Pitt Named "Best Value" University by Princeton Review

Issue Date: 
February 28, 2011

The University of Pittsburgh is Pennsylvania’s only public institution of higher education in a Princeton Review list of both the nation’s 50 “Best Value” public colleges and universities and 50 “Best Value” private colleges and universities. The Princeton Review teamed with USA Today to present the list in a Web posting titled “The Princeton Review Best Value Colleges for 2011.”

The lists of 100 “Best Value” institutions are posted on the Web sites of both The Princeton Review and USA Today.

In its profile of Pitt on USA Today’s Web site, the editors at The Princeton Review commend the University for producing Rhodes, Marshall, Truman, Udall, Goldwater, Churchill, and Gates Cambridge scholars; for the PITT ARTS program that “links students to cultural amenities in the city”; for holding “the distinction of being home to one of just 10 European Union Centers of Excellence in the United States funded by the European Commission”; for “earning…a top ranking in the Top American Research Universities annual report for four consecutive years”; and for its Outside the Classroom Curriculum program “designed to help students systematically gain experiences in a wide range of areas that can contribute later to successful job searches.” The profile adds, “Students interested in the biological sciences in particular will have amazing opportunities to conduct hands-on research at Pitt, as the university is ranked fifth for receipt of National Institutes of Health grants for research. (It was Pitt researchers who discovered the polio vaccine.)”

According to The Princeton Review, the selection of the schools in its “Best Value Colleges for 2011” was based on academics, cost of attendance, and financial aid. “The methodology examined more than 30 factors using data from the company’s surveys of administrators and students at 650 colleges with strong academic programs,” The Princeton Review states in its news release announcing its lists, adding, “Most of the data analyzed came from surveys conducted from fall 2009 through fall 2010: all cost and financial aid data came from fall 2010 surveys.”

Princeton Review Senior Vice President for Publishing Robert Franek said, “While a college education is undeniably a valuable investment, paying for college is challenging for most parents. Among the 12,000 respondents to our 2010 ‘College Hopes & Worries Survey’ of college applicants and their parents, 86 percent told us financial aid would be ‘very necessary’ to foot the bill. For them and for all families seeking academically outstanding colleges that have been exceptional at meeting their students’ needs for financial aid, we’re pleased to have teamed up with USA Today to identify and recommend these 100 institutions as ‘Best Value’ colleges.”

USA Today’s Web site features a database that allows users to view in-depth details about the schools by clicking on an interactive map to explore criteria, including cost of attendance and financial aid data, enrollment size, location, and The Princeton Review’s analysis of why each school was chosen as a “Best Value” college.

The Princeton Review, which is not affiliated with Princeton University and is not a magazine, is known for its college, business, and law school rankings in several categories reported on its Web site and in its books. They are based on the company’s surveys of higher education institutions and of students attending the schools.