Search the Database

1
2
3

50 Great Affordable Colleges for Computer Science and Engineering

Facebooktwitterlinkedinrssyoutube

Badge - Great Value CollegesBelow you will find a list of the 50 best-rated, most affordable colleges for computer science and engineering students.

Methodology

The list was calculated by first looking up the US News and World Report lists of the best Computer Science and Engineering programs in the United States and then calculating each school’s adjusted average tuition.

Convenient Online Programs

The tuition rates are “adjusted” because they are calculated by subtracting each school’s average grants and scholarships packages from the baseline tuition. The numbers used for average aid packages only include financial aid from the institutions themselves (since state and federal aid is not specific to any one school) and only include scholarships and grants (since loans have to be repaid). For public institutions, the aid packages are subtracted from the average tuition, or in-state tuition + out-of-state tuition divided by 2. Calculating adjusted tuition rates helps to equalize the ground for private vs. public institutions, since private schools are more expensive but give higher aid packages. The adjusted tuition rates will also give you a more accurate impression of what you can expect to pay if you have financial need.

Initially there were 111 schools on the list (the Top 100 Engineering programs and the Top 100 Computer Science programs, with considerable overlap) organized in two separate ways: in descending order from highest-rated to lowest-rated, and in descending order from cheapest to most expensive. Each school on each list was assigned a number from 1 to 111 based on its place on each list. A value score was then calculated for each school by adding together its number from each list. So, a school which was both the highest-rated and the cheapest (which doesn’t exist, by the way) would have gotten a 2, and a school that was the lowest-rated and the most expensive (which also doesn’t exist) would have gotten a 222. The 50 schools with the lowest overall scores made this list – the lowest of which had a score of 11, and the highest of which got a score of 108. They are organized below by region (Northeast, South, Midwest, Southwest, and West) for your convenience.


Additional Resources


Northeast

1. Princeton University

Princeton, New Jersey

Website

Princeton achieves high scores for both its computer science and engineering programs, and although the tuition price tag is a bit hefty, the school gives out a large amount in grants and scholarships each year. Both its engineering and computer science programs are within the School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the school benefits from having the resources of both a large research institution and a liberal arts college. The department focuses on challenges like energy and the environment, health, and security, and its Center for Information Technology Policy is an interdisciplinary center for those interested in technology, engineering, public policy, and the social sciences.

Tuition: $40,170
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $7,416
Computer science program ranking: #9
Engineering program ranking #17
Value Score: 17

2. Harvard University

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Website

Harvard has engineering and computer science programs available at both the undergraduate and graduate levels through its School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. The school earns Top 25 scores in both areas, and the school, abbreviated SEAS, has over 100 participating faculty members and 400 postdoctoral fellows, research appointees, and research staff. There are many distinguished faculty members, including those who have won MacArthur Awards and Nobel Prizes. SEAS also boasts over 400,000 square feet of interconnected labs, classrooms, clusters, and offices. Although Harvard’s baseline tuition is expensive, its adjusted rate is quite low due to the large amount of grants and scholarships the school awards.

Tuition: $42,292
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $2,538
Computer science program ranking: #18
Engineering program ranking #24
Value Score: 19

3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, Massachusetts

Website

For anyone not concerned with price, there’s really no better choice for computer science or engineering majors than the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, or MIT. And even for those who need to pay attention to price, the average $11,000 a year after scholarships isn”t half bad. Its school of engineering has ten different engineering departments, from aeronautics and astronautics to computer science to nuclear science and engineering. The school also has twenty different engineering laboratories and research centers, participates in K12 outreach, and offers cross-departmental training programs. MIT even offers a $100K Entrepreneurship Competition to encourage students to pursue their ideas.

Tuition: $43,498
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,071
Computer science program ranking: #1
Engineering program ranking #1
Value Score: 30

4. Yale University

New Haven, Connecticut

Website

Yale’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences offers programs for both undergraduate and graduate study. People who graduate from these programs often go into not just engineering careers, but fields in business, government, and academia. Students often participate in cutting-edge research with distinguished faculty members and benefit from a lot of individual attention from professors. Undergraduates are not neglected in research either, and many get to publish research before graduation. Yale also emphasizes interdisciplinary communication, and engineering and applied science majors often work with those majoring in medicine, forestry and environmental studies, and management.

