Best Value Colleges For Philosophy and Religious Studies Majors

While studying philosophy may give you insight into the fundamental questions of being, knowledge, and action, and while studying religion may help you to understand religious texts, beliefs, doctrines, practices, and world views, that sort of knowledge isn’t likely to earn you millions after you graduate. For that reason, it’s important to make sure the school where you’re earning your degree will provide you with a solid return on investment. Use PayScale’s College ROI report to make sure you don’t start your career at a financial disadvantage.

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Rank 
School Name 
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
Annual ROI
 
20 Year ROI annualized to represent the % of expected ROI received each year after graduation.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
20 Year Net ROI
 
Difference between 20 Year Median Pay for a bachelor’s grad and 24 Year Median Pay for a high school grad minus Total 4 Year Cost.
Total 4 Year Cost
 
Full cost, including tuition & fees, room & board, and books & supplies. Actual net cost may vary based on a student’s academic success and family income. Source: IPEDS
Total 4 Year Cost
 
Full cost, including tuition & fees, room & board, and books & supplies. Actual net cost may vary based on a student’s academic success and family income. Source: IPEDS
Graduation Rate
 
% of full-time, first-time degree seeking undergrad students who began their studies at the given school and graduate within 6 years. Source: IPEDS
Typical Years to Graduate
 
# of years it takes for at least 65 percent of graduates from a given school to receive their diplomas. Source: IPEDS
Average Loan Amount
 
Received by full-time, first-time degree seeking undergrad students, multiplied to represent amount over four years. Includes all Title IV loans and all institutionally- and privately-sponsored student loans. Source: IPEDS
% Grant Money Received
 
