The moment comes, when you need to enter a university and get a higher education. Hundreds of students-to-be face a real academic dilemma: which university to choose, a state or private university?
Since there’s no single, all-purpose answer to this question, the best option is to examine the advantages of both. The following detailed analysis is based on the highlighted terms. These principles can help to clarify any questions a student may have about making a choice between public and state universities.
The question of payment is a top priority. When choosing a public university, one can save a fortune in tuition and fees. A year’s tuition at a private university can be up to ten times higher than the cost of attending a state university. So, if you live on a low-budget, you won’t likely be able to afford the cost of attending a private university. However, if you are a high-achiever, there are numerous scholarships and financial packages that can be of assistance.
Admission to a state university tends to be much easier. State universities are generally much bigger than private universities and can therefore accept more applicants. Being a citizen of a particular state will help you make the list of admitted students. At the same time, larger state universities mean later class sizes. It is especially true for the courses of the entry level, where classes may take place in a room with nearly two hundred undergrads.
Unlike state universities, private universities are usually fairly small; that is why they only take on a limited number of new admissions each year. This fact explains why private universities often seem so restrictive and why competition to enter private universities is so high.
The level of academic teaching is sufficient enough at both types of educational establishments. Public universities offer the same variety of staff and the level of expertise is almost the same as at private universities. Still there’s some contrast between the two academic approaches. The low number of students at private universities increases the possibility for tutorials and consultations. These types of academic activities usually take place within small groups, and stimulate dialogue between professors and the students. Undoubtedly, this can be regarded as a valid benefit of private universities because this way of academic interaction and communication serves to develop analytic and critical thinking, which are of great importance for any individual’s future career (Drum, 2012).
Also, it must be admitted that private universities are considered to be more prestigious than state universities, so they are more likely to stimulate one’s future success (Nairaland Forum, 2015). As a rule, public institutions take lower position in the academic ranking. What is more, these universities and colleges typically provide less selective admission standards. At the same time, private colleges and universities may publish more influential scientific works and recruit more qualified personnel. However, the quality of knowledge received at a private college or university isn’t necessarily the finest one in contrast to education that one pursues at a public institution. Still, grads of top trusted colleges and universities with prestigious reputation are usually more attractive to the employers. It is important to stress that some public institutions have as prestigious status as their private alternatives.
When it comes to accreditation, academic institutions can be accredited regionally, nationally, or not accredited at all. Top educational standards are usually associated with regional accreditation – the so-called accreditation’s gold standard. It is important to keep in mind that almost every public university is accredited regionally, while a lot of private schools have national accreditation. Some private universities, like the ones that are religion-based, may give preference to accreditation of national level instead of regional accreditation. When it comes to the for-private institutions that have no accreditation, they turn out to be scandalous, and potential students should better keep away from those.
Apart from studies, each university pays attention to creating a student community by means of extracurricular activities. The number of extracurricular activities at private universities can be slightly higher compared to state universities, but the difference is too slight to be cited as a significant disadvantage for public universities (Drum, 2012). College students that have athletics as an integral part of their lives may choose to enter a public university. The point here is that most of the athletic teams of Division I come from public colleges.
Taking into consideration the fact that public institutions accept so many applicants, they usually provide a wider assortment of degree offerings. In other words, public universities enable one to find just about any academic degree or program. At the same time, private schools have fewer undergrads and thus, they offer fewer choices. Nonetheless, a lot of private universities provide a chance to customize the chosen programs by collaborating with academic advisers.
Religious affiliation is another important factor, when it comes to public versus private colleges competition. Public universities and colleges are irreligious, by law. In other words, these institutions are secular and have no connection to the religious matters. Private universities aren’t bound by the state-and-church separation principle, which means they may be affiliated religiously. If you give your preference to the non-secular private academic institutions, you’re not going to observe the college religion to get accepted. At the same time, secular undergrads may find more enjoyable to attend private or public school that is not affiliated religiously.
To add more, public institutions usually offer better facilities provided by governments. This includes extensive libraries and innovative research opportunities. In case you’re interested in conducting academic research, it is recommended to choose public schools where all these stunning options are accessible. On the other hand, private universities may provide you with a unique opportunity to join a teamwork project led by a professor in your field.
A true benefit of state universities is that you can select the one you need according to the country region or a city you desire. It is easier to deal with the question of geographical location, when you give your preference to the public colleges and universities.
It’s hard to give one exact answer to the question: “Which is better: Public or Private universities?” The academic goals and financial demands of each are different, and each type of university has strong points and weak points. By choosing a public university, you choose a safe and proven way receive a college higher education at a relatively low price. By selecting a private university, you are sure to get into a privileged circle of students, thus investing into a successful start of your future career. Just be ready to pay for it if you’re lucky enough to be admitted.
One certain thing is that the decision to continue studies and get a well-rounded education is always the right one. Luckily, the number of universities is sufficient enough to fulfill demand, so you’re sure to find a university to suit your needs.
As you’re completely aware now, there is a rage of different peculiarities that make private and public universities different. The key trick here is to choose the factors that are of significant importance, and act accordingly.