Tuition: $44,000
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $5,603
Computer science program ranking: #20
Engineering program ranking #34
Value Score: 30

5. Cornell University

Ithaca, New York

Website

This Ivy League school’s College of Engineering has departments ranging from Applied and Engineering Physics to Computer Science to Systems Engineering. Computer science students have unique opportunities to study robotics, artificial intelligence, computational biology, security, and other areas in-demand among graduates. Engineers also get to choose from a wide range of areas of study. Cornell students also get to participate in a number of unique opportunities, including an entrepreneurship program for computer scientists and engineers who want to find success in business.

Tuition: $45,358
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $12,352
Computer science program ranking: #6
Engineering program ranking #13
Value Score: 53

6. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Website

UPenn’s Engineering department includes programs for both undergraduate and graduate students. The school boasts fifteen centers and institutes for research, including the Center for Engineering Cells and Regeneration; General Robotics, Automation, Sensing, and Perception Lab; Nano/Bio Interface Center; and the Penn Institute for Computational Science. The average SAT math score of students majoring in engineering or applied science is 758. The school’s tuition price tag is a bit on the high side, even for an Ivy League, but its strong program rankings help make up for it.

Tuition: $45,890
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $12,333
Computer science program ranking: #19
Engineering program ranking #19
Value Score: 65

7. Dartmouth College

Hanover, New Hampshire

Website

One of the benefits of Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering is that students get to be involved in hands-on projects right from the start. They focus on real-world problems involving medical technologies, biofuels, hybrid cars, solar-powered robots, and other high-tech innovations. Students also have access to all liberal arts classes, study abroad and off-campus programs, and dual-degree opportunities. Computer science programs are in the School of Science, where students get access to more than ten separate labs dedicated to everything from robotics to molecular design to digital art.

Tuition: $46,752
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $10,701
Computer science program ranking: #40
Engineering program ranking #55
Value Score: 65

8. University of Maryland – College Park

College Park, Maryland

Website

The University of Maryland has separate schools for its computer science and engineering programs – the College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences, and the A. James Clark School of Engineering. The computer science program is actually the 16th in the world, and has the highest ranked program in the Mid-Atlantic region. Students earned the 14th spot in the World Finals Programming Contest in 20110, and the program offers more than ten inner-departmental scholarships for undergraduate students. The School of Engineering offers nine undergraduate majors and fifteen master’s degree programs, ten of which are also available at the PhD level. These programs are particularly good deals for in-state students, who could find themselves paying minimal tuition after scholarships and grants.

Tuition: $9,162 (In-state) $28,348 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $12,513
Computer science program ranking: #15
Engineering program ranking #22
Value Score: 68

9. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, Maryland

Website

Although Johns Hopkins is perhaps best known for its medical programs, the school also has better-than-decent computer science and engineering departments as well, and aid packages than can significantly offset the $45,000 price tag. Within the Whiting School of Engineering there are 19 different full-time degree programs in nine departments, including Applied and Computational Mathematics, Computer Integrated Surgery, Computer Science, Engineering for Sustainable Development, Information Systems Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering. There are also a number of minors, master’s, and certificate programs, an impressive student/faculty ratio of 9:1, and 19 major research centers and institutes.

Tuition: $45,470
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,666
Computer science program ranking: #28
Engineering program ranking #27
Value Score: 68

10. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, New York

Website

Columbia’s computer science and engineering programs are housed within The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Computer science students gain access to more than 25 separate labs dedicated to fields such as asynchronous circuits and systems, computational biology, architecture and design, and robotics. There are nine different engineering departments as well as an applied physics and mathematics program. Many undergraduates are taught by faculty who also teach at the graduate level, and the surrounding New York City area gives students access to a wealth social, cultural, and business opportunities to supplement their studies. Columbia also has a close relationship to New York’s public sector, and engineering graduates are often perfectly poised to take on jobs for the city.

Tuition: $49,138
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $13,055
Computer science program ranking: #15
Engineering program ranking #14
Value Score: 70

11. University of Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Website

While Pitt’s computer science program is housed in the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, its seven engineering programs are within the Swanson School of Engineering. The school is ranked roughly equally both fields, and its engineering programs are mostly (75%) made up of graduate students. Typical freshmen are in the top 10% of their graduating class, and nearly 5% of Pitt engineering students are in the top 1% of college-bound high school graduates. The school spends nearly $80 million a year just on engineering research, and nearly 500 faculty members have been honored with awards. The computer science program is one of the oldest in the world, and covers everything from algorithms and databases to natural language processing.

