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Tops in Texas — again: Rice University offers one of best college values in the U.S.

Tops in Texas — again: Rice University offers best college value

Places-Unique-Rice University students on campus
Rice University ranks No. 7 on the Kiplinger list of Best College Values. It ranks No. 4 among private colleges and universities. Courtesy of Rice University

Good news for Owls: That Rice University degree is one of the Best College Values in America. Kiplinger's annual roundup ranks Rice as the tops in Texas among colleges and universities offering the most bang for you buck.

Nationally, Rice ranks No. 7 among 300 colleges and universities on the 2015 list; among private universities in the nation, Rice ranks No. 4.

Kiplinger analyzed the cost and quality of education to determine the rankings. Impressive SAT and ACT scores from incoming freshman (70 percent scored 800 or higher on the SAT Math Score), an 82 percent four-year graduation rate, and a 6-1 student-to-faculty ratio contributed to Rice's high academic score.

Total cost per year at Rice is $56,703, with generous student need-based aid of nearly $35,000 annually. And 21 percent of students with financial means get merit-based aid averaging nearly $14,000 per year. At graduation, Rice students have an average debt of nearly $22,000, but are likely earn an average $60,000 yearly salary within 10 years.

No other school in Texas comes close to Rice on the list. Other Texas schools among the 300 are:

No. 88 - Trinity University, San Antonio

No. 136 - University of Texas at Austin

No. 148 - University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson

No. 180 - Texas A&M University, College Station

No. 214 - University of Dallas, Irving

No. 250 - Southern Methodist University, Dallas

No. 282 -  Texas Tech University, Lubbock

Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, ranks No. 1 among all colleges and also among liberal arts colleges on Kiplinger's 2015 list.

Rice has previously appeared on several best values list, including Kiplinger's 10 Best Values in Private Universities 2012-13, in 2014 and in 2015.