2023 Best Public Colleges in Texas
Published: September 1, 2022
By: Colleges of Distinction Staff
Jump to: Angelo State University | Stephen F. Austin State University | The University of Texas at Arlington | The University of Texas at Dallas | The University of Texas at San Antonio | Frequently Asked Questions
Public colleges and universities are usually perceived to have larger class sizes, less attention, and less prestige than private colleges. Don’t let these labels fool you! Each institution offers a unique college experience, ranging from small liberal arts colleges to research institutions.
Rather than looking at college rankings to choose where you will study for the next four years, take a more immersive approach to your college search. Explore college campuses, sift through your top college majors, and find the college experience that you want.
Colleges of Distinction has hand-picked a selection of the best colleges in the United States that cater to students’ interests to help you with your college search. Take a look below to see our list of 2022-2023 Texas Colleges of Distinction to help you find the right college for you.
San Angelo, TX ‧ Public ‧ 4-year
Angelo State University, a member of the Texas Tech University System, is a vibrant campus community of 10,000 students, known as the Ram Fam. The Ram Fam includes students from nearly every county in Texas, over 40 states, and close to 30 countries, and Angelo State has been designated a Hispanic Serving Institution by the U.S. Department of Education.
Angelo State offers over 100 majors and concentrations through six colleges, providing educational opportunities that prepare students for successful careers or entry into graduate and professional schools. ASU also boasts an unparalleled Honors Program and Center for International Studies, giving students further opportunities to expand their education through research and study abroad. With a 21:1 student-to-faculty ratio, ASU students also have ultimate access to award-winning faculty.
Acceptance rate 78% • Net price $12,420 • SAT Range 920-1120 • Students submitting SAT scores 65%
Total Undergrad Population 10,775 • Setting City: Small • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 43% • Retention rate 71% • Student-to-faculty ratio 21:1
Nacogdoches, TX ‧ Public ‧ 4-year
Axe ‘em, Jacks! Across a comprehensive array of disciplines, Stephen F. Austin State University helps its proud community of Lumberjacks pursue their passions and prepare for a lifetime of success. Its approximately 13,000 students benefit from over 80 undergraduate majors throughout six colleges: Business; Education; Fine Arts; Forestry & Agriculture; Liberal & Applied Arts; and Sciences & Mathematics. SFA offers degree programs both online and on its beautifully wooded campus in Nacogdoches, the heart of Texas Forest Country.
SFA Lumberjacks enjoy the academic breadth of a public university alongside the personalized attention of a private school, getting the support they need to thrive both in the classroom as well as during such hands-on experiences as internships and research projects.
Acceptance rate 76% • Net price $12,649 • SAT Range 980-1150 • Students submitting SAT scores 72%
Total Undergrad Population 12,620 • Setting Town • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 54% • Retention rate 77% • Student-to-faculty ratio 16:1
Arlington, TX ‧ Public ‧ 4-year
The University of Texas at Arlington is a public institution in Arlington, Texas. Over 32,000 undergraduates, faculty, and staff volunteer nearly 700,000 hours of service each year. In the classroom undergrad students can choose from 65 majors. On campus there are nearly 300 student clubs and organizations to join.
Acceptance rate 88% • Net price $15,220 • SAT Range 1050-1250 • Students submitting SAT scores 78%
Total Undergrad Population 48,072 • Setting City: Large • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 52% • Retention rate 76% • Student-to-faculty ratio 24:1
Richardson, TX ‧ Public ‧ 4-year
The University of Texas at Dallas is a collaborative institution with a strong emphasis on research. The University offers a wide range of programs, affording students several opportunities to find their niche. UT Dallas is quickly progressing and turning out students that are well equipped to succeed.
UT Dallas recognizes co-ops and Curricular Practical Training (CPT) as existing under the umbrella, “Internship.” In all cases, students apply what they have learned in the classroom to real world experience.
Externships involve job shadowing. When students job shadow, they get a firsthand look at what a career has to offer, as well as the demands of the job. Externships allow participants to gain industry knowledge without a long term commitment. Some of the activities one might experience during an externship include: tours of the facilities, staff meetings, and observation of customer/client interactions.
Acceptance rate 79% • Net price $11,185 • SAT Range 1220-1450 • Students submitting SAT scores 84%
Total Undergrad Population 28,669 • Setting City: Midsize • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 69% • Retention rate 90% • Student-to-faculty ratio 25:1
San Antonio, TX ‧ Public ‧ 4-year
The University of Texas at San Antonio is a nationally recognized state research university in San Antonio, Texas, with four campus locations: Main Campus, Downtown Campus, Hemisfair Campus, and Park West Campus. Located in one of the most vibrant, fastest-growing cities in the country, UTSA actively embraces multicultural traditions while serving as a center for intellectual and creative resources.
With 60 undergraduate areas of study and over 360 student organizations, students can practice what they love to do both inside and outside of the classroom. The UTSA community is full of social interaction, cultural engagement, and service to the community, all of which shape roadrunners into well-rounded, active citizens of the community. UTSA’s top-tier education goes beyond the workplace—it sets students on the path toward becoming who they’re meant to be.
Acceptance rate 84% • Net price $10,934 • SAT Range 1020-1210 • Students submitting SAT scores 82%
Total Undergrad Population 34,742 • Setting City: Large • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 46% • Retention rate 78% • Student-to-faculty ratio 27:1
What it’s like to attend public schools in Texas and other FAQ:
The average undergraduate tuition & fees for public colleges in Texas is $8,600 for in-state students and $24,890 for out-of-state students.
The University of Texas at San Antonio has an average net price of $10,934 making it the least expensive public college in Texas that made our list.
The University of Texas at Arlington has an acceptance rate of 88%, making it the least exclusive public college on our list.
The University of Texas at Arlington has a median total debt after graduation of $18,166. This is the typical debt for a student who completed their undergraduate degree.