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Arkansas Colleges

Knowledge is power! Choose the best Arkansas degree program with our helpful college search tool. Sort the list of Arkansas colleges by tuition, graduation rates and other statistics.

Find the Best Colleges in Arkansas & Beyond

The state of Arkansas supports two university systems, has a network of community colleges, and is host to 10 private colleges and universities accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The list of accredited Arkansas schools includes large public research universities, public and private baccalaureate colleges, plenty of public junior colleges and a variety of Christian colleges. Private schools with headquarters outside of Arkansas also offer degree programs within state lines.
Arkansas residents can also earn affordable degrees out of state through the Academic Common Market. In-state prices are offered to Arkansans for select undergraduate and graduate programs in Alabama, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Florida and Texas also offer tuition breaks at the graduate level.

Arkansas College Education Data

Here is an overview of Arkansas colleges and universities that are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  • Two-Year Colleges: The state of Arkansas oversees more than 20 associate’s colleges. Most of these schools serve about 1500 to 2000 students per year, but Pulaski Technical College in North Little Rock enrolled about 10,500 students in the fall of 2013. Other associate’s colleges with especially high enrollments in Arkansas are the Northwest Arkansas Community College in Benton and Arkansas State University – Beebe. The only private associate’s college in Arkansas that’s accredited by the Higher Learning Commission is Crowley’s Ridge College in Paragould. It’s affiliated with the Churches of Christ.
  • Four-Year Colleges: The University of Arkansas campuses in Fort Smith, Pine Bluff, Fayetteville and Little Rock grant four-year degrees. The remaining four-year schools in Arkansas with accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission are private. Of these nine private schools, eight are Christian colleges. John Brown University is Arkansas’ only secular private college with accredited bachelor degree programs.
  • Master’s Universities: Seven institutions in Arkansas focus on master’s education. Six of these are public universities. One is a private school affiliated with the Churches of Christ.
  • Medical School: The state’s only medical school is the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock.

Check out our list of top Arkansas colleges below.

Rank School Name City State Net Cost School Level Retention Rate Details
1

ABC Beauty College Inc

Arkadelphia

AR

N/A

Vocational

54.55%

Distance Learning

No

2

Academy of Salon and Spa

Fort Smith

AR

N/A

Vocational

78.13%

Distance Learning

No

3

Arkansas Baptist College

Little Rock

AR

N/A

4 year

39.45%

Distance Learning

Yes

4

Arkansas Beauty College

Russellville

AR

N/A

Vocational

66.67%

Distance Learning

No

5

Arkansas Beauty School

Conway

AR

N/A

Vocational

81.25%

Distance Learning

No

6

Arkansas Beauty School

Little Rock

AR

N/A

Vocational

57.14%

Distance Learning

No

7

Arkansas College of Barbering and Hair Design

North Little Rock

AR

N/A

Vocational

75%

Distance Learning

No

8

Arkansas Northeastern College

Blytheville

AR

$7,649

2 year

56.65%

Distance Learning

Yes

9

Arkansas State University-Beebe

Beebe

AR

$6,100

2 year

54.86%

Distance Learning

Yes

10

Arkansas State University-Main Campus

Jonesboro

AR

$8,984

4 year

73.12%

Distance Learning

Yes

11

Arkansas State University-Mountain Home

Mountain Home

AR

$10,369

2 year

55.84%

Distance Learning

Yes

12

Arkansas State University-Newport

Newport

AR

$5,218

2 year

53.53%

Distance Learning

Yes

13

Arkansas State University-System Office

Jonesboro

AR

N/A

4 year

N/A

Distance Learning

No

14

Arkansas Tech University

Russellville

AR

$8,137

4 year

69.37%

Distance Learning

Yes

15

Arthur's Beauty College Inc-Fort Smith

Fort Smith

AR

N/A

Vocational

80%

Distance Learning

No

16

Arthur's Beauty College Inc-Jacksonville

Jacksonville

AR

N/A

Vocational

60%

Distance Learning

No

17

Arthur's Beauty School Inc-Conway

Conway

AR

N/A

Vocational

71.43%

Distance Learning

No

18

Arthur's Beauty School Inc-Pine Bluff

Pine Bluff

AR

N/A

Vocational

55%

Distance Learning

No

19

Baptist Health Schools-Little Rock

Little Rock

AR

N/A

2 year

62.5%

Distance Learning

Yes

20

Black River Technical College

Pocahontas

AR

$5,418

2 year

59.13%

Distance Learning

Yes

21

Blue Cliff College-Fayetteville

Fayetteville

AR

N/A

Vocational

79.35%

Distance Learning

No

22

Bryan University

Rogers

AR

N/A

2 year

33.33%

Distance Learning

Yes

23

Career Academy of Hair Design

Springdale

AR

N/A

Vocational

67.38%

Distance Learning

No

24

Central Baptist College

Conway

AR

N/A

4 year

67.31%

Distance Learning

Yes

25

College of the Ouachitas

Malvern

AR

$4,788

2 year

48.74%

Distance Learning

Yes


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Useful and Fun Facts about Arkansas

Learn more about Arkansas with this mix of useful and fun facts.

  • The name “Arkansas” is derived from the Sioux word acansa, which means “people of the south wind.”
  • In honor of its natural beauty, Arkansas is nicknamed the Natural State. The state has highlands and lowlands. It has six national parks, 50 state parks, 2.5 million acres of national forests, 13 major lakes and 9740 miles of rivers and streams. It’s also known for its hot springs.
  • Hot Springs Mountain has dozens of hot springs on its southwestern slope. Their average temperature is 143 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In Crater of Diamonds State Park, visitors can prospect for diamonds, amethyst and other gemstones.
  • The cost of living in Arkansas is lower than average for the US.
  • Arkansas state government is focused on promoting and supporting higher education. One example is legislation passed in 2009 to help students transfer college credits. Another show of support came in June 2015 when an additional $7 million was allocated for college scholarships. In October 2015 the state adopted a master plan for higher education called Closing the Gap 2020.
  • Some major industries in Arkansas are electronics manufacturing, wood furniture production, paper milling, diamond mining, natural gas, and bromine and petroleum production. The state’s top crops are cotton, rice and soybeans. Tourism is also a big industry; it employs more than 50,000 Arkansans.

Ready to learn and earn? Make your list of best Arkansas colleges and universities today! Compare Arkansas schools and degree programs with help from the CollegeStats search tool.