Best Private Colleges in Oregon 2022

Best Private Colleges in Oregon 2022

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 Oregon.

Colleges and Universities in Oregon

Oregon is home to over 40 higher education institutions, including Oregon State University, the largest in the state. More than 30,000 students are enrolled at this public research institution in Corvallis, and with a tuition of $11,000, the school comes in slightly above the national average. Students attending the next largest, the University of Oregon, will join in on a friendly intrastate rivalry against Oregon State. Though the tuition is higher at $12,000, the school boasts a student–faculty ratio of 16:1.

Find college admissions consultants in your state.

Of the 21 private institutions, 10 are religiously based. Concordia University has the largest student population at just under 5,000 and a tuition of $31,000. Students who attend this private Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod university can study fields such as chemistry, psychology, and history. Oregon’s community colleges range in tuition from $4,000 to $6,000. The least expensive four-year institution in the state, Portland State University (PSU), comes in at $8,000. Students attending PSU can study a range of fields, including environmental engineering, film, and international business, right in the heart of the city.

Gaze at the Pacific Ocean from the Oregon Coast Highway, which travels along the entire coastal edge of the state. Taste Pacific Northwest wines from the Willamette Valley, or take a bike ride through the streets of Portland. Students looking to earn their associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree in The Beaver State can enjoy a great higher education experience set against a stunning natural backdrop.

Discover what Oregon has to offer, and find a college that fits your career interests as well as your budget.


What are Oregon’s Colleges & Universities?

Oregon’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.

Oregon's Best Private Colleges and Universities Badge
Download Badge

How do we determine Oregon's best private 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.

This list is composed entirely of private colleges and universities that offer bachelor’s degrees. We’ve identified 10 private universities in Oregon. To be included in the list below of the best private universities in Oregon, schools must be fully accredited, private, non-profit institution, and must offer a broad range of bachelor’s degrees.

Back to Top

Best Private Colleges in Oregon

  1. #1

    Reed College

    Portland , OR
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $63K

    Acceptance

    42%

    Graduation

    77%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1422/32

    What is Reed College known for?

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

    • Anthropology
    • Psychology
    • Computer Science
    • Economics
    • Philosophy
    • Literature
    • Sociology
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • History

    Most Influential Alumni

  2. #2

    Willamette University

    Salem , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $44K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    74%

    Student body

    2K

    What is Willamette University known for?

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

    • Economics
    • Law
    • Political Science
    • Physics
    • Anthropology
    • Chemistry
    • History
    • Biology
    • Philosophy
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  3. #4

    Lewis & Clark College

    Portland , OR
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $57K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    74%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1310/29

    What is Lewis & Clark College known for?

    Lewis & Clark College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Anthropology
    • Economics
    • Physics
    • Law
    • Sociology
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Communications
    • Psychology

    Most Influential Alumni

  4. #5

    Pacific University

    Forest Grove , OR
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $50K

    Acceptance

    89%

    Graduation

    64%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1160/23

    What is Pacific University known for?

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

    • Social Work
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    • Psychology
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • Physics
    • Communications

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. #6

    Linfield University

    McMinnville , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $46K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    75%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1135/23

    What is Linfield University known for?

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

    • Anthropology
    • History
    • Literature
    • Physics
    • Engineering
    • Law
    • Economics
    • Computer Science
    • Psychology
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. #7

    George Fox University

    Newberg , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $39K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    66%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1150/23

    What is George Fox University known for?

    George Fox University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Religious Studies
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Biology
    • Communications
    • Mathematics
    • Social Work

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. #8

    Corban University

    Salem , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    48%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1125/22

    What is Corban University known for?

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

    • Religious Studies
    • Mathematics
    • Psychology
    • Political Science
    • Biology
    • History
    • Criminal Justice
    • Education
    • Sociology
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

  8. #9

    Bushnell University

    Eugene , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $32K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1081/19

    What is Bushnell University known for?

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

    • Psychology
    • Religious Studies
    • Mathematics
    • Medical
    • Social Work
    • Criminal Justice
    • Communications
    • Philosophy
    • Business
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

  9. #10

    Warner Pacific University

    Portland , OR

    Tuition + fees

    $20K

    Acceptance

    100%

    Graduation

    38%

    Student body

    <1K

    What is Warner Pacific University known for?

    Warner Pacific University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Biology
    • Religious Studies
    • Social Work
    • Psychology
    • Sociology
    • Literature
    • Physics
    • History
    • Communications
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

Back to Top

Oregon’s Best Private Colleges in Your Area Interest

Resources for College-Bound Students

2021 Ranking Archive

Many of our 2022 undergraduate focused rankings look considerably different than 2021. That’s because we took a fundamentally different apporach. For 2021 we utiulized our Concentrated Influence algorithm, designed to take away the size advantage larger schools have when we rank their faculty and alumni’s academic influence. Concentrated influence highlights smaller schools that are proportionally as successful as larger universities at cultivating influential alumni and faculty.

  1. Reed College
  2. Lewis & Clark College
  3. Willamette University
  4. Pacific University
  5. Linfield University
  6. University of Portland
  7. George Fox University
  8. Warner Pacific University
  9. Corban University
  10. Bushnell University
  11. Pioneer Pacific College