Best Colleges in Kansas 2022

Here are the best colleges and universities in Kansas. Our list will help you find the right kind of school for you.

Best Colleges in Kansas 2022

Colleges and Universities in Kansas

Beyond the 23 community and technical colleges, Kansas also has nine public universities, the largest being the University of Kansas (KU) with over 28,000 students. The school’s main campus is located in Lawrence, Kansas, but there are four other locations where students can attend KU classes: Overland Park, Kansas City, Wichita, and Salina. Kansas is also home to 22 private higher education institutions, with tuition ranging from $7,000 to $31,000.

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In addition, students can choose from one of 18 religiously affiliated schools, including Newman University, Wichita — a Catholic liberal arts university serving the state’s largest private school student population at just over 2,000. Just under the national tuition average at $9,230, Kansas is also an affordable state in which to earn your degree. The state awards associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in common fields of study, like economics, nursing, business, and education. Specialized degrees include aerospace engineering at the University of Kansas and agribusiness from Kansas State University. Those in the medical and health fields can check out loan forgiveness programs, such as the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program, which awards up to $50,000, tax free, for those who serve two years at an approved site.

Arguably, it was the 1939 cinema classic, The Wizard of Oz, that put Kansas on the map. But The Sunflower State is also known for its mouth-watering barbecue, open plains, and vast sunflower fields. Prospective students can also choose from 50 colleges and universities across this Midwestern state.

See what Kansas has to offer by checking out the top programs and career paths available.


What are Kansas’s Colleges & Universities?

Kansas’s Best Overall

Related: Differences between research universities and teaching colleges

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How do we determine Kansas's best colleges and universities?

Methodology

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great! 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 in their fields of study.

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

To rank the influence of schools, we first determine the influence of scholars and professionals based on the number of citations and publications they have had over the past 10 years. In addition to publications and citations, we consider the web links to and from these sources, and the page views of those sources. We then match the influential people to their alma maters and institutions of employment, so that their influence is attributed to those schools. Our machine-learning Influence Ranking algorithm produces a numerical score of academic achievements, merits, and citations across Wikipedia, wikidata, Crossref, Semantic Scholar and an ever-growing body of data. If you are interested in exploring how and why we rank by influence, explore our methodology in more depth.

We’ve identified 24 colleges and universities in Kansas that meet our criteria. This list of the top colleges in Kansas below focuses on schools that offer bachelor’s degrees. The ranking features fully accredited public and private colleges and universities in Kansas.

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Best Colleges in Kansas 2022

  1. #1

    University of Kansas

    Lawrence , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    63%

    Student body

    23K

    What is University of Kansas known for?

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

    • Social Work
    • History
    • Anthropology
    • Psychology
    • Education
    • Sociology
    • Earth Sciences
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • Biology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. #2

    Kansas State University

    Manhattan , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    94%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    18K

    What is Kansas State University known for?

    Kansas State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Engineering
    • Mathematics
    • Computer Science
    • Economics
    • Physics
    • Anthropology
    • History
    • Earth Sciences

    Most Influential Alumni

  3. #3

    Wichita State University

    Wichita , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1150/23

    What is Wichita State University known for?

    Wichita State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Earth Sciences
    • Chemistry
    • Physics
    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  4. #4

    Washburn University

    Topeka , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Washburn University known for?

    Washburn University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Law
    • Literature
    • Nursing
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • History
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Psychology
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. #5

    Baker University

    Baldwin City , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    62%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1085/22

    What is Baker University known for?

    Baker University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Education
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Psychology
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. #6

    Pittsburg State University

    Pittsburg , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/21

    What is Pittsburg State University known for?

    Pittsburg State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • History
    • Sociology
    • Psychology
    • Chemistry
    • Physics
    • Literature
    • Economics

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. #7

    Emporia State University

    Emporia , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    86%

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1002/22

    What is Emporia State University known for?

    Emporia State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • History
    • Nursing
    • Education
    • Business
    • Physics
    • Mathematics
    • Social Work
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  8. Tuition + fees

    $5K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    10K

    What is Fort Hays State University known for?

    Fort Hays State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • History
    • Computer Science
    • Political Science
    • Business
    • Communications
    • Social Work
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Earth Sciences

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  9. #9

    Ottawa University

    Ottawa , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $37K

    Acceptance

    70%

    Graduation

    37%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    975/19

    What is Ottawa University known for?

