2022 Top Private Universities in Iowa

Private universities frequently top the lists of the best schools in the U.S. These institutions offer rigorous academic programs for students looking for a personalized college experience.

Private universities generally cost more than their public counterparts, but students often receive the benefits of smaller class sizes, strong alumni networks, and generous financial aid opportunities.

Unlike public universities, private institutions do not differentiate between in-state and out-of-state tuition. This means students from anywhere can enroll in Iowa’s private universities without paying higher out-of-state rates.

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you can make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering transparent, inclusive, and relevant school rankings.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our ranking methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Showing 30 schools

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    Avg Tuition per YearTuition is the price you pay to attend classes. Tuition varies by school, and does not include costs associated with room and board, books, school supplies, meal plans, or transportation.

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    #1

    St Luke's College

    Sioux City, IA

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    235

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $20440

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $20440

    Located in Sioux City, Iowa, St Luke's College attracts students with their well-regarded programs. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. With academic and technical tracks, the programs help learners reach a variety of career goals. Academic programs can take as little as a few months or as many as seven years to complete, depending on the degree or certificate type and the student's enrollment status. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. The waiver makes it simpler to apply. The admissions department can help applicants determine the next steps. At the accredited institution, enrollees also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #2

    Grinnell College

    Grinnell, IA

    Graduation Rate

    89%

    Enrollment

    1,733

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $54354

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $54354

    Grinnell College, located in Grinnell, Iowa, welcomes students with 27 program options. The institution's rigorous programs rank among the best in the nation. The student-to-instructor ratio is unknown. Information on the average amount of aid students receive is unavailable. The private institution reports a 89% graduation rate. The institution's commitment to experiential learning makes graduates more competitive. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Some programs no longer require standardized tests for admission. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #3

    Divine Word College

    Epworth, IA

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    66

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $13440

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $13440

    From its campus in Epworth, Iowa, Divine Word College offers programs as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. Students complete courses and experiential learning opportunities to bolster their knowledge. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The school provides support such as tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Learners at the accredited school often fund their education with federal aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #4

    Allen College

    Waterloo, IA

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    656

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $19052

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $19052

    A private institution located in Waterloo, Iowa, Allen College offers multiple programs. The school's accredited programs prepare learners for the workforce. Learners benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Students can enroll in nationally ranked programs. The cost per credit is unknown. As an accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for federal student aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Students complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements depending on their program. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #5

    Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary

    Ankeny, IA

    Graduation Rate

    43%

    Enrollment

    362

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $17298

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17298

    Located in Iowa, Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary offers 21 academic programs. The institution's top-ranked programs offer a rigorous course of study. The average student-to-faculty ratio is unavailable. The amount of aid students receive on average is currently unknown. Students in the school's programs graduate at a rate of 43%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps students enter the workforce. The admission rate is unknown at this time. Some applicants qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Applicants can reach out to the admission department to learn more about enrolling.

    #6

    Luther College

    Decorah, IA

    Graduation Rate

    75%

    Enrollment

    1,951

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $44070

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $44070

    From its campus in Decorah, Iowa, Luther College enrolls students as a private institution. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. Students who complete a technical or academic program may enter the workforce. Data on the school's average cost per credit is unavailable. Students can fund their education with financial aid such as federal loans, scholarships, and grants. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 75%. We do not currently have data on the school's admission rate. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #7

    Drake University

    Des Moines, IA

    Graduation Rate

    81%

    Enrollment

    4,884

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $42840

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $42840

    Drake University, a private institution in Des Moines, Iowa, enrolls learners in multiple programs. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their professional goals. Students prepare for a successful career by completing degree- or certificate-specific coursework. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. A test score waiver makes it easier to enroll. Enrollees receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The institution charges a per-credit fee of 733 for its programs. Learners attending the accredited school also qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Drake University has received accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #8

    Dordt University

    Sioux Center, IA

    Graduation Rate

    75%

    Enrollment

    1,547

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $31770

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $31770

    Located in Sioux Center, Iowa, Dordt University grants degrees as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their career goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to gain relevant knowledge and skills. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit test scores. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The school supports learners with academic help and career services. The cost per credit is unknown. Learners at the accredited school can pay for their educational costs with federal student aid programs. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #9

    Shiloh University

    Kalona, IA

    Graduation Rate

    Not Provided

    Enrollment

    41

    Format

    Online

    In-State Tuition

    $5250

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $5250

    Shiloh University, located in Kalona, Iowa, enrolls students as a private institution. The college offers academic and technical programs to help learners reach their educational goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to gain relevant knowledge and skills. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. A waiver makes it easier to enroll. The school supports enrollees with tutoring and career services. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Shiloh University has been accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #10

