2022 Top Public Universities in South Dakota

Public universities are often the most affordable option for students pursuing higher education, but it’s not just affordability that makes these institutions attractive. Public universities also rank highly among the best universities in many states, South Dakota included.

Public universities receive state and federal funding. Although they generally have larger class sizes than private institutions, they also tend to offer a wide variety of academic programs, diverse student bodies, and prestigious research opportunities.

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.

  1. #1

    Lake Area Technical College

    Watertown, SD

    Graduation Rate

    72%

    Enrollment

    2,228

    Format

    Online, In person

    A public institution located in Watertown, South Dakota, Lake Area Technical College enrolls learners in multiple programs. Students complete programs that prepare them for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. Multiple programs at the school appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Enrollees receive an average aid award of $4479, making the average tuition cost after aid $11400. Learners at the school choose from academic and technical programs. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  2. #2

    Mitchell Technical Institute

    Mitchell, SD

    Graduation Rate

    73%

    Enrollment

    1,162

    Format

    Online, In person

    A public institution located in Mitchell, South Dakota, Mitchell Technical Institute enrolls learners in multiple programs. Enrollees complete programs that prepare them for the workforce. The institution offers academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. Many of 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. Enrollees receive an average aid award of $4150, making the average tuition cost after aid $11382. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

  3. #3

    Dakota State University

    Madison, SD

    Graduation Rate

    43%

    Enrollment

    3,268

    Format

    Online, In person

    A public institution, Dakota State University educates students on its campus in Madison, South Dakota. With both academic and technical programs, the school helps students reach their career goals. During a bachelor's degree, undergraduates take lower-division and upper-division coursework. Enrollees also complete general education credits. Students learn advanced concepts in their major during upper-division courses. Enrollees receive support in the form of tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. Learners at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Dakota State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  4. #4

    University of South Dakota

    Vermillion, SD

    Graduation Rate

    59%

    Enrollment

    9,920

    Format

    Online, In person

    University of South Dakota, a public institution in Vermillion, South Dakota, enrolls learners in multiple programs. The school's academic and technical programs help learners reach a variety of professional goals. During a bachelor's degree, students take lower-division and upper-division coursework. Students also take general education coursework during their bachelor's degree. Degree-seekers study advanced concepts in their major during upper-division courses. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The amount students pay per credit on average is currently unknown. Learners at the accredited institution qualify for federal aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

  5. #5

    South Dakota State University

    Brookings, SD

    Graduation Rate

    56%

    Enrollment

    11,512

    Format

    Online, In person

    From its campus in Brookings, South Dakota, South Dakota State University enrolls students in programs as a public institution. Graduates leave the school with an accredited degree that prepares them for the workforce. Learners benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school's programs appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Degree-seekers at this accredited institution may qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The institution reports that students receive an average aid award of $ 4625, lowering the average tuition cost after aid to $ 18195. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Based on their major, students take foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. South Dakota State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  6. #6

    Sinte Gleska University

    Mission, SD

    Graduation Rate

    7%

    Enrollment

    549

    Format

    In person

    A public institution, Sinte Gleska University grants degrees from its campus in Mission, South Dakota. 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. Some applicants qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. The waiver makes it simpler to enroll. The school supports learners with tutoring and career services. The cost per credit is unknown. Learners at the accredited school qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Sinte Gleska University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  7. #7

    Southeast Technical Institute

    Sioux Falls, SD

    Graduation Rate

    59%

    Enrollment

    2,380

    Format

    Online, In person

    From its campus in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Southeast Technical Institute enrolls students as a public institution. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their professional goals. Students complete courses and experiential learning opportunities to bolster their knowledge. Some programs may let applicants apply without submitting test scores. A test score waiver makes it easier to apply. Learners benefit from support services like tutoring and career counseling. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Learners attending the accredited school also qualify for federal financial aid programs, including the Pell Grant. Southeast Technical Institute holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

  8. #8

    Northern State University

    Aberdeen, SD

    Graduation Rate

    48%

    Enrollment

    3,427

    Format

    Online, In person

    Northern State University enrolls learners from its Aberdeen, South Dakota campus. Instructors bring expertise in their fields. The school's academic and technical tracks help learners meet diverse career 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. The waiver makes it simpler to enroll. The admissions department can help students apply to the school. Degree-seekers also use financial aid to cover their educational costs. Northern State University has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent accrediting body.

  9. #9

    Oglala Lakota College

    Kyle, SD

    Graduation Rate

    4%

    Enrollment

    1,306

    Format

    In person

    Located in Kyle, South Dakota, Oglala Lakota College awards degrees and certificates as a public institution. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The cost per credit is unknown. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. The institution reports that 97% of students receive aid, and 0% receive loans. Degree-seekers graduate from the school at a rate of 4%. The school's admission rate is unknown at this time. Admissions advisors can provide more information about application requirements and start dates. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

  10. #10

    South Dakota School of Mines and Technology

    Rapid City, SD

    Graduation Rate

    49%

    Enrollment

    2,525

    Format

    Online, In person

    South Dakota School of Mines and Technology is a public institution located in Rapid City, South Dakota. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. Students who complete an academic or technical program often enter the workforce right away. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. At the accredited school, students qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. The institution reports that 92% of students receive financial aid and 50% take out loans. The public school reports a graduation rate of 49%. The admission rate for prospective students is 77%. Contact the admissions department for more details about application requirements. The school holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.