Tuition: $17,100 (In-state) $27,106 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $10,684
Computer science program ranking: #52
Engineering program ranking #43
Value Score: 77

12. Brown University

Providence, Rhode Island

Website

Brown’s academic units are structured in unique ways, and the school has “departments,” “centers,” and “programs” of biomedical engineering, computational biology, computer science, engineering, physics, and science and technology studies, among others. The computer science department is interdisciplinary in nature and collaborates extensively with scholars in archaeology, math, biology, linguistics, medicine, neuroscience, and others. Engineering students are involved in such high-tech activities as the Annual Robotics Olympiad, the CANSTRUCTION competition, and the Solar Decathlon in Europe. The tuition, even after grants and scholarships, is a little higher than at many Ivy League’s, but its programs are still very strong.

Tuition: $45,612
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $13,753
Computer science program ranking: #20
Engineering program ranking #46
Value Score: 79

13. Stony Brook University – SUNY

Stony Brook, New York

Website

Stony Brook University, part of the State University of New York, has a College of Engineering and Applied Sciences that includes departments of mathematics and statistics, biomedical engineering, computer science, electrical and computer engineering, materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, and technology and society. Its computer science program is the strongest, and is often considered one of the premier in the state. It’s also the largest program in the College of Engineering and houses a number of research centers. This includes the Center of Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology, a $230 million high-tech center. All engineering programs include a number of hands-on laboratory classes, an internship program, and a senior project.

Tuition: $7,995 (In-state) $19,935 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,638
Computer science program ranking: #40
Engineering program ranking #69
Value Score: 11

14. University at Buffalo – SUNY

Buffalo, New York

Website

The University at Buffalo, also a part of the State University of New York, has a College of Engineering and Applied Sciences comparable to Stony Brook – its engineering program a little stronger, its computer science program not as highly ranked. Students can study biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, environmental engineering, computer science, aeronautics, or other similar fields. Many faculty members are award-winning as well as members of prestigious editorial boards, and research includes the study of a number of emerging fields, including bioinformatics. In addition to engineering centers and research labs, there are a number of collaborative research centers focused on nanostructures, cognitive science, computational research, photonics, and other cutting-edge areas.

Tuition: $8,211 (In-state) $20,151 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $8,573
Computer science program ranking: #63
Engineering program ranking #60
Value Score: 80

15. University of Maryland – Baltimore County

Baltimore, Maryland

Website

This university, sometimes called UMBC, is an honors college with a computer science program in the Top 100 nationally. Housed in the College of Engineering and Information Technology, the school has both a computer science and engineering department and an information systems department. The computer science program is small but offers concentrations in eight different areas, including microelectronics and photonics and optical communications. There are strong ties with other departments and students get to work with professors in biology, geography, physics, visual arts, and other areas. With an average tuition of less than $9,000 a year after institutional aid, attending this university is not a bad deal.

Tuition: $10,068 (In-state) $21,642 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $8,904
Computer science program ranking: #70
Engineering program ranking Not Ranked
Value Score: 93

16. Rutgers University

Piscataway, New Jersey

Website

With faculty that has made strides in areas such as bionic limbs and traffic safety, Rutgers School of Engineering is focused on churning out innovators and inventors. Students get access to both close-knit groups of classmates thanks to small class sizes, but also get access to the resources of a large research institution. There are eight research centers, such as the Advanced Polymer Center and the Wireless Information Network Laboratory, and nearly thirty separate laboratories with focuses on everything from interfacial molecular science to specialty optics fibers. The school’s adjusted tuition rates are higher than many schools on this list, but it has lower out-of-state tuition than many other public universities.

Tuition: $13,499 (In-state) $27,523 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $14,253
Computer science program ranking: #34
Engineering program ranking #53
Value Score: 100

17. University of Massachusetts – Amherst

Amherst, Massachusetts

Website

UMass’s computer science program is much stronger than its engineering department, although both are in the US News Top 100. The university has both a College of Engineering and a School of Computer Science. The computer science program has grown dramatically since 2005 and now has 42 faculty members. Programs are available at the undergraduate and graduate degree level and the school added a B.A. in computer science in 2010. The school is committed to multidisciplinary research, with funding from both private industries and the government exceeding $15 million annually. And to help make school more affordable, the College of Engineering offers approximately 280 scholarships to undergraduates alone.

Tuition: $13,443 (In-state) $28,159 (Out-of-state)
Tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $15,260
Computer science program ranking: #25
Engineering program ranking #60
Value Score: 100

South

1. University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Website

UNC is by far one of the more affordable schools on the list, which is why it has a value score of an ultra-low 30 despite its engineering program being ranked 78th. Its computer science program is ranked very highly, however, in no small part because it seamlessly blends a liberal arts education with hands-on education. Students contribute to research in every way, and the active Computer Science Students Association sponsors a number of professional and social events. The engineering department is combined with environmental studies and has research strengths in the areas of engineering and policy solutions and molecular approaches to disease, among others.

