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Overall Score: 73.28

Simpson College

Indianola, IA
Simpson College wants you to have a good, rich liberal arts education – at a price you can actually afford. It notes that nearly every student who attends the college receives some form of grant or scholarship. The college, about 18 miles south of Des Moines, offers 80 majors, minors and special programs. The liberal arts curriculum focuses on “embedded skills,” such as critical thinking and intercultural communication, and requires courses in seven “areas of engagement.” The school presents a wide variety of opportunities in what it calls the "extended classroom," as well. Art students can study at an affiliated school in Florence, Italy; history majors can intern at the Iowa History Center on campus. Simpson is also home to the Des Moines Metro Opera, a professional opera company, where SC music students can work as interns during the group’s summer festival. Each spring term, classes are canceled for Campus Day, a tradition that dates back 100-years. Students and faculty are encouraged to celebrate the college by giving back through service projects on and off campus.


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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