2022 Top Private Colleges and Universities in Tennessee

Private colleges and universities frequently top the lists of the best schools in the U.S. These institutions offer rigorous academic programs for students looking for a personalized college experience.

Private institutions generally cost more than their public counterparts, but students often receive the benefits of smaller class sizes, strong alumni networks, and generous financial aid opportunities.

Unlike public colleges and universities, private institutions do not differentiate between in-state and out-of-state tuition. This means students from anywhere can enroll in Tennessee's private institutions without paying higher out-of-state rates.

2022 Best Private Colleges and Universities in Tennessee

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you can make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering transparent, inclusive, and relevant school rankings.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our ranking methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Showing 30 schools

    Filter

    School Name


    Location


    Program


    Learning Format


    School Type


    #1

    Vanderbilt University

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    93%

    Enrollment

    13,131

    Format

    Online, In person

    Located in Nashville, Tennessee, Vanderbilt University attracts students with their well-regarded programs. Students study with experts in many different fields. With academic and technical tracks, the school's programs help learners meet their professional goals. Academic programs can take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete, depending on degree or certificate type. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. A test score waiver makes it easier to apply. The admissions department provides additional resources on applying to the school. At the accredited institution, learners also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. Vanderbilt University has received accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #2

    Rhodes College

    Memphis, TN

    Graduation Rate

    80%

    Enrollment

    2,010

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Memphis, Tennessee, Rhodes College educates college students as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their educational goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to build industry-specific knowledge. Applicants may qualify for a test score waiver. The waiver makes it simpler to apply. Learners receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. Data on the school's average cost per credit is unavailable. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Rhodes College has received accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #3

    The Salon Professional Academy-Nashville

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    48

    Format

    In person

    A private institution, The Salon Professional Academy-Nashville grants degrees from its campus in Nashville, Tennessee. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their educational goals. Students complete coursework to prepare them for advanced roles. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit standardized test scores. A test score waiver makes it easier to enroll. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. The Salon Professional Academy-Nashville is accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

    #4

    Image Maker Beauty Institute

    Hendersonville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    47

    Format

    In person

    From its Hendersonville, Tennessee campus, Image Maker Beauty Institute enrolls learners in 1 programs. The institution offers top-ranked programs that provide a rigorous course of study. The average student-to-faculty ratio is unknown. Information on the average amount of aid students receive is unavailable. The school reports a 100% graduation rate. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps students enter the workforce. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Applicants can reach out to the admission department to learn more about enrolling.

    #5

    Health-Tech Institute of Memphis

    Memphis, TN

    Graduation Rate

    76%

    Enrollment

    23

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Memphis, Tennessee, Health-Tech Institute of Memphis grants degrees and certificates as a top school. Students study with experts in many different fields. With academic and technical tracks, the programs help students reach a variety of career goals. Depending on the degree or certificate type, enrollees can spend anywhere from a few months up to as many as seven years completing a program. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to apply. The admissions staff can provide more information on the process. Degree-seekers at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. The accreditation status of this school is unavailable.

    #6

    Franklin Hair Academy School of Cosmetology

    Franklin, TN

    Graduation Rate

    82%

    Enrollment

    34

    Format

    In person

    Located in Franklin, Tennessee, Franklin Hair Academy School of Cosmetology awards degrees and certificates as a private institution. Learners take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Students can fund their education with financial aid such as federal loans, scholarships, and grants. Students earn their bachelor's degree from the school at a rate of 82%. We do not currently have data on the school's admission rate. Prospective applicants can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying. Franklin Hair Academy School of Cosmetology has been accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences, an independent accrediting body.

    #7

    Austin's Beauty College Inc

    Clarksville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    112

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Clarksville, Tennessee, Austin's Beauty College Inc offers academic programs as a private institution. The school offers accredited programs that prepare learners for the workforce. Learners enroll in academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school boasts several programs that appear in national rankings. The school's average cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school is accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

    #8

    Chattanooga College Medical Dental and Technical Careers

    Chattanooga, TN

    Graduation Rate

    82%

    Enrollment

    503

    Format

    In person

    Chattanooga College Medical Dental and Technical Careers, located in Chattanooga, Tennessee, offers 10 programs for degree-seekers. Degree-seekers benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The average student-to-faculty ratio is currently unknown. The average amount of aid awarded per student is not available. Students earn their degree from the school at a rate of 82%. The institution understands that hands-on experience makes graduates more competitive in the job market. The institution's admission rate is unknown at this time. Many schools no longer require test scores for admission. Prospective students can contact the admissions department for more details about application requirements.