Tuition: $8,340 (In-state) $30,122 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $4,951
Computer science program ranking: #25
Engineering program ranking #78
Value Score: 30

2. Duke University

Durham, North Carolina

Website

Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering contains computer science and engineering programs that are both within the Top 30 in the nation. Its programs include studies in biomedical engineering, computer engineering, and energy engineering, among others. The school is also ranked #2 in undergraduate biomedical engineering, #3 in graduate biomedical engineering, #17 in undergraduate environmental engineering, and #12 in graduate undergraduate engineering. The school is also ranked #1 in faculty productivity for biomedical engineering, #7 for electrical and computer engineering, and #8 in mechanical engineering. Furthermore, the school garners many millions in funds each year thanks to research awards.

Tuition: $45,376
Tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $9,092
Computer science program ranking: #25
Engineering program ranking #29
Value Score: 42

3. Vanderbilt University

Nashville, Tennessee

Website

Vanderbilt is an expensive school, but it doles out enough grants and scholarships each year to make its tuition fairly affordable for many students. Students who get into Vanderbilt’s engineering program score in the 99th percentile on their SATs, and over 60% of them receive some sort of financial aid. Students enjoy a student/faculty ratio of 14:1 (5:1 at the graduate level), and 90% of them have jobs within six months of graduation. Research opportunities exist within the Center for Intelligent Mechatronics, the Institute for Software Integrated Systems, the Institute for Space and Defense Electronics, and the Institute for Nanoscale Science and Engineering, as well as six others.

Tuition: $42,978
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $5,363
Computer science program ranking: #56
Engineering program ranking #34
Value Score: 64

4. Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, Georgia

Website

Although Georgia Tech has a higher average adjusted tuition than some, it is very affordable for in-state students and is ranked in the Top 10 for both computer science and engineering. The university has both a College of Computing and a College of Engineering, both with programs available at the undergraduate, master’s degree, and doctoral degree levels. Students get to participate in events like National Robotics Week and get significant help with the job hunt post-graduation. The College of Computing has 102 instructional faculty, the highest job placement of any major at the university, and has six individual programs ranked above 15th place on a national level. Similarly, the College of Engineering has 10 undergraduate programs ranked in 10th place or above, and 11 graduate programs ranked similarly.

Tuition: $10,650 (In-state) $29,954 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $13,479
Computer science program ranking: #9
Engineering program ranking #6
Value Score: 66

5. University of Virginia

Charlottesville, Virginia

Website

UVA’s School of Engineering and Applied Science has strong computer science and engineering programs, although its computer science department is rated somewhat higher. Of the more than 2,500 students in the school, 31% are women, making it a great value for female students wishing to pursue a field of study in this area. The average starting salary for graduates is over $66,000, with the highest offers exceeding $100,000. Nearly 100% of students are in the top 10% of their high school graduating class, and over a quarter study abroad at some point during their college experience.

Tuition: $12,668 (In-state) $40,054 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $12,015
Computer science program ranking: #29
Engineering program ranking #40
Value Score: 78

6. George Mason University

Fairfax, Virginia

Website

GMU’s Volgenau School of Engineering includes departments of Applied Information Technology; Bioengineering; Civil, Environmental, and Infrastructure Engineering; Computer Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering; Statistics; and Systems Engineering. The school offers bachelor’s degrees, undergraduate certificates, graduate degrees, graduate certificates, and doctoral degrees. The school is particularly strong in computer science and information technology-based engineering, rather than material-based engineering. There are five research centers and seven laboratories on campus focused on everything from cryptography and network security to air transportation systems.

Tuition: $9,908 (In-state) $28,592 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,137
Computer science program ranking: #67
Engineering program ranking #110
Value Score: 97

7. Auburn University

Auburn, Alabama

Website

The Samuel Ginn College of Engineering at Auburn is low on the list of the Top 100 Computer Science and Engineering programs, but talk about value! It’s adjusted average tuition is roughly $5,000 – and even for students who don’t receive scholarships and grants, both its in-state and out-of-state tuition rates are lower than average. The school offers seventeen different engineering and computer science majors, including aerospace engineering, chemical engineering, polymer and fiber engineering, electrical engineering, and wireless engineering. Programs center on mathematics and the physical sciences, but also stress the importance of the social sciences and communication skills. Even engineers need to know how to write! Auburn offers a special undergraduate pre-engineering degree to prepare students for professional studies.

