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EIU ranked #3 in the country for affordable college education

Finding a college that offers a solid academic education that won't put students under a mountain of school debt is a growing concern parents and their college-bound offspring. College Consensus has curated a list of schools ranked according to the most recent out-of-state tuition & fee information published by the National Center for Education Statistics.
Photo: Xin Wang/Unsplash

According to College Consensus, Eastern Illinois University in Charleston ranks #3 out of 100 schools across the country for an affordable college education.

Pursuing a college degree is now, more than ever, an expensive, but necessary journey. On average across most career fields, adults with college degrees stand to rake in a lot more money, more than 60% more according to NCES data, than those who don't continue their education after high school. Regardless of one's age, gender or race, a college degree is crucial to earning potentially more money during your lifetime.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average tuition rate for public universities in 2017-2018 academic year was more than $20,000; by contrast, 30 years earlier, the same education would have cost $3800. But everything was cheaper in 1985 – except that, adjusted for inflation, 1985 tuition was less than $8500 in 2018 dollars. Tuition continues to rise faster than inflation.

Education debt is second largest consumer debt class in the Unite States behind real estate mortgages. The average recent graduate is more than $37,000 in student debt.

This alone makes it a priority to find college programs that are reasonably priced and focuses on teaching market-ready skills for current in-demand professions.

The top three schools in the Best Value Colleges and Universities ranking for 2021 are (1) Brigham Young University--Provo, (2) North Dakota State University, and nearby Eastern Illinois University at #3. The next 97 ranked schools can be found here.

To create their ranking of the 100 Best Value Colleges & Universities, College Consensus created a list and ordered schools based on the most recent out-of-state tuition & fee information published by the National Center for Education Statistics.

EIU, which offers Bachelor’s Degrees, post-baccalaureate Certificates, Master’s Degrees and Doctorates in over 60 programs, scored well due to both in-state and out-of-state tuition runs $10,000 less than the average cost of all the 4-year schools that were evaluated.

Also making the list was Illinois State University at #93 and the University of Missouri - St. Louis at 100.

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