Most Affordable Colleges in Ohio 2024

Badge for MOST AFFORDABLE COLLEGES IN OHIO

Here are the most affordable colleges and universities in Ohio. Our list will help you find the right kind of school for you, at a price you can afford.

With college tuition costs continuing to rise across the United States, finding an affordable yet quality education is a priority for many students and families. For students looking to go to an Ohio school for their higher education, several colleges and universities offer academic excellence at a relatively low price point compared to many other institutions.

Whether it be one of Ohio’s public state schools or a private, non-profit college, students can find knowledgeable professors, engaging courses, and valuable experiences without breaking the bank.

Cheap Colleges in Ohio

Here are the most affordable colleges and universities in Ohio. Our list will help you find the right kind of school for you, at a price you can afford. You’ll discover schools with high acceptance rates friendly to students with average test scores and GPAs, as well as some hidden gems that offer generous financial aid and scholarships to make themselves within reach. Plus, some Ohio schools don’t have an application fee, which is helpful when you’re on a budget.

10 Most Affordable Colleges in Ohio 2024

Sort by:
  1. Ohio State University
  2. University of Cincinnati
  3. Miami University
  4. Ohio University
  5. Kent State University
  6. Bowling Green State University
  7. University of Akron
  8. Cleveland State University
  9. University of Toledo
  10. Youngstown State University
  1. Ohio State University
  2. University of Cincinnati
  3. Miami University
  4. Ohio University
  5. Kent State University
  6. Bowling Green State University
  7. University of Akron
  8. Cleveland State University
  9. University of Toledo
  10. Wilberforce University
  1. University of Toledo 97%
  2. Cleveland State University 91%
  3. Miami University 89%
  4. Ohio University 89%
  5. Kent State University 87%
  6. University of Akron 85%
  7. University of Cincinnati 85%
  8. Bowling Green State University 79%
  9. Youngstown State University 78%
  10. Ohio State University 57%
  1. Ohio State University at Newark 29 to 1
  2. University of Northwestern Ohio 23 to 1
  3. University of Cincinnati Clermont College 23 to 1
  4. Kent State University at Ashtabula 22 to 1
  5. Kent State University at Stark 22 to 1
  6. Kent State University at Salem 21 to 1
  7. University of Toledo 21 to 1
  8. Miami University Middletown 21 to 1
  9. Kent State University 21 to 1
  10. Ohio State University at Lima 20 to 1
  1. Union Institute & University $17,141
  2. Antioch University Midwest $14,976
  3. Miami University $13,253
  4. Wilberforce University $13,250
  5. Ohio University $12,840
  6. University of Akron $11,880
  7. Cleveland State University $11,610
  8. University of Northwestern Ohio $11,550
  9. Ohio State University $11,018
  10. Kent State University $11,000
  1. Antioch University Midwest $18,072
  2. Union Institute & University $15,911
  3. University of Toledo $14,758
  4. University of Cincinnati $13,224
  5. Wilberforce University $12,830
  6. Miami University $12,806
  7. Kent State University $11,766
  8. Kent State University at Stark $11,766
  9. Ohio State University $11,560
  10. Ohio State University at Lima $11,496
  1. Ohio State University at Lima
  2. Ohio State University at Marion
  3. University of Northwestern Ohio
  4. Ohio State University at Mansfield
  5. Ohio University – Chillicothe
  6. Ohio State University at Newark
  7. Kent State University at Salem
  8. Ohio University Southern Campus
  9. Miami University Hamilton
  10. Kent State University at Ashtabula
  1. Ohio State University at Marion
  2. Ohio State University at Lima
  3. Ohio University – Chillicothe
  4. University of Northwestern Ohio
  5. Kent State University at Salem
  6. Kent State University at Ashtabula
  7. Ohio State University at Mansfield
  8. Kent State University at Stark
  9. Ohio University Southern Campus
  10. Ohio State University at Newark
  1. Wilberforce University 39%
  2. Ohio State University 57%
  3. Youngstown State University 78%
  4. Bowling Green State University 79%
  5. University of Cincinnati 85%
  6. University of Akron 85%
  7. Kent State University 87%
  8. Ohio University 89%
  9. Miami University 89%
  10. Cleveland State University 91%
  1. Union Institute & University 7 to 1
  2. Wilberforce University 10 to 1
  3. Shawnee State University 14 to 1
  4. Miami University Hamilton 15 to 1
  5. Cleveland State University 15 to 1
  6. Miami University 16 to 1
  7. Ohio University 16 to 1
  8. University of Akron 16 to 1
  9. Ohio University Southern Campus 17 to 1
  10. Youngstown State University 18 to 1
  1. University of Cincinnati Clermont College $5,230
  2. Miami University Hamilton $5,747
  3. Miami University Middletown $5,747
  4. Ohio University Southern Campus $5,774
  5. Ohio University – Chillicothe $5,774
  6. Kent State University at Salem $6,651
  7. Kent State University at Ashtabula $6,651
  8. Kent State University at Stark $6,651
  9. Ohio State University at Lima $8,295
  10. Ohio State University at Mansfield $8,295
  1. Youngstown State University $6,453
  2. Miami University Hamilton $7,406
  3. Miami University Middletown $7,406
  4. Bowling Green State University $8,017
  5. Ohio University $9,444
  6. University of Northwestern Ohio $9,778
  7. Shawnee State University $10,156
  8. Cleveland State University $10,419
  9. University of Akron $10,610
  10. Ohio State University at Lima $11,496