    Ottawa University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Social Work
    • Psychology
    • Sociology
    • Religious Studies
    • Biology
    • History
    • Education
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

  10. #10

    Friends University

    Wichita , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    58%

    Graduation

    42%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/22

    What is Friends University known for?

    Friends University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • Psychology
    • Mathematics
    • Religious Studies
    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • Criminal Justice
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  11. #11

    Benedictine College

    Atchison , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    97%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1185/24

    What is Benedictine College known for?

    Benedictine College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Physics
    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Economics
    • Engineering
    • Education
    • Biology
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  12. #12

    Kansas Wesleyan University

    Salina , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    62%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1041/21

    What is Kansas Wesleyan University known for?

    Kansas Wesleyan University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Biology
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology
    • Education
    • Communications
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

  13. #13

    Southwestern College

    Winfield , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    56%

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    995/21

    What is Southwestern College known for?

    Southwestern College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Criminal Justice
    • Religious Studies
    • Mathematics
    • Computer Science
    • Chemistry
    • Psychology
    • Business
    • Education

    Most Influential Alumni

  14. #14

    Hesston College

    Hesston , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $28K

    Graduation

    63%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Hesston College known for?

    Hesston College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Nursing
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

  15. #15

    Bethel College

    North Newton , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    61%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1030/21

    What is Bethel College known for?

    Bethel College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Social Work
    • Communications
    • Mathematics
    • Religious Studies
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • History
    • Chemistry
    • Nursing

    Most Influential Alumni

  16. #16

    Tabor College

    Hillsboro , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $33K

    Acceptance

    46%

    Graduation

    42%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1045/19

    What is Tabor College known for?

    Tabor College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Psychology
    • Communications
    • Chemistry
    • Religious Studies
    • Mathematics
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Social Work

    Most Influential Alumni

  17. Tuition + fees

    $34K

    Acceptance

    64%

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    2K

    What is MidAmerica Nazarene University known for?

    MidAmerica Nazarene University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Religious Studies
    • History
    • Mathematics
    • Biology
    • Education
    • Psychology
    • Business
    • Political Science
    • Chemistry
    • Physics

    Most Influential Alumni

  18. #18

    Newman University, Wichita

    Wichita , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $34K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1087/21

    What is Newman University, Wichita known for?

    Newman University, Wichita’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • History
    • Criminal Justice
    • Literature
    • Chemistry
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Business
    • Philosophy
    • Mathematics
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

  19. #19

    Donnelly College

    Kansas City , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    13%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Donnelly College known for?

    Donnelly College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Nursing
    • Computer Science
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

  20. #20

    McPherson College

    McPherson , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    52%

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/21

    What is McPherson College known for?

    McPherson College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • History
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Literature
    • Political Science
    • Education
    • Social Work
    • Philosophy

    Most Influential Alumni

  21. #21

    Sterling College

    Sterling , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $29K

    Acceptance

    37%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    985/20

    What is Sterling College known for?

    Sterling College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Communications
    • Literature
    • History
    • Criminal Justice
    • Philosophy
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Business
    • Mathematics
    • Education

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  22. #22

    Bethany College

    Lindsborg , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    34%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Bethany College known for?

    Bethany College ’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Physics
    • Psychology
    • Literature
    • Religious Studies
    • History
    • Biology
    • Economics
    • Medical
    • Sociology
    • Chemistry

    Most Influential Alumni

  23. #23

    University of Saint Mary

    Leavenworth , KS

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1045/20

    What is University of Saint Mary known for?

    University of Saint Mary’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Sociology
    • Psychology
    • Political Science
    • History
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics
    • Computer Science
    • Communications

    Most Influential Alumni

  24. Tuition + fees

    $20K

    Graduation

    23%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Central Christian College of Kansas known for?

    Central Christian College of Kansas’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Communications
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Education
    • History
    • Criminal Justice
    • Business
    • Medical
    • Law
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Kansas’s Best Colleges in Your Area of Interest

Resources for College-Bound Students

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. Friends University
  2. University of Kansas
  3. Kansas State University
  4. MidAmerica Nazarene University
  5. Southwestern College
  6. Ottawa University
  7. Baker University
  8. Washburn University
  9. Bethel College
  10. Wichita State University
  11. Benedictine College
  12. Kansas Wesleyan University
  13. Tabor College
  14. Pittsburg State University
  15. McPherson College
  16. Emporia State University
  17. Sterling College
  18. Newman University, Wichita
  19. Fort Hays State University
  20. Bethany College
  21. University of Saint Mary