Home College Towns The Top Ten Schools in the Texas Public University System

The Top Ten Schools in the Texas Public University System

The Top Ten Schools in the Texas Public University System

8. Tarleton University, Stephenville, Texas

Tarleton University, a member of the Texas A&M University System. The main campus is in Stephenville, which is an hour southwest of Fort Worth. About seventeen thousand people live in Stephenville, an area with hot, humid summers and fairly mild winters.

But the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex is only an hour away, and it provides the cultural and economic center for the North Texas area. The just over 12,000 students on campus can access DFW easily.

The vision for the school is to become a leader in student-focused education while promoting learning, leadership, and service through one hundred undergraduate and graduate degrees in 5 colleges. There are one hundred student organizations and recreational sports to join. Or you might be able to join the Purple Poo. Put that on your resume. Seriously, it is a secret organization that puts up signs on Monday nights to promote spirit. Sounds fun.

By Billy Hathorn at English Wikipedia (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
By Billy Hathorn at English Wikipedia (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Tarleton is known for agriculture, nursing, music, medical technology, mathematical data mining and teacher education, and has one of the largest and oldest public school improvement partnerships in the U.S. that provides benefits to fifty area schools. There are several new and renovated buildings on the one hundred seventy-three acre campus.

Tarleton also has a six hundred acre university farm and twelve hundred acre ranch as well as a new sports recreation center, dining facility, and Planetarium to name a few recent additions. Totally worth spending some time considering.

Instate tuition, books, room, and board costs – $19,786.

Average student debt – $21,500.*

 7. Midwestern State, Wichita Falls, Texas

By Travis K. Witt (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons
By Travis K. Witt (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons
There are six thousand students on the Midwestern State campus with a 17:1 student to faculty ratio. This is one of the four public universities that is not part of a public university system. It is the only public liberal arts college in Texas.

There are seven colleges that make up Midwestern: the College of Science and Mathematics, College of Business Administration, College of Fine Arts, College of Health Sciences & Human Services, College of Education and Graduate School. The guiding philosophy on campus considers civil service, taking care of the environment, and financial and human resources to be very important.

Wichita Falls, a city of one hundred thousand, likely feels lucky to have this safe and beautiful campus tucked inside it. This is an area with many hot days and some very cold nights.

Midwestern has a two hundred twenty-five acre campus with 50 buildings built of red brick with tiled roofs and arched facades. Lovely.

The student population is roughly 53% white, 16% Hispanic, 13% Black, 3% Asian, and 9% non-resident Alien. There are one hundred organizations and a solid Greek life to keep you busy when you’re not studying.

Instate tuition, books, room, and board costs – $16,327.

Average student debt – $23,000.*

 6. Angelo State University, San Angelo, Texas

By NativeTexan55 (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Angelo State University strives to prepare students to be responsible citizens and to have productive careers. The school motto is “Let there be light.”

Angelo State is part of the Texas Tech University System where the tag line is “From here it’s possible” suggesting the desire to show the value of education and helping people achieve their dreams.

The school is located in San Angelo, a city with a population of about one hundred thousand. Minimal snow falls here, but there are about fifty days falling in the freezing range, with an average temperature of 65 degrees and two hundred and fifty-one days of sun.

There are one hundred undergraduate and thirty-four graduate programs. It is the second largest campus in the Texas Tech University System, with about eighty-five hundred students on campus from forty-six states and twenty-two countries. The student body is considered to be very religious.

Six colleges make up the university, which was rated as one of the “Best 380 Colleges” in 2016 by the Princeton Review. It was also named as a “Top 10 Up and Coming Regional University” by U.S. News & World Report. Princeton Review and GamePro list Angelo State as having a “Top 50 Undergraduate Game Design Program.” And the Military Times ranks Angelo State as 42nd best university for veterans.

The student union is ranked as one of the “25 Most Amazing Campus Student Unions” in the Best College Reviews. There is a tree-lined pedestrian walkway stretching over a mile, connecting major buildings. The planetarium on campus is one of the largest at a college.

Off campus, Angelo State has a Lake House at Lake Nasworthy for outside living fun. A nice tradition on campus is when the university president presents class rings to each senior student before commencement. The school mascot, Dominic the ram, comes so that each student can either rub their ring through his wool for luck or touch his horn with their ring for strength.

Angelo State has Division II sports along with more than one hundred student sports and organizations. Student to faculty ratio is 19:1.

Imagine walking the walkway while enjoying the sunny campus and knowing that you are getting what you want from college while owing a fraction of what your best friend at one of those other private schools owes.

Instate tuition, books, room, and board costs – $16,442.

Average student debt – $21,594.*



  1. While I loved reading all the great things about Texas Tech, the university is a Tier One instiutution

    1. This whole “countdown” reads like a promotional article for the smaller Texas colleges. A&M and Texas don’t need to advertise. 🙂

    1. Please reread the first paragraph regarding Tarleton University. The very first sentence states, “Tarleton University, a member of the Texas A & M system.”

  2. I fail to understand the omission of two of the top public universities in the nation. Ever heard of UT Austin or Texas A&M?

    1. If you reread the introductory paragraph, you will see that the article looked at schools that don’t come with a big price tag.

  3. These rankings are literal trash, not to mention hilarious regarding the fact that the actual top public Texas universities, UT Austin and Texas A&M, were both left off.

    1. Your post is ridiculous. The article is not about the top universities in the nation, but universities in Texas that have a lot to offer without the big price tag.

    2. Golly gee whillikers lern tu reed!

      It is about schools that you do not have to sell soul and sacrifice your firstborn son too widget.

  4. I believe the focus of the article was to show the variety of the state college system in Texas, particularly for people outside of the state. Obviously A&M & Texas are the biggest but so what – they are already well-known outside of the state. There are other schools in the state that are high-quality. In fact, I venture to say that there are few colleges/universities in Texas that aren’t up to snuff – private as well as public. So, you A&M and Texas folks who have their noses out of joint, just get over yourselves. Unlike what you think the sun does not rise and set over just two places in Texas.

  5. The first paragraph states, “…here are ten fantastic college options in Texas that do not come with a huge price tag… ” UT and TAMU are both outstanding universities. However, their costs are eye-watering compared to the ten schools listed.

  6. “here are ten fantastic college options in Texas that do not come with a huge price tag when compared nationally to other public universities.” For everyone whining about UTA and A&M. Paragraph one. Learn to read.

  7. Fact Check: For all those claiming that UT and A&M were excluded due to cost, please follow the link provided in the sources section. For starters, the numbers listed on this site are quite different than the ones in this article which makes me wonder where the author got their numbers. Secondly, you’ll see that the cost of both UT and A&M is comparable to many of the institutions on this list.

    The difference in cost is significant when considering out of state tuition but I’m not sure that’s the intended audience of this article based on “There is completely a school here for you, and if you’re a resident of Texas, then lucky you. Not only do you have interesting choices, but you have economical choices.”

  8. Sorry to see that UT Arlington was omitted! Our programs compare well in all areas addressed by this article.

  9. Agree with this list based on cost of education but your headline is misleading. Should be to top 10 cheapest Texas public universities. Great article though to give people options.

  10. Glad to see UNT on this list. UT-Arlington deserves to be on here, and above Tech as it is also a Tier One university.

  11. Texas Southern?! Really?! That school is forever about to lose their accreditation. That school is a mess. The campus is ugly and in dire need of updating. The law school was recently under review because their bar exam passing rate is in the toilet. What criteria was used that got this university put on the list?!


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