The University of Minnesota and three private schools in the state have been named to The Princeton Review’s recently released list of the 150 “Best Value Colleges” for 2013.
 
The U of M appeared on a list of the 75 best public school values, while Carleton College in Northfield, Macalester College in St. Paul, and St. Olaf College in Northfield made the list of the 75 best private school values.
 
The designation is based on assessments that examined more than 30 data points covering academics, cost, and financial aid. The 150 colleges recognized were chosen from a pool of 650 U.S. colleges and universities at which The Princeton Review conducted institutional and student surveys in 2011 and 2012.
 
The Princeton Review called the U of M a “massive, well-run” public research university. Citing direct quotes from university students, it added that the school’s science departments are “across the board . . . superb,” and the prestigious Carlson School of Management is “one of the best business schools in the Midwest, with reasonable tuition” to boot.
 
The university—at which journalism, political science, and psychology are the most popular majors—received an academic rating of 76 out of 100.
 
Meanwhile, Carleton was touted as an “extremely rigorous liberal arts school.” Citing direct quotes from students, The Princeton Review said that Carleton has a “top-notch” and “cooperative” learning environment and that the professors focus on teaching rather than research.
 
Carleton, which has slightly more than 2,000 students, received an academic rating of 98 out of 100.
 
Macalester College, which has about the same number of students as Carleton and received an academic rating of 97, is “fast becoming an academic powerhouse,” The Princeton Review said. Citing direct quotes from students, it said the school attracts “academic-minded” students because of the generous financial aid, and it places an emphasis on internationalism.
 
And St. Olaf, a Lutheran school with slightly more than 3,000 students, provides a “great liberal arts education rich with musical, academic, and social opportunities in a tight-knit, caring community,” said The Princeton Review, citing direct quotes from students. Additionally, the school is renowned for its extensive music department, and most students study abroad for at least a month.
 
St. Olaf received an academic rating of 93 out of 100.
 
To see The Princeton Review’s full list of “Best Value Colleges,” which includes additional information about each school, click here (although you must register at no cost prior to being able to view it). For an interactive list via USA Today that allows you to sort several different ways, click here.
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