San Diego State vs. MSU

Should I go to San Diego State University or Montana State University? Compare 50+ facts and figures about the colleges to help you determine if San Diego State or MSU is the better college for you. The CollegeSimply comparison tool allows side-by-side comparison of 50+ statistics and facts for over 2,500 colleges and universities.

Add a college to compare up to four schools

Frequently compared to these colleges. Click a college to add to the comparison. 

USD UCSD UC Riverside Cal State Fullerton Cal Poly Cal State Long Beach Colorado State UCSC San Francisco State UCSB UW ASU
San Diego State University vs. Montana State University comparison
San Diego State University Montana State University College 3 College 4
San Diego State University Montana State University
Remove Remove +Add +Add


San Diego State MSU
Location San Diego, CA Bozeman, MT
Setting Large City Remote Town
Enrollment 36,334 16,218
Type Public 4 Year Public 4 Year
National Ranking #274 #477
Religious Affiliation - - - -
Status Non-profit Non-profit
Team Colors                    


San Diego State MSU
Tuition (In State) $5,742 $5,654
Tuition (Out of State) $17,622 $25,084
Room & Board $18,531 $10,400
Avg Net Price $13,192 $17,656
Avg Grant Aid $9,431 $7,100
% Receiving Grant Aid 58% 91%


San Diego State MSU
Admission Chances Calculate Calculate
Applied 64,784 18,892
Admitted 23,778 15,260
Acceptance Rate 36.7% 80.8%
Enrolled % 20.4% 21.4%
Avg High School GPA 3.81 weighted 3.6
Typical High School Grades A- B+
Admissions Standards Difficult Difficult
Applicant Competition High
ACT Range 22/29 21/28
SAT Range 1090/1300 1090/1320
Submit Test Scores Required Required
Application Deadline Nov 30, 2022 May 15, 2023


San Diego State MSU
Student to Faculty Ratio 27:1 17:1
Popular Majors
  • Business (23%)
  • Social Sciences (13%)
  • Psychology (8%)
  • English and Literature (7%)
  • Health Professions (7%)
  • Engineering (12%)
  • Business (10%)
  • Health Professions (9%)
  • Visual and Performing Arts (8%)
  • Education (7%)


San Diego State MSU
Graduation Rate 66% 51%
Median Earnings (After 10 years) $53,400 $45,800
Making Student Loan Payments 65% 71%
Median Student Loan Debt $15,349 $24,000
Median Loan Payment $158 $248


San Diego State MSU
% Men 43% 52%
% Women 57% 48%
Racial Diversity Very High Very Low
% White 34% 86%
% Black 4% 1%
% Hispanic 31% 4%
% Native American 0% 2%
% Pacific Islander 0% 0%
% Two or More Races 7% 3%
% International 6% 3%
% Unknown Race 4% 1%


San Diego State MSU
% In-State 83% 42%
% Out-of-State 15% 57%


San Diego State MSU
Campus Housing Yes Yes
Freshman Dorm Required No No
Meal Plan Yes Yes
Weekend/Evening Classes No No
Daycare Facility Yes Yes
Learn More Details Details

Comparable Facts

  • San Diego State University is larger than than MSU based on total student enrollment (36,334 students vs. 16,218 students)

San Diego State vs. MSU Cost Comparison

Which college is more expensive, San Diego State or MSU?

  • San Diego State University is 1.6% more expensive to attend than MSU for in-state tuition ($5,742.00 vs. $5,654.00)
  • Out of state tuition is 42.3% higher at MSU than San Diego State University ($25,084.00 vs. $17,622.00)
  • The typical actual cost that students pay to attend (average net price) is less at San Diego State University than MSU ($13,192 vs. $17,656)
  • Living costs (room and board or off-campus housing budget) at Montana State University are 78.2% lower than costs at San Diego State University ($10,400 vs. $18,531)
  • More students receive financial grant aid at Montana State University than San Diego State University (91% vs. 58%)
  • The average total grant financial aid received by San Diego State University students is 32.8% larger than aid received Montana State University ($9,431 vs. $7,100)

San Diego State vs. MSU Admissions Difficulty Comparison

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

  • The average SAT score at Montana State University (1131) is 1 points higher than at San Diego State (1130)
  • Incoming San Diego State students have at the same average ACT score (25) as students at MSU (25)
  • MSU has a higher acceptance rate (80.8%) than San Diego State (36.7%)

San Diego State vs. MSU Graduation Outcomes Comparison

Which is better, San Diego State or MSU? 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 MSU and San Diego State.

  • The graduation rate at San Diego State is higher than Montana State University (66% vs. 51%)
  • Graduates from San Diego State University earn on average $7,600 more per year than MSU graduates after ten years. ($53,400 vs. $45,800)
  • San Diego State University students graduate with a $8,651 lower median federal student loan debt than MSU graduates. ($15,349 vs. $24,000)
  • San Diego State graduates are paying $90 less per month on federal student loans than MSU graduates. ($158 vs. $248)
  • More MSU graduates are actively paying back their federal student loan debt than former San Diego State students, three years after graduation. (71% vs. 65%)

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