Kentucky’s higher education system includes eight public universities, 16 colleges within the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, and 25 accredited independent institutions. That translates to plenty of higher education options for Kentucky students, but it’s important for aspiring students to do their research to ensure they pick the school that’s right for them. This page offers tools and data that can help, including rankings that list Kentucky’s best overall colleges, information about financial assistance programs, and data that shows the real cost of college in Kentucky.

Kentucky College Leaderboard: 2017 Rankings

Kentucky Kentucky

Searching for the right school can be daunting, so we’ve made the task easier by rounding up the top colleges in Kentucky to give prospective students an idea of the state’s best academic offerings. Rankings are determined by a combination of factors, such as tuition, access to financial aid, graduation rate and student-teacher ratio. Even if students don’t see their perfect fit here, they can use the list to gauge the quality of other Kentucky colleges. See which Kentucky colleges and universities made the cut for the 2017 academic year.

1
1 West Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
99.83
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$27,200
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
14:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
1%
1West Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
99.83
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $27,200
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    14:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    1%

  • Graduation Rate 38%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 11
  • # Total Programs 99
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
2
2 Madisonville Community College
Score
99.74
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$26,800
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
14:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
22%
2Madisonville Community College
Score
99.74
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $26,800
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    14:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    22%

  • Graduation Rate 30%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 11
  • # Total Programs 61
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
3
3 Gateway Community and Technical College
Score
99.60
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$26,300
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
9%
3Gateway Community and Technical College
Score
99.60
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $26,300
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    9%

  • Graduation Rate 34%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 13
  • # Total Programs 70
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
4
4 Maysville Community and Technical College
Score
99.41
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$22,300
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
11:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
9%
4Maysville Community and Technical College
Score
99.41
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $22,300
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    11:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    9%

  • Graduation Rate 30%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 10
  • # Total Programs 67
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
5
5 Henderson Community College
Score
99.20
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$24,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
10:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
22%
5Henderson Community College
Score
99.20
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $24,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    10:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    22%

  • Graduation Rate 21%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 5
  • # Total Programs 28
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
6
6 Somerset Community College
Score
98.90
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$25,800
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
8%
6Somerset Community College
Score
98.90
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $25,800
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    8%

  • Graduation Rate 25%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 11
  • # Total Programs 84
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
7
7 Owensboro Community and Technical College
Score
98.72
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$25,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
13:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
4%
7Owensboro Community and Technical College
Score
98.72
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $25,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    13:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    4%

  • Graduation Rate 30%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 10
  • # Total Programs 82
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
8
8 Jefferson Community and Technical College
Score
98.40
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$26,200
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
1%
8Jefferson Community and Technical College
Score
98.40
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $26,200
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    1%

  • Graduation Rate 11%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 11
  • # Total Programs 101
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
9
9 Bluegrass Community and Technical College
Score
98.01
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$22,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
2%
9Bluegrass Community and Technical College
Score
98.01
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $22,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    2%

  • Graduation Rate 18%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 14
  • # Total Programs 98
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
10
10 Ashland Community and Technical College
Score
97.90
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$24,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
14:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
7%
10Ashland Community and Technical College
Score
97.90
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $24,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    14:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    7%

  • Graduation Rate 20%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 9
  • # Total Programs 58
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
11
11 Hopkinsville Community College
Score
97.51
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$26,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
19:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
10%
11Hopkinsville Community College
Score
97.51
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $26,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    19:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    10%

  • Graduation Rate 19%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 11
  • # Total Programs 43
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
12
12 Hazard Community and Technical College
Score
97.44
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$21,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
19%
12Hazard Community and Technical College
Score
97.44
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $21,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    19%

  • Graduation Rate 28%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 10
  • # Total Programs 62
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience Yes
13
13 Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
96.73
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$22,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
6%
13Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
96.73
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $22,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    6%

  • Graduation Rate 25%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 7
  • # Total Programs 54
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
14
14 Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
88.51
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$29,200
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
5%
14Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College
Score
88.51
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $29,200
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    5%

  • Graduation Rate 20%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 7
  • # Total Programs 47
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
15
15 Elizabethtown Community and Technical College
Score
87.28
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$27,200
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
4%
15Elizabethtown Community and Technical College
Score
87.28
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $27,200
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    4%

  • Graduation Rate 23%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 13
  • # Total Programs 66
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience Yes
16
16 Big Sandy Community and Technical College
Score
86.00
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$23,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
18%
16Big Sandy Community and Technical College
Score
86.00
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $23,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    18%

