Forbes recently released its list of the top 650 colleges in the U.S, relying on a system that measures “output” more than “input”. Rather than using metrics like SAT scores and grades, Forbes relies on “ROI: What are students getting out of college?”
Which of these top 650 colleges would be a good match for you? An interactive feature allows you to enter your SAT score, grade average, maximum yearly costs, and other criteria to create a list of top schools that fit your profile.
I ran a few examples using only academic stats and costs, with the top five results for each category shown below. This quick search excluded the effects of financial aid, along with preferences for type and location of colleges. (The numbers after the school names show Forbes rank.)
WITH A LIMITED BUDGET, THE BEST MATCHES FOR THE “TIPPY-TOP STUDENT” ARE MILITARY ACADEMIES.
TIPPY-TOP STUDENT — SAT 1560 (99%ile); GPA 4.0 (A+)
BEING ABLE TO SPEND MORE MONEY ADDS HIGHER-RANKED SCHOOLS FOR THE “HIGH ACHIEVER”.
HIGH ACHIEVER – SAT 1320 (90%ile); GPA 3.8 (A-)
THE “MIDDLE-OF-THE-ROAD SCHOLAR” ON A LIMITED BUDGET FINDS NO MATCHES AT ALL.
MIDDLE-OF-THE-ROAD SCHOLAR – SAT 1060 (60%ile); GPA 2.7 (B-)
$25,000 Maximum Yearly Cost:
No surprises here. Whatever your academic credentials, it’s good to be rich.