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Murray State University is a mid-sized campus that educates over 8,000 undergraduate students and approximately 1,500 graduate students on its Kentucky campus. The public university finds its home in the town of Murray, which has a population of around 17,000. Given the ample size of the campus, students are not spared any resources. In fact, they can choose from a list of 145 majors and minors in fields such as advertising, economics, business, agriculture, STEM, and the humanities. Murray State also offers online degree programs for undergraduate students, master's degrees, certificate programs, and doctoral programs, among other online, academic options.

Overview of Murray State University

During their downtime, Murray State students enjoy the campus' recreation and wellness opportunities. In the Wellness Center, students can play basketball, racquetball, jog on the indoor track, as well as make use of cardio machines and weight training equipment. The center also functions as a lounge area with a pool table, ping-pong, couches, and televisions.

Murray State students also enjoy Fall intramural sporting leagues such as disc golf, table tennis, E-Sports, and cornhole. There are also one-day tournaments where students engage in friendly competition without an ongoing time commitment.

General Information

School Type Public
Campus Setting Town: Remote
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 15:1
Graduation Rate 55%
Year Founded 1922

Student Enrollment

Total Students9,556


Undergraduate Student

Male 3,174
Female 4,965

Graduate Student

Male 553
Female 864

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Male 2,942
Female 5,385


Male 2,412
Female 4,470

Acceptance Rate82%

Male 82%
Female 83%

Enrollment 1,434

Male 535
Female 899
Application Fee $40
High School GPA Required
High School Rank Recommended
High School Transcripts Required
College Prep Courses Required
Recommendations NA
SAT/ACT Required
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Required
Application Deadline December 1
Common Application Accepted No

Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

A college diploma represents many things and cost is surely one. Murray State University is a public institution that is able to deliver top-notch academics while containing costs. Considering MSU's gross costs, the institution is competitive with most other public institutions of higher learning. That is, Kentucky residents pay around $10,000 for a year's worth of tuition, books, and supplies. Their out-of-state peers pay around $26,000, which is still competitive with private colleges and universities.

The final tally of MSU's gross costs includes room and board and Kentucky residents see a total price tag of around $25,000. Out-of-state students have a gross cost of around $40,000. Keep in mind that these costs don't factor in financial aid, which yields a lower net price for everyone.

Indeed, the average net price for a year at Murray State University is a mere $12,000, including room and board. At the lower end of the average, lower income families see an average net cost of $9,000. At the top end, families with income over $110,000 pay a mere $15,000.

Average net price 2018-2019
Net Price $11,512
Average Total Aid $10,450
Students Receiving Financial Aid 99%
Room & Board $9,466

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $9,168
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $24,792
  • Books and Supplies - $1,260
  • Room & Board - $9,466
  • Other - $3,800


There are many reasons to attend Murray State. Some are excited about the athletics and others like the Western Kentucky location. However, the chief reason students attend Murray State University is the academics. Education researchers find that their reasoning is sound in that the statistics reflect a strong academic tradition. For starters, Murray State reports strong retention numbers.

Retention is a metric that reflects how many first-time, full-time students return to campus for a second year. Murray State reports that its first-year students return to campus at a rate of 79%, which is hard to beat in any public university. The numbers remain strong through graduation. At least 55% of Murray State University's students cross the stage with a bachelor's degree. On top of this, MSU shows that 28% of student enroll in other institutions to complete their degrees. Thus, MSU is a springboard to a bachelor's degree, no matter where that diploma is minted.

These strong academic numbers can surely be attributed to MSU's student-to-faculty ratio of 15:1. For a larger public university, Murray State's class sizes are small enough to support all students. Such a nurturing environment gives students a foundation that will support them for a lifetime.

Student Population Total

Student Population 9,556

Evening Classes : Yes
Online Learning : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

Health Professions and Related Programs 269 Total Graduates / 17%
Veterinary/Animal Health Technology/Technician and Veterinary Assistant 109 Graduates
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 101 Graduates
Audiology/Audiologist and Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist 43 Graduates
Community Health and Preventive Medicine 14 Graduates
All Business Majors 182 Total Graduates / 12%
Business/Commerce, General 64 Graduates
Accounting 34 Graduates
Finance, General 33 Graduates
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 27 Graduates
All Engineering Majors 159 Total Graduates / 10%
Occupational Safety and Health Technology/Technician 73 Graduates
Civil Engineering Technology/Technician 45 Graduates
Electromechanical Technology/Electromechanical Engineering Technology 18 Graduates
CAD/CADD Drafting and/or Design Technology/Technician 13 Graduates
All Education Majors 130 Total Graduates / 8%
Elementary Education and Teaching 63 Graduates
Special Education and Teaching, General 27 Graduates
Junior High/Intermediate/Middle School Education and Teaching 23 Graduates
Early Childhood Education and Teaching 11 Graduates
Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences 112 Total Graduates / 7%
Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences, Other 112 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 46%

Outcome & Salary

Murray State University students and their families are eager to calculate a possible return on their educational investment. While education has values that surpass finances, one objective measure of educational value is starting salary. In this area, MSU shines. Their graduates begin their working lives with strong earnings. Those who graduate from the quality control and safety technologies bachelor's degree program begin their careers with reported median earnings of $67,000. At the lower end, MSU students who graduate with bachelor's degrees in information science earn around $50,000 in their first year of work.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $45,900
College Grads Average Salary $61,974
College Grads Mid Career Salary $80,900
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $619,740
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $1,428,740
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $46,048
10 Year Projected ROI $573,692
20 Year Projected ROI $1,382,692
No College Education Salary Comparison
National Average Salary $38,792
10 Year Projected Income $387,920
20 Year Projected Income $775,840

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