% of full-time, first-time undergrads who received local, state, federal, or institutional grant aid in the 2012-2013 academic year. Source: IPEDS
18.0%8.0%9.7%9.7%$364,000$364,000$390,000$389,000$98,200$98,30085%4$30,30012%
1University of Wisconsin-Madison(In-State)
Annual ROI8.0%
Annual ROI8.0%
Annual ROI9.7%
Annual ROI9.7%
20 Year Net ROI$364,000
20 Year Net ROI$364,000
20 Year Net ROI$390,000
20 Year Net ROI$389,000
Total 4 Year Cost$98,200
Total 4 Year Cost$98,300
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,300
Grant Money Received12%
26.6%7.5%10.7%12.9%$362,000$383,000$436,000$457,000$139,000$118,00092%4$23,90023%
2University of California-Berkeley(In-State)
Annual ROI6.6%
Annual ROI7.5%
Annual ROI10.7%
Annual ROI12.9%
20 Year Net ROI$362,000
20 Year Net ROI$383,000
20 Year Net ROI$436,000
20 Year Net ROI$457,000
Total 4 Year Cost$139,000
Total 4 Year Cost$118,000
Grad Rate92%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$23,900
Grant Money Received23%
37.5%7.1%11.2%10.5%$348,000$340,000$401,000$393,000$107,000$115,00084%4$24,30019%
3University of Washington-Seattle Campus(In-State)
Annual ROI7.5%
Annual ROI7.1%
Annual ROI11.2%
Annual ROI10.5%
20 Year Net ROI$348,000
20 Year Net ROI$340,000
20 Year Net ROI$401,000
20 Year Net ROI$393,000
Total 4 Year Cost$107,000
Total 4 Year Cost$115,000
Grad Rate84%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$24,300
Grant Money Received19%
46.5%7.1%11.4%13.4%$347,000$364,000$430,000$447,000$139,000$122,00082%4$20,80039%
4University of California-Santa Barbara(In-State)
Annual ROI6.5%
Annual ROI7.1%
Annual ROI11.4%
Annual ROI13.4%
20 Year Net ROI$347,000
20 Year Net ROI$364,000
20 Year Net ROI$430,000
20 Year Net ROI$447,000
Total 4 Year Cost$139,000
Total 4 Year Cost$122,000
Grad Rate82%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$20,800
Grant Money Received39%
57.8%8.1%10.9%11.4%$338,000$343,000$380,000$385,000$96,100$91,30085%4$23,70019%
5University of Georgia(In-State)
Annual ROI7.8%
Annual ROI8.1%
Annual ROI10.9%
Annual ROI11.4%
20 Year Net ROI$338,000
20 Year Net ROI$343,000
20 Year Net ROI$380,000
20 Year Net ROI$385,000
Total 4 Year Cost$96,100
Total 4 Year Cost$91,300
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$23,700
Grant Money Received19%
66.6%6.8%11.0%11.5%$327,000$332,000$396,000$401,000$125,000$120,00087%4$22,80026%
6University of California-San Diego(In-State)
Annual ROI6.6%
Annual ROI6.8%
Annual ROI11.0%
Annual ROI11.5%
20 Year Net ROI$327,000
20 Year Net ROI$332,000
20 Year Net ROI$396,000
20 Year Net ROI$401,000
Total 4 Year Cost$125,000
Total 4 Year Cost$120,000
Grad Rate87%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$22,800
Grant Money Received26%
76.4%7.0%11.3%13.0%$326,000$341,000$405,000$419,000$133,000$118,00091%4$25,30030%
7University of California-Los Angeles(In-State)
Annual ROI6.4%
Annual ROI7.0%
Annual ROI11.3%
Annual ROI13.0%
20 Year Net ROI$326,000
20 Year Net ROI$341,000
20 Year Net ROI$405,000
20 Year Net ROI$419,000
Total 4 Year Cost$133,000
Total 4 Year Cost$118,000
Grad Rate91%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$25,300
Grant Money Received30%
86.7%5.8%10.0%8.5%$321,000$299,000$376,000$355,000$121,000$142,00080%4$30,30028%
8Rutgers University-New Brunswick(In-State)
Annual ROI6.7%
Annual ROI5.8%
Annual ROI10.0%
Annual ROI8.5%
20 Year Net ROI$321,000
20 Year Net ROI$299,000
20 Year Net ROI$376,000
20 Year Net ROI$355,000
Total 4 Year Cost$121,000
Total 4 Year Cost$142,000
Grad Rate80%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,300
Grant Money Received28%
97.1%7.1%12.3%12.3%$320,000$320,000$387,000$387,000$110,000$110,00091%4$27,80015%
9University of Michigan-Ann Arbor(In-State)
Annual ROI7.1%
Annual ROI7.1%
Annual ROI12.3%
Annual ROI12.3%
20 Year Net ROI$320,000
20 Year Net ROI$320,000
20 Year Net ROI$387,000
20 Year Net ROI$387,000
Total 4 Year Cost$110,000
Total 4 Year Cost$110,000
Grad Rate91%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$27,800
Grant Money Received15%
107.5%7.5%10.9%10.9%$316,000$316,000$362,000$362,000$97,600$97,60076%4$30,40019%
10Indiana University-Bloomington(In-State)
Annual ROI7.5%
Annual ROI7.5%
Annual ROI10.9%
Annual ROI10.9%
20 Year Net ROI$316,000
20 Year Net ROI$316,000
20 Year Net ROI$362,000
20 Year Net ROI$362,000
Total 4 Year Cost$97,600
Total 4 Year Cost$97,600
Grad Rate76%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,400
Grant Money Received19%
116.7%N/A9.8%N/A$314,000N/A$366,000N/A$118,000N/A85%4$27,60022%
11University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign(In-State)
Annual ROI6.7%
Annual ROIN/A
Annual ROI9.8%
Annual ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$314,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
20 Year Net ROI$366,000
20 Year Net ROIN/A
Total 4 Year Cost$118,000
Total 4 Year CostN/A
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$27,600
Grant Money Received22%
128.0%8.1%11.3%11.4%$312,000$312,000$350,000$350,000$84,400$83,80072%4$29,00023%
12University of Iowa(In-State)
Annual ROI8.0%
Annual ROI8.1%
Annual ROI11.3%
Annual ROI11.4%
20 Year Net ROI$312,000
20 Year Net ROI$312,000
20 Year Net ROI$350,000
20 Year Net ROI$350,000
Total 4 Year Cost$84,400
Total 4 Year Cost$83,800
Grad Rate72%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$29,000
Grant Money Received23%
137.3%7.4%10.4%10.5%$309,000$311,000$353,000$355,000$100,000$99,00067%4$25,90026%
13Arizona State University-Tempe(In-State)
Annual ROI7.3%
Annual ROI7.4%
Annual ROI10.4%
Annual ROI10.5%
20 Year Net ROI$309,000
20 Year Net ROI$311,000
20 Year Net ROI$353,000
20 Year Net ROI$355,000
Total 4 Year Cost$100,000
Total 4 Year Cost$99,000
Grad Rate67%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$25,900
Grant Money Received26%
147.0%7.0%10.0%10.0%$301,000$301,000$345,000$345,000$104,000$104,00081%4$21,70024%
14The University of Texas at Austin(In-State)
Annual ROI7.0%
Annual ROI7.0%
Annual ROI10.0%
Annual ROI10.0%
20 Year Net ROI$301,000
20 Year Net ROI$301,000
20 Year Net ROI$345,000
20 Year Net ROI$345,000
Total 4 Year Cost$104,000
Total 4 Year Cost$104,000
Grad Rate81%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$21,700
Grant Money Received24%
155.1%5.1%5.9%5.9%$290,000$290,000$316,000$315,000$172,000$172,00085%4$30,30012%
15University of Wisconsin-Madison(Out-of-State)
Annual ROI5.1%
Annual ROI5.1%
Annual ROI5.9%
Annual ROI5.9%
20 Year Net ROI$290,000
20 Year Net ROI$290,000
20 Year Net ROI$316,000
20 Year Net ROI$315,000
Total 4 Year Cost$172,000
Total 4 Year Cost$172,000
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4
Loan Amt$30,300
Grant Money Received12%

* N/A indicates school does not have an on campus living option.

Some very well-known colleges and universities are rightly considered the best schools at which to study philosophy and religion, including Harvard University, Boston College, Yale University, Duke University and Princeton University. If you’re considering one of these schools, use our College ROI report to make sure you’re not raiding the collection plate for rent money after you graduate.


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