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2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky

45 Colleges
$37,376 Avg Salary*
34% Avg 4-Year Grad Rate*

There are lots of options to chooose from today when trying to decide which college to attend. College Factual has developed its Top Kentucky Schools ranking as one item you can use to help make this decision.

Our analysis looked at 45 schools in Kentucky to determine which ones were the best in terms of overall quality. Instead of depending on subjective information, we focus on over 20 objective factors to determine this ranking. These factors include such things as student-to-faculty ratio, average graduate earnings, and graduation rate.

Learn more about our ranking methodology.

One Size Does Not Fit All

We've developed a number of other tools and rankings to help you make your college decision. Start by filtering this list by location or field of study and then explore our other rankings that feature schools great for different groups of students such as veterans or returnings adults.

We've created a tool called College Combat that lets you create your own customized comparisons based on the factors that matter the most 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 in Kentucky

Learn more about these excellent schools below:

#1

University of Kentucky

Lexington, Kentucky

Our 2022 rankings named University of Kentucky the best school in Kentucky in terms of overall quality for students working on their bachelor’s degree. UK is a public institution located in Lexington, Kentucky. The school has a large population, and it awarded 7,882 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from UK go into careers with an average salary of $45,100 during the early years of their career.

Full University of Kentucky Report

#2

Centre College

Danville, Kentucky

A rank of #2 on our Best Colleges in Kentucky list means Centre College is a great place for students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in Danville, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 406 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2019-2020.

The low student loan default rate of 1.5% 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% The average salary of a graduate with a bachelor’s degree from Centre College of Kentucky is $45,500 during the early years of their career.

Full Centre College Report

#3

Berea College

Berea, Kentucky

The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Berea College helped the school earn the #3 place on this year’s ranking of the best schools in Kentucky. Berea is located in Berea, Kentucky and has a small student population. In 2019-2020, this school awarded 395 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The low student loan default rate of 4.3% 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% Upon graduation, bachelor’s degree recipients go on to jobs making an average salary of $33,700 during the early years of their career..

Full Berea College Report

#4

University of Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky

A rank of #4 on our Best Colleges in Kentucky list means University of Louisville is a great place for students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in Louisville, Kentucky, the large public school awarded 5,110 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2019-2020.

Graduates with a bachelor’s degree from UofL make an average of $41,800 per year during the early years of their career.

Read More…

#5

Transylvania University

Lexington, Kentucky

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Transylvania University. It ranked #5 on our 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky list.Lexington, Kentucky is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 205 students in 2019-2020.

The student loan default rate at the school is 4.3%, which is quite low when compared to the national default rate of 10.1% During the early years of their career, graduates from Transylvania make an average of $44,100 a year.

Full Transylvania University Report

#6

Bellarmine University

Louisville, Kentucky

With a ranking of #6, Bellarmine University did quite well on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky list.Louisville, Kentucky is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 998 students in 2019-2020.

Upon graduation, bachelor’s degree recipients go on to jobs making an average salary of $45,700 during the early years of their career..

Read More…

#7

University of the Cumberlands

Williamsburg, Kentucky

University of the Cumberlands landed the #7 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Cumberlands is located in Williamsburg, Kentucky and has a fairly large student population. In 2019-2020, this school awarded 4,149 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from Cumberlands go into careers with an average salary of $35,100 during the early years of their career.

Full University of the Cumberlands Report

#8

Asbury University

Wilmore, Kentucky

Asbury University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #8. Asbury is a small private not-for-profit school situated in Wilmore, Kentucky. It awarded 449 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

The average salary of a graduate with a bachelor’s degree from Asbury is $34,900 during the early years of their career.

Full Asbury University Report

#9

Northern Kentucky University

Highland Heights, Kentucky

Northern Kentucky University ranked #9 on this year’s Best Colleges in Kentucky list. Located in Highland Heights, Kentucky, the fairly large public school handed out 3,045 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Upon graduation, bachelor’s degree recipients go on to jobs making an average salary of $37,500 during the early years of their career..

Full Northern Kentucky University Report

#10

Georgetown College

Georgetown, Kentucky

Georgetown College landed the #10 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking.Georgetown, Kentucky is the setting for this small institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 425 students in 2019-2020.

Graduates with a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown College make an average of $43,000 per year during the early years of their career.

Read full report on Georgetown College

Jefferson Community and Technical College came in at #11 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Located in Louisville, Kentucky, the fairly large public school handed out 1,369 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

During the early years of their career, graduates from Jefferson Community and Technical College make an average of $28,800 a year.