    #9

    Tennessee School of Beauty of Knoxville Inc

    Knoxville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    80%

    Enrollment

    252

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Knoxville, Tennessee, Tennessee School of Beauty of Knoxville Inc educates college students as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. Students prepare to contribute to their field by completing courses. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit test scores. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The school supports enrollees with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Learners at the accredited school can pay for their educational costs with federal student aid programs. The school is accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

    #10

    Johnson University

    Knoxville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    63%

    Enrollment

    1,037

    Format

    Online, In person

    Located in Knoxville, Tennessee, Johnson University grants college degrees as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution offers coursework that gives students the chance to build industry-specific knowledge. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. Enrollees receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Learners at the accredited school qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Johnson University has received accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #11

    Williamson Christian College

    Franklin, TN

    Graduation Rate

    56%

    Enrollment

    60

    Format

    Online, In person

    Located in Franklin, Tennessee, Williamson Christian College educates students as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their professional goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares students for advancement in their field. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Test-optional policies make it easier to apply. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal student aid programs such as the Pell Grant. Williamson Christian College is accredited by the Association for Bibical Higher Educaiton, an independent accrediting body.

    #12

    EduMed Partners

    Goodlettsville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    96%

    Enrollment

    108

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Goodlettsville, Tennessee, EduMed Partners enrolls students as a private institution. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. The school's academic and technical programs prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The institution's cost per credit is unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. The private institution reports a 96% graduation rate. The rate of admission for the school is unknown. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements. EduMed Partners is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education.

    #13

    The University of the South

    Sewanee, TN

    Graduation Rate

    79%

    Enrollment

    1,768

    Format

    In person

    From its Sewanee, Tennessee campus, The University of the South offers 48 program options for students. Students enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. Information on the student-to-teacher ratio is unavailable. How much aid students receive on average is not currently known. The private institution reports a graduation rate of 79%. Experiential learning opportunities help graduates on the job market. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements.

    #14

    Gould's Academy

    Memphis, TN

    Graduation Rate

    86%

    Enrollment

    163

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Memphis, Tennessee, Gould's Academy awards degrees and certificates as a top school. Degree-seekers study with experts in many different fields. The school's academic and technical tracks help students meet diverse career goals. Academic programs generally take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete depending on degree or certificate type. Applicants may qualify for test-optional admissions. These policies make it easier to enroll. The admissions department can help prospective students determine the next steps. Financial aid provides options for degree-seekers to pay for their education. Gould's Academy holds accreditation from the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences, an independent accrediting body.

    #15

    Arnolds Beauty School

    Milan, TN

    Graduation Rate

    79%

    Enrollment

    66

    Format

    In person

    A private institution located in Milan, Tennessee, Arnolds Beauty School enrolls students in several programs. Students can earn a degree or certificate that prepares them for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. The school's programs appear in national rankings. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Council on Occupational Education.

    #16

    Allied Health Careers Institute

    Murfreesboro, TN

    Graduation Rate

    84%

    Enrollment

    148

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Tennessee, Allied Health Careers Institute enrolls students in 3 programs. Degree-seekers enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The average student-to-teacher ratio is unavailable. Data on the average amount of aid students receive is unavailable. Students earn their degree from the school at a rate of 84%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates become more competitive in the job market. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Applicants may qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Prospective applicants can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying.