  • Graduation Rate 16%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 9
  • # Total Programs 57
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience No
1
1 Georgetown College
Score
99.72
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$43,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
9:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
1Georgetown College
Score
99.72
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $43,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    9:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 60%
  • Acceptance Rate 89%
  • # Online Programs 3
  • # Total Programs 42
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
2
2 Berea College
Score
98.84
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$34,400
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
10:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
2Berea College
Score
98.84
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $34,400
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    10:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 66%
  • Acceptance Rate 34%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 50
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
3
3 Bellarmine University
Score
98.72
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$44,900
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
3Bellarmine University
Score
98.72
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $44,900
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 62%
  • Acceptance Rate 83%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 54
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
4
4 Transylvania University
Score
98.44
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$41,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
11:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
4Transylvania University
Score
98.44
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $41,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    11:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 74%
  • Acceptance Rate 83%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 40
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
5
5 Centre College
Score
98.14
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$45,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
10:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
97%
5Centre College
Score
98.14
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $45,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    10:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    97%

  • Graduation Rate 87%
  • Acceptance Rate 72%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 29
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
6
6 University of Louisville
Score
98.06
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$37,700
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
56%
6University of Louisville
Score
98.06
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $37,700
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    56%

  • Graduation Rate 52%
  • Acceptance Rate 74%
  • # Online Programs 5
  • # Total Programs 121
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
7
7 University of Kentucky
Score
96.03
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$41,500
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
59%
7University of Kentucky
Score
96.03
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $41,500
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    59%

  • Graduation Rate 58%
  • Acceptance Rate 72%
  • # Online Programs 3
  • # Total Programs 185
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
8
8 Murray State University
Score
95.88
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$35,500
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
70%
8Murray State University
Score
95.88
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $35,500
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    70%

  • Graduation Rate 54%
  • Acceptance Rate 80%
  • # Online Programs 12
  • # Total Programs 101
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
9
9 Thomas More College
Score
94.51
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$45,800
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
98%
9Thomas More College
Score
94.51
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $45,800
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    98%

  • Graduation Rate 49%
  • Acceptance Rate 93%
  • # Online Programs 1
  • # Total Programs 43
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience No
10
10 Asbury University
Score
94.15
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$34,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
93%
10Asbury University
Score
94.15
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $34,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    93%

  • Graduation Rate 76%
  • Acceptance Rate 69%
  • # Online Programs 12
  • # Total Programs 57
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
11
11 Brescia University
Score
94.12
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$36,800
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
14:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
89%
11Brescia University
Score
94.12
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $36,800
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    14:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    89%

  • Graduation Rate 46%
  • Acceptance Rate 49%
  • # Online Programs 9
  • # Total Programs 30
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
12
12 Kentucky Wesleyan College
Score
92.82
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$36,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
12Kentucky Wesleyan College
Score
92.82
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $36,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 36%
  • Acceptance Rate 61%
  • # Online Programs 3
  • # Total Programs 38
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
13
13 Midway College
Score
92.61
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$36,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
96%
13Midway College
Score
92.61
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $36,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    96%

  • Graduation Rate 51%
  • Acceptance Rate 58%
  • # Online Programs 9
  • # Total Programs 26
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
14
14 Western Kentucky University
Score
92.37
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$34,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
37%
14Western Kentucky University
Score
92.37
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $34,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    37%

  • Graduation Rate 50%
  • Acceptance Rate 93%
  • # Online Programs 44
  • # Total Programs 132
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
15
15 Campbellsville University
Score
92.24
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$32,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
13:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
90%
15Campbellsville University
Score
92.24
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $32,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    13:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    90%

  • Graduation Rate 44%
  • Acceptance Rate 73%
  • # Online Programs 8
  • # Total Programs 58
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
16
16 Union College
Score
91.39
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$32,500
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
13:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
16Union College
Score
91.39
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $32,500
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    13:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 36%
  • Acceptance Rate 75%
  • # Online Programs 2
  • # Total Programs 47
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
17
17 University of the Cumberlands
Score
91.19
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$33,300
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
100%
17University of the Cumberlands
Score
91.19
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $33,300
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    100%

  • Graduation Rate 45%
  • Acceptance Rate 66%
  • # Online Programs 23
  • # Total Programs 58
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience No
18
18 Eastern Kentucky University
Score
91.19
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$33,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
15:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
41%
18Eastern Kentucky University
Score
91.19
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $33,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    15:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    41%