Key Takeaways

  • The most prominent university in Ohio is the Ohio State University, with over 55,000 students and five regional campuses. Ohio is also one of the most preferred states by international students to study for four-year degrees.
  • The most affordable college in Ohio has an average cost of $9,000 per year. The cheapest colleges on the list are Ohio University Southern Campus, Kent State University, and the University of Cincinnati Clermont College, with an average tuition fee of $6,000.
  • The most affordable colleges in Ohio included on the list have not only low published tuition fees but also offer high-quality education, financial aid opportunities, and access to various educational alternatives. Students have on-campus and online options in Ohio that deliver the same academic quality.

Ohio’s Inexpensive Colleges: Are They Worth It

Numerous accredited institutions in Ohio offer affordable education and can satisfy your academic demands and career aspirations. And because Ohio’s cost of living is below the national average, more and more international students are transferring to the state.

Exterior facade of a college building

Ohio can be a great transitional state for international students looking to explore, save money, and become accustomed to American culture while studying for a longer-term academic program commitment in their intended field of study.

Average Cost of College Education in Ohio

In general, the average tuition fee for colleges in Ohio is $9,000. The cheapest colleges, on the other hand, have an average tuition of $6,000. These rates can substantially decrease or increase depending on each student’s enrollment status.

A proven way to afford college is by applying for financial aid. Examples of the cheapest schools that offer great financial aid packages include:

However, tuition and other fees are not the only things prospective students need to consider when studying for college. Other things you should consider are housing and transportation. Luckily, the cost of living in Ohio is very affordable.

According to the Education Data Initiative, the cost of room and board at four-year universities ranges from $8,556 to $12,870 annually. Although living off-campus in Ohio can be less expensive, you’ll still need to set aside money for rent, food, gas, and utilities

In Ohio, a typical college student might anticipate spending between $1,000 and $1,800 on transportation costs. Additionally, it has been suggested that college students set up at least $1,000 annually for transportation and travel.

Highest-Paid Jobs in Ohio

To ensure that you have the best chance of landing a high-paying job after you attend college in Ohio, you need to have a degree that leads to in-demand and high-paying career opportunities. But remember, not all cities have the same demand for specific professionals..

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports these as some of the top high-paying jobs in Ohio:

  • Chief Executives
  • Computer Network Architects
  • General and Operations Managers
  • Ophthalmologists, Except for Pediatric
  • Radiologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Surgeons, All Other
  • Natural Sciences Managers
  • Purchasing Managers
  • Marketing and Sales Managers
Back to Top

Colleges and Universities in Ohio

Ohio offers over 120 colleges and universities for students to earn their associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree. The largest school in the state, Ohio State University, a public institution, serves almost 55,000 students. This university has five regional campuses, which have graduated alumni like writer Harlan Ellison and Wikipedia cofounder Larry Sanger. The majority of Ohio’s schools, however, are private.

Find college admissions consultants in your state.

Tuition at these schools varies greatly, with costs as low as $7,000 at God’s Bible School and College, and as high as $56,000 at Kenyon University. The state is also home to nearly 40 higher education institutes with religious affiliations, offering plenty of options for students aiming to blend their faith with higher education. Although tuition costs in Ohio are higher than the national average, Ohio provides several loan forgiveness programs to those pursuing careers as public defenders and prosecutors, dentists, nurses, primary care physicians, and mental health providers. Many of these programs require individuals to work in shortage areas around the state for a certain time period in order to qualify.

If you’re someone with a wide variety of interests, Ohio might just be the place for you. In The Buckeye State, individuals can visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, take a trip through Amish Country, attend a professional sporting event, and hike waterfalls in Cuyahoga Valley National Park. It seems this state has something for everyone, including those pursuing a higher education degree.