Full Jefferson Community and Technical College Report

#12

Thomas More University

Crestview Hills, Kentucky

Thomas More University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #12. Located in Crestview Hills, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 498 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

During the early years of their career, graduates from Thomas More make an average of $49,400 a year.

Full Thomas More University Report

#13

Spalding University

Louisville, Kentucky

Spalding University landed the #13 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Located in Louisville, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 473 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

The impressive student-to-faculty rate of 7 to 1 means that students may have more opportunities to work more closely with their professors than they would at other schools. Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from Spalding go into careers with an average salary of $45,100 during the early years of their career.

Read More…

#14

Murray State University

Murray, Kentucky

Murray State University landed the #14 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Murray State is located in Murray, Kentucky and has a medium-sized student population. In 2019-2020, this school awarded 2,132 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The average salary of a graduate with a bachelor’s degree from Murray State is $37,100 during the early years of their career.

Full Murray State University Report

#15

Western Kentucky University

Bowling Green, Kentucky

Western Kentucky University ranked #15 on this year’s Best Colleges in Kentucky list. This fairly large public school is located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and it awarded 4,283 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from WKU go into careers with an average salary of $34,700 during the early years of their career.

Full Western Kentucky University Report

#16

Sullivan University

Louisville, Kentucky

Sullivan University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #16. Sullivan University is located in Louisville, Kentucky and has a small student population. In 2019-2020, this school awarded 936 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergradutates.

The impressive student-to-faculty rate of 9 to 1 means that students may have more opportunities to work more closely with their professors than they would at other schools. Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from Sullivan University go into careers with an average salary of $31,400 during the early years of their career.

Read More…

#17

Brescia University

Owensboro, Kentucky

Brescia University ranked #17 on this year’s Best Colleges in Kentucky list. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Owensboro, Kentucky, and it awarded 206 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Graduates with a bachelor’s degree from Brescia University make an average of $40,100 per year during the early years of their career.

Full Brescia University Report

#18

Eastern Kentucky University

Richmond, Kentucky

Eastern Kentucky University came in at #18 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Located in Richmond, Kentucky, the fairly large public school handed out 3,709 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Graduates with a bachelor’s degree from Eastern make an average of $36,100 per year during the early years of their career.

Read full report on Eastern Kentucky University

#19

Lindsey Wilson College

Columbia, Kentucky

Lindsey Wilson College came in at #19 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Located in Columbia, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 623 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Graduates with a bachelor’s degree from Lindsey Wilson College make an average of $28,800 per year during the early years of their career.

Full Lindsey Wilson College Report

#20

Kentucky Christian University

Grayson, Kentucky

Kentucky Christian University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #20. Located in Grayson, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school awarded 143 diplomas to qualifed bachelor’s degree students in 2019-2020.

The average salary of a graduate with a bachelor’s degree from Kentucky Christian University is $34,600 during the early years of their career.

Read More…

Bluegrass Community and Technical College came in at #21 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Bluegrass Community and Technical College is a fairly large public school located in Lexington, Kentucky that handed out 1,245 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Upon graduation, bachelor’s degree recipients go on to jobs making an average salary of $28,000 during the early years of their career..

Read full report on Bluegrass Community and Technical College

#22

Midway University

Midway, Kentucky

Midway University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #22. This small private not-for-profit school is located in Midway, Kentucky, and it awarded 308 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

During the early years of their career, graduates from Midway make an average of $34,500 a year.

Read More…

Elizabethtown Community and Technical College landed the #23 spot on the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking.Elizabethtown, Kentucky is the setting for this medium-sized institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 874 students in 2019-2020.

Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from Elizabethtown Community and Technical College go into careers with an average salary of $29,000 during the early years of their career.

Full Elizabethtown Community and Technical College Report

#24

Kentucky Wesleyan College

Owensboro, Kentucky

Kentucky Wesleyan College came in at #24 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking. Located in Owensboro, Kentucky, the small private not-for-profit school handed out 178 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

Those who receive a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan go into careers with an average salary of $36,700 during the early years of their career.

Full Kentucky Wesleyan College Report

#25

Campbellsville University

Campbellsville, Kentucky

Campbellsville University did quite well in the 2022 Best Colleges in Kentucky ranking, coming in at #25. Campbellsville University is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in Campbellsville, Kentucky that handed out 3,771 bachelor’s degrees in 2019-2020.

During the early years of their career, graduates from Campbellsville University make an average of $33,700 a year.

Read full report on Campbellsville University

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Notes and References

Footnotes

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

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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