  • Graduation Rate 37%
  • Acceptance Rate 74%
  • # Online Programs 15
  • # Total Programs 128
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
19
19 Spalding University
Score
91.02
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$40,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
14:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
97%
19Spalding University
Score
91.02
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $40,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    14:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    97%

  • Graduation Rate 38%
  • Acceptance Rate 46%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 40
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience No
20
20 Northern Kentucky University
Score
91.00
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$36,100
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
51%
20Northern Kentucky University
Score
91.00
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $36,100
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    51%

  • Graduation Rate 37%
  • Acceptance Rate 91%
  • # Online Programs 16
  • # Total Programs 86
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience Yes
21
21 Morehead State University
Score
89.22
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$31,800
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
18:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
70%
21Morehead State University
Score
89.22
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $31,800
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    18:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    70%

  • Graduation Rate 43%
  • Acceptance Rate 84%
  • # Online Programs 15
  • # Total Programs 85
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
22
22 Kentucky State University
Score
88.27
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$26,600
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
61%
22Kentucky State University
Score
88.27
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $26,600
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    61%

  • Graduation Rate 14%
  • Acceptance Rate 48%
  • # Online Programs 2
  • # Total Programs 29
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
23
23 Kentucky Christian University
Score
88.18
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$28,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
12:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
99%
23Kentucky Christian University
Score
88.18
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $28,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    12:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    99%

  • Graduation Rate 41%
  • Acceptance Rate 48%
  • # Online Programs 2
  • # Total Programs 20
  • Placement Services No
  • Credit for Experience No
24
24 The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Score
87.78
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
N/A
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
11:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
43%
24The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Score
87.78
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    N/A
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    11:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    43%

  • Graduation Rate 55%
  • Acceptance Rate 65%
  • # Online Programs 1
  • # Total Programs 15
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
25
25 University of Pikeville
Score
86.90
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$30,400
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
99%
25University of Pikeville
Score
86.90
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $30,400
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    99%

  • Graduation Rate 28%
  • Acceptance Rate 100%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 22
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience Yes
26
26 Alice Lloyd College
Score
86.54
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$33,400
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
17:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
79%
26Alice Lloyd College
Score
86.54
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $33,400
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    17:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    79%

  • Graduation Rate 36%
  • Acceptance Rate 36%
  • # Online Programs 0
  • # Total Programs 18
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No
27
27 Lindsey Wilson College
Score
86.00
Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
TUITION & FEES
Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
ALUMNI EARNINGS
$28,000
STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
16:1
First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
Gift Financial Aid
99%
27Lindsey Wilson College
Score
86.00
  • Published in-state tuition and fees for undergraduate students.
    TUITION & FEES
  • Annual median earnings 10 years after entering the college. Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.
    ALUMNI EARNINGS
    $28,000
  • STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO
    16:1
  • First-time, full-time undergraduates receiving grant or scholarship aid directly from the postsecondary institution.
    Gift Financial Aid
    99%

  • Graduation Rate 32%
  • Acceptance Rate N/A
  • # Online Programs 4
  • # Total Programs 36
  • Placement Services Yes
  • Credit for Experience No

Search & Compare Colleges in Kentucky

Many variables come into play when it comes to choosing the right college. Prospective students can use this search tool to find and compare colleges in Kentucky that fit with their academic, financial and lifestyle needs. Sort through the options to filter for variables such as cost, degree level and student population, and make side-by-side comparisons to find the perfect college match.

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College Readiness and Support Programs in Kentucky

Every year, the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA) provides the state’s students with millions of dollars in scholarships and grants to help make higher education more accessible. Along with need- and merit-based financial aid, KHEAA also provides students and parents with planning tools, timelines, career guides, loan repayment information and other resources to help ease some of the stress that comes with planning for college and life after graduation. Students can start their search for college planning and assistance with these three KHEAA programs:

KHEAA College Connection Newsletters

Every month, KHEAA publishes its College Connection Newsletters, which provide students and parents with relevant, timely information to help prepare for and navigate through college. Readers can find pre-college checklists, scholarship opportunities, tips for writing entrance essays, financial aid information, and news about local higher education programs. KHEAA keeps a year’s worth of past issues on its website, and readers can sign up for email notifications when new editions are posted.

15 to Finish

Kentucky launched its 15 to Finish campaign in order to help college students graduate on time. The campaign provides resources and advice to help students attain the goal of taking 15 credits per semester, which will allow them to finish their degrees in two or four years, depending on the degree program. The campaign pushes to make 15 credits per semester the standard, full-time course load, because students who finish their degrees on time incur less debt and are able to join the workforce sooner.