    #17

    Lipscomb University

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    68%

    Enrollment

    4,595

    Format

    Online, In person

    Lipscomb University, located in Nashville, Tennessee, often ranks as one of the best schools. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The school offers academic and technical tracks to help students meet a variety of professional goals. Typical time for program completion ranges from a few months to seven years depending on the type of degree or certificate offered. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The admissions department can help prospective students complete their application. Financial aid helps enrollees cover their educational expenses. Lipscomb University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    #18

    Visible Music College

    Memphis, TN

    Graduation Rate

    43%

    Enrollment

    241

    Format

    Online, In person

    From its campus in Memphis, Tennessee, Visible Music College enrolls learners in 13 programs. The institution offers top-ranked programs that provide a rigorous course of study. Information on the average student-to-instructor ratio is unavailable. How much aid students receive on average is currently unknown. The private institution reports a graduation rate of 43%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates on the job market. The admission rate is unknown at this time. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. Prospective applicants can contact the admissions office for more information about applying.

    #19

    The Hair Academy LLC

    Fayetteville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    89%

    Enrollment

    51

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Fayetteville, Tennessee, The Hair Academy LLC grants degrees and certificates as a top school. Instructors draw on their expertise in diverse fields. Academic and technical programs help students reach their professional goals. Academic programs generally take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete depending on degree or certificate type. Applicants may qualify for a test score waiver. A test score waiver makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department can help students complete the process. Financial aid helps students cover the cost of their degree or certificate. The Hair Academy LLC has been accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences, an independent accrediting body.

    #20

    Union University

    Jackson, TN

    Graduation Rate

    68%

    Enrollment

    3,172

    Format

    Online, In person

    A private institution, Union University educates students on its campus in Jackson, Tennessee. With both academic and technical programs, this school can help learners reach their educational goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that allows students to bolster their knowledge. Depending on the program, applicants may need to submit standardized test scores. These policies make it easier to enroll. The school supports enrollees with tutoring and career services. The school's average cost per credit is unknown. Learners at this accredited school also qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Union University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #21

    Lincoln Memorial University

    Harrogate, TN

    Graduation Rate

    55%

    Enrollment

    4,867

    Format

    Online, In person

    Located in Harrogate, Tennessee, Lincoln Memorial University attracts students with their well-regarded programs. Students study with experts in many different fields. The programs offer academic and technical tracks to help learners meet their career goals. Academic programs can take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete, depending on degree or certificate type. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to apply. The admissions department provides additional resources on submitting an application. Enrollees at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. Lincoln Memorial University holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

    #22

    Career Beauty College

    Lawrenceburg, TN

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    3

    Format

    In person

    A private institution located in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, Career Beauty College enrolls students in several programs. The school's accredited programs prepare learners for the workforce. The institution provides academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Many of the school's programs appear in national rankings. Data on the school's average cost per credit is unavailable. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners at the school choose from academic and technical programs. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Career Beauty College holds accreditation from the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

    #23

    Nossi College of Art

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    63%

    Enrollment

    309

    Format

    In person

    From its Nashville, Tennessee campus, Nossi College of Art enrolls students in 6 programs. Students enroll in top-ranked programs that offer a rigorous course of study. The average student-to-instructor ratio is unavailable. The average amount of aid awarded to students is unknown. The private institution reports a 63% graduation rate. Students should explore how workplace experience makes them more competitive employee candidates. The school's admission rate is unavailable. Some programs waive the test score requirement for qualified applicants. Prospective students can contact the admission department for more information about applying.

    #24

    Gould's Academy

    Bartlett, TN

    Graduation Rate

    Not Provided

    Enrollment

    126

    Format

    In person

    A private institution, Gould's Academy educates students on its campus in Bartlett, Tennessee. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps learners reach their educational goals. The institution's degree and certificate programs offer coursework that prepares learners for a career in their field. Some programs may offer test-optional admission policies. Students may find it easier to apply without a test score requirement. Learners benefit from support services, which include tutoring and career counseling. The school's average cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal student aid programs. Gould's Academy has been accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

    #25

    Massage Institute of Memphis

    Memphis, TN

    Graduation Rate

    89%

    Enrollment

    28

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Memphis, Tennessee, Massage Institute of Memphis enrolls students in 1 programs. The institution's top-ranked programs offer students a challenging course of study. The student-to-teacher ratio is unavailable. Information on the average amount of aid students receive is unavailable. Learners graduate from the school at a rate of 89%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates on the job market. The institution's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs let applicants apply without submitting test scores. Applicants can reach out to the admissions office to learn more about enrolling.