Learn more about the numerous excellent degree paths and career prospects available in Ohio.


What are Ohio’s Colleges & Universities?

Ohio’s Best Overall

Ohio's Most Affordable Colleges and Universities Badge
Download Badge

Ohio has 29 colleges and universities with stated tuitions and fees under $20,000/year. The following list of the most affordable colleges and universities in Ohio is composed entirely of schools offering bachelor’s degree programs, have stated tuition and fees near or under the national average of $16,000/year, and are fully accredited colleges.

Group of students carrying backpacks and notebooks Back to Top

Most Affordable Colleges in Ohio 2024

These schools are ranked by academic excellence, and all under $20,000/year.

  1. #1

    Ohio State University

    Columbus , OH
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    57%

    Graduation

    88%

    Student body

    56K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1320/29

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio State University

    Cost of Degree: $12,485
    Expenses: $17,700
    Starting Salary: $52,119
    Salary after 4 years: $66,526
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  2. What We Like about Ohio State University

    Ohio State University, founded in 1870, is renowned for its academic excellence, athletic success, and research opportunities. It’s one of the largest universities in the U.S., known for being the first to offer degrees in several fields, including engineering, nursing, aviation, veterinary medicine, optometry, and computer science.

    The university’s athletic achievements include eight national championships in football and impressive records in other sports. A lively arts and culture scene is evident through its museums and performing arts centers. Ohio State’s commitment to research is showcased in its numerous research centers and collaborations.

    The diverse student body, including a significant percentage of first-generation college students and international students from over 100 countries, adds to its thriving campus life. The faculty, from various disciplines, contribute to a rich educational environment.

  3. #2

    University of Cincinnati

    Cincinnati , OH
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    85%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    34K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1225/26

    Career Outlook for degree at University of Cincinnati

    Cost of Degree: $12,334
    Expenses: $16,990
    Starting Salary: $52,903
    Salary after 4 years: $61,429
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary

    University of Cincinnati’s Online Degrees

    BBS in Criminal Justice
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Public Health
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Interdisciplinary Studies
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: None Reported
    BS in Respiratory Therapy
    • Required Credits: 50
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSN in Nursing
    Degree Concentrations
    • RN-BSN
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: None Reported
    BS in Radiation Science Technology
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BAS in Technical and Applied Studies (BTAS)
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Health Information Management
    • Required Credits: 52
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Law & Paralegal Studies
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Early Childhood Education (ECE)
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Pre-Occupational Therapy
    • Required Credits: 52
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Communication
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Social Work
    • Required Credits: 57
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Fire Science & Emergency Management
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: None Reported
    BS in Substance Abuse Counseling
    • Required Credits: 60-120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Information Technology
    Degree Concentrations
    • Networking and Systems
    • Software Application Development
    • Cybersecurity
    • Game Development and Simulation
    • Data Technologies
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: None Reported
    BS in Health Sciences
    • Required Credits: 59
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  4. What We Like about University of Cincinnati

    The University of Cincinnati, established in 1819, is a public research university known for its significant contributions to academia, culture, and society. It boasts a large and diverse student body, with an enrollment of around 34,000 students from all 50 states and 152 countries.

    The university’s campus is recognized for its beauty and urban design, blending innovative architectural spaces with open green areas, making it an inspiring academic setting. UC is particularly renowned for its cooperative education program, which was the first of its kind and ranked fourth in the nation for co-op and internships. The program allows students to gain real-world experience, with co-op students collectively earning $75 million annually.

    UC’s strong commitment to community engagement is evident, with over 3,000 students involved in service learning and community-based research projects each year. University of Cincinnati’s diverse academic offerings, vibrant campus life, and integration into Cincinnati’s thriving professional landscape make it a notable choice for students from around the world.

  5. What We Like about Miami University

    Miami University, established in 1809 in Oxford, Ohio, is recognized for its strong liberal arts focus combined with the qualities of a public university.

    Miami University is committed to graduate and advanced professional education, with a range of master’s and selective doctoral programs. The university supports around 3,000 students annually in funded research and experiential learning.

    With a student body of nearly 20,000, Miami University combines a range of academic programs with faculty dedicated to teaching, ensuring personal attention that is typically found only at smaller institutions.

  6. What We Like about Ohio University

    Ohio University, founded in 1804, is the oldest university in Ohio and the first in the Northwest Territory. It has a beautiful campus, which is located in Athens and nestled in the Appalachian foothills.

