Arkansas’s Best Community Colleges of 2021

The best community colleges provide an effective springboard into higher education, offering students high-quality two-year degree programs in a wide range of disciplines. The top-rated community colleges in Arkansas offer a broad selection of associate’s degrees, affordable tuition rates, and strong partnerships with public four-year schools so that students can easily transfer their credits into accredited bachelor’s degree programs.

Arkansas’s Best Community Colleges of 2021

Colleges and Universities in Arkansas

Colleges and universities in Arkansas are uniquely affordable, with just under half providing tuition rates of $9,000 or less. Included in this list are the state’s two largest universities, the University of Arkansas and Arkansas State University. Though students can find some overlapping degree programs at the two schools, each has its specialties. For example, students hoping to pursue degrees in architecture, agriculture, or business may want to consider the University of Arkansas, while those interested in biology, nursing, or political science may want to attend Arkansas State University.

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Additionally, about one third of the schools in Arkansas have a religious affiliation. Student populations at these schools range from just under 200 students up to 5,000, and allow students to pursue degrees merging religious studies with fields like chemistry and history. While tuition at each of the state’s 12 private schools varies greatly, costing anywhere between $9,000 and $46,000, many of these colleges boast high graduation rates and small class sizes.

While Arkansas is perhaps best-known and loved for countless lakes, Hot Springs National Park, and the United States’ only active diamond mine. The Natural State houses many higher education institutes where students can earn associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in a full range of disciplines.

With so many affordable schools and competitive degree programs, students attending school in Arkansas have the luxury of combining their individual budget needs with their desired degree paths. For more information on attending school in Arkansas, check out some of the state’s top schools.

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We’ve identified 19 community colleges in Arkansas. In order to be included in this list of the best community colleges, a school needs to satisfy the following three conditions:

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How do we determine Arkansas's best community colleges?

The best colleges pound for pound!

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. This is why, at the undergraduate level, we rank the best colleges and universities based on what we call Concentrated Influence. Concentrated Influence takes the combined influence score of a college or university’s top academic influencers (including faculty and alums) and divides it by the school’s total number of undergraduates.

Using concentrated influence gives small and mid-sized schools an opportunity to shine by taking away the size advantage of larger universities. A small school with proportionately more influential faculty than a large school, whose influence in absolute terms may be bigger, will nonetheless score higher in a concentrated influence ranking. Our approach highlights undergraduate schools that truly rank for excellence, regardless of size.

If you are serious about finding the best colleges and universities for a bachelor’s degree, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching and whether their graduates are themselves advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence.

Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Concentrated Influence provides a ranking that is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.

Find out more about our ranking methodology here.

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Best Community Colleges in Arkansas

  1. University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College
    #1

    University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College

    #14129 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Student body

    4K

    North Little Rock, AR

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    What is University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College known for?

    University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Computer Science
  2. Southeast Arkansas College
    #2

    Southeast Arkansas College

    #9016 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Student body

    <1K

    Pine Bluff, AR

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    What is Southeast Arkansas College known for?

    Southeast Arkansas College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    • Business
    • Medical
  3. South Arkansas Community College
    #3

    South Arkansas Community College

    #11956 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    1K

    El Dorado, AR

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    What is South Arkansas Community College known for?

    South Arkansas Community College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
  4. Black River Technical College
    #4

    Black River Technical College

    #8090 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    1K

    Pocahontas, AR

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    What is Black River Technical College known for?

    Black River Technical College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Computer Science
  5. Northwest Arkansas Community College
    #5

    Northwest Arkansas Community College

    #7579 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Student body

    5K

    Bentonville, AR

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    What is Northwest Arkansas Community College known for?

    Northwest Arkansas Community College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton
    #6

    University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton

    #8702 institution's overall influence
    #1208 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Acceptance

    100%

    Student body

    1K

    Morrilton, AR

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    What is University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton known for?

    University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
  7. Cossatot Community College
    #7

    Cossatot Community College

    #10708 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $4K

    Student body

    <1K

    De Queen, AR

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    What is Cossatot Community College known for?

    Cossatot Community College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Communications
  8. University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
    #8

    University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville

    #8266 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Batesville, AR

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    What is University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville known for?

    University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    • Nursing
    • Engineering
    • Biology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
  9. Southern Arkansas University
    #9

    Southern Arkansas University

    #3294 institution's overall influence
    #1310 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    69%

    Graduation

    35%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1067/21

    Magnolia, AR

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    What is Southern Arkansas University known for?

    Southern Arkansas University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Political Science
    • Biology
    • History
    • Computer Science
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Social Work

    Most Influential Alumni

  10. Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas
    #10

    Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas

    #11074 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Helena, AR

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    What is Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas known for?

    Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Psychology
  11. National Park College
    #11

    National Park College

    #12285 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Student body

    2K

    Hot Springs, AR

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    What is National Park College known for?

    National Park College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Education
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Law
    • Engineering
  12. Arkansas State University Mid-South
    #12

    Arkansas State University Mid-South

    #11994 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    West Memphis, AR

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    What is Arkansas State University Mid-South known for?

    Arkansas State University Mid-South's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Engineering
    • Nursing
  13. Arkansas State University-Newport
    #13

    Arkansas State University-Newport

    #13261 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    2K

    Newport, AR

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    What is Arkansas State University-Newport known for?

    Arkansas State University-Newport's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
  14. North Arkansas College
    #14

    North Arkansas College

    #10733 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    1K

    Harrison, AR

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    What is North Arkansas College known for?

    North Arkansas College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
  15. East Arkansas Community College
    #15

    East Arkansas Community College

    #13757 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Forrest City, AR

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    What is East Arkansas Community College known for?

    East Arkansas Community College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
  16. Arkansas State University–Mountain Home
    #16

    Arkansas State University–Mountain Home

    #15401 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Mountain Home, AR

    View profile

    What is Arkansas State University–Mountain Home known for?

    Arkansas State University–Mountain Home's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Nursing
    • Business
  17. Ozarka College
    #17

    Ozarka College

    #12118 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Melbourne, AR

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    What is Ozarka College known for?

    Ozarka College's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Criminal Justice
  18. Arkansas State University-Beebe
    #18

    Arkansas State University-Beebe

    #12191 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    3K

    Beebe, AR

    View profile

    What is Arkansas State University-Beebe known for?

    Arkansas State University-Beebe's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
  19. University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana
    #19

    University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana

    #19337 institution's overall influence

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Student body

    <1K

    Hope, AR

    View profile

    What is University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana known for?

    University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education

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