Tuition: $9,852 (In-state) $20,364 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $5,137
Computer science program ranking: #90
Engineering program ranking #67
Value Score: 99

8. Mississippi State University

Mississippi State, Mississippi

Website

Mississippi State has perhaps the lowest in-state, out-of-state, and adjusted tuition rates of any school that made the Top 100 Engineering Programs list. The James Worth Bagley College of Engineering contains eight different engineering and computer science departments, which include degrees and certificates at both the undergraduate and graduate degree level. The college is the third largest at MSU and is ranked 51st nationally in research and development expenditures. The school is particularly devoted to promoting diversity, and African Americans make up 12% of enrolled engineering students, compared to the national average of just 5%. The school is also committed to encouraging females to pursue engineering and goes out of its way to hire female professors.

Tuition: $6,772 (In-state) $16,960 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $5,741
Computer science program ranking: Not Ranked
Engineering program ranking #90
Value Score: 100

Midwest

1. University of Minnesota

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Website

The University of Minnesota has very strong computer science and engineering programs housed within its College of Science and Engineering. The school has particularly strong in the prestige of its faculty, and 95% are tenured or tenure-tracked. Nearly 100% of engineering students are within the top 25% of their high school graduating class, and 95% of seniors have jobs or are pursuing graduate work within six months of graduation. Undergraduates and graduates alike have many opportunities to participate in research, get to collaborate with students majoring in medicine and health sciences, and work with major companies such as 3M and Medtronic.

Tuition: $13,555 (In-state) $19,805 (Out-of-state)
Tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,534
Computer science program ranking: #29
Engineering program ranking #28
Value Score: 66

2. Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

Website

OSU has strong programs in both computer science and engineering, as well as very decent tuition rates. The College of Engineering is ranked #14 among public universities, which makes it a particularly appealing choice for those who don’t expect to receive many grants or scholarships, as both in-state and out-of-state tuition rates are relatively low. The school distinguishes itself from other universities by throwing students into experiential learning early on, rather than sticking to the traditional lecture/lab approach. The First-Year Experience program in particular ranks as one of the nation’s most outstanding options for undergraduates.

Tuition: $10,037 (In-state) $25,757 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,232
Computer science program ranking: #34
Engineering program ranking #31
Value Score: 66

3. University of Wisconsin

Madison, Wisconsin

Website

Wisconsin’s College of Engineering offers programs at both the undergraduate and graduate level, including certificate degrees and an honors program. The school offers special services in computer-aided engineering, career services, international/study abroad opportunities, and a leadership center. There are also 55 registered student organizations where students participate in community service, conduct educational outreach, and implement sustainable engineering solutions. 85% of students participate in at least one internship or co-op experience, and the Engineers without Borders chapter is one of the largest chapters in the country.

Tuition: $10,403 (In-state) $26,653 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $13,602
Computer science program ranking: #11
Engineering program ranking #17
Value Score: 70

4. Purdue University

West Lafayette, Indiana

Website

Purdue is a large research university with a prestigious College of Engineering, and is an especially good choice for Indiana residents who can capitalize on the less than $10,000/year in-state tuition. The engineering program is one of the largest in the country and all 13 of its academic departments are highly ranked. The program is also growing rapidly, and the number of faculty and staff could grow by as much as 30% in the next five years. The school has also spent over $16 million on new engineering buildings and labs since 2002. Research centers on a number of subjects, including terrorism, energy sources, and healthcare solutions.

Tuition: $9,992 (In-state) $28,794 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $13,230
Computer science program ranking: #20
Engineering program ranking #8
Value Score: 77

5. Iowa State University

Ames, Iowa

Website

If you live in Iowa, it’s hard to get a better deal that ISU’s in-state tuition, although the out-of-state price tag won’t break the bank either, especially after scholarships and grants. Academic departments include aerospace, biosystems, chemical, computer, industrial, and mechanical engineering, among others. The school spends nearly $80 million on research each year, and there are over 60 research centers and institutes on campus. Iowa State is considered a best value school among public colleges, ranks highly on the number of engineering degrees granted to women, and is 28th in externally sponsored research.

