The next academic year will soon start and students are actively seeking colleges they can fit into. Some are checking out the cost of tuition, location, cost of living in a certain location, and a host of other factors to decide if a college fits into their plan. This article discusses colleges in Ohio, their requirements, cost of tuition, financial aid, courses, and placement. 

We have done all the research to find the 10 best colleges in the state. 

2024’s Best Colleges in Ohio

  1. Ohio State University
  2. Kenyon College
  3. Oberlin College
  4. Denison University
  5. Cedarville University
  6. Case Western Reserve University
  7. The College of Wooster
  8. Ohio Northern University
  9. Franciscan University of Steubenville
  10. Miami University-Oxford

Ohio State University

Ohio State University 1
Ohio State University

OSU is a public research university in Columbus that was founded in 1870. It is known as a Public Ivy institution and it is the principal school in the Ohio University System. It is the sole school in North America that offers welding engineering as an undergraduate degree. It has one of the highest numbers of Fulbright Scholars because OSU students are well-rounded academically. It has over 1000 student organizations and clubs, including over 60 sororities and fraternities. 

OSU ranks 53rd in National Universities and is one of the best colleges in Ohio. it ranks 25th in most innovative schools, 17th in top public schools, and 27th in best colleges for veterans. It comes 44th in best undergraduate teaching and 160th in best value schools. 

It has a 54% acceptance rate and an 83% graduation rate. OSU is currently test-optional because of the effects of the coronavirus. Students can decide whether or not to submit their test scores. 

In-state students pay $11,517 while out-of-state students pay $33,501 for tuition and fees. OSU students can apply for scholarships, loans, work-study, and grants if they are eligible. 

In 2019, 98.5% of optometry graduates in OSU were gainfully employed within a year of graduating. 

Here are some courses OSU offers:

  • Actuarial Science 
  • Biology 
  • Culinary Science 
  • Dental Hygiene 
  • Economics 
  • Finance
  • Health Promotion, Nutrition, and Exercise Science 
  • Insurance 
  • Journalism 
  • Linguistics 
  • Molecular Genetics 
  • Natural Resource Management 
  • Operational Management 
  • Philosophy 
  • Real Estate and Urban Analysis 
  • Spanish 
  • Theatre 

Kenyon College

Kenyon College
Kenyon College

Kenyon College is a private institution with liberal arts at its core. It is one of the top colleges in Ohio and the oldest private college in the state. It was founded in 1824 and now has 1,708 undergraduate students. Faculty and staff members are highly skilled in their various areas and are more than willing to help students become better. There are numerous recreational activities for students on campus to keep their bodies and minds fit. 

Kenyon ranks 11th in best undergraduate programs, 28th in national liberal arts colleges, and 58th in best value schools. 

Kenyon College has a 34% acceptance rate and a 90% graduation rate. Students who wish to submit standardized test results are free to do so but it is not compulsory. Kenyon has a test-optional policy for Fall 2022. 

All students are expected to pay $61,100 for tuition and fees per year except they are awarded financial aid. 70% of first-year students receive some form of financial aid but grants and scholarships are the most common. This aid is about $40,068. 

These are a few courses from the list of courses Kenyon has to offer: 

  • Anthropology 
  • Biology 
  • Drama 
  • French 
  • International Studies 
  • Mathematics and Statistics 
  • Neuroscience 
  • Political Science 
  • Religious Studies 
  • Studio Art
  • Women’s and Gender Studies 

Oberlin College

Oberlin College
Oberlin College

Oberlin College is a private college that focuses on liberal arts. It is also a music conservatory in the state of Ohio. Oberlin encourages students to explore their creative side, blend theory and practice to bring out the best graduates. Enrolled students study using a rigorous curriculum and in well-equipped faculties that are designed to bring forth academic and artistic excellence.

Oberlin ranks 36th in national liberal arts colleges, 9th in most innovative schools, 21st in learning communities, and 19th in best undergraduate teaching. It ranks 80th in best value schools and 36th in first-year experiences. 

It has a 36% acceptance rate and an 85% graduation rate. Oberlin has adopted the test-optional way. Students are not required to submit test scores but may do so if they wish. 

Students have to $58,504 for tuition and fees annually. The average amount of grant awards or need-based scholarships is $40,964 and 55% of full-time Oberlin students receive this. 

Graduates had an average salary of $40,800 annually according to data from 2018. 

These are some majors available at Oberlin:

  • Archaeological Studies 
  • Biochemistry 
  • Cinema Studies 
  • Dance 
  • Environmental Studies 
  • Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies 
  • History 
  • Law and Society 
  • Musical Studies 
  • Neuroscience 
  • Politics 
  • Russian and East European Studies 
  • Spanish 
  • Theatre 

Denison University

Denison University
Denison University

Denison University is one of the top-ranked colleges in Ohio and for good reason. It is a private liberal arts college that was founded in 1831. Students can commute on foot to their destinations because of how close-knit the campus is. Living on campus is compulsory except they are over 25 years old, married, or are parents. Denison has more than 150 clubs and organizations and over 75% of students play a sport. Denison offers study abroad programs and career exploration to help students decide what programs fit into their plans. 

