Best Private Colleges in Michigan 2023

Best Private Colleges in Michigan 2023

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 Michigan.

Colleges and Universities in Michigan

With over 80 public and private colleges to choose from, students hoping to earn their associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree can find a program that suits their educational needs and budget. Michigan State University and the University of Michigan are the two largest schools, both serving around 42,000 students and costing $16,000 in tuition. Most of the schools in The Wolverine State, however, serve smaller student populations, with tuition fees ranging from $3,000 to $49,000.

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Additionally, students pursuing their degree at a school with religious affiliations have more than 20 options to choose from, including Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Grand Rapid’s Calvin College, and Hope College in Holland. Students attending one of Michigan’s private schools, like Davenport University, can earn their degrees in fields like nursing, education, criminal justice, and history. Michigan, like many other states, also provides a special loan forgiveness program to those in medical, dental, and mental health professions who work in underserved communities. Recipients can receive up to $200,000 of tax-free funds over an eight-year period.

The great state of Michigan famously serves as the major hub of the United States auto industry - and also boasts the longest freshwater coastline in the nation. Students who love the outdoors but are also drawn to the metropolitan energy of big cities like Detroit and Grand Rapids will feel very much at home in Michigan.

To find your degree program, explore some of the top schools in Michigan.


What are Michigan’s Colleges & Universities?

Michigan’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 21 private universities in Michigan. To be included in the list below of the best private universities in Michigan, 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 Michigan

  1. #6

    Andrews University

    Berrien Springs , MI
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    82%

    Graduation

    72%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1205/24

    Andrews University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Business Administration
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Religion
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  2. Tuition + fees

    $44K

    Acceptance

    86%

    Graduation

    70%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1270/27

  3. #9

    Madonna University

    Livonia , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    52%

    Graduation

    64%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1015/20

    Madonna University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Hospitality And Tourism Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Organizational Leadership
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Criminal Justice
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Family And Consumer Science
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Sociology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 38
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Gerontology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  4. Tuition + fees

    $38K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    2K

  5. #12

    Davenport University

    Grand Rapids , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $21K

    Acceptance

    98%

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Davenport University known for?

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    Davenport University’s Online Degrees

    BBA in Business
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Finance
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Human Resource Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in International Business
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Marketing
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Project Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Sport Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Accounting
    • Required Credits: 132
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Computer Information Systems
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Computer Science
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Cyber Defense
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BBA in Fraud Investigation
    • Required Credits: 123
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Leadership And Organizational Performance
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Case Management
    Degree Concentrations
    • Completion
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Health Information Management
    Degree Concentrations
    • Completion
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Medical Case Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Health Services Administration
    • Required Credits: 132
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 120-122
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  6. Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    63%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    1K

    What is Concordia University Ann Arbor known for?

    Concordia University Ann Arbor’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

    Concordia University Ann Arbor’s Online Degrees

    BS in Applied Computer Science
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Accounting
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  7. #15

    Spring Arbor University

    Spring Arbor , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    64%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1085/23

    Spring Arbor University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Nursing
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  8. #16

    Cornerstone University

    Grand Rapids , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $27K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    59%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/22

    What is Cornerstone University known for?

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    Cornerstone University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Psychology
    • Required Credits: 46
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Ministry Leadership
    • Required Credits: 48
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Business Administration and Leadership
    • Required Credits: 46
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  9. #17

    Finlandia University

    Hancock , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    21%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Finlandia University known for?

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

    Most Influential Alumni

  10. Tuition + fees

    $29K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    2K

    Siena Heights University’s Online Degrees

    BA in Applied Science
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Business Administration
    Degree Concentrations
    • Accouting
    • Healthcare Management
    • Information Technology Management
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Finance
    • Management
    • Marketing
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Multidisciplinary Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Nursing
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Public Services Administration
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  11. #19

    Kuyper College

    Grand Rapids , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    69%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Kuyper College known for?

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

  12. #20

    Aquinas College

    Grand Rapids , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $36K

    Acceptance

    89%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/23

  13. #21

    Rochester College

    Rochester Hills , MI

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    98%

    Graduation

    40%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    950/20

    What is Rochester College known for?

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    Rochester College’s Online Degrees

    BS in Early Childhood Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Christian Ministry
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Business Administration
    Degree Concentrations
    • Computer Information Systems
    • Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Psychology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Strategic Leadership
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
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Michigan’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 utilized 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. Kalamazoo College
  2. Kettering University
  3. University of Detroit Mercy
  4. Lawrence Technological University
  5. Andrews University
  6. Hope College
  7. Albion College
  8. Calvin University
  9. Aquinas College
  10. Madonna University
  11. Alma College
  12. Adrian College
  13. Cornerstone University
  14. Spring Arbor University

Check out our directory of private colleges throughout the U.S. for a look at the top private schools in every state.