Best Private Colleges in Arkansas 2022

Best Private Colleges in Arkansas 2022

Private colleges, unlike large public institutions, can be a great option for students wanting a more intimate campus experience, more personal attention from excellent professors, and more immediate access to support services. Here is our list of the best private colleges in Arkansas.

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. We’ve also found 7 high quality colleges offering online degree programs in Arkansas.

Indeed, online students can earn their degree at one of the state’s two largest universities, the University of Arkansas or 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. It is possible to study these subjects both through traditional and online degree programs in the state of Arkansas.

Find college admissions consultants in your state.

Roughly 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. Both traditional and online students can pursue degrees that merge religious studies with fields like chemistry and history.

Tuition rates at each of the state’s 12 private schools vary greatly. Arkansas’s private colleges and schools cost anywhere between $9,000 and $46,000. Many of these private colleges boast high graduation rates and small class sizes.

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

With so many affordable schools and competitive on-campus and online 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.


What are Arkansas’s Colleges & Universities?

Arkansas’s Best Overall

What is the difference between public and private colleges?

Public and private colleges and universities operate under different business models. Public colleges and universities are owned by the state and receive both state and federal funding to operate. Private colleges and universities are private companies with private funding. If you’re looking at the pros and cons of private vs. public colleges, consider that many public colleges provide diverse course offerings, influential professors, and an excellent return on your investment.

Public colleges are schools that receive most of their funding from tax revenues. As a result, the cost of a bachelor’s degree at a public university is often lower than the equivalent cost at a private college — especially for students attending a public school in their home state. Attending a college in-state is usually the cheapest option. Private universities and colleges can be very competitive with their funding opportunities, so do not simply believe that private colleges are always going to be more expensive. According to National Center for Educational Statistics, the average annual cost (tuition, fees, room and board for full-time students) at a public university was slightly over $20,000. In contrast, private universities cost, on average, nearly $43,000 annually. But in the end, the cost of college comes down to each student’s academic and financial situation.

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This list is composed entirely of private colleges and universities that offer bachelor’s degrees. We’ve identified 12 private universities in Arkansas. To be included in the list below of the best private universities in Arkansas, schools must be fully accredited, private, non-profit institution, and must offer a broad range of bachelor’s degrees.

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Best Private Colleges in Arkansas

  1. #4

    Ouachita Baptist University

    Arkadelphia , AR

    Tuition + fees

    $30K

    Acceptance

    62%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/24

    Ouachita Baptist University’s Online Degrees

    BA in Christian Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Interdisciplinary Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing Rn To Bsn
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  2. #7

    Crowley's Ridge College

    Paragould , AR

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Graduation

    39%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Crowley's Ridge College known for?

    Crowley's Ridge College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  3. #8

    University of the Ozarks

    Clarksville , AR

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    56%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    960/20

  4. #9

    Arkansas Baptist College

    Little Rock , AR

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    12%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Arkansas Baptist College known for?

    Arkansas Baptist College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. Tuition + fees

    $17K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    960/19

    What is Central Baptist College known for?

    Central Baptist College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  6. #11

    Williams Baptist University

    Walnut Ridge , AR

    Tuition + fees

    $19K

    Acceptance

    69%

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    970/20

    What is Williams Baptist University known for?

    Williams Baptist University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Graduation

    22%

    Student body

    5K

    What is University of Arkansas Grantham known for?

    University of Arkansas Grantham’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

    University of Arkansas Grantham’s Online Degrees

    BS in Accounting
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Business Administration
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Computer Engineering Technology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Computer Science
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Criminal Justice
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Cybersecurity
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Electronics Engineering Technology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Engineering Management Technology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Financial Planning
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Health Information Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Information Systems
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA/BS in Multidisciplinary Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing (RN-to-BSN)
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
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Arkansas’s Best Private Colleges in Your Area Interest

2021 Ranking Archive

Many of our 2022 undergraduate focused rankings look considerably different than 2021. That’s because we took a fundamentally different apporach. For 2021 we utiulized our Concentrated Influence algorithm, designed to take away the size advantage larger schools have when we rank their faculty and alumni’s academic influence. Concentrated influence highlights smaller schools that are proportionally as successful as larger universities at cultivating influential alumni and faculty.

  1. Hendrix College
  2. Lyon College
  3. Ouachita Baptist University
  4. John Brown University
  5. Philander Smith College
  6. Harding University
  7. University of the Ozarks
  8. Crowley's Ridge College
  9. Williams Baptist University
  10. Central Baptist College