Denison ranks 1579 in the world, 44th in national liberal arts colleges, and 12 in most innovative schools. It is the 30th in best undergraduate teaching and 70th in best value schools. 

Denison has a 29% acceptance rate and an 82% graduation rate. It is a test-optional college however, submitted test scores will be super scored. Students can submit scores themselves, through their school or a testing agency.

Students pay $56,680 for tuition and fees for a year. 99% of students with financial needs received financial aid from Denison University. Scholarships range from $5,000 to the complete cost of tuition and first-year students can receive merit-based scholarships. 

Denison graduates have an average salary of $48,800 every year. 

Majors include: 

  • Art History and Visual Culture 
  • Black Studies 
  • Communication 
  • Data Analytics 
  • Educational Studies 
  • French 
  • Global Health 
  • International Studies 
  • Japanese 
  • Music 
  • Organizational Studies 
  • Politics and Public Affairs 
  • Religion 
  • Spanish 
  • Theatre 
  • Writing Program 

Cedarville University

Cedarville University
Cedarville University

Cedarville is a Baptist university that was founded in 1887. Cedarville seeks to educate students with the necessary theoretical and practical knowledge to make a difference in the lives of others. Enrolled students learn how to treat one another in the love of Christ and to spread this love to the ends of the earth when they graduate. 

It is one of the top-rated colleges in Ohio and ranks 21st in regional Midwest universities. Cedarville ranks 66th in best value schools, 14th in best colleges for veterans, and 46th in best undergraduate engineering programs. 

Cedarville has a 79% acceptance rate and a 73% graduation rate. It adopted a test-optional policy in 2022 which will run till 2022. 

Tuition and fees cost $32,564 for each Cedarville student annually. Additionally, Cedarville meets 29% of the financial needs of its students. Within a certain year, 75% of Cedarville students received need-based financial aid. All freshmen currently receive scholarships with an average of $17,950. 

Graduates have an average salary of $41,300 annually. 

These are some majors: 

  • Allied Health 
  • Biblical Studies 
  • Computer Science 
  • Forensic Science 
  • Global Business 
  • Information Technology Management 
  • Liberal Arts 
  • Mathematics 
  • Molecular Biology 
  • Physics 
  • Sport Business Management 
  • Theatre 

Case Western Reserve University

Case Western Reserve University
Case Western Reserve University

CWRU is a private university that was founded in 1892. It has over 100 research and academic hubs on the university campus and 6 libraries with thousands of books. There are numerous educational opportunities and events like Unity Banquet that cement diversity, inclusion, and equal opportunity. CWRU is the best college in Ohio and it offers quality education and rigorous training for all enrolled students.

It ranks 42nd in national universities, 58th in most innovative schools, and 49th in best value schools. CWRU ranks among the best colleges in Cleveland and 47th in best undergraduate engineering programs. 

It has a 27% acceptance rate and an 82% graduation rate. CWRU is currently test-optional and will stay that easy till 2023. There are no exemptions to this policy. 

Students have to pay $52,948 annually for tuition and fees. CWRU met up to 95% of the needs of its students. Over 80% of students receive some form of need-based financial aid. CWRU awarded more than $110,000 in 2020 as institutional aid. 

Graduates have an average salary of $74,600 per year. 

These are some courses:

  • Aerospace Engineering 
  • Business Management 
  • Chinese
  • Dance 
  • Environmental Geology 
  • French 
  • History and Philosophy of Science 
  • Management 
  • Nutrition 
  • Origin Sciences 
  • Philosophy 
  • Religious Studies 
  • Spanish 
  • World Literature 

The College of Wooster

The College of Wooster
The College of Wooster

The College of Wooster is a private college that focuses on the liberal arts. It was founded in 1866 and currently has 1947 enrolled undergraduates. It is renowned for emphasizing undergraduate research with the guidance of mentors. Wooster has student organizations and clubs to build friendships and engage in other cultures. The wellness center attends to student’s physical and mental health needs. 

Wooster ranks 69th in national liberal arts colleges, 42nd in most innovative schools, 14th in undergraduate research/creative subjects, and 75th in best value schools. It is 63rd in first-year experiences, 16th in best undergraduate teaching, and one of the great colleges in Ohio. 

Wooster has a 55% acceptance rate and a 75% graduation rate. Wooster has a test-optional policy and it lest students provide the material that shows them at their strongest. However, those who wish to submit test scores can do so. 

Students have to pay $54,000 for fees and tuition except they are eligible for financial aid. 85% of Wooster students receive financial assistance in some form. Wooster offers $1 million for work-study opportunities, $7 million in loans, and there are other financial aid options students can apply for. 

Graduates from the College of Wooster earn an average salary of $46,300 annually. 

