University of Colorado makes top 10 most affordable schools in West

Caitlin Hendee --- The Denver Business Journal 

The University of Colorado Boulder (CU-Boulder) rounded out the list of the Great Value Colleges' top 10 most affordable colleges in the West.

"More than 1,200 undergrads annually are involved in worldwide faculty research, and with a student-faculty ratio of 18:1 it’s easy to get to know professors," said Great Value Colleges on its website Tuesday. "Thanks to its efforts to keep students engaged, [CU-Boulder] enjoys the highest graduation rates for public universities in the State."

Colorado State University (CSU) wasn't far behind, coming in at No. 13 on Great Value Colleges' 50 most affordable post-secondary schools in the West.

"Colorado State’s more than $300 million in annual research funding puts it at the forefront of areas such as infectious disease, cancer research and atmospheric science," said Great Value Colleges on its website.

Salisbury, Maryland-based Great Value Colleges is a free web guide to economical degree programs. The site compiled the rankings by first determining if a college has in-state tuition of $22,000 or less per year. Colleges that met that standard were then ranked according to eight factors:

  1. Six-year graduation rate.
  2. Freshmen retention rate.
  3. Student-to-faculty ratio.
  4. Percentage of classes entrusted to graduate assistants.
  5. Average entrance ACT score.
  6. Number of campus organizations.
  7. Number of academic programs.
  8. Forbes ranking.

"We included the Forbes ranking because, more than other sources that write on education, it assesses schools based on measures of student 'output' and satisfaction," the study said.

Click here to see the full list.