Reed College, located in Portland, Oregon, is a private liberal arts and science institution. Students, known on campus as Reedies, can pursue a bachelor’s degree in one of 40 programs and majors. With a student body of just 1,400, the college boasts a student-professor ratio of 9:1. In 2022-23, Reed College tuition and fees was $64,760 for both in-state and out-of-state students.
Costs for 2022-23
Tuition & Fees
Books & Supplies
Room & Board
Total Cost of Attendance
Many students receive financial aid to help cover Reed College costs. In 2020-21, 61% of first-time Reed students received financial aid, such as grants and scholarships, as well as student loans. Pell Grants, which is a federal student loan program for students who demonstrate an exceptional financial need, went to 11% of Reed students in 2020-21, with the average grant totaling $5,374.
Generally, financial aid is monetary assistance awarded to students based on personal need and merit. Students that qualify for financial aid can use it to pay for college costs like tuition, books, and living expenses.
The federal government is the largest provider of student financial aid. However, aid can also be given by state governments, colleges and universities, private companies, and nonprofits. The different types include:
• Scholarships: These can be awarded by schools and other organizations based on students’ academic excellence, athletic achievement, community involvement, job experience, field of study, and financial need.
• Grants: Generally based on financial need, these can come from federal, state, private, and non-profit organizations.
• Work-study: This federal program provides qualifying students with part-time employment to earn money for expenses while in school.
• Federal student loans: This is money borrowed directly from the U.S. Department of Education. It comes with fixed interest rates that are typically lower than private loans.
Colleges, universities, and state agencies use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine financial aid eligibility. The FAFSA can be completed online, but note that state and federal and school deadlines may differ.
You can find other financial aid opportunities on databases such as:
In addition to gift-based financial aid, some students choose to borrow student loans to cover Reed College tuition. Forty-six percent of students who borrowed student loans received federal student loans, while 7% of students took out private student loans.
Private loans are funded by private organizations such as banks, online lenders, credit unions, some schools, and state-based or state-affiliated organizations. While Federal student loans have interest rates that are regulated by Congress, private lenders follow a different set of regulations so their qualifications and interest rates can vary widely.
What’s more, private loans have variable or fixed interest rates that may be higher than federal loan interest rates, which are always fixed. Private lenders may (but don’t always) require you to make payments on your loans while you are still in school, compared to federal student loans which you don’t have to start paying back until after you graduate, leave school, or change your enrollment status to less than half-time.
Private loans don’t have a specific application window and can be applied for on an as-needed basis. However, if you think you may need to take out a private loan, it’s a good idea to submit your FAFSA first to see what federal aid you may qualify for as it generally may have better rates and terms.
If you’ve missed the FAFSA deadline or you’re struggling to pay for school throughout the year, private loans can potentially help you make your payments. Just keep in mind that you will need enough lead time for your loan to process and for your lender to send money to your school.
Based on 2023-24 tuition data, it costs an estimated $282,391 to earn a four-year degree from Reed. For comparison, the average total cost of a four-year degree from a private, nonprofit college was $223,360, and it cost $104,108 for in-state students attending a public university, according to the Education Data Initiative.
During the 2022-23 academic year, Reed College tuition and fees was $64,760. This cost is for in- and out-of-state, first-time undergraduate students who attended the school full-time. Reedies who live on campus pay $15,950 for room and board.
For comparison, the national average tuition and fees at a private, nonprofit college is $37,641 while students pay $9,092 for on-campus room and board.
Graduate Tuition and Fees
Costs for 2022-23
Total Cost Of Attendance
Reed College offers one graduate program. Interested students can earn a Masters of Arts Degree in Liberal Studies. The program differs from traditional masters degrees in that it’s a broad program, and students can choose from a wide range of courses. Reedies in the graduate program are required to complete nine units of course work to graduate, and tuition costs an estimated $45,900; they do not pay a student body fee like undergrads.
For comparison, the average cost of a master’s degree at a private institution is $62,100, according to the Education Data Initiative. To help pay for this hefty cost graduate loans are one option for students who need to finance their advanced degree.
Cost per Credit Hour
Students who choose to attend Reed College part-time can pay for classes per unit. The cost for one unit is $11,220. A minimum of 30 units is required for graduation.