    Northwestern College

    Orange City, IA

    Graduation Rate

    68%

    Enrollment

    1,412

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $32300

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $32300

    From its campus in Orange City, Iowa, Northwestern College awards degrees and certificates as a top school. Students take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. With academic and technical tracks, the school offers programs for students with a variety of professional goals. Depending on the program, students can spend anywhere from a few months up to as many as seven years earning their degree or certificate. Some applicants qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to apply. The admissions department provides additional resources on applying to the school. At the accredited institution, students also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. Northwestern College holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #11

    Central College

    Pella, IA

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    1,163

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $38600

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $38600

    From its Pella, Iowa campus, Central College offers 35 program options for students. Students benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. Information on the average student-to-faculty ratio is unavailable. How much aid students receive on average is currently unknown. The private institution reports a graduation rate of 67%. Real-world experience helps candidates stand out on the job market. The admission rate is unknown at this time. Some programs offer test-optional admission policies. Prospective applicants can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying.

    #12

    Emmaus Bible College

    Dubuque, IA

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    215

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $18950

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $18950

    Emmaus Bible College enrolls learners from its Dubuque, Iowa campus. Students take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The programs offer academic and technical tracks to help learners meet their career goals. Visit the program's website to find information on the typical timeline for completion. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides additional resources on applying to the school. At the accredited institution, degree-seekers also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. Emmaus Bible College holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #13

    Cornell College

    Mount Vernon, IA

    Graduation Rate

    69%

    Enrollment

    1,020

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $43976

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $43976

    A private institution, Cornell College grants degrees from its campus in Mount Vernon, Iowa. The school's academic and technical programs help learners reach a variety of professional goals. Students prepare for a successful career by completing degree- or certificate-specific coursework. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. A waiver makes it easier to enroll. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Cornell College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #14

    Mount Mercy University

    Cedar Rapids, IA

    Graduation Rate

    64%

    Enrollment

    1,807

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $33862

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $33862

    Mount Mercy University, located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, offers 79 programs for degree-seekers. The institution's rigorous programs rank among the best in the nation. The student-to-teacher ratio is unknown. The average amount of aid awarded to students is unknown. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 64%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning makes graduates more competitive. The admission rate is unknown at this time. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #15

    Loras College

    Dubuque, IA

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    1,416

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $35218

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $35218

    Loras College, located in Dubuque, Iowa, grants degrees and certificates as a private institution. Students learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Students can fund their education with financial aid such as federal loans, scholarships, and grants. Degree-seekers graduate from the school at a rate of 67%. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Prospective students can contact the admission department for more information about applying. Loras College has received accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #16

    Coe College

    Cedar Rapids, IA

    Graduation Rate

    66%

    Enrollment

    1,430

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $45580

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $45580

    Coe College, which is often listed among the best schools, operates from its main campus in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Instructors draw on their expertise in diverse fields. With academic and technical tracks, the school's programs help students meet their professional goals. Enrollees earn their degree or certificate in as little time as a few months or as much time as seven years depending on program type and enrollment status. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. These policies make it easier to apply. The admissions department can provide more information on the process. Learners at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover educational costs. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #17

    Simpson College

    Indianola, IA

    Graduation Rate

    72%

    Enrollment

    1,355

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $40666

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $40666

    From its campus in Indianola, Iowa, Simpson College awards degrees and certificates as a top school. Enrollees take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The school's academic and technical tracks help students meet diverse career goals. Depending on the degree or certificate type, enrollees can spend anywhere from a few months up to as many as seven years completing a program. Applicants may qualify for test-optional admissions. This makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides additional resources on submitting an application. Financial aid helps degree-seekers pay for their education. Simpson College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #18

    Buena Vista University

    Storm Lake, IA

    Graduation Rate

    60%

    Enrollment

    1,815

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $35194

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $35194

    From its campus in Storm Lake, Iowa, Buena Vista University grants college degrees as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their career goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares students for advancement in their field. Some programs may no longer require standardized tests for admission. Students may find it easier to apply without a test score requirement. Learners receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Learners at the accredited school qualify for federal financial aid programs such as the Pell Grant. Buena Vista University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #19

    Maharishi University of Management

    Fairfield, IA

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    1,861

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $16530

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $16530

    A private institution located in Fairfield, Iowa, Maharishi University of Management educates students through multiple programs. The school offers programs that prepare learners for the workforce. The institution's affordable programs provide a rigorous course of study. Many of the school's degrees make national rankings. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at the accredited school may qualify for federal financial aid, including the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Based on their major, students take foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #20

    Upper Iowa University

    Fayette, IA

    Graduation Rate

    48%

    Enrollment

    4,279

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $31685

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $31685

    From its campus in Fayette, Iowa, Upper Iowa University enrolls students in 89 programs. Degree-seekers benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The average student-to-faculty ratio is unavailable. Information on the average amount of aid students receive is unavailable. The school reports a graduation rate of 48%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps students enter the workforce. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Prospective students can contact the admission department for more information about applying.