Tuition: $7,726 (In-state) $20,278 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $8,497
Computer science program ranking: #63
Engineering program ranking #46
Value Score: 77

6. University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign

Urbana, Illinois

Website

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has very high rankings in both computer science and engineering. It doesn’t give out as much financial aid as some other schools, so it may be more affordable for in-state students. All twelve of its undergraduate engineering majors, from aerospace to mechanical, are ranked in the Top 20 nationally, and its engineering physics department is the premier in the U.S. Similarly, all 19 of its graduate engineering majors are ranked in the Top 20, with both its civil and physics – condensed matter programs at #1.

Tuition: $14,750 (In-state) $29,132 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $15,414
Computer science program ranking: #5
Engineering program ranking #6
Value Score: 81

7. University of Michigan

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Website

The University of Michigan is well-known for several of its programs, and both its computer science and engineering departments are in the Top 15 nationally. The scholarships and grants the institution awards can bring down the cost of tuition substantially, although the adjusted cost is still somewhat on the high end. Students in the College of Engineering study everything from stem cells to nuclear prevention to 3D printing to thermal vision. All eleven of its undergraduate and graduate programs are ranked in the Top 15 nationally, and students can conduct research in one of sixteen different centers and institutes. The School of Information is also a unique choice for students interested in IT and computer science.

Tuition: $13,142 (In-state) $40,392 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $15,063
Computer science program ranking: #13
Engineering program ranking #8
Value Score: 85

8. University of Iowa

Iowa City, Iowa

Website

The University of Iowa has a unique engineering program for undergraduate students that allows them to be “undeclared engineers” while exploring different courses in order to make the most educated decision about what specialty to pursue. Freshman applicants applying to the College of Engineering get their admissions decision within 48 hours of submitting their application! There is a 96% placement rate for students within 90 days of graduation, students benefit from free tutoring, and there is substantial K12 outreach. There are also a number of scholarships available to both first-year and transfer students.

Tuition: $8,061 (In-state) $26,931 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $9,411
Computer science program ranking: #63
Engineering program ranking #62
Value Score: 86

9. University of Nebraska – Lincoln

Lincoln, Nebraska

Website

The College of Engineering at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln is rated low on the Top 100 Computer Science and Engineering Programs list, but it is a very affordable option for both in-state and out-of-state students. There are eleven academic departments, including those within the School of Architectural Engineering and Construction. The undergraduate student/faculty ratio is only 16:1, the average ACT score in incoming students is 29, and there are over 55 student engineering organizations. There are also over 160 tenure/tenure-track faculty.

Tuition: $8,060 (In-state) $21,388 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $9,714
Computer science program ranking: #70
Engineering program ranking #87
Value Score: 100

10. Indiana University – Bloomington

Bloomington, Indiana

Website

Although IU’s engineering program is not ranked, its computer science program is only about halfway down the list, which makes paying the less than $13,000 average adjusted tuition even more of a value for computer science students. The School of Informatics and Computing includes a unique combination of programs, such as informatics, computer science, library science, and information science. All programs are multidisciplinary and have a strong focus on research. Students can conduct research at any one of the nine different campus centers and institutes, and research areas include artificial intelligence, cognitive science, data mining, human computer interaction design, music informatics, robotics, security, and web science.

Tuition: $10,209 (In-state) $32,350 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $12,911
Computer science program ranking: #52
Engineering program ranking Not Ranked
Value Score: 105

11. Missouri University of Science and Technology

Rolla, Missouri

Website

Missouri S&T barely makes the cut for Top 100 programs, and isn’t actually ranked for engineering, but has low adjusted tuition rates, even for out-of-state students, which make it a great value for people on the computer science end of the spectrum. The department has been designated a National Center for Academic Excellence in Information Assurance and is one of the oldest programs in the U.S. CS students have 24-hour access to all of the school’s advanced computer labs, work in the school’s IT division, and make starting salaries of over $60,000 after graduation.

Tuition: $9,510 (In-state) $24,675 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $10,878
Computer science program ranking: Not Ranked
Engineering program ranking #81
Value Score: 108

Southwest

1. Rice University

Houston, Texas

Website

Rice is a great value for students looking to go to school in the Southwest because it has highly-ranked computer science and engineering programs but its adjusted tuition is under $11,000 – not bad for a private school. The School of Engineering has nine departments, including Computer Science, and is home to over 100 faculty members – eleven of which are members of the National Academies of Engineering and Science. The school’s proximity to Houston allows students to get involved in the energy industry, medical research, space exploration, and technology.

