What You Need to Know About Iowa Colleges

Graph showing Iowa colleges graduation ratesDid You Know?

  • 12 Iowa colleges have graduation rates of 50% or better?
  • The average net price for all private Iowa colleges is less than $30,000?
  • All three public Iowa universities have five-year graduation rates of 60% or better while admitting over 80% of students?
  • Of the five colleges that have the smallest percentage of freshman receiving Pell Grants, two are public?

Where to Start Looking to Find Iowa Colleges

If you’re trying to find Iowa colleges, start with the Iowa College Access Network (ICAN).  This is a comprehensive college planning website set up with sections for middle school, high school, college, and professionals. The high school section includes topics on how to succeed in high school, explore colleges, pay for college, manage your money, and resource zone. Each section has a basic but thorough description of the topic and a useful helpful links section. The Planning Tools and Resource section includes several budgeting calculators, scholarship data base, virtual presentations, and a calendar of ICAN events.

The I Have a Plan Iowa website is a XAP based site that  provides detailed information and extensive planning tools for registered members. It has the usual features of being to create an online portfolio and application. It also has a career assessment tool that has various surveys and checklists. Also available is test prep, college search, financial aid calculators, and scholarship ship search.

For more information on the Iowa specific financial aid, visit the Iowa College Student Aid Commission website. It includes a series of college planning videos as well as free publications for downloading. Students interested in starting off at a community college and transferring to a Regent university should check out the transfer agreements at Transfer In Iowa.

Some Numbers to Help You Find a College

There are 26 four-year Iowa colleges with 500 or more full-time undergraduates according to the Integrated Post-secondary Education Data System. Approximately 40% students attend one of the 23 private Iowa colleges while 60% of students attend one of the 3 state institutions.

The private Iowa colleges have an average four-year graduation rate of 49.8% and the public universities have an average five-year graduation rate of 64%. A total of 14 schools meet the DIY College Rankings 50-50 profile requirements.

College-bound seniors in Iowa had an average of 22.2 ACT Composite score with a 21.6 for English and 21.5 for Math. The 75th Percentile scores were a Composite of 25, 25 for English, and 25 for Math.  A total of 17 colleges ACT 75th% Composite scores were at or above this level.

The top 20 colleges ACT test takers in Iowa applied to:

Iowa Colleges Conferences and Divisions

Iowa colleges athletic conferences

List of Iowa Colleges

In the following table, the four-year graduation rate is used for private colleges and the five-year rate for public colleges. The data are based on the data available from IPEDS in September of 2015 which are available on the DIY College Search spreadsheet.

Iowa Colleges with Graduation Rates and Test Scores
(download PDF version)


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