    #21

    Wartburg College

    Waverly, IA

    Graduation Rate

    62%

    Enrollment

    1,505

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $43930

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $43930

    Wartburg College, a private institution in Waverly, Iowa, enrolls learners in multiple programs. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to gain relevant knowledge and skills. Many schools no longer require admissions tests such as ACT or SAT scores. Students may find it easier to apply without a test score requirement. Learners receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Learners at the accredited school qualify for federal financial aid programs such as the Pell Grant. Wartburg College holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #22

    Hamilton Technical College

    Davenport, IA

    Graduation Rate

    77%

    Enrollment

    134

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $14250

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $14250

    A private institution, Hamilton Technical College enrolls students on its campus in Davenport, Iowa. The college offers academic and technical programs to help learners reach their educational goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares students for advancement in their field. Some programs may no longer require standardized tests for admission. Test-optional policies make it easier to apply. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Learners attending the accredited school also qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Hamilton Technical College holds accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges.

    #23

    Morningside College

    Sioux City, IA

    Graduation Rate

    62%

    Enrollment

    2,599

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $32720

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $32720

    From its campus in Iowa, Morningside College enrolls students in 66 programs. Students choose from rigorous, top-ranked programs at the school. The student-to-teacher ratio is currently unknown. How much aid students receive on average is currently unknown. The school reports a 62% graduation rate. Job seekers often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive job candidates. The school's admission rate is unknown at this time. Some programs operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #24

    Saint Ambrose University

    Davenport, IA

    Graduation Rate

    64%

    Enrollment

    2,968

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $31812

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $31812

    A private institution located in Davenport, Iowa, Saint Ambrose University educates students through multiple programs. Students complete programs that prepare them for careers and professional advancement. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. Students can enroll in nationally ranked programs. The school charges an average of 606 per credit. Degree-seekers at the accredited school may qualify for federal financial aid, including the Pell Grant. The institution offers both academic and technical programs. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Saint Ambrose University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #25

    Graceland University-Lamoni

    Lamoni, IA

    Graduation Rate

    46%

    Enrollment

    1,733

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $30420

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $30420

    From its campus in Lamoni, Iowa, Graceland University-Lamoni enrolls students in programs as a private institution. The school offers accredited programs that prepare students for a successful career. The institution offers affordable programs that do not sacrifice academic rigor. Students can enroll in nationally ranked programs. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at the accredited school may qualify for federal financial aid, including the Pell Grant. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the institution. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Graceland University-Lamoni has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #26

    Briar Cliff University

    Sioux City, IA

    Graduation Rate

    40%

    Enrollment

    1,129

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $32202

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $32202

    A private institution located in Sioux City, Iowa, Briar Cliff University enrolls students in several programs. The school's programs help graduates launch or advance professional careers. The institution offers academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Students can enroll in nationally ranked programs. The institution's average cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. The institution offers both academic and technical programs. The school offers foundational courses, technical classes, and general education courses in multiple majors. Briar Cliff University has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #27

    Clarke University

    Dubuque, IA

    Graduation Rate

    63%

    Enrollment

    904

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $34670

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $34670

    A private institution, Clarke University enrolls students on its campus in Dubuque, Iowa. The school's academic and technical programs help learners reach a variety of professional goals. Students prepare to contribute to their field by completing courses. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to enroll. The school provides support such as tutoring and career services. The cost per credit is unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Clarke University has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #28

    William Penn University

    Oskaloosa, IA

    Graduation Rate

    34%

    Enrollment

    1,258

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $26100

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $26100

    A private institution, William Penn University grants degrees from its campus in Oskaloosa, Iowa. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their career goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares learners for a career in their field. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. The waiver makes it simpler to apply. The school provides support such as tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. William Penn University holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #29

    Grand View University

    Des Moines, IA

    Graduation Rate

    55%

    Enrollment

    1,889

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $30508

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $30508

    A private institution located in Des Moines, Iowa, Grand View University offers a variety of programs. The school offers accredited programs that prepare students for a successful career. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. The school boasts several programs that appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Students attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners at the school choose from academic and technical programs. Based on their major, students take foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #30

    University of Dubuque

    Dubuque, IA

    Graduation Rate

    43%

    Enrollment

    2,302

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $35570

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $35570

    From its campus in Dubuque, Iowa, University of Dubuque enrolls students as a private institution. The school's academic and technical programs help learners reach a variety of professional goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to gain relevant knowledge and skills. Some programs may offer test-optional admission policies. These policies make it easier to enroll. Learners receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. The accredited school qualifies for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. University of Dubuque holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.