Best Public Colleges in New York 2022

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

Best Public Colleges in New York 2022

Colleges and Universities in New York

On average, tuition at New York’s higher education institutes comes in well-below the national average at about $7,900. Students have nearly 80 public school options to choose from, ranging in fees from $1,000 at the United States Merchant Marine Academy up to $10,000 at the University at Buffalo, the largest public university. However, some of the state’s private schools, such as New York University (NYU), charge tuition fees at a much higher cost.

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Although tuition fees at NYU average $52,000, students who attend this school have access to some of the best programs in fields like literature, business, medicine, communications, and law. The school also boasts famous alumni like Whoopi Goldberg and Jonas Salk. New York also offers close to 40 religiously affiliated schools. Students can expect to pay a wide range of tuition costs at these schools, but have the option to major in fields like social work, law, religious studies, business, and nursing.

They say New York is a place where dreams come true. Here, fashion, culture, food, business, art, and many languages comfortably coexist. While The Empire State’s metropolitan landmarks, like the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, are noteworthy, many forget New York also offers access to the Great Lakes, the Atlantic Ocean, and countless cozy cabins tucked away in the verdant Catskills Mountains. Additionally, New York is home to over 200 colleges and universities, making it easy for students to dream big while earning their degrees.

Explore some of the top programs New York higher education institutes have to offer, and make your educational and personal dreams come true.


What are New York’s Colleges & Universities?

New York’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 41 public universities in New York. To be included in our list of the best public colleges in New York, 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 York'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 York 2022

  1. #1

    Stony Brook University

    Stony Brook , NY
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    49%

    Graduation

    76%

    Student body

    25K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1335/29

    What is Stony Brook University known for?

    Stony Brook University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Sociology
    • Computer Science
    • Anthropology
    • Philosophy
    • Earth Sciences
    • Economics
    • Psychology
    • Biology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. #2

    City College of New York

    New York , NY
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    51%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    12K

    What is City College of New York known for?

    City College of New York’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Philosophy
    • Psychology
    • History
    • Literature
    • Economics
    • Physics
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology
    • Anthropology
    • Education

    Most Influential Alumni

  3. #3

    University at Buffalo

    Buffalo , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    75%

    Student body

    28K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1250/26

    What is University at Buffalo known for?

    University at Buffalo’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Philosophy
    • Anthropology
    • Computer Science
    • Communications
    • Economics
    • Mathematics
    • Medical
    • Chemistry
    • Literature
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  4. #4

    Brooklyn College

    Brooklyn , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    54%

    Student body

    15K

    What is Brooklyn College known for?

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

    • Psychology
    • Anthropology
    • Philosophy
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Social Work
    • Sociology
    • Economics
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. #5

    United States Military Academy

    West Point , NY
    Other Rankings

    Acceptance

    9%

    Graduation

    85%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1270/27

    What is United States Military Academy known for?

    United States Military Academy’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Literature
    • Law
    • Business
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    • Biology
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. #6

    Binghamton University

    Vestal , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    43%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    18K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1360/30

    What is Binghamton University known for?

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

    • Sociology
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science
    • Literature
    • Anthropology
    • History
    • Economics
    • Mathematics
    • Philosophy
    • Social Work

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. #7

    Hunter College

    New York , NY
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    40%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    19K

    What is Hunter College known for?

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

    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • History
    • Communications
    • Political Science
    • Anthropology
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology
    • Education
    • Philosophy

    Most Influential Alumni

  8. Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    57%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    16K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1170/25

    What is University at Albany, SUNY known for?

    University at Albany, SUNY’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Earth Sciences
    • Sociology
    • Chemistry
    • Psychology
    • Economics
    • Literature
    • Physics
    • Philosophy
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  9. #9

    Baruch College

    New York , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    41%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    16K

    What is Baruch College known for?

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

    • Business
    • Economics
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Communications
    • Education
    • Biology
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

  10. Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    53%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    16K

    What is Queens College, City University of New York known for?

    Queens College, City University of New York’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Anthropology
    • Mathematics
    • Sociology
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Political Science
    • Social Work

    Most Influential Alumni

  11. Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    59%

    Graduation

    83%

    Student body

    8K

    What is Fashion Institute of Technology known for?