Tuition: $38,941
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $10,822
Computer science program ranking: #20
Engineering program ranking #33
Value Score: 48

2. University of Arizona

Tucson, Arizona

Website

The University of Arizona scores about in the midrange for computer science and engineering programs, and is on the low side for tuition rates. The school is 19th in research and development expenditures, with $650 million a year in federal funding. Every single one of its academic engineering departments are nationally ranked, many students study abroad, and student-run project clubs range from the UA Baja Racing Team to the Aerial Robotics Club. The school is very research-focused, with over 100 funded projects and over 200 graduate research assistants.

Tuition: $10,391 (In-state) $27,383 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $10,696
Computer science program ranking: #40
Engineering program ranking #55
Value Score: 67

3. Arizona State

Tempe, Arizona

Website

ASU offers opportunities for engineering students in both the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering and the College of Technology and Innovation. There are numerous student organizations, K12 outreach programs, and a career center just for future engineers. Starting in the summer of 2014 the College of Technology and Innovation on the Polytechnic campus will merge with Fulton. Engineers and computer scientists can live in collaborative residential communities, participate in events like Career Exploration, and start conducting research as an undergraduate.

Tuition: $9,861 (In-state) $23,654 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $9,161
Computer science program ranking: #48
Engineering program ranking #43
Value Score: 67

4. Texas A&M University

College Station, Texas

Website

Texas A&M’s Dwight Look College of Engineering has sixteen different degree tracks, including agricultural, biomedical, electrical, industrial, nuclear, ocean, and petroleum engineering, plus computer science. It is a very large program, with over 12,000 students and 350 faculty members. Through its partnership with the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station, the school offers students the chance to collaborate with industry leaders and other universities to conduct research, particularly in the areas of energy and the environment, homeland security, healthcare, and informatics. Texas A&M is a particularly good deal for in-state students – especially if they can get scholarship money.

Tuition: $8,506 (In-state) $25,126 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,453
Computer science program ranking: #40
Engineering program ranking #11
Value Score: 75

5. University of Houston

Houston, Texas

Website

Although this school’s computer science department is not nationally ranked in the Top 100 (just barely missing it), the engineering department holds its own against other top universities. There are six academic departments in the College of Engineering, including electrical and computer engineering. The school is unique in that it offers a number of interdisciplinary graduate programs in areas like subsea, aerospace, materials, and computer and systems engineering. The school spends roughly $24 million on research each year and there are ten separate research centers and institutes, including the Centers for Electromagnetic Compatibility, Integrated Bio and Nano Systems, and Superconductivity.

Tuition: $8,401 (In-state) $16,897 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $7,618
Computer science program ranking: #101
Engineering program ranking #78
Value Score: 89

6. University of Texas – Dallas

Richardson, Texas

Website

The Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science includes nine different engineering and computer science departments, is considered the 44th best engineering program amongst public schools, and is the 3rd highest-rated school of its kind in Texas. Students involved in research participate in developing cutting-edge technologies like carbon nanotubes, microelectromechanical systems, cochlear implant technologies, cybersecurity, organic electronics, and chemical and biosensors. The school has risen nearly 20 spots in national ranking since it started an expansion program in 2003.

Tuition: $10,864 (In-state) $26,038 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $8,014
Computer science program ranking: #70
Engineering program ranking #71
Value Score: 95

7. University of Texas – Austin

Austin, Texas

Website

Although significantly more expensive than UT Dallas, at least for out-of-state students and those who don’t receive scholarships, UT Austin also has much stronger programs in both computer science and engineering. The Cockrell School of Engineering employs 280 faculty members for 7,700 students in nine undergraduate and 13 graduate degree programs. The senior faculty constitute the fourth highest membership in the National Academy of Engineering, the majority of students are in the top 10% of their graduating class, and 12% of students were their high school’s valedictorians or salutatorians. The school offers more than 1,300 scholarships totaling over $4.5 million in award money, which can help offset the higher tuition costs.

Tuition: $9,798 (In-state) $33,842 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $17,494
Computer science program ranking: #9
Engineering program ranking #10
Value Score: 100

West

1. Stanford

Stanford, California

Website

Although far down on this list because it is organized by region, Stanford received the lowest overall Value Score of any school that made the cut (which is a good thing). It has some of the strongest programs in the country and gives out so many institutional grants and scholarships that its tuition is extremely affordable. All if its engineering departments are in the Top 6 nationally and all will be housed in 21st century facilities by the Fall of 2014. There are more than 80 labs, centers, and affiliate programs for conducting research, and nearly 13,000 companies have been founded by Stanford engineering faculty and grads.

