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The University of Iowa is a large, public university founded in 1847. It’s located in Iowa City, Iowa, which is roughly halfway between Des Moines and Chicago, Illinois. The university is consistently rated one of the best public research universities, as well as Iowa City topping the best college town lists and best places to live year after year with help of its picturesque river setting and the endless on and off-campus events, entertainment, and cultural activities.

Overview of University of Iowa

Of the more than 31,000-strong student body, roughly 75% are undergraduates. Students can take advantage of the many prestigious, nationally rated, and accredited academic programs in the country. In fact, the University of Iowa has one of the most renowned academic medical centers nationwide, as well as being a global leader in writing programs. This university also excels in even more academic realms including arts, sciences, business, and professional programs. In total, there are more than 200 distinct areas of study and over 100 graduate, doctoral, and professional programs.

As part of the University of Iowa’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, students can take advantage of over 500 academic, personal, and professional clubs and organizations. Students are also able to participate in intramurals and 24 competitive collegiate sports at the NCAA Division I level and the school is home to many of the nation’s firsts, including the first official endorsement of an LGBT student association in 1970.

General Information

All Awards Image, Best Ranked Major Public
School Type Public
Campus Setting City: Small
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 16:1
Graduation Rate 72%
Year Founded 1847

Student Enrollment

Total Students31,240


Undergraduate Student

Male 10,802
Female 12,680

Graduate Student

Male 3,569
Female 4,189

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Male 11,595
Female 14,333


Male 9,276
Female 12,183

Acceptance Rate83%

Male 80%
Female 85%

Enrollment 4,950

Male 2,140
Female 2,810
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 May 1
Common Application Accepted Yes

Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

As with most state public universities, in-state students can expect to pay significantly less than out-of-state students. Iowa residents have tuition rates of about $9,600 each year, whereas, non-residents pay roughly three times in-state rates, around $31,600. Students should also consider budgeting for an additional $14,000 or so to pay for standard living expenses, books and supplies, and other classroom fees and costs.

The leadership at the University of Iowa works diligently to ensure this higher education is attainable for any student with the drive and motivation to gain acceptance into a program. As such, students will have access to a huge variety of scholarships and grants to help make the elite University of Iowa degree programs more affordable. Student loans, work programs, and paid internships are also available. All of these financial incentive opportunities help to lower the average net price to $17,008; that is the cost the student must still pay after all financial aid has been applied.

Average net price 2018-2019
Net Price $17,008
Average Total Aid $9,754
Students Receiving Financial Aid 85%
Room & Board $11,400

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $9,606
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $31,569
  • Books and Supplies - $950
  • Room & Board - $11,400
  • Other - $2,850


The academics at the University of Iowa are exceptional by all standards. Students can select from over 200 programs and more than 100 advanced degrees and professional areas of study through 12 academic colleges. The colleges are as diverse as the student population and include medicine, dentistry, education, engineering, law, liberal arts and sciences, nursing, pharmacy, public health, business, and others. You can select from a huge number of specialized majors, minors, and certificates.

Various programs are some of the most popular and in-demand such as business, economics, management, engineering, computing, health sciences, language, culture, society, natural sciences, robotics, pre-professional programs, math and quantitative sciences, social sciences, policy, writing, communications, visual and performing arts, and many more. Students can also choose between online, hybrid, and on-campus educational platforms as well as combined degree programs.

The graduation rates at the University of Iowa are well above the national averages, sitting at 55% for four-years and 72% at six years, with an outstanding 86% retention rate. These impressive figures are likely at least partially attributed to the 15 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio, the encouragement of a positive education-to-life balance, and the many academic support systems and resources in place for all students.

Student Population Total

Student Population 31,240

Evening Classes : No
Online Learning : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

All Business Majors 1,098 Total Graduates / 21%
Finance, General 364 Graduates
Organizational leadership 187 Graduates
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 159 Graduates
Accounting 140 Graduates
Parks, Recreation, Leisure, and Fitness Studies 665 Total Graduates / 13%
Kinesiology and Exercise Science 497 Graduates
Sport and Fitness Administration/Management 112 Graduates
Parks, Recreation and Leisure Studies 51 Graduates
Sports Studies 5 Graduates
All Engineering Majors 451 Total Graduates / 9%
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering 129 Graduates
Mechanical Engineering 100 Graduates
Civil Engineering, General 57 Graduates
Electrical and Electronics Engineering 53 Graduates
All Social Sciences Majors 393 Total Graduates / 7%
Economics, General 145 Graduates
Political Science and Government, General 90 Graduates
Criminology 41 Graduates
Sociology 39 Graduates
Health Professions and Related Programs 349 Total Graduates / 7%
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 224 Graduates
Audiology/Audiologist and Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist 63 Graduates
Radiologic Technology/Science - Radiographer 40 Graduates
Athletic Training/Trainer 11 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 44%

Outcome & Salary

Graduates from the University of Iowa easily find jobs with reputable employers and gain entrance to graduate programs at a rate of 95% with the help of a highly regarded academic reputation and the Pomerantz Career Center. Within the career center, students have access to a variety of career events and career fairs, both in-person and online. Students can also take advantage of career peer advising, research sources for majors and careers, interview preparations, assessments, resume improvements, salary negotiation, networking and internships, and also micro-internships.

Each year, over 100 Fortune 500 companies hire University of Iowa graduates. Employers flock to the career center to secure employees. The expansive alumni network also takes advantage of pursuing recent graduates, as well as enrolling in leadership, career advancement, and professional development programs.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $56,400
College Grads Average Salary $69,076
College Grads Mid Career Salary $108,100
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $690,760
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $1,771,760
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $68,032
10 Year Projected ROI $622,728
20 Year Projected ROI $1,703,728
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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