Colleges in Columbus: All 15 Schools
Editor & Writer
Editor & Writer
www.bestcolleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.
Turn Your Dreams Into Reality
Take our quiz and we'll do the homework for you! Compare your school matches and apply to your top choice today.
The Columbus area is home to some of the best colleges in Ohio. Whether you're looking for a large state university experience, a smaller Christian school, or a flexible online program, there are many academic institutions for you to choose from.
With institutions like Ohio State University and Cedarville University, Columbus offers an array of programs at every level, catering to just about any academic interest or career goal.
Throughout this page, we dive into the colleges in Columbus and highlight what they can offer you. Additionally, we spotlight some scholarships and answer some of your most pressing questions. Keep reading to see why Columbus might be the college city for you.
3 Popular Colleges in the Columbus Area
Given the many different types of academic institutions in the Columbus area — big, small, public, and private — you are bound to find a school that aligns with your needs. Read on to learn more about the schools in and around Ohio's capital. Here are some known for their academic prestige and variety of programs.
The Ohio State University is the Buckeye State's flagship public institution with a rich history and diverse academic options at all levels. Notable for quality programs in diverse fields like STEM, healthcare, and creative writing, Ohio State ranks among the top public universities in the United States.
Along with its student community and tradition of top athletics, Ohio State's vibrant campus plays a significant part in Columbus's broader culture. In-state tuition averages about $12,485, while nonresidents pay over $36,000 per year.
Another top Columbus institution, Franklin University is a private institution that dates back to 1902. Largely an online school, Franklin is a popular option for working professionals and nontraditional students. Some of the school's most popular majors include areas like business management, marketing, human resources, and accounting.
Thanks to its various online academic programs, Franklin allows you to earn your degree while keeping up with personal and professional obligations. And with an annual net price of about $19,000, Franklin is one of the most affordable private schools in Columbus.
Located in suburban Columbus, Cedarville University is a private Christian institution serving more than 4,500 students each year. Ideal for students seeking a smaller school prioritizing their faith, some of the school's most popular majors include nursing, engineering, and early childhood education.
With a relatively small student-to-faculty ratio, you can receive a personalized education while also benefiting from the school's commitment to student success through ample student services. The average annual net price for this private school is currently $25,462.
List of All Colleges in Columbus
We've created a complete list of all four-year nonprofit colleges in Columbus and the surrounding area. You can use the table below to compare data on student population and the average net cost.
The following school data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). All data is from 2022. Note that colleges with a total undergrad enrollment of fewer than 500 were not considered for this list.
|Total Student Enrollment
|Avg. Annual Net Price
|Columbus College of Art and Design
|Mount Carmel College of Nursing
|Mount Vernon Nazarene University
|Ohio Christian University
|Ohio Dominican University
|Ohio State University
|Ohio State University at Marion
|Ohio Wesleyan University
How Much Is College in Columbus?
|Average Annual Net Price
College often comes with a hefty price tag — thankfully Columbus, Ohio, is home to a diverse catalog of private and public schools with tuition rates that reflect an equally diverse list of options. As a result, higher education in Columbus is accessible to a relatively broad spectrum of students.
While the cost of college can vary dramatically between public and private colleges, Ohio's lower-than-average cost of living helps make Columbus a relatively affordable place to live and attend school. Ohio has the 12th-lowest cost of living in the United States, according to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center.
Scholarships for Columbus Students
Finding scholarships is a practical way to help cut the cost of your college education. We spotlight three Ohio-based scholarship awards below.
Ohio College Opportunity Grant
The Ohio College Opportunity Grant is a need-based scholarship for Ohio residents pursuing an associate degree, bachelor's degree, or nursing diploma program.
This award is available to students pursuing their degrees at both public and private institutions, and applicants must demonstrate financial need. Funding varies by school but can exceed $4,000 per year.
Land Grant Opportunity Scholarship for Ohio Residents
The Ohio State University Land Grant Opportunity Scholarship is a merit-based award that's available to those who are Pell Grant-eligible and enrolling as first-year students at the school.
Typically covering full tuition and fees, this generous scholarship is exclusively for Ohio residents. Students who apply for admission and file the FAFSA by February 1 are considered for this scholarship.
The Morrill Scholarship Program
Ohio State University's Morrill Scholarship Program is a merit-based award designed to fund the education of talented students dedicated to social justice causes while pursuing their undergraduate degree.
This award covers full tuition and is open to and is open to recent high school graduates pursuing their degree at the school's Columbus campus.
Frequently Asked Questions About Colleges in Columbus
What is the cheapest college in Columbus?
In the Columbus area, the cheapest public institution is Ohio State University at Marion, with an annual net price of about $13,000 for resident students. The cheapest private school in the area is Franklin University, with an annual tuition of under $19,000.
How many colleges are in Columbus?
Columbus is home to a wide array of academic institutions with 15 four-year nonprofit colleges and universities. From an elite and sizable public institution like Ohio State University to flexible online options from the private Franklin University, opportunities abound.
What is the biggest college in Columbus?
The biggest college in Columbus is Ohio State University, clocking in at over 60,000 students. While dwarfed by Ohio's flagship institution, Franklin University is the city's largest private school, with an enrollment of more than 8,000 students.