Best Value Colleges For Computer Science Majors

According to PayScale's College ROI Report, computer science majors have the best 20-year net return on investment out of any degrees on the list, which can probably be credited to the high earning potential a computer science degree warrants in today's technology-driven world.  Read More

Find Out Exactly What You
Should Be Paid


74 (tie)University of Mary Washington(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$760,000
Total 4 Year Cost$97,400
Grad Rate73%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$28,600
77 (tie)California State University - Chico(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$757,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,800
Grad Rate59%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$21,400
77 (tie)Western Washington University(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$757,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,300
Grad Rate72%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$23,000
79Hunter College(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$754,000
Total 4 Year Cost$81,900
Grad Rate52%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$19,800
80University of Wisconsin (UW) - Madison(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$753,000
Total 4 Year Cost$96,800
Grad Rate84%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$29,600
81Prairie View A & M University(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$752,000
Total 4 Year Cost$77,500
Grad Rate38%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$25,700
82 (tie)Texas Tech University(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$751,000
Total 4 Year Cost$88,100
Grad Rate59%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$30,000
82 (tie)University of New Hampshire (UNH) - Main Campus(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$751,000
Total 4 Year Cost$122,000
Grad Rate76%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$37,400
84 (tie)University of Georgia (UGA)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$748,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,100
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$24,700
84 (tie)University of Iowa (UI)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$748,000
Total 4 Year Cost$84,400
Grad Rate70%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$28,400
84 (tie)University of Texas at Dallas(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$748,000
Total 4 Year Cost$161,000
Grad Rate71%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$24,500
87The College of William and Mary(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$746,000
Total 4 Year Cost$210,000
Grad Rate90%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$27,400
88University of California - Santa Barbara (UCSB)(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$745,000
Total 4 Year Cost$229,000
Grad Rate81%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$24,800
89 (tie)California State University - Fresno (Fresno State)(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$744,000
Total 4 Year Cost$127,000
Grad Rate52%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$20,300
89 (tie)Northwest Missouri State University(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$744,000
Total 4 Year Cost$90,300
Grad Rate50%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$24,600

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

In case you hadn't noticed, technology is ubiquitous these days, permeating every facet of our world, from the iPhone in your pocket to Google's self-driving cars roaming the streets outside your office. This explosion in tech means there's a relative scarcity of employees who can invent, code, develop build it all, and computer science and math majors are poised to cash in on that shortage. PayScale's College ROI Report provides expected return on investment for different majors based on expected 20-year earnings for alumni from top universities across the nation, and the return on investment for computer science majors is the highest overall. And by using the College ROI Report, computer science majors can use the findings to make an informed decision of which computer science programs offer the best return for their educational dollar.

Perennially coming in as one for best value colleges for computer science majors is Stanford University in Silicon Valley, home to some of the largest high-tech companies and startups in the world. Stanford might top the charts for best college for students to pursue a computer science degree, but it, unfortunately, is also at the top of the list for having one of the worst college mascots; a tree ('Cardinal", if you're feeling fancy). In fact, Stanford doesn't actually have a mascot, the school unofficially reverted to "Cardinal" because it was the university's color. Official mascot or not, Stanford's graduation rate is still near perfect at 96 percent.

New York City's Columbia University, is a prestigious Ivy League school that was one of the nine colonial colleges founded before the Revolutionary War, and was also the school where -- among other US Presidents -- President Barack Obama earned his undergraduate degree.

Another high-ranked school for computer science majors in our College ROI report is a consistently high performer across the board: UC Berkeley.

All three top-tier best value colleges for computer science majors prove to be wise investments. One thing's for sure, computer science majors can expect one of the most lucrative ROIs out of any degree on the College ROI Report. Use PayScale's College ROI Report to see how well a computer science degree from your current or potential university pays its alumni back in the real world.