Public Colleges: Pros & Cons

Are public colleges better than private colleges?

public collegesWith so many different colleges to choose from, it can get overwhelming as a high school senior. Should you pick from one of the many public colleges to attend? Or should you choose a private college? Lets begin by breaking down the pros and the cons of public colleges.

Pros of Public Colleges

  • Tuition– Public colleges are very affordable to attend, especially for students that attend the college in the same state that they live. Tuition at public colleges and universities are a lot less expensive than private college tuition.
  • Diversity– Public colleges typically have many different types of people that you can meet. They have a large student population and people come from different states, backgrounds, ethnicities, etc. Along with being diverse in people that you will meet, public colleges also offer an abundance of extracurricular activities.
  • Course Availability Public colleges provide a lot of flexibility when it comes to signing up for and taking your courses. Courses are offered at different times through out the day so if you want to work during the day, you are able to take night classes and if you want to work a night shift, you can sign up for day courses. Public colleges can incorporate their curriculum into your schedule very easily.

Cons of Public Colleges

  • Larger class sizes– Since there are a lot of people that attend public colleges, public colleges tend to have more students in each class. Some classes consist of lecture halls filled with students. There can be one hundred students or more in some classes with only one teacher. For some people, it is difficult to learn in a huge lecture hall full of students and the professors are not able to give students individual attention.
  • Overcrowded Campus-  Due to the high number of students that enroll in public colleges each semester, classes will get filled up quickly—especially the courses with the “best” professors. Also, lines at lunch, the bookstore, and other popular places on campus can be long since there are so many students that attend the public college.
  • Communication with Professors– Professors at public colleges can have hundreds of students each semester. Due to having so many students, professors at public colleges might have limited times where they will communicate with. You might have to visit during their set office hours or schedule an appointment with them before just dropping by to ask a question.

***Note: Not all public colleges have a lot of students that attend. Some public colleges have classes with only 10 or 20 students in them each semester. It all depends on which public college you choose to go to and what classes you choose to enroll in. You can still find smaller class sizes at a public college.

After knowing about the pros and cons of public colleges, would you want to attend a public college? Leave a comment letting me know if you would or wouldn’t and why.

By: Shanice Miller, founder of

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