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Kentucky (KY): Colleges, Universities and Technical Schools

There are slightly over 50 public and private non-profit colleges, universities and technical schools in Kentucky (KY). Read about the schools with the highest graduation rates and lowest costs, among other areas of interest, to find the school for you.

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Kentucky has many colleges, universities and technical schools to offer. This article focuses on the traditional Kentucky schools, both public and private not-for-profit, that offer multiple fields of study. Those institutions are compared by four distinctions.

Kentucky Schools Near Large Cities

Kentucky offers potential students the chance to enroll in classes at colleges located in and around the major city of Lexington. The cities outside of Lexington are considered small cities, by the NCES. Some of the schools are also located in large suburbs, such as Louisville.

  • Western Kentucky University (Bowling Green)
  • Transylvania University (Lexington)
  • University of Kentucky (Lexington)
  • Northern Kentucky University (Highland Heights)
  • Kentucky Wesleyan College (Owensboro)

Largest Schools in Kentucky

The largest schools in Kentucky are perhaps the most well-known postsecondary institutions in the state. All of the following schools are 4-year public schools offering certificates, as well as undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

  • University of Kentucky (29,203 students)
  • University of Louisville (21,561 students)
  • Western Kentucky University (20,171 students)
  • Eastern Kentucky University (16,305 students)
  • Northern Kentucky University (15,090 students)

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Agriculture
  • Architecture
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Business
  • Communications and Journalism
  • Computer Sciences
  • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Legal
  • Liberal Arts and Humanities
  • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
  • Medical and Health Professions
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychology
  • Transportation and Distribution
  • Visual and Performing Arts

Lowest Net Price

Knowing the cost of attending college or the amount of debt commonly incurred by students is often the largest consideration for individuals when choosing a college. NCES determines net cost by subtracting the average amount of government or school aid a student receives from the total cost of attendance (including tuition and fees, books, supplies, room and board and miscellaneous expenses). Listed below are the colleges in Kentucky that had the lowest net price, as of 2014-2015, for full-time undergraduate students.

  • Berea College ($3,125)
  • Hopkinsville Community College ($5,823)
  • Somerset Community College ($5,915)
  • Madisonville Community College ($7,420)
  • Henderson Community College ($7,528)

Highest Graduation Rate

Students considering their college options might look at the success of a college, which can be estimated by its graduation rate. This rate is reported by NCES and is based on full-time undergraduate students who began their studies in 2011 and completed them in 150% of the 'normal time' (i.e. four years for a bachelor's degree). The following schools offer the highest graduation rates among traditional colleges and universities in Kentucky.

  • Centre College (86% graduation rate)
  • Transylvania University (73% graduation rate)
  • Bellarmine University (67% graduation rate)
  • Berea College (63% graduation rate)
  • University of Kentucky (63% graduation rate)

These four categories will help you to determine which school will be the best fit for what you're looking for, with regard to cost, location, graduation rate and student population.

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