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­College Leads “Best Value” List

By Carol Brévart-Demm

USA Today and the Princeton Review have named Swarthmore the “best value” among all private colleges and universities for 2009–2010—for the second year running. The Princeton Review selected the schools based on surveys of administrators and students at more than 650 public and private college and university campuses in the United States. According to USA Today, “criteria included more than 30 factors in three areas: academics, costs, and financial aid. Academic ratings were based on student surveys about such issues as professors’ accessibility and class sizes as well as institutional reports about student-faculty ratios and percent of classes taught by teaching assistants. The financial aid rating is based on a combination of school-reported data and student surveys. Tuition, room and board, and required fees as well as book costs and other factors are included in the financial measurement.” Harvard University and Wesleyan College (Macon, Ga.) rounded out the top three schools.

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