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Overall Score: 83.01

Rice University

Houston, TX
Rice University is one of the most elite private colleges in the south, with an acceptance rate of 8.5% and a graduation rate of 94%. Classes are small at the Houston-based university, with a tiny 6:1 student-faculty ratio, and undergraduates have opportunities to work with some of the world's top researchers. Popular majors include social sciences, engineering and natural sciences, though Rice offers more than 80 undergrad programs in all. Rice is relatively diverse: Undergraduate students are almost evenly split between men and women, about 35% are Asian, and 17% are Hispanic. Rice doesn't have fraternities or sororities, and social life revolves around residential houses, where some 75% of undergrads live. People compete in activities such as water balloon fights and the annual Beer Bike relay race, which requires cyclists to chug beer (or water) and then pedal laps. Rice also attracts prestigious speakers and events. Its stadium has hosted a Super Bowl, and President John F. Kennedy delivered a famous speech about the space race there in 1962. Notable alumni include astronaut Peggy Whitson and former White House press secretary Josh Earnest.


Est. full price 2022-2023
% of students who get any grants
Est. price for students who receive aid
Average price for low-income students


Acceptance rate
Median SAT/ACT score
SAT/ACT required?
Undergraduate enrollment

Financial Aid

% of students with need who get grants
% of need met
% of students who get merit grants
Average merit grant

Student Success

Graduation rate
Average time to a degree
4.1 years
Median student debt
Early career earnings
% earning more than a high school grad

Notes: Students who get merit grants are full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants. Graduation rate measures degree completion within six years for both transfer students and first-time students. Early career earnings are the median earnings for both graduates and non-completers, 10 years after they first enrolled.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson’s, Money/Witlytic calculations.

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