NSU vs. RU

Should I go to Norfolk State University or Radford University? Compare the two schools' costs, SAT, ACT, GPA, admissions criteria and outcomes to help you determine if NSU or RU is the better college for you.

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Norfolk State University vs. Radford University comparison
Norfolk State University Radford University College 3 College 4
Norfolk State University Radford University
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Location Norfolk, VA Radford, VA
Setting Midsize City Distant Town
Students 5,204 9,335
Type Public 4 Year Public 4 Year
Religious Affiliation - - - -
Status Non-profit Non-profit


Tuition (In State) $5,752 $7,922
Tuition (Out of State) $16,920 $19,557
Room & Board $10,844 $8,995
Avg Net Price $12,645 $14,981
Avg Grant Aid $12,190 $9,426
% Receiving Grant Aid 76% 70%

Admission and Academics

Acceptance Rate 91.7% 75.3%
Avg High School GPA 2.92 3.15
Admissions Standards Extremely Easy Unavailable
Applicant Competition
ACT Range 15/21
SAT Range 860/1040
Application Deadline Feb 1, 2020


Graduation Rate 33% 56%
Median Earnings (After 10 years) $36,700 $47,400
Making Student Loan Payments 27% 70%
Median Student Loan Debt $31,000 $23,000
Median Loan Payment $320 $237
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Comparable Facts

  • Radford University is larger than than NSU based on total student enrollment (9,335 students vs. 5,204 students)

NSU vs. RU Cost Comparison

Which college is more expensive, NSU or RU?

  • Radford University is 37.7% more expensive to attend than NSU for in-state tuition ($7,922.00 vs. $5,752.00)
  • Out of state tuition is 15.6% higher at RU than Norfolk State University ($19,557.00 vs. $16,920.00)
  • The typical actual cost that students pay to attend (average net price) is less at Norfolk State University than RU ($12,645 vs. $14,981)
  • Living costs (room and board or off-campus housing budget) at Radford University are 20.6% lower than costs at Norfolk State University ($8,995 vs. $10,844)
  • More students receive financial grant aid at Norfolk State University than Radford University (76% vs. 70%)
  • The average total grant financial aid received by Norfolk State University students is 29.3% larger than aid received Radford University ($12,190 vs. $9,426)

NSU vs. RU Admissions Difficulty Comparison

Which college is harder to get into, NSU or RU? Average SAT and ACT scores plus acceptance rates offer good insight into the difficulty of admission between RU or NSU .

  • NSU has a higher acceptance rate (91.7%) than RU (75.3%)

NSU vs. RU Graduation Outcomes Comparison

Which is better, NSU or RU? Graduation rate, salary and amount of student loan debt are indicators of a college which offers better outcomes for its graduates. Compare the following outcomes facts between RU and NSU.

  • The graduation rate at RU is higher that Norfolk State University (56% vs. 33%)
  • Graduates from Radford University earn on average $10,700 more per year than NSU graduates after ten years. ($47,400 vs. $36,700)
  • Radford University students graduate with a $8,000 lower median federal student loan debt than NSU graduates. ($23,000 vs. $31,000)
  • RU graduates are paying $83 less per month on federal student loans than NSU graduates. ($237 vs. $320)
  • More RU graduates are actively paying back their federal student loan debt than former NSU students, three years after graduation. (70% vs. 27%)

Sources: U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov IPEDS and College Scorecard https://collegescorecard.ed.gov/