Montana colleges rank near middle of pack

MSUB-1-1Montana colleges and universities posted mediocre results in Washington Monthly’s annual rankings, which came out Monday.

The University of Montana ranked 115th nationally in the overall rankings. It was the only Montana school to make the list, which included more than 300 colleges and universities.

In the “Best Bang for the Bucks” listing of colleges in the West, only the University of Montana Western campus in Dillion cracked the top 40.

Montana Tech in Butte was listed 49th. The University of Montana was 90th, Montana State University Billings ranked 106th, Rocky Mountain College was listed 122nd, and Montana State University in Bozeman was 140th.

The methodology that Washington Monthly uses to compile its rankings is too complex to explain in a blog post, but you can find it here. Generally, it looks at such factors as graduation rates, earnings performance, costs adjusted for family income and other factors.

MSU Billings ranked 176th among 198 colleges in graduation rates and 107th in earnings performance. Net price was $10,881 a year.

Rocky ranked 85th in graduation rates and 119th in earnings performance. Net annual price was $18,104.

California led the way both in overall quality and in the “Best Bang” ratings. Fourteen of the top 20 “Best Bang” colleges were in California, and seven of the top 20 overall were there.

The Washington Monthly rankings are based on substantially different methodology than the U.S. News annual rankings and provides different insights. To dig into the differences, go here.

Disclaimer: I tried to give these rankings a thorough look, but for some reason the site kept freezing up. If you find any errors or significant omissions, please chime in.

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