edinboro is a public institution located in Edinboro, Pennsylvania. The school has a small population, and it awarded 798 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

It takes the average student at Edinboro about 4.5 years to graduate, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $20,200. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Edinboro is about $90,294. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Full Edinboro University of Pennsylvania Report

Request Information
#23

Kutztown University of Pennsylvania

Kutztown, Pennsylvania

With a ranking of #23, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania list. Kutztown University is a medium-sized public school situated in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. It awarded 1,651 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Kutztown University is 4.3 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $24,595. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Kutztown University is $106,496. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

Full Kutztown University of Pennsylvania Report

Request Information
#24

California University of Pennsylvania

California, Pennsylvania

California University of Pennsylvania landed the #24 spot on the 2021 Best Value Colleges in Pennsylvania ranking. Located in California, Pennsylvania, the medium-sized public school handed out 1,345 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at Cal U is 4.3 years, and it costs about $22,779 per year to attend the school. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the Cal U is $97,266. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

Read full report on California University of Pennsylvania

Request Information

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology came in at #25 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for the Money in Pennsylvania ranking. Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is located in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and has a small student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 51 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The average student at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology graduates in less than 4.3 years, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $10,497. Looking at these numbers together, we estimate that the average cost of a bachelor’s degree from Harrisburg University of Science and Technology is about $44,927. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

Full Harrisburg University of Science and Technology Report

Request Information

View Best Colleges for the Money Nationwide >

All Majors and Fields of Study >

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.

Featured Schools

Find Schools Near You