Best Value Engineering Schools

In PayScale's College ROI Report, when sorting by school type, engineering schools top the list of best values.

Engineers use science and math to solve real-life problems, and engineering graduates' skillset makes them highly sought after by many employers after graduation.  Read More

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1California Institute of Technology (Caltech)(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$973,000
Total 4 Year Cost$230,000
Grad Rate92%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$19,000
2Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$972,000
Total 4 Year Cost$232,000
Grad Rate91%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$32,200
3Harvey Mudd College(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$945,000
Total 4 Year Cost$249,000
Grad Rate90%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$24,400
4Colorado School of Mines(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$846,000
Total 4 Year Cost$118,000
Grad Rate76%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$33,400
5Georgia Institute of Technology(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$833,000
Total 4 Year Cost$91,500
Grad Rate82%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$31,700
6Kettering University(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$785,000
Total 4 Year Cost$199,000
Grad Rate57%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$41,700
7Colorado School of Mines(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$783,000
Total 4 Year Cost$181,000
Grad Rate76%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$33,400
8Stevens Institute of Technology(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$781,000
Total 4 Year Cost$239,000
Grad Rate82%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$45,800
9Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI)(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$776,000
Total 4 Year Cost$228,000
Grad Rate85%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$43,000
10Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (RHIT)(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$769,000
Total 4 Year Cost$225,000
Grad Rate72%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$45,500
11 (tie)Georgia Institute of Technology(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$756,000
Total 4 Year Cost$168,000
Grad Rate82%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$31,700
11 (tie)Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$756,000
Total 4 Year Cost$87,500
Grad Rate63%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$27,500
13South Dakota School of Mines & Technology(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$718,000
Total 4 Year Cost$85,700
Grad Rate54%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$29,200
14 (tie)New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT)(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$708,000
Total 4 Year Cost$126,000
Grad Rate59%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$31,900
14 (tie)South Dakota School of Mines & Technology(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$708,000
Total 4 Year Cost$95,700
Grad Rate54%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$29,200

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

The top engineering schools tend to be highly competitive, but earning a degree from one means you'll be in high demand and command an equally high salary. With a STEM degree or other degree from a respected engineering school, a student can go on to enjoy a successful career in many fields.

With a first-place ranking on our national 20 Year Net ROI list for 2016, the California Institute of Technology is in a league of its own. Consistently ranked among the best universities in the world for engineering, technology and the physical sciences, Caltech -- as it's more commonly known -- enjoys a 2nd-place ranking on the national 20 Year Net ROI list. Founded in 1891, the private, Pasadena-based university is split up into six academic divisions, most of which have an emphasis on science and engineering. The 20 Year Net ROI of Caltech is $973,000 without financial aid; with financial aid, it zooms up to $1,100,000. Caltech offers 24 majors, or "options," and six minors, with computer science, electrical engineering and chemical engineering being among the most popular.

One-third of all manned space flights have included graduates of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, or MIT, so it's easy to see why it's among the best engineering schools a person can select. Located in Cambridge, the private university is ranked second on the national 20 Year Net ROI list for engineering school. Indeed, its 20 Year Net ROI is $972,000 -- which skyrockets to $1,120,000 with financial aid -- easily making it among the best engineering schools return on investment you can find. Programs offered by its five schools and colleges span many fields, but the physical sciences and engineering are undoubtedly among the most popular. Since its founding in 1861, MIT has produced or been associated with more than 80 Nobel Laureates, 45 Rhodes Scholars, 52 National Medal of Science recipients and two Fields Medalists, so you would be hard-pressed to find a more prestigious engineering school offering this kind of value.

Based in Claremont, California, Harvey Mudd College is a private school with a tiny population of around 800 undergraduate students, but the school punches far above its weight when it comes to ROI. A significant percentage of its students go on to earn PhDs after earning degrees in mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, computer science and, of course, engineering. Harvey Mudd College offers Bachelor of Science degrees in a variety of science, math and engineering majors, and students can also attend classes at other schools in the Claremont Colleges consortium. Harvey Mudd alums report a median return of investment of $945,000, which increases to a staggering total of $1,060,000 when financial aid is included. Without a doubt, the school offers one of the best values in engineering schools.