Best Value Colleges For Technology Careers

A career in tech is a smart choice if you want to see maximum return on investment for the money you spend on your education.

According to PayScale's College ROI Report technology careers can lead to some of the highest returns on investment for your dollar -- but choosing the right school can mean a difference of up to one million dollars over the first 20 years of your career.

Tech jobs, which include job titles such as software developer, product manager, program manager, IT administration, web developer, UX designer, data scientist, statistician and more, are in high demand in today's economy.  Read More

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181 (tie)Lafayette College(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$681,000
Total 4 Year Cost$243,000
Grad Rate90%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$29,100
181 (tie)University of Alabama in Huntsville(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$681,000
Total 4 Year Cost$94,100
Grad Rate46%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$25,200
183University of Texas at Dallas(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$680,000
Total 4 Year Cost$161,000
Grad Rate71%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$24,500
184Boston College(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$678,000
Total 4 Year Cost$248,000
Grad Rate91%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$18,000
185 (tie)California State University - Los Angeles (CSULA)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$676,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,000
Grad Rate41%
Time to Graduate6 Years
Loan Amt$14,500
185 (tie)California State University - Northridge (CSUN)(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$676,000
Total 4 Year Cost$135,000
Grad Rate47%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$19,800
187 (tie)Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T)(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$674,000
Total 4 Year Cost$147,000
Grad Rate63%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$27,500
187 (tie)Wayland Baptist University(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$674,000
Total 4 Year Cost$95,400
Grad Rate32%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$23,300
189 (tie)Montclair State University(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$673,000
Total 4 Year Cost$113,000
Grad Rate64%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$33,200
189 (tie)The College of New Jersey (TCNJ)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$673,000
Total 4 Year Cost$123,000
Grad Rate87%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$39,100
191 (tie)Bowie State University (BSU)(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$671,000
Total 4 Year Cost$124,000
Grad Rate33%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$26,400
191 (tie)California State University - Chico(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$671,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,800
Grad Rate59%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$21,400
193 (tie)Arizona State University (ASU)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$670,000
Total 4 Year Cost$97,200
Grad Rate63%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$25,200
193 (tie)South Dakota School of Mines & Technology(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$670,000
Total 4 Year Cost$89,700
Grad Rate54%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$29,200
195 (tie)Evergreen State College(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$669,000
Total 4 Year Cost$89,600
Grad Rate56%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$23,200

*NOTE: Unranked schools on this list don’t have on-campus living options, so on-campus costs are not available.

You don't have to major in computer science or math in order to work in tech either -- many tech jobs are held by people who studied a wide variety of subjects other than computer engineering in college. So even if you earn your bachelor's degree in humanities, communication, or even and design, as long as you also take classes (or teach yourself) in technical skills like programming, coding, statistics and engineering, you can land a high-paying tech career.

Since Northern California's Silicon Valley is the heart of the tech industry, it isn't surprising that many of the College ROIs seen by technology workers come from the surrounding area. Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA, consistently provides high 20-year ROIs for students who attend the school. Despite the fact that Stanford is an expensive private school, Stanford students usually do so well, especially in the tech field, that it is one of the best college values around for math and science careers. In nearby Berkeley, California, alumni of UC Berkeley also usually see an extraordinarily high college return on investment if technology careers are in their future. Even out-of-state residents, who pay significantly more to attend a University of California school, get a great value.

On the East Coast, Ivy League school Columbia University typically delivers a robust 20-year net ROI for tech students. Located in Manhattan in New York City, Columbia equips students with a strong network of both established blue-chip employers and up and coming tech start-ups.

Other schools to consider if you want the highest college return on investment technology careers can offer include Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Carnegie Mellon University and the Georgia Institute of Technology. In fact, it's hard to find a college with a low return on investment if you end up working in tech.