Best Value Colleges in Montana

Montana is not only one of the most beautiful states in the country, it's home to some surprisingly good college values.

The College ROI Report for Montana helps students and their parents determine which Montana colleges and universities offer the highest return on investment for their educational dollars.  Read More

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1Montana Tech of The University of Montana(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$628,000
Total 4 Year Cost$73,900
Grad Rate44%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$22,400
2Montana Tech of The University of Montana(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$580,000
Total 4 Year Cost$122,000
Grad Rate44%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$22,400
3Montana State University - Main Campus(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$437,000
Total 4 Year Cost$76,900
Grad Rate50%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$27,000
4Montana State University - Main Campus(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$382,000
Total 4 Year Cost$132,000
Grad Rate50%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$27,000
5Montana State University - Billings Campus(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$148,000
Total 4 Year Cost$69,700
Grad Rate24%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$21,200
6University of Montana(In-State)
20 Year Net ROI$145,000
Total 4 Year Cost$73,800
Grad Rate48%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$24,500
7Carroll College - Helena, MT(Private)
20 Year Net ROI$123,000
Total 4 Year Cost$159,000
Grad Rate63%
Time to Graduate4 Years
Loan Amt$32,700
8Montana State University - Billings Campus(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$104,000
Total 4 Year Cost$114,000
Grad Rate24%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$21,200
9University of Montana(Out-of-State)
20 Year Net ROI$83,800
Total 4 Year Cost$135,000
Grad Rate48%
Time to Graduate5 Years
Loan Amt$24,500

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

Students in Big Sky Country, as the state is affectionately nicknamed, enjoy some of the most amazing outdoor adventure opportunities in the country, including access to Yellowstone National Park in the southern part of the state. More importantly, they can take their pick from several schools that appear in the upper rankings in terms of 20 Year Net ROI. Whatever attracts you to the Treasure State, consider using PayScale's data to investigate the best value colleges in Montana before you apply.

As the top school in our Montana College ROI Report rankings, Montana Tech of the University of Montana is a great option for students who want to get the most out of their educational investments. Ranked 81st nationally, the school boasts a 20 Year Net ROI of $628,000; with financial aid, that figure increases to $651,000. Located in Butte, Montana Tech is comprised of four colleges and schools. The School of Mines and Engineering's most popular programs are in industrial hygiene and engineering. As evidenced by its high job placement rating, Montana Tech offers a college return on investment Montana students use to build strong, successful careers. Enrollment hovers around 2,700 students, making it a small yet effective place to earn a degree.

Located in Bozeman, which is widely considered to be the most unique and eclectic city in Big Sky Country, Montana State University is ranked 316th nationally in terms of 20 Year Net ROI. The cost of an education from this school averages $76,900, and MSU alumni report a median return of investment of $437,000 in the 20 years following graduation. With financial aid, that number increases to $459,000. Offering baccalaureate degrees in 51 fields, master's degrees in 41 and doctoral degrees in 18, MSU is easily one of the best value colleges Montana students graduate from. Notable alumni include numerous Rhodes scholars, several U.S. reps and a few governors.

If you're interested in pursuing a career in medicine, you'd be well-advised to consider Carroll College in Helena, Montana. This private Catholic liberal arts school is known for affording alumni with a great rate of acceptance to medical school. The cost of an education from Carroll College averages $159,000. With a 20 Year Net ROI of $123,000 without financial aid and $182,000 with it, the school offers a value of college education Montana students and their families appreciate. As a student, you can take your pick from majors in engineering, education, nursing, theology, computer science and many others, and a variety of pre-professional programs are available as well.