2022 Top Public Universities in Colorado

Public universities are often the most affordable option for students pursuing higher education, but it’s not just affordability that makes these institutions attractive. Public universities also rank highly among the best universities in many states, Colorado included.

Public universities receive state and federal funding. Although they generally have larger class sizes than private institutions, they also tend to offer a wide variety of academic programs, diverse student bodies, and prestigious research opportunities.

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.

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Showing 29 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

    Colorado School of Mines

    Golden, CO

    Graduation Rate

    84%

    Enrollment

    6,744

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $16650

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $37350

    Located in Golden, Colorado, Colorado School of Mines educates college students as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps students reach their career goals. The institution's bachelor's programs incorporate lower-division and upper-division coursework. The degree typically requires general education credits. Upper-division credits emphasize advanced concepts in the major. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal student aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Colorado School of Mines has received accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #2

    Pickens Technical College

    Aurora, CO

    Graduation Rate

    65%

    Enrollment

    903

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3480

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6900

    Serving students of all backgrounds, Pickens Technical College is a public school based in Colorado. Students can complete courses in person in Aurora or onilne. Learners can choose from 35 certificate programs. Students in the programs gain knowledge and skills in one specialized study area. These credentials feature no general education requirements, which lets students graduate faster. A certificate or diploma offers many professional benefits. Common professional outcomes include increased job opportunities and higher salary levels. A diploma or certificate can also lead to further education, such as an associate or bachelor's degree. Credits earned in a diploma or certificate program may transfer to another degree.

    #3

    Colorado State University-Global Campus

    Aurora, CO

    Graduation Rate

    Not Provided

    Enrollment

    12,578

    Format

    Online

    In-State Tuition

    $8400

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $8400

    From its campus in Aurora, Colorado, Colorado State University-Global Campus enrolls students as a public institution. Students learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The school's academic and technical programs prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. Students can expect to spend around 408 per credit at the school. At the accredited school, learners qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. At the institution, 84% of students receive financial aid and 40% take out loans. The graduation rate is unavailable at this time. The admission rate for incoming students is 98%. Prospective applicants can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #4

    Morgan Community College

    Fort Morgan, CO

    Graduation Rate

    47%

    Enrollment

    1,376

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    A public institution, Morgan Community College educates students on its campus in Fort Morgan, Colorado. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their career goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to build industry-specific knowledge. Applicants may qualify for test-optional admissions. These policies make it easier to apply. Enrollees 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 student aid programs. Morgan Community College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #5

    Colorado State University-Fort Collins

    Fort Collins, CO

    Graduation Rate

    70%

    Enrollment

    32,428

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $9426

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $28147

    From its campus in Fort Collins, Colorado, Colorado State University-Fort Collins educates college students as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the institution helps students reach their career goals. During a bachelor's degree, students take lower-division and upper-division coursework. The school's 120-credit bachelor's programs also include general education credits. Degree-seekers study advanced concepts in their major during upper-division courses. Enrollees receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. Data on the school's average cost per credit is unavailable. The accredited institution qualifies for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Colorado State University-Fort Collins holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #6

    University of Colorado Boulder

    Boulder, CO

    Graduation Rate

    72%

    Enrollment

    37,437

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $10728

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $34930

    University of Colorado Boulder enrolls students on its Boulder, Colorado campus as a public institution. Instructors bring expertise in their fields. Students who complete a technical or academic program may enter the workforce. The institution's average cost per credit is unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 67% of learners receive financial aid, while 26% take out loans. The public school reports a graduation rate of 72%. The school reports a 84% admission rate. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. University of Colorado Boulder is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #7

    Aims Community College

    Greeley, CO

    Graduation Rate

    35%

    Enrollment

    5,981

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $2544

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $10200

    Located in Greeley, Colorado, Aims Community College grants degrees as a public 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 build industry-specific knowledge. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit standardized test scores. A waiver makes it easier to apply. The school supports learners with academic help and career services. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal student aid programs. Aims Community College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #8

    Red Rocks Community College

    Lakewood, CO

    Graduation Rate

    24%

    Enrollment

    6,029

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    From its Lakewood, Colorado campus, Red Rocks Community College enrolls learners in 122 programs. Degree-seekers enroll in rigorous, top-ranked programs at the school. The school has a student-to-faculty ratio of 19-to-1. A total of 57% of the students at this institution offest some of their education-related expenses with financial aid. The public institution reports a graduation rate of 24%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates on the job market. The rate of admission for the school is unknown. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Prospective applicants can contact the admissions office for more information about applying.