Close the Deal

Kentucky’s Close the Deal program was created to encourage high school students to seek higher education, whether through a one-year certificate program or a four-year degree. High schools with historically low college admission rates partner with business and community leaders to help prepare students for contemporary workforce demands and education after high school. These leaders work with students to set and meet college and career goals, and then guide them through the admissions and financial aid processes. State education professionals also participate to help school guidance counselors improve their college and career advising.

Cost of College in Kentucky

Looking solely at tuition and fees can give students a skewed picture of the cost of attending college. By reviewing recent financial aid statistics, such as how many students receive assistance and how much money is awarded on average, prospective students can get a more thorough understanding of college costs. Take a look at the charts below to see how Kentucky colleges compare with national tuition rates and financial aid disbursement.

Average Kentucky Tuition & Fees at 4-Year Public Colleges

Source: CollegeBoard

% of Kentucky Students Receiving Financial Aid

Source: IPEDS

Average Financial Aid Award for Kentucky Students

Source: IPEDS

* Institutional aid represents grant and scholarship funds directly awarded by a postsecondary institution.

* Financial aid data represents 4-year public and private nonprofit schools only.

Most Affordable Colleges in Kentucky

A quality education doesn’t necessarily mean breaking the bank. Along with financial aid programs, Kentucky has multiple colleges with low tuition and fees. Combine these two factors, and you’ve got the most affordable colleges in Kentucky. Check out these top six, based on net price, and see where Kentucky ranks nationally for affordability.

Average
Annual Net
Price

Cost for students awarded federal financial aid, after school and government aid is deducted. At public colleges, only applies to in-state students.

Kentucky College Net Price vs. National Average
KENTUCKY $15,155 Average
Annual Net Price
$18,073

Source: College Scorecard
Note: Rankings/data represent 4-year public and private nonprofit schools only.

Kentucky Colleges With Highest-Paid Alumni

Students often need to borrow money to help pay for college, but the pain of post-graduation debt can be eased by landing a well-paying job within a few years of earning a degree. These Kentucky colleges turn out the state’s highest-paid alumni 10 years after they entered college.

Annual
Median Earnings
10 Years
After Entering
College

Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.

Kentucky Alumni Salaries vs. National Average
KENTUCKY $35,643 Annual Median Earnings
10 Years After Entering College
$42,759

Source: College Scorecard
Note: Rankings/data represent 4-year public and private nonprofit schools only.

Colleges in Kentucky With Least Alumni Debt

Whether it’s because of low tuition, significant financial aid packages, comprehensive planning tools, or a combination of all three, some colleges leave their students with a little more change in their pockets when graduation rolls around. Check out which colleges in Kentucky have the lowest alumni debt.

Median
Federal Student
Loan Debt After
Graduation

Only for undergraduates who completed college; does not include Parent-PLUS loans.

Kentucky College Grad Debt Vs. National Average
KENTUCKY $23,021 Median Federal Student
Loan Debt After Graduation
$23,145

Source: College Scorecard
Note: Rankings/data represent 4-year public and private nonprofit schools only.

Kentucky Cost of Living: College Expenses Beyond Tuition

Sometimes prospective students find their perfect college – the right program at the right price – only to find that the area’s high rents, expensive utilities or pricey groceries make attending school unfeasible. Fortunately for Kentucky students, the state’s cost of living is generally lower than the national average, especially for housing. Prospective students can look at the table below to get a breakdown of the cost of living in Kentucky and its largest metro areas.

area composite index housing groceries utilities transportation health care misc.
Statewide Average 89% 75% 92% 100% 102% 92% 93%
Ashland 82% 58% 95% 98% 100% 90% 84%
Bowling Green 90% 79% 92% 106% 95% 91% 92%
Lexington 91% 78% 92% 85% 97% 96% 101%
Louisville 91% 79% 90% 90% 99% 89% 98%
Madisonville 90% 73% 96% 120% 96% 96% 91%

Source: The Council for Community and Economic Research

Accreditation for Kentucky Colleges and Why It’s Important

When looking for colleges, it’s important that students ensure their institution of choice is accredited. Accreditation is an optional evaluation process schools undergo to prove that they meet specified quality standards. Unaccredited schools have either not been through these rigorous quality-assurance tests and evaluations or have not met their standards, and may be subpar in one or more areas, like curriculum development or teacher qualifications. Also, students who attend unaccredited institutions aren’t eligible for federal financial aid. Regional accreditation is granted to an institution as a whole. Kentucky’s regional accrediting body is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Individual programs within an institution can also be accredited. For example:

Popular College Cities in Kentucky

Lexington

Like Louisville, Lexington has a little bit of everything when it comes to colleges. While the city has fewer schools overall to choose from, students here can still pick between a private college, a public university and a public community college. All three schools are tightly clustered in downtown Lexington, so students get the ultimate mix of metropolitan life and close-knit college community.

