Top 100 Best Affordable Computer Science Programs

Best Most Affordable Computer Science Programs

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So, you’ve decided you want to earn a degree in computer science. With this degree, not only will you be entering a growing, valuable field, but you can also expect to receive a healthy paycheck to match. With the world going through continuous technological development, you’ll entering a high-demand discipline with plenty of room to evolve and improve. 

If you're looking for low-cost computer science programs, you’ve come to the right place. In this roundup, we’ll list and introduce the 100 most affordable computer science programs in the U.S. so you can pick the right course for you.

Why Earn a Degree in Computer Science?


These days, it's safe to say almost every industry uses technology to conduct or streamline their business. This means they must hire and retain educated individuals who know how to design websites, develop software, and manage databases. These somewhat recent changes to the industry have caused an upsurge in hiring computer scientists and a higher number of college students planning to obtain degrees in that field.

Students and professionals who major in computer science have various high-paying fields at their feet such as web development, network systems administration, information technology, and software engineering. Due to this sudden demand and peak in interest, many businesses are left scrambling to fill positions. In 2019, over 600,000 jobs relating to computer science needed filling, but less than 72,000 graduates in that field were able to fill them.

Are Computer Science Degrees in High Demand?


According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the computer and information technology field is expected to grow by 13% between 2016 and 2026—a faster rate than the average growth rate of all other occupations. By 2026, another 557,100 jobs are expected to be added within the field.

Since 2019, nearly 32,700 people have filled computer science jobs. According to BLS, the projected percentage increase in employment from 2019 to 2029 is 15%. Additional data from NACE’s Winter 2021 Salary Survey show the current increasing value of computer sciences majors in the job market. Many believe this to be a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has emphasized a greater importance of the “virtual world” in which people live, learn, and work.

Best Most Affordable Computer Science Rankings


1

Berea College

Various national and international high-education evaluators continually position Berea College as the number one for academic affordability, diversity, quality, low debt, sustainability, and many other vital things that matter to students. With a smaller total enrollment of 1,688, Berea College gifts each student a “Tuition Promise Scholarship” that states NO Berea student ever pays tuition.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $45,092
    • Out-of-state: $45,092
  • Net Price: $1,964
  • Retention Rate: 84%
  • Total Enrollment: 1,688
  • Undergrad Students: 1,688
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 68%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 26
2

Elizabeth City State University

As a part of The University of North Carolina, students at Elizabeth City State University have innovative research opportunities at their disposal. Teachers and professors seek to extend student’s learning beyond classrooms and textbooks. ECSU offers baccalaureate, professional, and master's degrees for a diverse student body. With a retention rate of 70%, the student population is around 1,769, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 16 to 1.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,260
    • Out-of-state: $7,260
  • Net Price: $2,465
  • Retention Rate: 70%
  • Total Enrollment: 1,769
  • Undergrad Students: 1,692
  • Graduate Students: 77
  • Graduation Rate: 39%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 7
3

CUNY Lehman College

Combining low-cost tuition, student support, and a beautifully landscaped campus with state-of-the-art facilities, CUNY Lehman College offers over 50 majors and certificates, each with professional, high-quality academic programs. Total enrollment at CUNY Lehman College is 15,143, with 13,002 undergraduates. The student-to-faculty ratio is 16 to 1, with over 80 subject diplomas awarded. The college's retention rate is 83%, with a graduation percentage of 53%.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,410
    • Out-of-state:$15,360
  • Net Price: $2,709
  • Retention Rate: 83%
  • Total Enrollment: 15,143
  • Undergrad Students: 13,002
  • Graduate Students: 2,141
  • Graduation Rate: 53%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 150
4

California State University-Los Angeles

California State University of LA is one of the top public universities located right in the heart of Los Angeles. The institution focuses on service, engagement, and producing outcomes that are beneficial for all members of the public. For the upwards mobility of their students, Cal State LA ranks number one in the country. The university's main goal with their computer science programs is to prepare educated students for careers concerning computer systems design and how to apply them to real-life scenarios in science and industry. Regarding total enrollment, Cal State LA's student population is over 25,000, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 24 to 1.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $6,781
    • Out-of-state: $18,661
  • Net Price: $3,255
  • Retention Rate: 81%
  • Total Enrollment: 26,671
  • Undergrad Students: 22,797
  • Graduate Students: 3,874
  • Graduation Rate: 52%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 357
5

CUNY City College

Offering outstanding engineering, science, education, and architecture programs, CUNY City College works to prepare students for the future. Whether students choose traditional courses or up-and-coming fields like computer science, the college offers 50 master’s programs, degrees, and certifications. Over 150 subject diplomas have been awarded to students, with 22,797 undergrad students and 3,874 graduate students.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,340
    • Out-of-state: $15,290
  • Net Price: $3,397
  • Retention Rate: 84%
  • Total Enrollment: 15,816
  • Undergrad Students: 13,030
  • Graduate Students: 2,786
  • Graduation Rate: 56%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 120
6