Campus Housing Expenses
Costs for 2022-23
Books & Supplies
Room & Board
On-campus housing at Reed College is segmented into neighborhoods based on class level. First-year students are required to live in the freshman housing complex on campus. There is a dedicated sophomore neighborhood, upper-division neighborhood, and one mixed sophomore and upper-classmen house.
Additionally, off-campus housing is an option for students. The average cost of rent for a 758-square-foot unit in Portland, Oregon, is $1,763 per month, according to RentCafe. Unlike on-campus housing costs, which typically only require students to pay rent during the academic year, off-campus housing generally requires a 12-month lease.
Reed College Acceptance Rate
Number of applications
The Reed College acceptance rate in fall 2022 was 31%, which makes it a competitive school. More than 9,000 students applied to attend Reed for the fall of 2022, and the school accepted 2,797.
Students who are interested in applying to Reed College for the fall term must submit their applications by January 15. Below are the requirements:
• High school GPA
• High school transcript
• Letter of recommendation
• College-preparatory program
Considered, but not required:
• Secondary school rank
• Formal demonstration of competencies
• Test of English as a Foreign Language, if necessary
SAT and ACT Scores
Reed College applicants are not required to submit standardized test scores, like the SAT or ACT, and the scores are not considered in the acceptance process. However, some prospective students still choose to provide their test scores. Typical SAT and ACT scores, as disclosed by the College Board, are below.
SAT Evidence-Based Reading/Writing
Popular Majors at Reed College
Undergraduate students enrolled at Reed College can choose from 38 majors across 26 departments; 13 of the majors are interdisciplinary. Students may also choose to combine two disciplines once they have the approval of both departments.
1. Political Science and Government
The most popular major at Reed College is political science. Students gain a theoretical and practical understanding of social and political issues. Courses are taught by renowned faculty and include classes on political philosophy, public policy, and more.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 25
2. Experimental Psychology
Reed’s experimental psychology program is the second most popular major. Students receive a foundational learning in psychological science and can select from five allied fields as part of the curriculum requirement.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 20
Reed mathematics majors can focus just on pure mathematics, do a concentration in statistics, or pursue an interdisciplinary study in math and computer science. In addition to the learning calculations, they acquire analytical and research skills necessary for jobs in the public and private sectors.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 18
4. English Language and Literature
English majors learn and analyze various literary works, including the classics, contemporary writing, and more. Students develop their writing skills, as well as communication and critical thinking aptitude throughout the curriculum. According to the college, many of the students who earn a bachelor’s degree in English go on to earn a doctorate degree.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 18
5. Art/Art Studies
Reed College art majors study both art history and studio art. Students learn about the various art periods throughout history, study different artistic methods and movements, and perform research.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 16
Sociology majors study patterns, relationships, and issues in social structures. They study theories, and perform research to better understand nuanced dynamics within society today.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 15
Reed’s anthropology undergraduate program offers students a deep dive into human life, and students can choose from a linguistic or cultural discipline. The college encourages students toward interdisciplinary studies, for example, history or political science, to achieve a rounded education.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 13
8. Biology/Biological Sciences
Biology majors get to plan, execute, and analyze their own research project at the end of the curriculum. Students learn how to research independently, apply foundational knowledge about biology, and produce research papers defending their findings.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 12
9. Environmental Studies
Environmental studies majors at Reed receive interdisciplinary training in natural and social sciences with students choosing a primary focus in biology, chemistry, economics, history, or political science. Environmentally-focused courses include environmental ethics, eco-lit, and others.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 12
Neuroscience majors merge curriculums from biology and psychology to earn this interdisciplinary degree. Students learn about the physiological mechanics of the brain, and its effects on animal and human behavior.
Undergraduate degrees in 2021-22: 11
Generally, more than half of Reed students graduate within four years. Undergraduate students who enrolled at Reed College full-time beginning in fall 2014, graduated at the following rates:
Post-Graduation Median Earnings
The average college graduate with a bachelor’s degree earns about $55,260, according to Bankrate. Ten years after earning their degrees, students who graduated Reed College earn a median salary of $52,236.
The cost of Reed College tuition for 2022-23 was $64,760 for 2022-23, higher than the average sticker price of a private, nonprofit, four-year college. Students who are eager to pursue a degree in psychology or political science and want to attend a small liberal arts school with a low student-to-teacher ratio might find Reed College a worthwhile investment.
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