PLU vs. Whitman College

Should I go to Pacific Lutheran University or Whitman College? Compare the two schools' costs, SAT, ACT, GPA, admissions criteria and outcomes to help you determine if PLU or Whitman College is the better college for you.

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Pacific Lutheran University vs. Whitman College comparison
Pacific Lutheran University Whitman College College 3 College 4
Pacific Lutheran University Whitman College
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Location Tacoma, WA Walla Walla, WA
Setting Large Suburban Remote Town
Students 3,207 1,475
Type Private 4 Year Private 4 Year
Religious Affiliation Evangelical Lutheran Church - - -
Status Non-profit Non-profit


Tuition (In State) $43,264 $53,420
Tuition (Out of State) $43,264 $53,420
Room & Board $10,876 $13,512
Avg Net Price $25,362 $41,822
Avg Grant Aid $30,044 $26,260
% Receiving Grant Aid 99% 86%

Admission and Academics

Acceptance Rate 86% 55.9%
Avg High School GPA 3.66 3.74
Admissions Standards Difficult Exceptional
Applicant Competition Low
ACT Range 24/29 28/33
SAT Range 1080/1290 1240/1450
Application Deadline Jan 15, 2020


Graduation Rate 66% 86%
Median Earnings (After 10 years) $52,300 $56,900
Making Student Loan Payments 74% 93%
Median Student Loan Debt $25,800 $17,500
Median Loan Payment $266 $180
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Comparable Facts

  • Pacific Lutheran University is larger than than Whitman College based on total student enrollment (3,207 students vs. 1,475 students)

PLU vs. Whitman College Cost Comparison

Which college is more expensive, PLU or Whitman College?

  • Whitman College is 23.5% more expensive to attend than PLU for in-state tuition ($53,420.00 vs. $43,264.00)
  • Out of state tuition is 23.5% higher at Whitman College than Pacific Lutheran University ($53,420.00 vs. $43,264.00)
  • The typical actual cost that students pay to attend (average net price) is less at Pacific Lutheran University than Whitman College ($25,362 vs. $41,822)
  • Living costs (room and board or off-campus housing budget) at Pacific Lutheran University are 24.2% lower than costs at Whitman College ($10,876 vs. $13,512)
  • More students receive financial grant aid at Pacific Lutheran University than Whitman College (99% vs. 86%)
  • The average total grant financial aid received by Pacific Lutheran University students is 14.4% larger than aid received Whitman College ($30,044 vs. $26,260)

PLU vs. Whitman College Admissions Difficulty Comparison

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

  • The average SAT score at Whitman College (1314) is 197 points higher than at PLU (1117)
  • Incoming Whitman College students have a 5 point higher average ACT score (30) than students at PLU (25)
  • PLU has a higher acceptance rate (86%) than Whitman College (55.9%)

PLU vs. Whitman College Graduation Outcomes Comparison

Which is better, PLU or Whitman College? 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 Whitman College and PLU.

  • The graduation rate at Whitman College is higher that Pacific Lutheran University (86% vs. 66%)
  • Graduates from Whitman College earn on average $4,600 more per year than PLU graduates after ten years. ($56,900 vs. $52,300)
  • Whitman College students graduate with a $8,300 lower median federal student loan debt than PLU graduates. ($17,500 vs. $25,800)
  • Whitman College graduates are paying $86 less per month on federal student loans than PLU graduates. ($180 vs. $266)
  • More Whitman College graduates are actively paying back their federal student loan debt than former PLU students, three years after graduation. (93% vs. 74%)

Sources: U.S. Department of Education IPEDS and College Scorecard