    With over 23,000 students, Ohio University provides a wide range of academic programs, with more than 250 areas of study. The university strongly focuses on research, reflected in its ‘Very high research activity’ classification in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.

    It has produced notable alumni, including U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Toni Morrison.

  7. Shelves full of books in a school library
  8. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    87%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    23K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/23

    Career Outlook for degree at Kent State University

    Cost of Degree: $11,373
    Expenses: $18,390
    Starting Salary: $39,853
    Salary after 4 years: $49,600
    Cost Recoup Time: 12 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  9. What We Like about Kent State University

    Kent State University, established in 1910, is a public research university located in Kent, Ohio. It offers a wide range of academic programs, with nearly 370 programs of study, and is known for its academic excellence.

    Kent State is distinctive for its eight-campus system, serving more than 23,000 students and offering degrees from the associate to doctoral levels. The university has been recognized for its graduate education programs, ranking high in various fields like education, public health, mathematics, physics, earth sciences, public affairs, and computer science.

  10. Kent State is located in an award-winning college town, providing students with a close-knit community and access to major cities like Cleveland, Akron, Canton, and Youngstown.

  11. What We Like about Bowling Green State University

    Bowling Green State University, located south of Toledo, offers a dynamic and engaging student experience. With over 200 undergraduate programs and 75 graduate programs, the university is noted for its academic excellence, consistently ranking high among public schools.

    BGSU’s athletic spirit, with NCAA Division I sports teams and a strong football program, provides a rich campus life for its diverse student body of over 16,000. The university is also recognized for its commitment to veterans and military students, achieving high national rankings for its support programs.

  12. The campus has impressive facilities, including sports arenas, fine arts centers, and various student housing options. BGSU is particularly renowned for its biology, business, education, and aviation programs, underlining its innovative approach to experiential learning.

  13. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    85%

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    14K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1110/22

    Career Outlook for degree at University of Akron

    Cost of Degree: $12,427
    Expenses: $15,930
    Starting Salary: $44,856
    Salary after 4 years: $53,971
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary

    University of Akron’s Online Degrees

    BS in Organizational Supervision
    • Required Credits: 62
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Criminology And Criminal Justice
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Emergency Management And Homeland Security
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Public Communication
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Public Relations
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Sociology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Nursing: RN to BSN
    • Required Credits: 31
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  14. What We Like about University of Akron

    The University of Akron has a unique history, transitioning from a Universalist-affiliated institution in 1907 to a state university in 1967. It has undergone significant transformation, marked by a $627 million construction project that includes a new football stadium and extensive campus enhancements.

    The university’s connection to the tire and rubber industry is notable, offering the world’s first courses in rubber chemistry. The University of Akron provides diverse academic programs, from undergraduate to doctoral levels, supported by excellent research facilities. This variety caters to a wide range of academic interests and career aspirations among students.

  15. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    13K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1055/21

    Career Outlook for degree at Cleveland State University

    Cost of Degree: $12,254
    Expenses: $18,567
    Starting Salary: $45,244
    Salary after 4 years: $55,983
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  16. What We Like about Cleveland State University

    Cleveland State University, an urban institution, is dedicated to engaged learning and contributing to the public good, with strong partnerships with local entities.

    The university has modernized its campus with facilities like the Euclid Commons dorms and the School of Film and Media Arts.

    CSU offers more than 70 majors, various postgraduate degrees, and research cooperation with the NASA Glenn Research Center. The university attracts diverse students, creating a community that enhances the educational experience.

  17. Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    97%

    Graduation

    55%

    Student body

    15K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1097/23

    Career Outlook for degree at University of Toledo

    Cost of Degree: $11,311
    Expenses: $19,482
    Starting Salary: $48,660
    Salary after 4 years: $59,810
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  18. What We Like about University of Toledo

    The University of Toledo’s growth from a local to a state institution is marked by an expansive range of academic programs and a tradition in athletics, especially football. The university is notable for its comprehensive research, particularly in astronomy, astrophysics, solar energy, and water quality.

    It emphasizes accessible and transformational education, with over 300 undergraduate and graduate programs. The University of Toledo stands out for its affordability and focus on providing educational opportunities that pave the way for future success.