College Name School Type Annual Net Price Annual Median Earnings
10 Years After College

Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.

LexingtonUniversity of Kentucky Public $14,333 $41,500
Founded in 1865 with only 190 students, the University of Kentucky now has a student body of over 26,000 students, making it the largest college in the state. UK has more than 200 academic programs offered through 16 colleges and professional schools, giving students plenty of routes to pursue. In addition, some 450 student organizations allow students to get involved in extracurricular activities and build relationships with peers.
LexingtonTransylvania University Private not-for-profit $20,488 $41,100
This private liberal arts college is the oldest in Kentucky. Transylvania University is affiliated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), but welcomes students of all faiths and cultural backgrounds. The school has just over 1,000 students, most which receive some form of financial aid. Transylvania University boasts small class sizes along with 38 majors and 37 minors from which to choose. Students who don't find the right major fit even have the option to build their own.
LexingtonBluegrass Community and Technical College Public $7,188 $22,600
One of the state's largest community colleges, Bluegrass offers students six physical locations in addition to online course options. The school has been in operation for more than 75 years and aims to provide students with technical education and workforce training. Students can choose from over 200 degree, diploma and certificate areas of study.
Louisville

With its seven public and private schools, Louisville has the most nonprofit colleges in Kentucky. Very few Kentucky colleges are public, but Louisville is home to two: one university and one community college. This means that Louisville students shouldn't have to look far to find a school that fits with their lifestyles and academic goals. The University of Louisville, Jefferson Community and Technical College, and Bellarmine University are three of Louisville's most popular accredited colleges, and are all located within minutes of downtown Louisville and the Ohio River.

College Name School Type Annual Net Price Annual Median Earnings
10 Years After College

Only includes former students who received federal financial aid.

LouisvilleUniversity of Louisville Public $13,834 $37,700
A public, four-year university with some 22,000 students, the University of Louisville is a nationally-recognized metropolitan research university with three campuses in the city, plus online options. U of L students can choose from 12 colleges and schools and over 170 fields of study to earn their associate, bachelor's, graduate and professional degrees.
LouisvilleJefferson Community and Technical College Public $6,662 $26,200
Jefferson Community and Technical College is the largest school within the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, and lets students choose between six locations, as well as online courses, to make the experience as convenient as possible. Students can enroll in workforce training and technical programs designed to lead to high-skill, high-wage careers. JCTC offers more than 70 programs of study with 300 degree, diploma and certificate options, and credits are transferable to many of Kentucky's four-year universities.
LouisvilleBellarmine University Private not-for-profit $23,487 $44,900
Bellarmine is an independent Catholic college that specializes in liberal arts studies. The student population is just under 4,000 students, half of whom ranked in the top 25 percent of their high school classes. The school offers degrees in 50 majors as well as study abroad and varsity sport opportunities. While Bellarmine is rooted in its Catholic tradition, it also aims to follow in the footsteps of monk Thomas Merton, who believed in recognizing the diversity of cultures and faiths.

Source: College Scorecard

Kentucky College Resources

Prospective students can continue researching Kentucky’s higher education opportunities by checking out these resources:

College Access Program Grant

This need-based grant provides financial assistance of up to $1,900 to undergraduate students who attend eligible Kentucky schools.

Kentucky Adult Education

A resource for adult learners within the Kentucky higher education system, this site includes information about educational programs and tips for successfully joining the workforce.

Kentucky Community and Technical College System

Learn about each school and its offerings on this hub page for Kentucky’s community and technical colleges.

Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education

Provides information on Kentucky colleges and universities, as well as planning tools and guides for prospective college students and parents.

Kentucky Department of Education – Career Readiness

Provides information and advice geared toward helping technical students transition into the workforce.

Kentucky Department of Education – Scholarships and Grants

Get information on scholarships and grants available to Kentucky students.

Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship

Through this scholarship program, Kentucky high schoolers can earn money for college by getting good grades and test scores. Any student with a minimum 2.5 GPA can earn money, and award amounts increase with higher grades.

Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority

A multitude of useful guides, tools, articles and other resources for high school and college students and their families.

Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation

Created to give additional financial support to students whose college expenses aren’t completely covered by state, school and federal financial aid.