    #9

    University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus

    Denver, CO

    Graduation Rate

    44%

    Enrollment

    24,723

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7920

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $24408

    A top-ranked school, University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus enrolls learners in programs from its campus in Denver, Colorado. The college enrolls students in high-value programs and courses. The programs offer academic and technical tracks to help learners meet their career goals. Degree-seekers can earn an associate degree in two years, a bachelor's degree in four years, a master's degree in 1-2 years, or a doctoral degree in 3-7 years. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Test-optional policies make it easier to apply. Admission advisors can provide additional information on submitting an application. Enrollees at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #10

    Arapahoe Community College

    Littleton, CO

    Graduation Rate

    26%

    Enrollment

    12,001

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    Located in Littleton, Colorado, Arapahoe Community College attracts students with their well-regarded programs. The institution's faculty brings expertise in multiple fields. The school offers academic and technical tracks to help students meet a variety of professional goals. Visit the program's website to find information on the typical timeline for completion. Applicants may qualify for a standardized test score waiver. This makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides additional resources on applying to the school. At the accredited institution, enrollees also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. Arapahoe Community College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #11

    Trinidad State Junior College

    Trinidad, CO

    Graduation Rate

    56%

    Enrollment

    1,404

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6135

    Located in Colorado, Trinidad State Junior College offers 72 programs for students. Learners enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The school maintains a student-to-faculty ratio of 11-to-1. According to the institution, 89% of students receive some form of financial aid. The public institution reports a graduation rate of 56%. Real-world experience helps candidates stand out on the job market. The rate of admission for the school is unknown. Some programs offer test-optional admission policies. Applicants can reach out to the admissions office to learn more about enrolling.

    #12

    Front Range Community College

    Westminster, CO

    Graduation Rate

    23%

    Enrollment

    18,703

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    A public institution located in Westminster, Colorado, Front Range Community College offers a variety of programs. Graduates leave the school prepared for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. Information on the school's cost per credit is unavailable. Students attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Students receive an average aid award of $7630, lowering the average tuition cost after aid to $9165. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Depending on their major, learners complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Front Range Community College has received accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #13

    Colorado Northwestern Community College

    Rangely, CO

    Graduation Rate

    35%

    Enrollment

    993

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6136

    From its campus in Rangely, Colorado, Colorado Northwestern Community College awards degrees and certificates as a top school. Experts in diverse disciplines teach at the institution. With academic and technical tracks, the school's programs help learners 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 offer a waiver for standardized test scores. These policies make it easier to apply. The admissions department can help students apply to the school. Learners also use financial aid to pay for their college degree or certificate. Colorado Northwestern Community College holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #14

    Community College of Aurora

    Aurora, CO

    Graduation Rate

    26%

    Enrollment

    7,835

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    Located in Aurora, Colorado, Community College of Aurora grants college degrees as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that allows students to strengthen their skills. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit standardized test scores. These policies make it easier to enroll. The school supports learners with academic help and career services. Information on the school's cost per credit is unavailable. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Community College of Aurora is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #15

    Northeastern Junior College

    Sterling, CO

    Graduation Rate

    48%

    Enrollment

    1,293

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4601

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6902

    Northeastern Junior College, located in Sterling, Colorado, operates as a public institution. Instructors bring expertise in their fields. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. A total of 98% of students receive financial aid and 27% take out loans at the school. The public institution reports a graduation rate of 48%. The school's admission rate is unavailable. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements. Northeastern Junior College has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #16

    Pikes Peak Community College

    Colorado Springs, CO

    Graduation Rate

    17%

    Enrollment

    12,506

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    From its campus in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Pikes Peak Community College grants degrees and certificates as a top school. The institution's faculty brings expertise in multiple fields. Academic and technical programs help learners reach their unique professional goals. Check the program website for specifics on the degree- or certificate-completion timeline. Some programs may no longer require standardized tests for admission. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides more information about the application process. At the accredited institution, students also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #17

    Metropolitan State University of Denver

    Denver, CO

    Graduation Rate

    32%

    Enrollment

    19,086

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7236

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $22510

    From its campus in Denver, Colorado, Metropolitan State University of Denver enrolls students in 125 programs. Learners enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The school reports a student-to-faculty ratio of 18-to-1. According to the school, 77% of students receive some form of financial aid. The school reports a graduation rate of 32%. The institution understands that hands-on experience makes graduates more competitive in the job market. The school reports an 83% admission rate. Some programs no longer require test scores for admission. Prospective applicants can contact the admissions office for more information about applying.

    #18

    Community College of Denver

    Denver, CO

    Graduation Rate

    18%

    Enrollment

    7,273

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    Community College of Denver, located in Denver, Colorado, often ranks as one of the best schools. Instructors draw on their expertise in diverse fields. With academic and technical tracks, the programs help students reach a variety of 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 can help students apply to the school. Enrollees at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. Community College of Denver holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #19

    Pueblo Community College

    Pueblo, CO

    Graduation Rate

    21%

    Enrollment

    5,551

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $15102

    From its campus in Pueblo, Colorado, Pueblo Community College enrolls students in 90 programs. The institution's rigorous programs rank among the best in the nation. The school reports a student-to-faculty ratio of 18-to-1. The institution reports that of its total enrollees, 83% receive financial aid. The public institution reports a 21% graduation rate. Job seekers often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive job candidates. We do not currently have data on the school's admission rate. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Prospective applicants can contact the admission department for more information about applying.

