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.

Find out exactly what you should be paid
RankSchool Name20 Year Net ROI
Total 4 Year Cost
Graduation Rate
Typical Years to Graduate
Average Loan Amount
Rank:1School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,563,000Total 4 Year Cost:$270,000Graduation Rate:83%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$23,700
Rank:2School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,495,000Total 4 Year Cost:$318,000Graduation Rate:94%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$23,300
Rank:3School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,485,000Total 4 Year Cost:$303,000Graduation Rate:96%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$35,500
Rank:4School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,476,000Total 4 Year Cost:$293,000Graduation Rate:96%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$28,900
Rank:5School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,453,000Total 4 Year Cost:$160,000Graduation Rate:93%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$28,800
Rank:6School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,296,000Total 4 Year Cost:$305,000Graduation Rate:93%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$21,000
Rank:7School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,285,000Total 4 Year Cost:$317,000Graduation Rate:97%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$53,400
Rank:8School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,273,000Total 4 Year Cost:$0Graduation Rate:84%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:-
Rank:9School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,264,000Total 4 Year Cost:$301,000Graduation Rate:93%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:$28,600
Rank:10School Name:20 Year Net ROI:$1,261,000Total 4 Year Cost:$0Graduation Rate:86%Typical Years to Graduate:4Average Loan Amount:-

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. 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.