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

    • Business

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  12. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    37%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    13K

    What is John Jay College of Criminal Justice known for?

    John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology
    • Law
    • Economics
    • Political Science
    • Anthropology
    • Psychology
    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • History

    Most Influential Alumni

  13. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    74%

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1160/26

    What is State University of New York at Purchase known for?

    State University of New York at Purchase’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Anthropology
    • Sociology
    • Communications
    • Literature
    • Economics
    • Biology
    • History
    • Psychology
    • Education
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  14. #14

    Lehman College

    Bronx , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    47%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    12K

    What is Lehman College known for?

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

    • Mathematics
    • Anthropology
    • Sociology
    • Philosophy
    • Physics
    • Computer Science
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Social Work
    • History

    Most Influential Alumni

  15. Tuition + fees

    $1K

    Acceptance

    24%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1260/28

    What is United States Merchant Marine Academy known for?

    United States Merchant Marine Academy’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering

    Most Influential Alumni

  16. Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    62%

    Graduation

    76%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1185/25

    What is State University of New York at New Paltz known for?

    State University of New York at New Paltz’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Earth Sciences
    • Political Science
    • Social Work
    • Literature
    • Economics
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    • Anthropology
    • Business

    Most Influential Alumni

  17. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    69%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/23

    What is State University of New York at Oswego known for?

    State University of New York at Oswego’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Earth Sciences
    • Communications
    • Anthropology
    • Literature
    • Economics
    • Business
    • Chemistry
    • History
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

  18. #18

    College of Staten Island

    Staten Island , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    31%

    Student body

    10K

    What is College of Staten Island known for?

    College of Staten Island’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Sociology
    • Physics
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Literature
    • Nursing
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  19. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    77%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1210/25

    What is State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry known for?

    State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Earth Sciences
    • Chemistry
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  20. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    63%

    Graduation

    76%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/23

    What is State University of New York at Oneonta known for?

    State University of New York at Oneonta’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Earth Sciences
    • Business
    • Economics
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • Biology
    • Physics
    • History
    • Literature
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  21. #21

    Buffalo State College

    Buffalo , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    40%

    Student body

    8K

    Median SAT/ACT

    980/20

    What is Buffalo State College known for?

    Buffalo State College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Earth Sciences
    • Economics
    • Chemistry
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • Criminal Justice
    • History
    • Education
    • Social Work
    • Biology

    Most Influential Alumni

  22. #22

    Alfred State College

    Alfred , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    72%

    Graduation

    58%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1055/21

    What is Alfred State College known for?

    Alfred State College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • Biology
    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Criminal Justice
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  23. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    61%

    Graduation

    78%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1215/25

    What is State University of New York at Geneseo known for?

    State University of New York at Geneseo’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Anthropology
    • Earth Sciences
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Biology
    • Sociology
    • Physics
    • Philosophy

    Most Influential Alumni

  24. #24

    Farmingdale State College

    Farmingdale , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1070/21

    What is Farmingdale State College known for?

    Farmingdale State College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Computer Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Biology
    • Mathematics
    • Economics
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  25. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    61%

    Graduation

    67%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1080/22

    What is State University of New York at Plattsburgh known for?

    State University of New York at Plattsburgh’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Anthropology
    • Earth Sciences
    • Communications
    • Literature
    • Physics
    • Chemistry
    • Economics
    • Computer Science
    • Philosophy
    • Criminal Justice

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
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New York’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. United States Military Academy
  2. Brooklyn College
  3. Stony Brook University
  4. State University of New York at Purchase
  5. University at Buffalo
  6. Hunter College
  7. United States Merchant Marine Academy
  8. Binghamton University
  9. Queens College, City University of New York
  10. University at Albany, SUNY
  11. State University of New York Maritime College
  12. State University of New York at Oswego
  13. Baruch College
  14. State University of New York at New Paltz
  15. State University of New York at Fredonia
  16. State University of New York at Plattsburgh
  17. State University of New York at Oneonta
  18. State University of New York at Geneseo
  19. State University of New York College at Cortland
  20. State University of New York at Potsdam
  21. Buffalo State College
  22. Farmingdale State College
  23. The College at Brockport, State University of New York
  24. Alfred State College
  25. State University of New York at Cobleskill

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