Some majors include:

  • Archaeology 
  • Communication Sciences and Disorders 
  • East Asian Studies 
  • Global Media and Digital Studies 
  • Music 
  • Political Science 
  • Russian Studies 
  • Statistical and Data Sciences 
  • Theatre and Dance 
  • Urban Studies 
  • Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies 

Ohio Northern University

Ohio Northern University
Ohio Northern University

Ohio Northern University is a private institution that was founded in 1871. It is a small university that goes out of its way to create a huge impact in the lives of its students and the community. It has 5 colleges, 2,814 students and the average class size consists of 18 students. Being a Christian university, it has embraced church-related values geared towards academic, spiritual, and moral excellence. 

ONU ranks in the top 10 Ohio schools ranking. It is 3rd in regional colleges Midwest, 39th in top performers on social mobility and 4th in best value schools. 

ONU has a 70% acceptance rate and a 77% graduation rate. It has a test-optional policy for Fall 2021 and Fall 2022. However, students can submit if they feel their test scores will affect their admission. 

Students pay $34,440 for tuition and fees annually. 99.6% of ONU students receive some form of financial aid. ONU awards $53.8 million annually for grants and scholarships. The average amount of financial aid ONU awards is $25,000

Graduates have an average salary of 63,500 per year. ONU has a 95% of graduate school and job placement. 

These are some majors: 

  • Accounting 
  • Civil Engineering 
  • Data Analytics 
  • Environmental and Field Biology 
  • Forensic Biology 
  • Mathematics 
  • Nursing 
  • Political Science 
  • Social Studies 
  • Technical Education
  • Writing and Multimedia Studies 

Franciscan University of Steubenville

Franciscan University of Steubenville
Franciscan University of Steubenville

The Franciscan University of Steubenville is a private university that is owned by the catholic church and was founded in 1946. Its system is rooted in Catholic faith values and a rigorous educational system to train students in maturity, wisdom, and faith. Franciscan helps students find their purpose on how to live their lives, what programs to study, and to build a Christ-centered life. FSU is particular about campus health and safety. It also has non-discriminatory policies to help students live in harmony. 

It ranks 15th in regional universities Midwest, 10th in best value schools, and 9th in best colleges for veterans. 

It has a 77% acceptance rate and a 76% graduation rate. FSU is test-optional for Fall and Spring of 2022. Students who can not submit test scores should submit a short essay on the Mission of Franciscan University. 

Students pay $28,880 for tuition and fees annually. Financial aid is in the form of scholarships, grants, and loans. Students can apply for these and they will be considered if they meet the criteria. 

Graduates earn an average salary of $37,700 annually. 

Some majors are: 

  • Accounting 
  • Catechetics and Evangelization 
  • Education 
  • Humanities and Catholic Culture 
  • International Business 
  • Marketing 
  • Occupational Therapy Program 
  • Philosophy 
  • Sacred music 
  • Theatre 
  • Theology 

Miami University-Oxford

Miami University Oxford
Miami University-Oxford

Miami is a public university that is among the best public universities in Ohio rankings. It was established in 1809 and is America’s 2nd oldest public university. It has campuses in Hamilton, West Chester, Middletown, and Luxembourg. Since 2008, Miami has reduced its carbon footprint by 44% and it offers a healthy learning environment for students. 

It is one of the good colleges in Ohio and ranks 103rd in national universities. It is the 25th in best undergraduate teaching, 170th in best value schools, and 68th in best colleges for veterans. It is 46th in top public schools and 373rd in top performers on social mobility. 

Miami has an 80% acceptance rate and a 78% graduation rate. Miami will be test-optional till Spring 2023. Domestic freshman students are not required to submit their standardized test scores to be eligible for admission or scholarships. 

Ohio residents pay $15,330 while out-of-state residents pay $34,727 for tuition and fees. Miami offers gift aid financial aid which includes grants and scholarship awards. It also offers self-help financial aid which are educational loans and work-study. 

Graduates have an average salary of $47,100 annually. By Fall 2018, about 98% of graduates furthered their education or got a job. 

Here are some available courses:

  • Architecture 
  • Biological Physics 
  • Critical Race and Ethnic Studies 
  • Diplomacy and Global Politics 
  • Economics 
  • German 
  • Kinesiology 
  • Medical Laboratory Science 
  • Nursing 
  • Public Health 
  • Robotics Engineering 
  • Supply Chain and Operations Management 
  • Urban and Regional Planning 
  • Zoology 

Why Study in Ohio?

Students who choose colleges in Ohio especially these top 10 best colleges are rarely ever disappointed. Colleges in OH have a long list of academic programs to choose from. Ohio has a low cost of living, commuting is easy and there is so much to see. Students can save money to visit neighboring states and get a feel of the environment before starting their educational programs. Furthermore, Ohio has a moderate climate which makes it suitable for living all year round. 


Ohio has excellent 4-year colleges and universities that are academically grounded and renowned for training students into professionals. The best universities in Ohio have rigorous programs, hundreds of recreational activities, and annual events to keep students active. These colleges have strong value systems and working towards creating a more diverse and inclusive community with equal opportunities for all students. 


Helen Vlasova
Helen is the co-founder of admissionsly.com, a career guidance website for students and young professionals. She has a degree in English from the University of Michigan. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, reading, and traveling.

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