After a year focusing on the value of college education, UT enters 2013 with more recognition.
UT has been named a top value among public universities by wealth management magazine Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. In its 2013 rankings, the University is 27th nationally among colleges touted for their combination of value and world-class education.
Last year, UT was ranked 24. The Kiplinger’s listing caps off a year in which the University received a string of high-profile rankings. A recent study commissioned by the nonpartisan Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education also highlighted the value and innovative education at UT and Texas A&M University. Texas A&M ranked 18th on the Kiplinger’s list. The University of Texas at Dallas ranked 60th.
“We’re pleased that Kiplinger has joined many other publications in recognizing The University of Texas at Austin as one of the nation’s best values in higher education,” said UT president Bill Powers. “With our internationally recognized faculty, our relatively low tuition, and the highest public university graduation rate in the state, we continue to offer outstanding educational opportunities at an affordable price.”
The formula used to determine value includes 45 percent for cost factors like tuition, financial aid, and student debt, as well as 55 percent for quality factors, including competitiveness, academic support, and graduation rates. UT emphasized graduation rates in 2012, including a commitment to raising the four-year rate to 70 percent, up from its current rate of just over 50 percent.
The special report published alongside the rankings paints a bleak picture for public university funding, noting continued cuts in state appropriations, causing the cost of college to rise more than four percent last year and outpacing inflation and family income. In the 2011 Texas Legislature, lawmakers made numerous cuts to higher education, including $180 million in formula funding and over $150 million in financial aid. The 2013 legislative session begins on January 8.
The East Mall fountain and UT Tower. Photo courtesy Frank Jaquier via Flickr Creative Commons.
This article originally appeared on The Alcalde.