    Students sitting and studying on a school lawn
  19. #10

    Youngstown State University

    Youngstown , OH
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    47%

    Student body

    10K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1075/21

    Career Outlook for degree at Youngstown State University

    Cost of Degree: $9,585
    Expenses: $14,566
    Starting Salary: $44,830
    Salary after 4 years: $53,144
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary

    Youngstown State University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Criminal Justice
    Degree Concentrations
    • Generalist Track
    • Required Credits: 57
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: None Reported
    BS in General Studies
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Nursing
    • Required Credits: 28
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BSAS in Applied Science
    Degree Concentrations
    • Allied Health
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  20. What We Like about Youngstown State University

    Youngstown State University is celebrated for its NCAA Division I sports teams, including its highly successful football program. The university offers an active student life with over 200 student organizations and many campus events and activities.

    As a research-intensive institution, YSU focuses on areas such as renewable energy, advanced manufacturing, and neuroscience. It is recognized for providing high-quality education at an affordable price, ranking as one of the most affordable universities nationwide.

    The university’s comprehensive urban research environment includes over 110 undergraduate and 30+ graduate programs. YSU’s campus life is deeply integrated with the local community, offering students a blend of academic and cultural experiences.

  21. #11

    Wilberforce University

    Wilberforce , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    39%

    Graduation

    18%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    790/16

    Career Outlook for degree at Wilberforce University

    Cost of Degree: $13,250
    Expenses: $10,200
    Starting Salary: $43,154
    Salary after 4 years: $49,391
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  22. What We Like about Wilberforce University

    Wilberforce University, the nation’s oldest private, historically black university, has a storied history beginning before the Civil War. Its location in Xenia, Ohio, near the Underground Railroad, symbolizes its commitment to freedom and education.

    The university played a significant role in educating the “natural” mixed-race children of wealthy white planters and their enslaved African-American mistresses. The university offers a range of undergraduate programs in fields like Humanities, Social Sciences, and Natural Sciences, and is known for its cooperative education program requiring internships for graduation​​​​.

  23. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $17K

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Union Institute & University

    Cost of Degree: $17,141
    Expenses: $15,987
    Starting Salary: $68,196
    Salary after 4 years: $77,585
    Cost Recoup Time: 9 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary

    Union Institute & University’s Online Degrees

    BS in Business Management
    Degree Concentrations
    • Business Administration
    • Human Resources Management
    • Organizational Leadership
    • Applied Technology & Business Leadership
    • Healthcare Administration
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Criminal Justice Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Emergency Services Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Social Work
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Maternal Child Health: Human Lactation
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Child & Adolescent Development
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  24. What We Like about Union Institute & University

    Union Institute & University has had a dynamic history since its founding, focusing on providing adult education and distance learning.

    Union Institute & University boasts a diverse range of notable alumni, including authors, activists, and politicians. Its student body is served by a faculty of lecturers, with an excellent student-to-instructor ratio ensuring personalized attention.

    The university offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in various fields, including Criminal Justice, Human Development, and Public Health, and a significant portion of its students take classes online​​​​​​.

  25. #13

    Shawnee State University

    Portsmouth , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    37%

    Student body

    3K

    Career Outlook for degree at Shawnee State University

    Cost of Degree: $9,341
    Expenses: $17,304
    Starting Salary: $39,489
    Salary after 4 years: $48,883
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Shawnee State University known for?

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

  26. What We Like about Shawnee State University

    Shawnee State University, located in Portsmouth, Ohio, offers a campus with facilities like the Clark Planetarium and various student housing options. Its inclusive policy requires first-year students to live on campus unless they meet specific criteria. Shawnee State competes in the NAIA, offering various sports, including baseball, basketball, and soccer.

    The university supports a diverse range of student organizations and clubs, catering to different interests. Notable alumni include former Ohio governor Ted Strickland. Shawnee State is focused on providing accessible education and boasts a comparatively small student body with a solid commitment to disability services and support for military veterans​​​​​​​​.

  27. #14

    Antioch University Midwest

    Yellow Springs , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Antioch University Midwest

    Cost of Degree: $16,264
    Expenses: $15,987
    Starting Salary: $46,778
    Salary after 4 years: $57,003
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Antioch University Midwest known for?

    Antioch University Midwest’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  28. What We Like about Antioch University Midwest

  29. Antioch University Midwest, part of the Antioch University system, transitioned in 2020 from offering in-person programs to primarily online and low-residency options. Despite these changes, it is committed to a socially progressive education philosophy.

    Known for its focus on the “whole individual” and experiential learning, Antioch has a history of innovative approaches in higher education, including being the first to offer courses in teaching methods and emphasizing equal pay for female faculty. Antioch University Midwest’s programs are designed for non-traditional students, with offerings in liberal arts, education, management, and healthcare​​​​.

  30. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    20%

    Student body

    3K

    Career Outlook for degree at University of Cincinnati Clermont College

    Cost of Degree: $6,364
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $37,071
    Salary after 4 years: $44,724
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is University of Cincinnati Clermont College known for?