Tuition: $43,683
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $7,294
Computer science program ranking: #1
Engineering program ranking #3
Value Score: 11

2. California Institute of Technology

Pasadena, California

Website

CalTech is known for all its science and technology departments, and it is fairly affordable compared to other private schools. Its academic divisions are separated into biology and biological engineering, chemistry and chemical engineering, and engineering and applied science. It is a world-renowned research facility with a student/teacher ratio of an incredibly low 3:1. The faculty includes 32 Nobel Laureates, 57 National Medal of Science recipients, 13 National Medal of Technology recipients, and 111 National Academies memberships. Over half of students receive need-based aid packages, the average indebtedness of the graduating class is $15,090 (among the lowest in the nation for a four-year college), and it has been rated 2nd in the nation for return on investment of degree.

Tuition: $41,538
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,775
Computer science program ranking: #11
Engineering program ranking #4
Value Score: 49

3. University of Washington

Seattle, Washington

Website

UW has an especially strong computer science program, although its engineering department isn”t too shabby, either. Departments include aeronautics and astronautics, bioengineering, computer science, human centered design and engineering, industrial and systems engineering, and mechanical engineering. Women represent over a quarter of undergraduate and graduate students and nearly a third of PhD candidates, and over 20% of faculty are women, making UW a great choice for female aspiring engineers. The faculty includes many prestigious members, including 2 MacArthur Fellows. The school spends over $100 million in engineering research each year.

Tuition: $12,397 (In-state) $31,971 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $11,834
Computer science program ranking: #6
Engineering program ranking #26
Value Score: 52

4. University of Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

Website

The University of Utah has very decent computer science and engineering programs, and is affordable even for out-of-state students – and in-state students get a real deal! There is a School of Computing within the School of Engineering, which offers typical degree programs like Civil Engineering as well as more unique programs like Nuclear Engineering. It has the 39th largest undergraduate enrollment of engineering students, is 30th in total annual research expenditures, is 35th for the number of tenure-track faculty, and is 34th in the number of graduate degrees it offers.

Tuition: $7,457 (In-state) $23,736 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $9,130
Computer science program ranking: #40
Engineering program ranking #53
Value Score: 63

5. University of California – Berkeley

Berkeley, California

Website

Berkeley has both a College of Engineering and a School of Information for graduate students interested in information systems. The engineering school includes departments of bioengineering, electrical engineering and computer science, industrial engineering, nuclear engineering, and others. Although all of its engineering and computer science programs are very highly rated, it achieved a lower Value Score because it is expensive compared to some other highly-rated universities. 23% of engineering students are international, 23% are women, 59% of undergraduate students receive some form of financial aid, and there are 215 full-time faculty members.

Tuition: $12,864 (In-state) $35,742 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $15,143
Computer science program ranking: #1
Engineering program ranking #3
Value Score: 76

6. University of California – Los Angeles

Los Angeles, California

Website

UCLA is definitely considered a good value school, although it is somewhat more expensive, on average, and somewhat less highly-ranked than its UC counterpart to the north. Majors for engineers and computer scientists include aerospace studies, bioengineering, bioinformatics, chemical and biomolecular engineering, civil and environmental engineering, computational and systems biology, computer science, information studies, and materials science and engineering. The average GPA for incoming freshmen is a 4.25, 55% of undergraduates receive some sort of financial assistance, and 36% of undergraduates receive Pell Grants – among the highest percentage of any top-tier university in the country.

Tuition: $12,697 (In-state) $35,575 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $15,602
Computer science program ranking: #13
Engineering program ranking #16
Value Score: 90

7. Brigham Young University

Provo, Utah

Website

Although BYU’s computer science program barely makes the list, and its engineering program is not in the Top 100, it has the cheapest adjusted average tuition except for Harvard – and its in-state tuition is hard to beat, even without financial aid. The Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology is ranked 8th in the U.S. for the number of students who go on to pursue PhDs in engineering. Nearly 70% of its students speak a second language and there are over 140 state-of-the-art laboratories, including facilities for prototyping, manufacturing, and computing; a virtual reality theater; and a class 10 cleanroom. The school places considerable emphasis on mentoring undergraduates who want to do research.

Tuition: $4,850 (In-state) $37,505 (Out-of-state)
Average tuition minus institutional grants/scholarships: $4,020
Computer science program ranking: #90
Engineering program ranking #102
Value Score: 99

Other Sources:

https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/

http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-science-schools/computer-science-rankings

http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-engineering-schools/eng-rankings

 


Additional Resources


2 Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. http://www.gp.se/fescvea
  2. Blog post #4- Which school is right for you? – Site Title

Leave a Reply