2022 best colleges in Arkansas best-colleges

Students will find a memorial of each graduated student since the late 1800s at the University of Arkansas’s Senior Walk, but that’s not the school’s only asset. U of A ranks among the top schools in regard to the number of graduates working at Fortune 500 companies. For sports fans, Arkansas State University is home to the Red Wolves, which compete in the Division I Sun Belt Conference. While options for liberal arts schools are limited, Lyon College offers solid academic programs and a pet-friendly campus, including pet-inclusive facilities and on-campus pet training programs.

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Net cost: The median annual cost of all students that receive any aid. This does not refer to the “sticker price”, the price listed by the college.

Earnings: The median earnings of all bachelor-level students 10 years after enrollment. This includes both students that do and do not graduate, across all majors.

Payback: The amount of time in years it takes to pay off the median net cost by the median earnings. For this calculation, the median earning of high school graduates (in the school’s home state) are deducted from the median earnings.

Degree premium: The difference between the school’s median earnings and the median earnings for all schools in the same state. This is called “Vs. state average” in school profiles below.

Ranking: The payback rate is divided by the degree premium (set as a percentage), the lower the number the higher the rank. (i.e. payback=1, degree premium 20% higher than state school median: 1/120% = .883.

Net cost
Earnings
Payback
Degree premium
Rankings
Ranking methodology
#1 in Arkansas

University of Arkansas

Fayetteville, Arkansas

Admission rate: 78%

Grad rate: 65%

Net cost: $16,381

Payback: 2.5 Years

Earnings: $51,702

Vs. state average: + $9,019

Economic score: 2.04

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#2 in Arkansas

John Brown University

Siloam Springs, Arkansas

Admission rate: 59%

Grad rate: 69%

Net cost: $21,963

Payback: 3.1 Years

Earnings: $51,785

Vs. state average: + $9,102

Economic score: 2.58

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#3 in Arkansas

Harding University

Searcy, Arkansas

Admission rate: 56%

Grad rate: 66%

Net cost: $19,375

Payback: 3.4 Years

Earnings: $47,520

Vs. state average: + $4,837

Economic score: 3.02

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#4 in Arkansas

Hendrix College

Conway, Arkansas

Admission rate: 71%

Grad rate: 66%

Net cost: $19,295

Payback: 3.4 Years

Earnings: $45,626

Vs. state average: + $2,943

Economic score: 3.22

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#5 in Arkansas

Arkansas Tech University

Russellville, Arkansas

Admission rate: 98%

Grad rate: 48%

Net cost: $10,772

Payback: 3.1 Years

Earnings: $38,580

Vs. state average: - $4,103

Economic score: 3.40

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#6 in Arkansas

Ouachita Baptist University

Arkadelphia, Arkansas

Admission rate: 62%

Grad rate: 64%

Net cost: $19,815

Payback: 3.7 Years

Earnings: $44,927

Vs. state average: + $2,244

Economic score: 3.47

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#7 in Arkansas

Lyon College

Batesville, Arkansas

Admission rate: 51%

Grad rate: 51%

Net cost: $15,447

Payback: 3.8 Years

Earnings: $43,343

Vs. state average: + $660

Economic score: 3.72

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#8 in Arkansas

University of the Ozarks

Clarksville, Arkansas

Admission rate: 56%

Grad rate: 53%

Net cost: $12,924

Payback: 3.5 Years

Earnings: $39,347

Vs. state average: - $3,336

Economic score: 3.75

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#9 in Arkansas

Arkansas State University

Jonesboro, Arkansas

Admission rate: 68%

Grad rate: 52%

Net cost: $13,406

Payback: 3.9 Years

Earnings: $37,755

Vs. state average: - $4,928

Economic score: 4.44

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#10 in Arkansas

Henderson State University

Arkadelphia, Arkansas

Admission rate: 75%

Grad rate: 36%

Net cost: $10,270

Payback: 2.9 Years

Earnings: $39,020

Vs. state average: - $3,663

Economic score: 3.13

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#11 in Arkansas

University of Central Arkansas

Conway, Arkansas

Admission rate: 94%

Grad rate: 44%

Net cost: $15,376

Payback: 3.5 Years

Earnings: $42,472

Vs. state average: - $211

Economic score: 3.53

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#12 in Arkansas

University of Arkansas-Fort Smith

Fort Smith, Arkansas

Admission rate: N/A

Grad rate: 37%

Net cost: $9,637

Payback: 3.2 Years

Earnings: $37,613

Vs. state average: - $5,070

Economic score: 3.59

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#13 in Arkansas

Southern Arkansas University Main Campus

Magnolia, Arkansas

Admission rate: 69%

Grad rate: 41%

Net cost: $14,270

Payback: 3.9 Years

Earnings: $39,191

Vs. state average: - $3,492

Economic score: 4.22

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#14 in Arkansas

University of Arkansas at Little Rock

Little Rock, Arkansas

Admission rate: 57%

Grad rate: 40%

Net cost: $14,906

Payback: 4.0 Years

Earnings: $40,077

Vs. state average: - $2,606

Economic score: 4.31

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#15 in Arkansas

Central Baptist College

Conway, Arkansas

Admission rate: 50%

Grad rate: 36%

Net cost: $16,619

Payback: 4.3 Years

Earnings: $40,099

Vs. state average: - $2,584

Economic score: 4.53

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#16 in Arkansas

Philander Smith College

Little Rock, Arkansas

Admission rate: N/A

Grad rate: 32%

Net cost: $14,141

Payback: 5.5 Years

Earnings: $35,583

Vs. state average: - $7,100

Economic score: 6.60

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#17 in Arkansas

Williams Baptist University

Walnut Ridge, Arkansas

Admission rate: 70%

Grad rate: 41%

Net cost: $18,444

Payback: 6.8 Years

Earnings: $36,232

Vs. state average: - $6,451

Economic score: 8.05

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#18 in Arkansas

Ecclesia College

Springdale, Arkansas

Admission rate: 77%

Grad rate: 22%

Net cost: $18,838

Payback: 6.9 Years

Earnings: $36,421

Vs. state average: - $6,262

Economic score: 8.07

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#19 in Arkansas

University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff

Pine Bluff, Arkansas

Admission rate: 60%

Grad rate: 36%

Net cost: $12,320

Payback: 6.1 Years

Earnings: $31,984

Vs. state average: - $10,699

Economic score: 8.10

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#20 in Arkansas

Crowley's Ridge College

Paragould, Arkansas

Admission rate: N/A

Grad rate: 35%

Net cost: $13,796

Payback: 13.0 Years

Earnings: $27,898

Vs. state average: - $14,785

Economic score: 19.83

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