    University of Cincinnati Clermont College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    University of Cincinnati Clermont College’s Online Degrees

    BTAS in Technical And Applied Students
    • Required Credits: 60
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  31. What We Like about University of Cincinnati Clermont College

    University of Cincinnati Clermont College, a public institution, offers an affordable and high-quality education in a suburban setting. With a student-to-faculty ratio of 7 to 1, students benefit from personalized attention and a range of academic programs.

  32. The college emphasizes career preparation and has a variety of student services and resources. The college’s suburban location in Batavia, Ohio, offers a peaceful learning environment​​​​​​​​.

    St Ivers School of the Arts
  33. #16

    Miami University Middletown

    Middletown , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    19%

    Student body

    1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Miami University Middletown

    Cost of Degree: $6,670
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $44,464
    Salary after 4 years: $54,120
    Cost Recoup Time: 9 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Miami University Middletown known for?

    Miami University Middletown’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  34. What We Like about Miami University Middletown

    Miami University Middletown, a regional campus of Miami University, offers open admission for various associate and bachelor’s degree programs. Small class sizes and a supportive environment provide opportunities for study abroad and focus on student well-being.

  35. The campus is in Middletown, Ohio, and offers affordable online learning options. The campus is noted for its connections with Cincinnati State Technical and Community College​​​​​​​​.

  36. #17

    Kent State University at Stark

    North Canton , OH

    Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    2K

    Career Outlook for degree at Kent State University at Stark

    Cost of Degree: $6,995
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $34,487
    Salary after 4 years: $42,418
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Kent State University at Stark known for?

    Kent State University at Stark’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

  37. What We Like about Kent State University at Stark

    Kent State University at Stark, in North Canton, Ohio, offers a personalized education with a wide range of academic programs. The campus has a vibrant student life, including over 30 student organizations and various wellness initiatives.

    With a focus on service learning and leadership development, students are encouraged to engage in community service projects. The campus also offers a unique Senior Guest Program for adults over 60.

  38. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    29%

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Kent State University at Ashtabula

    Cost of Degree: $6,995
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $36,454
    Salary after 4 years: $42,711
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Kent State University at Ashtabula known for?

    Kent State University at Ashtabula’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  39. What We Like about Kent State University at Ashtabula

    Kent State University at Ashtabula, established in 1958, is known for its nursing program, which has trained a significant portion of registered nurses in Ashtabula County. Additionally, it offers unique wine degree programs in viticulture and enology.

    The campus provides a range of bachelor’s and associate degree programs, focusing on health degrees and community impact.

  40. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    19%

    Student body

    2K

    Career Outlook for degree at Miami University Hamilton

    Cost of Degree: $6,704
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $42,273
    Salary after 4 years: $53,457
    Cost Recoup Time: 9 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Miami University Hamilton known for?

    Miami University Hamilton’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Miami University Hamilton’s Online Degrees

    BS in Commerce
    Degree Concentrations
    • Small Business Management
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BAS in Health Communication
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Health Information Technology
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion Time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  41. What We Like about Miami University Hamilton

    Miami University Hamilton combines big-city university advantages and small-campus comfort. It caters to a diverse student body with associate degrees, certificate programs, bachelor’s programs, and graduate courses.

    The campus has a diversity score of 0.46 and offers a range of student organizations and athletic teams, including the Miami Hamilton Harriers.

  42. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    19%

    Student body

    1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio University Southern Campus

    Cost of Degree: $6,004
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $40,709
    Salary after 4 years: $52,523
    Cost Recoup Time: 9 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio University Southern Campus known for?

    Ohio University Southern Campus’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  43. What We Like about Ohio University Southern Campus

  44. Ohio University Southern Campus in Ironton, Ohio, offers a unique educational experience with a focus on community engagement and continuing education. A significant percentage of students receive financial aid at this school, and the campus has a diverse student body.

    Popular programs include horseback riding and a range of academic offerings. The campus has a student-to-faculty ratio that ensures personalized attention for each student​​​​​​​​.

  45. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Graduation

    31%

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Kent State University at Salem

    Cost of Degree: $6,995
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $34,841
    Salary after 4 years: $41,051
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Kent State University at Salem known for?

    Kent State University at Salem’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  46. What We Like about Kent State University at Salem

    Kent State University at Salem, part of the Kent State University system, offers a unique blend of small-town charm and big-city university opportunities. Established in 1962, the campus has a history of providing excellent education and community services.