    #26

    Shear Perfection Academy of Cosmetology

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    80%

    Enrollment

    10

    Format

    In person

    From its campus in Nashville, Tennessee, Shear Perfection Academy of Cosmetology enrolls students in 4 programs. The institution's many rigorous academic programs rank among the best in the nation. The average student-to-instructor ratio is currently unknown. Data on the amount of aid students receive per year on average is unavailable. Students in the school's programs graduate at a rate of 80%. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates on the job market. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs offer a waiver for standardized test scores. Prospective students can contact the admissions office for more information about applying.

    #27

    Master's Barber & Styling College

    Old Hickory, TN

    Graduation Rate

    100%

    Enrollment

    22

    Format

    In person

    Located in Tennessee, Master's Barber & Styling College offers 1 academic programs. The institution's many rigorous academic programs rank among the best in the nation. Information on the student-to-instructor ratio is unavailable. Data on the amount of aid students receive per year on average is unavailable. The school reports a 100% graduation rate. Job seekers often benefit from hands-on experience, which makes them more competitive job candidates. The school's admission rate is currently unknown. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. The admission department can provide more information about application requirements.

    #28

    Ross Medical Education Center-Knoxville

    Knoxville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    67%

    Enrollment

    108

    Format

    In person

    A private institution located in Knoxville, Tennessee, Ross Medical Education Center-Knoxville offers multiple programs. Students leave the school with experience and credentials that prepare them for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. The school's programs appear in national rankings. Data on the school's average cost per credit is unavailable. Degree-seekers at the accredited school may qualify for federal financial aid, including the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Ross Medical Education Center-Knoxville holds accreditation from the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools, an independent accrediting body.

    #29

    Mind Body Institute

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    69%

    Enrollment

    52

    Format

    In person

    Mind Body Institute, which is often listed among the best schools, operates from its main campus in Nashville, Tennessee. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. With academic and technical tracks, the school offers programs for learners with a variety of professional goals. Enrollees earn their degree or certificate in as little time as a few months or as much time as seven years depending on program type and enrollment status. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. Test-optional policies make it easier to apply. The admissions department can help applicants determine the next steps. Financial aid provides options for degree-seekers to pay for their education. Mind Body Institute holds accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges.

    #30

    John A Gupton College

    Nashville, TN

    Graduation Rate

    43%

    Enrollment

    164

    Format

    Online

    John A Gupton College, located in Nashville, Tennessee, enrolls students as a private institution. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 43%. We do not currently have data on the school's admission rate. The admission department can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. John A Gupton College holds accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an independent accrediting body.

    Why Choose a Private College or University in Tennessee?

    Private colleges and universities provide many benefits to students, including smaller class sizes that allow for more personal attention from professors. Enrollees in private schools also generally enjoy greater access to student services because these institutions serve fewer students. Private colleges and universities in Tennessee also tend to offer courses that promote rigor and academic excellence, giving learning a prominent place in the college experience.

    Some students who value academics may still prefer public education. Public schools tend to charge lower tuition rates because they receive federal and state funding. Also, because public institutions usually enroll more students, they typically offer more majors and degree programs from which students can choose.

    According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), 45 private nonprofit four-year colleges exist in Tennessee, compared to 10 public four-year institutions. When comparing these figures, private colleges in Tennessee might offer prospective students more choices in higher education.

    Some of the best private schools in Tennessee rank competitively with other colleges and universities nationwide. As a member of the Academic Common Market, Tennessee adheres to a reciprocity agreement with select southern states.

    Pros and Cons of Attending a Private College or University in Tennessee

    Pros

    Private schools generally offer more generous financial aid.Students at many private schools can gain greater access to scholarships and grants.Lower student enrollments at many private colleges mean smaller class sizes and more individual attention and mentoring.Most four-year private colleges place considerable emphasis on learning, which often results in rigorous curricula.

