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Rank: 12

California Institute of Technology

Pasadena, CAwww.caltech.edu
Even by the demanding standards of elite schools, California Institute of Technology is tough. Freshmen take their first-year courses pass/fail to ease into the school, but after that, professors are notoriously hard graders. No easy A's here, and certainly not in the popular engineering and physical sciences programs. Along with the challenging workload comes great research opportunities, a hallmark of the school. Internships at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, located near Caltech's Pasadena campus, are a prime example. The school also boasts more than 30 Nobel laureates among its alumni and faculty members. And Techies tend to go on to great jobs, reporting salaries to PayScale that average about $78,800 within three years of getting their degree, which is high even by elite tech school standards. Caltech isn't known for its athletics or social life. The men's Division III basketball team, for instance, had a 310-game losing streak from 1985 through 2011. Male students outnumber females by two to one. But the school's residential houses pick up the social slack: Each throws at least one big party a year, often complete with theater-style sets.
costs
Est. Full Price 2018-2019
$70,600
% of students who get any grants
60%
Est. price for students who receive aid
$28,800
Average price for low-income students
$3,500
admissions
Acceptance rate
8%
Median SAT/ACT Score
1560/35
SAT/ACT required?
Yes
Enrollment
1,002
Financial Aid
% of students with need who get grants
100%
% of need met
100%
% of students who get merit* grants
0%
Average merit grant
$5,000
student success
Graduation rate
94%
Average time to a degree
4.2 years
Average student debt
$14,400
Average salary within 3 years
$78,800
% of low-income students who become upper middle class
66%
key deadlines
Early decision application
Nov 1
Regular application
Jan 3

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Equality of Oppourtunity Project.

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Equality of Oppourtunity Project.

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