  47. Students can choose from more than 20 degrees, including 12 bachelor’s degrees. The campus has affordable tuition, especially for in-state students, and offers a lower tuition rate than the main campus.

    Two girls sitting on the school steps and playing with their graduation robes
  48. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    30%

    Student body

    2K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio State University at Newark

    Cost of Degree: $8,944
    Expenses: $14,918
    Starting Salary: $41,941
    Salary after 4 years: $50,448
    Cost Recoup Time: 10 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio State University at Newark known for?

    Ohio State University at Newark’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  49. What We Like about Ohio State University at Newark

    Ohio State University at Newark offers a great student experience with various student life activities and organizations, including the Newark Campus Activities Board and the Student Cultural Council.

  50. It provides a range of undergraduate degree programs such as Business Management, Education, Engineering Technology, English, History, and Psychology. Ohio State University at Newark is known for its academic excellence, small class sizes, and personalized attention.

  51. Tuition + fees

    $6K

    Graduation

    18%

    Student body

    1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio University – Chillicothe

    Cost of Degree: $6,004
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $40,709
    Salary after 4 years: $52,523
    Cost Recoup Time: 9 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio University – Chillicothe known for?

    Ohio University – Chillicothe’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  52. What We Like about Ohio University – Chillicothe

    Ohio University – Chillicothe, the oldest of Ohio University’s regional campuses, offers 13 associate degrees and eight bachelor’s degrees. Its diverse range of academic programs and the College Credit Plus program allows high school students to earn college credits.

    The campus provides a nurturing environment with facilities like Bennett Hall, Stevenson Center, and the Shoemaker Center. Graduates from OHIO Chillicothe earn an average salary of $40,000 starting out, making it a valuable choice for students seeking a blend of affordability and quality education​​​​​​​​.

  53. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    15%

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio State University at Mansfield

    Cost of Degree: $8,944
    Expenses: $14,918
    Starting Salary: $33,377
    Salary after 4 years: $43,061
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio State University at Mansfield known for?

    Ohio State University at Mansfield’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  54. What We Like about Ohio State University at Mansfield

    Ohio State University at Mansfield offers a wide range of bachelor’s degree programs, including Business Management, Criminology, Early Childhood Education, Engineering Technology, and Social Work.

    The campus has small class sizes, faculty excellence, and ample research opportunities. Ohio State University at Mansfield’s rural setting provides a tranquil environment for study and reflection​​​​​​​​​​.

  55. Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Graduation

    60%

    Student body

    3K

    Career Outlook for degree at University of Northwestern Ohio

    Cost of Degree: $11,867
    Expenses: $12,700
    Starting Salary: $40,836
    Salary after 4 years: $47,118
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is University of Northwestern Ohio known for?

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

  56. What We Like about University of Northwestern Ohio

    The University of Northwestern Ohio (UNOH) is a private, not-for-profit institution founded in 1920. Located in Lima, Ohio, UNOH offers various programs across five colleges: Applied Technologies, Business, Health Professions, Occupational Professions, and a Graduate College.

    Known worldwide as a leader in the Automotive, Diesel, and High-Performance industries, UNOH also provides over 50 degree programs in Business, Health, Marketing, Information Technology, and other fields. The university has small class sizes for more personalized attention and prepares students well for their chosen careers.

  57. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    15%

    Student body

    1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio State University at Marion

    Cost of Degree: $8,944
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $32,162
    Salary after 4 years: $42,938
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio State University at Marion known for?

    Ohio State University at Marion’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  58. What We Like about Ohio State University at Marion

  59. Ohio State University at Marion offers a dynamic environment for learning, with small class sizes that promote close interactions between students and faculty. The campus fosters a great student experience with a range of academic programs, including Biology, Business Management, Child and Youth Studies, Early Childhood Education, Engineering Technology, and Social Work.

    The campus provides opportunities for honors and scholars programs, undergraduate research, and study abroad experiences. Students at Ohio State University at Marion benefit from academic support services and are encouraged to engage in student life through various organizations and clubs.

  60. Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Graduation

    24%

    Student body

    <1K

    Career Outlook for degree at Ohio State University at Lima

    Cost of Degree: $8,944
    Expenses: $15,411
    Starting Salary: $31,286
    Salary after 4 years: $43,416
    Cost Recoup Time: 11 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Ohio State University at Lima known for?

    Ohio State University at Lima’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  61. What We Like about Ohio State University at Lima

    Ohio State University at Lima provides a comprehensive educational experience with over 140 courses and 9 bachelor’s degree programs in science and liberal arts.