    Cons

    Private schools are typically more expensive than public institutions.They tend to offer fewer majors than public institutions.Except for many research institutions, private schools typically provide fewer opportunities to gain research experience.The academic demands of many private schools can make working full- or part-time while studying difficult.

    Nonprofit vs. For-Profit Colleges and Universities in Tennessee

    All public colleges and universities are nonprofit. However, private schools can be either nonprofit or for-profit. Boards of trustees or directors manage nonprofit schools, which typically receive funding from their state and the federal government, driving down tuition costs.

    For-profit colleges operate like businesses, primarily focusing on generating profits. At these schools, investors typically make decisions about academic offerings and other operations. Although a for-profit education can cost up to $8,500 more per year, they do not always provide the same academic rigor as nonprofits, and they do not always hold proper institutional accreditation.

    For-profit colleges can offer certain advantages, such as scheduling flexibility, allowing working professionals to further their education. Students attending private for-profit institutions might also pay lower tuition rates than enrollees attending their nonprofit counterparts. According to NCES, Tennessee is home to 23 for-profit two- and four-year institutions that enroll over 14,000 students.

    How Much Does It Cost to Attend a Private College or University in Tennessee?

    According to NCES, students at four-year private colleges and universities in Tennessee paid more than $40,000 per year on average during the 2019-2020 academic year. This figure includes more than $29,000 in tuition and fees alone. The cost of room and board averaged almost $11,000 annually.

    Tennessee's least and most expensive private colleges and universities vary in annual tuition, fees, and other expenses. For example, Vanderbilt University in Nashville charges the highest tuition in the state, $54,840 annually as of 2021-2022. In contrast, students at LeMoyne-Owen College in Memphis paid about $11,000 in tuition per year.

    Prospective students with limited funds and dreams of private education can see if they qualify for tuition reimbursement or scholarships. Although student loans serve as a way to pay for college, other options exist, including work-study programs and federal grants that do not require repayment.

    Find the Tools You Need to Get Started on Your Degree

    Frequently Asked Questions About Private Colleges and Universities in Tennessee

    How many private colleges and universities are there in Tennessee?

    According to NCES, Tennessee is home to 45 private nonprofit four-year colleges and 10 public four-year institutions.

    The best private schools in Tennessee depend on a student's needs. They vary by tuition and expenses, student body size, number of academic majors, and other characteristics.

    Students looking for a more diverse student body or one with a more significant percentage of students of color might consider applying to historically Black colleges or universities (HBCUs) in the state.

    What is the most expensive private college or university in Tennessee?

    Students attending Vanderbilt University in Nashville paid the highest tuition at any private school in the state in 2021-2022. Tuition, housing, meals, books, and other fees added up to almost $80,000 per year.

    The cost of higher education has increased more than 170% over the past 40 years for public and private school students. Some of the drivers of increasing higher education expenses include rising tuition rates, growing demand for student services, and increases in administrative costs.

    What is the least expensive private college or university in Tennessee?

    During the 2021-2022 school year, students at Lane College in Jackson paid $9,270 in tuition, the lowest annual tuition rate for a private, nonprofit school in Tennessee.

    The least expensive for-profit private school in Tennessee is Victory University in Memphis, with students paying $4,000-$8,000 in tuition during the same academic year.

    Is a private college or university right for me?

    For many students, pursuing private higher education reflects a choice based on financial considerations, educational goals, and other factors.

    Anyone considering the best private schools in Tennessee should prepare to pay the relatively high tuition either with their own funds or by obtaining scholarships or financial aid.

    Students should also consider their need for individual attention and academic tutoring. The smaller class sizes at most private schools allow learners to get more personalized attention from professors who teach fewer students. Also, applicants who know the major they want to pursue might thrive in a private college that offers their chosen area of study.

    Can I get more scholarship money at a private college or university?

    Although private schools vary in thescholarship money they award, they generally offer more funding for qualifying students than public institutions because of private donations, investments, and endowments.

    Some scholarships award money to students with outstanding GPAs or high entrance exam scores. Students can also obtain scholarship funding for meeting other criteria, such as demonstrating financial need or excellence in athletics.

    College applicants should contact their prospective schools or go to their websites to find the types of scholarships they offer.