    #20

    University of Colorado Colorado Springs

    Colorado Springs, CO

    Graduation Rate

    45%

    Enrollment

    12,380

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $9208

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $19572

    From its campus in Colorado, University of Colorado Colorado Springs administers 118 total programs. Learners enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The school holds a student-to-faculty ratio of 15-to-1. The institution reports that 85% of undergraduates receive some form of financial aid. The school reports a graduation rate of 45%. Graduates often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive candidates on the job market. The school offers internships, research opportunities, and other forms of experiential learning. Prospective learners can expect admission rates of 90%. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option.

    #21

    University of Northern Colorado

    Greeley, CO

    Graduation Rate

    52%

    Enrollment

    11,460

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7596

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $19854

    From its Greeley, Colorado campus, University of Northern Colorado offers 131 program options for students. The institution's rigorous programs rank among the best in the nation. The school reports a 16-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. At the institution, 99% of undergraduates receive some form of financial aid. Students earn their bachelor's degree from the school at a rate of 52%. The institution understands that real-world experience helps job seekers enter the workforce. For instance, University of Northern Colorado may offer internships, service-learning, and research opportunities. The admission rate is 88% for new students. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores.

    #22

    Otero Junior College

    La Junta, CO

    Graduation Rate

    38%

    Enrollment

    1,216

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6136

    From its La Junta, Colorado campus, Otero Junior College enrolls students in 38 programs. The institution's rigorous programs rank among the best in the nation. According to the school, the student-to-faculty ratio stands at 17-to-1. According to the the school's reports, 100% of its students receive financial assistance. The public school reports a 38% graduation rate. The institution's commitment to experiential learning makes graduates more competitive. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements and start dates.

    #23

    Colorado Mesa University

    Grand Junction, CO

    Graduation Rate

    37%

    Enrollment

    9,110

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7787

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $21336

    Located in Grand Junction, Colorado, Colorado Mesa University operates as a public institution. Enrollees take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. Students who complete an academic or technical program often enter the workforce right away. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that 96% of students receive aid, and 44% receive loans. Learners graduate from the school at a rate of 37%. The admission rate is 75%. Applicants can reach out to the admissions office to learn more about enrolling. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #24

    Colorado Mountain College

    Glenwood Springs, CO

    Graduation Rate

    25%

    Enrollment

    5,315

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $4440

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $11184

    Located in Colorado, Colorado Mountain College offers 99 academic programs. Students benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The student-to-faculty ratio at the school is 13-to-1. The school reports that 77% of students receive financial aid. Students in the school's programs graduate at a rate of 25%. Students should explore how workplace experience makes them more competitive employee candidates. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Contact the admissions department for more details about application requirements.

    #25

    Western Colorado University

    Gunnison, CO

    Graduation Rate

    50%

    Enrollment

    3,203

    Format

    In person

    In-State Tuition

    $6816

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $18600

    Located in Gunnison, Colorado, Western Colorado University enrolls students as a public institution. Learners study with experts in many different fields. Students who complete a technical or academic program may enter the workforce. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. At the accredited institution, students qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. At the institution, 94% of students receive aid and 32% receive loans. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 50%. The admission rate is 88% for new students. Prospective students can contact the admissions office for more information about applying. Western Colorado University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

    #26

    Lamar Community College

    Lamar, CO

    Graduation Rate

    41%

    Enrollment

    723

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $3680

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $6136

    From its campus in Lamar, Colorado, Lamar Community College enrolls students in programs as a public institution. The school offers programs that prepare graduates for careers and professional advancement. The institution's affordable programs provide a rigorous course of study. 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. Students receive $7333 in aid on average, lowering the average tuition cost after aid to $10692. Learners 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.

    #27

    Colorado State University Pueblo

    Pueblo, CO

    Graduation Rate

    37%

    Enrollment

    5,925

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $6349

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $12907

    Located in Pueblo, Colorado, Colorado State University Pueblo is a public institution that offers multiple programs. Students earn an accredited degree that prepares them for the workforce. Learners benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school's programs appear in national rankings. The school's average cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Current students receive an average aid award of $ 8106, making the average tuition cost after aid $ 13388. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

    #28

    Fort Lewis College

    Durango, CO

    Graduation Rate

    42%

    Enrollment

    3,469

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $7056

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17712

    Fort Lewis College, a public organization located in Durango, Colorado, offers multiple programs. Enrollees complete programs that prepare them for the workforce. The institution offers an academically rigorous course of study at an affordable price. The school offers nationally ranked programs in diverse fields. The institution's average cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Current students receive an average aid award of $8053, making the average tuition cost after aid $15723. The institution offers both academic and technical programs. Depending on their major, learners complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    #29

    Adams State University

    Alamosa, CO

    Graduation Rate

    32%

    Enrollment

    3,164

    Format

    Online, In person

    In-State Tuition

    $5856

    Out-of-State Tuition

    $17592

    A public institution, Adams State University educates students on its campus in Alamosa, Colorado. The school's academic and technical programs help students reach a variety of professional goals. During a bachelor's degree, undergraduates take lower-division and upper-division coursework. Undergraduates also complete general education credits. Degree-seekers study advanced concepts in their major during upper-division courses. Enrollees receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. At the accredited institution, learners qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.