  62. The campus collaborates with James A. Rhodes State College, enhancing the academic and community experience. Students at Ohio State Lima benefit from small class sizes and personalized attention, with opportunities for internships and undergraduate research. The rural campus setting is ideal for students who prefer a quieter countryside environment​​​​​​.

What to Look for in Cheap Ohio Colleges

When researching affordable colleges in Ohio to attend, there are a few key factors to consider beyond just the sticker price of tuition and fees to determine if the college is a good return on investment:

Campus grounds of a school in Ohio
  • Graduation rates: While enrolling in an inexpensive college is appealing, you want to make sure you’re likely to finish your degree in a reasonable timeframe. Look for schools with 4-year and 6-year graduation rates of at least 50% or higher.
  • Financial aid and scholarships: The cheaper the tuition, the less you may think financial aid is necessary. However, don’t rule out colleges that also offer generous institutional aid and scholarships to make themselves even more affordable. Over 80% of students in the U.S. receive some form of financial assistance.
  • Academic programs: Just because tuition is low doesn’t mean academic rigor or offerings should suffer. Ensure your major and other programs of interest are available and well-respected. Research student-to-faculty ratios, class sizes, and other academics.
  • Accreditation: Accreditation affects the quality of education you’ll receive and can impact your ability to get financial aid, transfer credits, and even gain employment post-graduation.
  • Location/cost of living: Consider how far you are willing to commute or if you require on-campus housing or meal plans that may drive up total costs. In-state public schools often have the lowest living expenses.

Taking the time to thoroughly research colleges will help you choose the most cost-effective school for your education and career goals.

Popular Degrees Offered at Ohio Universities

Popular college majors in Ohio colleges and universities include a range of fields, reflecting the diverse interests and career aspirations of students in the state.

  • Business administration and management: Business administration, marketing, accounting, and finance are very popular business majors in Ohio. Many schools have business schools offering these programs.
  • Health professions: Nursing is a highly sought-after program, especially as healthcare systems continue to grow. Other popular health majors include exercise science, health sciences, pre-med, and social work.
  • Education: Ohio has a very strong demand for teachers, particularly in certain high-need areas like special education and STEM subjects. Early childhood education, primary education, and secondary education majors are common.
  • Engineering: Majors like mechanical, civil, electrical, computer, biomedical, and chemical engineering are widely available and popular with students wanting to work in Ohio’s manufacturing economy.
  • Natural sciences: Careers in food science and technology, biochemistry and biophysics, chemistry, environmental science, and psychology are popular. Leading universities in these areas are Case Western Reserve, Ohio University, Ohio State University, Bowling Green State University, and Miami University of Ohio.
  • Computer sciences: Computer engineering, information technology, and computer science programs have grown in Ohio, especially at schools with co-op programs that provide work experience.

Related Questions

Are There Reputable Colleges in Ohio That Are Affordable?

Yes, there are over 50 accredited four-year colleges and universities, with 29 being both highly reputable and affordable Ohio four-year schools compared to national averages.

Is a Cheap College in Ohio Worth It?

Yes, a cheap college in Ohio can be worth it because the state’s public university system focuses on accessibility and affordability for residents. Students can take advantage of high quality academics at a fraction of the price of private or out-of-state alternatives.

Do Schools in Ohio Have Good Master’s Programs?

Yes, there are great master’s programs at Ohio colleges and universities. Many of them are very affordable, and you have the opportunity to earn several online if you want to save money on housing and transportation.

Conclusion

Whether you’re an Ohio resident or someone from out-of-state looking to study in the Buckeye State for the next few years, several great schools are available. We hope our list helps you select not only an affordable university or college in Ohio, but one that matches your needs for academics as well.

Back to Top

Ohio’s Most Affordable Colleges in Your Area of Interest

2024 Ranking Archive
  1. University of Cincinnati Clermont College
  2. Kent State University at Ashtabula
  3. Kent State University at Salem
  4. Kent State University at Stark
  5. Miami University Hamilton
  6. Miami University Middletown
  7. Ohio State University at Marion
  8. Ohio State University at Mansfield
  9. Ohio State University at Lima
  10. Ohio State University at Newark
  11. Shawnee State University
  12. Youngstown State University
  13. University of Toledo
  14. University of Akron
  15. Kent State University
  16. Cleveland State University
  17. Ohio State University
  18. University of Cincinnati
  19. Bowling Green State University
  20. University of Northwestern Ohio
  21. Ohio University
  22. Ohio Christian University
  23. Wilberforce University
  24. Union Institute & University
  25. Miami University
Do you have a question about this topic? Ask it here