Obama Scorecard: Top Colleges for Value and Affordability
Affordable Colleges Online
AC Online Methodology Basics: Obama Value Colleges
Affordable Colleges Online takes data and analysis seriously. Both are paramount when creating content people can trust. Therefore, we not only use data sources from the most respectable sites on the web, but we have a team of data analysts with years of experience. Here’s a list of our most trusted college- and career-related data sources:
- NCES is the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education. It provides consistent, reliable, complete, and accurate indicators of education status and trends.
- IPEDS is the primary federal source for data on colleges, universities, and technical and vocational post-secondary schools in the U.S.
- Carnegie Classification is a framework widely used in the study of higher education, both as a way to represent and control for institutional differences, and also in the design of research studies to ensure adequate representation of sampled institutions, students, or faculty.Payscale.com is a leading provider of career-related data on a national, state, local, and individual basis.
- PayScale.com team of statisticians continually refines data collection methods to maximize accuracy and integrity.
Methodology Details: Obama Value Colleges
To isolate the 100 colleges we thought had the best chance to land on the president’s upcoming scorecard, we started with a series of general criteria:
- Full accreditation
- 4-year degrees offered
- Public colleges and universities
We then dove into more detailed value metrics, giving colleges a score in each respective category. The % weight applied to each category has been included, as well:
- Net price (tuition + fees) – (grant + scholarship money per student) – 20%
- Student loan default rate (from studentaid.gov) – 22%
- Graduation rate (4-year) – 22%
- Graduation rate (6-year) – 8%
- Student services breadth and depth – 3%
- Starting salaries for graduates (PayScale.com) – 25%
We want all colleges and universities on our lists to be happy with their representation. If you have questions or would simply like to discuss the rankings further, please don’t hesitate to email us via our contact form.
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