CUNY Brooklyn College

For over nine decades, CUNY Brooklyn college has brought in a diverse range of students. Boasting a wide array of artists, academics, and professionals who are among the best in their field, the college offers something for everyone—all with an affordable tuition rate. Brooklyn college features a beautiful landscape with state-of-the-art facilities, high-tech classrooms, and studios. The school has a total student enrollment of 17,811 students—14,970 undergraduates and 2,841 graduates.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,440
    • Out-of-state: $15,390
  • Net Price: $3,805
  • Retention Rate: 80%
  • Total Enrollment: 17,811
  • Undergrad Students: 14,970
  • Graduate Students: 2,841
  • Graduation Rate: 54%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 211
7

Located right in the heart of Los Angeles, CSU Dominguez Hills serves a diverse, welcoming group of avid learners and educators who work together to better the lives of students and communities. CSUDH offers strong, relevant academic programs, dedicated faculty, a beautifully landscaped campus, and renowned student facilities. The university is especially devoted to helping students achieve high-quality education at a low cost. CSUDH has a total enrollment of 17,977 students—over 15,000 undergraduates and about 2,600 graduate students.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $6,941
    • Out-of-state: $18,821
  • Net Price: $4,594
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Total Enrollment: 17,977
  • Undergrad Students: 15,365
  • Graduate Students: 2,612
  • Graduation Rate: 44%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 163
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
8

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

With campuses located in various points throughout the Rio Grande Valley, UTRGV enhances daily life, motivates successful careers, and claims a reputation as a worldwide pioneer in higher education, biomedical research, health education, bilingual education, and growing technology that created changes for the better. UTRGV also has a great retention rate of 76%.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $8,917
    • Out-of-state: $18,733
  • Net Price: $4,654
  • Retention Rate: 76%
  • Total Enrollment: 29,113
  • Undergrad Students: 24,965
  • Graduate Students: 4,148
  • Graduation Rate: 46%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 124
9

Fayetteville State University, or FSU, is a national comprehensive, Historically Black University, which provides strong, innovative degree programs and courses that are firmly established in the liberal arts practice. The university works to promote knowledge through a combination of research, public service, teaching, and learning. The college has a great retention rate of 74%.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $5,309
    • Out-of-state: $16,917
  • Net Price: $5,587
  • Retention Rate: 74%
  • Total Enrollment: 6,551
  • Undergrad Students: 5,644
  • Graduate Students: 907
  • Graduation Rate: 34%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 21
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
10

California State University-Bakersfield

CSUB boasts over 187 acres of beautiful landscape and state-of-the-art buildings and facilities to accommodate student life, a great community, and high-quality academic programs. CSU places a big emphasis on community. Together with partners throughout Kern County and Bakersfield, the university works to improve the district’s overall education, enhance its quality of life, and support its economic development. CSU has a total enrollment of over 11,000, with 9,981 undergraduates and 1,550 graduates in a recent year.

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $7,498
    • Out-of-state: $19,378
  • Net Price: $5,771
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Total Enrollment: 11,531
  • Undergrad Students: 9,981
  • Graduate Students: 1,550
  • Graduation Rate: 43%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 60
Full Ranking Report

What Can You Do with a Computer Science Degree?


By definition, computer science is “a branch of science that deals with the theory of computation or the design of computers”. While that may sound like a mouthful, computer science is simply the study of practical and theoretical applications of computers. Whether it’s Facebook, Google, or video games, almost every new technology we enjoy today couldn’t have been created without computer science. Ideal for problem solvers, this field is perfect for anyone looking to continually learn new things, particularly about today’s rapidly changing, technology-geared world.

The field of computer science offers a wide range of job opportunities, including:

  • Software Developers
  • Database Administrators
  • Web Developers
  • Computer Hardware Engineers
  • Computer Systems Analysts
  • Computer Network Architects
  • Information Security Analysts
  • Computer and Information Systems Managers
  • Computer and Information Research Scientists
  • IT Project Managers

Beyond the more traditional opportunities within the field, another growing sector related to computer science is artificial intelligence. Computer scientists who are currently developing models that reproduce the reasoning and learning experience are focusing their attention on artificial intelligence. Additionally, cyber security is another rapidly evolving field where computer science professionals are in high demand to protect various groups—like businesses, individuals, and the government—from the growing threat of criminal activities carried out through the internet.

Computer scientists work in various environments, such as the private sector, government, business, academia, and research organizations. Due to such variety, computer science provides considerable range when it comes to finding the right position for you.