Best Public Colleges New Jersey 2022

Public colleges and universities account for almost 75 percent of all undergraduate students in the U.S. The best public colleges in New Jersey provide broad access to reputable degree programs, affordable tuition, and sprawling educational communities.

Best Public Colleges New Jersey 2022

Colleges and Universities in New Jersey

Nearly half of the colleges and universities in this state are private, and tuition rates range from $6,000 to $52,000. With a graduation rate of 97% and a student population of just over 7,000, Princeton University is the state’s most esteemed institution. Narrowing in on the sciences and arts, this Ivy League school offers unique areas of study, including robotics, intelligent systems, and public life. The remaining 31 public colleges and universities range in tuition from $4,000 to $17,000.

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The state’s largest and top-ranked public research institution is Rutgers University. With campuses in New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden as well as smaller locations across the state, Rutgers awards degrees in physics, economics, criminal justice, and psychology. New Jersey also has 11 religiously affiliated colleges and universities, including the oldest diocesan university in the United States, Seton Hall University. This Roman Catholic university has a tuition rate of $42,000 and a student population of over 8,000.

New Jersey, known for its sandy shores and busy expressways, also has more diners than any other state in the U.S., as well as the world’s longest boardwalk, located in Atlantic City. Many influential people, including Buzz Aldrin, Frank Sinatra, and Thomas Edison, have called The Garden State home. Visitors can even peek at some of Edison’s early light bulbs at the Menlo Park Museum. And with 50 higher learning institutions to choose from, students can find a school that suits their career path and budget.

Learn more about earning your degree from one of New Jersey’s highly regarded colleges and universities.


What are New Jersey’s Colleges & Universities?

New Jersey’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 public colleges and universities that offer bachelor’s degrees. We’ve identified 13 public universities in New Jersey. To be included in our list of the best public colleges in New Jersey, shcools must receive direct funding from the state, be fully accredited, and offer a broad range of bachelor’s degress.

How do we determine New Jersey's best public 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.

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Best Public Colleges in New Jersey 2022

  1. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    76%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1075/20

    What is Rutgers University–Camden known for?

    Rutgers University–Camden’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Law
    • Philosophy
    • Medical
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Political Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    • Mathematics
    • Education

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. Tuition + fees

    $18K

    Acceptance

    66%

    Graduation

    70%

    Student body

    10K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1290/27

    What is New Jersey Institute of Technology known for?

    New Jersey Institute of Technology’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Physics
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    • Business
    • Medical
    • History
    • Education
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  3. #3

    Rowan University

    Glassboro , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    17K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/24

    What is Rowan University known for?

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

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Physics
    • Engineering
    • Nursing
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Communications
    • History
    • Business

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  4. #4

    Montclair State University

    Montclair , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    19K

    What is Montclair State University known for?

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

    • Sociology
    • Literature
    • Earth Sciences
    • Philosophy
    • Communications
    • Social Work
    • Education
    • Psychology
    • Computer Science
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. Tuition + fees

    $16K

    Acceptance

    51%

    Graduation

    86%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1260/27

    What is The College of New Jersey known for?

    The College of New Jersey’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Psychology
    • Education
    • Literature
    • Business
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • Engineering
    • History
    • Philosophy
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. #6

    Kean University

    Union , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1010/20

    What is Kean University known for?

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

    • Political Science
    • Education
    • Sociology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Social Work
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  7. #7

    Stockton University

    Galloway , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    74%

    Student body

    11K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/23

    What is Stockton University known for?

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

    • Psychology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology
    • Social Work
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Physics
    • Earth Sciences
    • Biology
    • Chemistry

    Most Influential Alumni

  8. Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    9K

    What is William Paterson University known for?

    William Paterson University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Communications
    • Social Work
    • Nursing
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • Anthropology
    • Earth Sciences
    • Criminal Justice
    • Education
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  9. #9

    Rutgers University–New Brunswick

    New Brunswick , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    84%

    Student body

    47K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1320/28

    What is Rutgers University–New Brunswick known for?

    Rutgers University–New Brunswick’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Mathematics
    • Social Work
    • Physics
    • Biology
    • Philosophy
    • Criminal Justice
    • Political Science
    • Economics
    • Psychology
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  10. #10

    New Jersey City University

    Jersey City , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    96%

    Graduation

    36%

    Student body

    6K

    What is New Jersey City University known for?

    New Jersey City University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Nursing
    • Sociology
    • Business
    • Education
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science
    • Psychology
    • Literature
    • History

    Most Influential Alumni

  11. #11

    Ramapo College

    Mahwah , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    72%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1130/23

    What is Ramapo College known for?

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

    • Social Work
    • Nursing
    • Philosophy
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Education
    • Political Science
    • Chemistry
    • Physics

    Most Influential Alumni

  12. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Student body

    4K

    What is Thomas Edison State University known for?

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

    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Education
    • Psychology
    • Social Work
    • Communications
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

  13. #13

    Rutgers University–Newark

    Newark , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    74%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    11K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1110/22

    What is Rutgers University–Newark known for?

    Rutgers University–Newark’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • Anthropology
    • Mathematics
    • Biology
    • Philosophy
    • Political Science
    • Chemistry
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
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New Jersey’s Best Public College in Your Area of 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. New Jersey Institute of Technology
  2. Montclair State University
  3. The College of New Jersey
  4. Rutgers University–Camden
  5. Ramapo College
  6. Stockton University
  7. Rutgers University–Newark
  8. Rowan University
  9. William Paterson University
  10. Kean University
  11. Rutgers University–New Brunswick

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