Best Grad Schools in Rhode Island 2024


Graduate school may be a critical step in your higher education, whether you are interested in expanding your knowledge, learning a specialization, or earning advanced credentials required by your profession. The best graduate schools in Rhode Island offer advanced degrees, such as master’s and doctoral degrees, as well as opportunities for independent research, mentorships, and professional networking.

Colleges and Universities in Rhode Island

Of the three public schools, the University of Rhode Island is the largest, having more than 15,000 students in attendance. The main campus is located in Kingston, and the tuition rate is $14,000. The most prestigious school in the state is Brown University, a private Ivy League institution located in Providence. Over 9,000 students study on this campus in fields like biophysics, ethnic studies, and public health. Tuition is more expensive at about $55,000, but the school boasts a 96% graduation rate.

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Of the eight private schools, two are religiously affiliated. Both Salve Regina University and Providence College have under 5,000 students, though the tuition fees are more expensive at $40,000 and $51,000, respectively. Whether you seek an associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree, Rhode Island also offers a unique opportunity for graduates. As a financial incentive to pursue a career or start a business in Rhode Island in the technology, engineering, design, or other sectors, the Wavemaker Fellowship program defrays student loan payments for up to four years.

Rhode Island is the smallest U.S. state, but it has more than 400 miles of coastline, giving it the nickname The Ocean State. With sandy beaches and colonial towns, this state offers relaxation and history. Rhode Island also has 11 public and private higher education institutions with an average tuition of just over $12,000.

Meet your academic goals at one of the higher learning centers in Rhode Island. Check out the top programs to see which school fits your needs.

What are Rhode Island’s Colleges & Universities?

Rhode Island’s Best Overall

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There are 4 doctorate-granting graduate schools in Rhode Island. Our ranking of the best graduate schools in the Rhode Island is composed of both private and public schools. To be included, schools must be fully accredited non-profit institutions, and must offer doctoral degrees and a broad array of graduate degrees.

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Best Grad Schools in Rhode Island 2023

  1. #1

    Brown University

    Providence , RI
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees






    Student body


    Median SAT/ACT


    Career Outlook for degree at Brown University

    Cost of Degree: $65,046
    Expenses: $18,540
    Starting Salary: $89,100
    Cost Recoup Time: 15 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  2. #3

    Rhode Island College

    Providence , RI

    Tuition + fees






    Student body


    Career Outlook for degree at Rhode Island College

    Cost of Degree: $10,966
    Expenses: $16,104
    Starting Salary: $43,900
    Cost Recoup Time: 12 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
  3. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees






    Student body


    Median SAT/ACT


    Career Outlook for degree at Salve Regina University

    Cost of Degree: $46,000
    Expenses: $21,780
    Starting Salary: $57,700
    Cost Recoup Time: 18 years
    Paid back at 15% of annual salary
    What is Salve Regina University known for?

    Salve Regina University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    Most Influential Alumni

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Rhode Island’s Best Grad School for Your Area of Interest

Resources for Prospective Grad Students

Whether you’re just getting started on your college search, you’re looking for survival tips on your way to a bachelor’s degree, or you’re preparing for the transition into grad school, we’ve got guides, how to’s and tons of other valuable resources to keep you moving forward in your educational journey.

2021 Ranking Archive

Many of our 2024 undergraduate focused rankings look considerably different than 2023. That’s because we took a fundamentally different approach. For 2024 we utilized our Concentrated Influence algorithm, designed to take away the size advantage larger schools have when we rank their faculty and alumni’s academic influence. Concentrated influence highlights smaller schools that are proportionally as successful as larger universities at cultivating influential alumni and faculty.

  1. Brown University
  2. University of Rhode Island
  3. Salve Regina University
  4. Rhode Island College
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