UCF vs. Penn State

Should I go to University of Central Florida or Penn State Main Campus? Compare the two schools' costs, SAT, ACT, GPA, admissions criteria and outcomes to help you determine if UCF or Penn State is the better college for you.

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University of Central Florida vs. Penn State Main Campus comparison
University of Central Florida Penn State Main Campus College 3 College 4
University of Central Florida Penn State Main Campus
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Location Orlando, FL University Park, PA
Setting Large Suburban Small City
Students 68,475 46,810
Type Public 4 Year Public 4 Year
Religious Affiliation - - - -
Status Non-profit Non-profit

Costs

Tuition (In State) $4,478 $17,416
Tuition (Out of State) $19,810 $34,480
Room & Board $10,010 $11,884
Avg Net Price $11,617 $24,724
Avg Grant Aid $9,708 $8,678
% Receiving Grant Aid 86% 50%

Admission and Academics

Acceptance Rate 44.4% 75.9%
Avg High School GPA 3.81 3.59
Admissions Standards Very High Very High
Applicant Competition Low
ACT Range 25/30 23/30
SAT Range 1170/1340 1070/1310
Application Deadline May 1, 2020

Outcomes

Graduation Rate 63% 87%
Median Earnings (After 10 years) $48,900 $55,300
Making Student Loan Payments 59% 69%
Median Student Loan Debt $18,270 $26,818
Median Loan Payment $188 $277
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Comparable Facts

  • University of Central Florida is larger than than Penn State based on total student enrollment (68,475 students vs. 46,810 students)

UCF vs. Penn State Cost Comparison

Which college is more expensive, UCF or Penn State?

  • Penn State Main Campus is 288.9% more expensive to attend than UCF for in-state tuition ($17,416.00 vs. $4,478.00)
  • Out of state tuition is 74.1% higher at Penn State than University of Central Florida ($34,480.00 vs. $19,810.00)
  • The typical actual cost that students pay to attend (average net price) is less at University of Central Florida than Penn State ($11,617 vs. $24,724)
  • Living costs (room and board or off-campus housing budget) at University of Central Florida are 18.7% lower than costs at Penn State Main Campus ($10,010 vs. $11,884)
  • More students receive financial grant aid at University of Central Florida than Penn State Main Campus (86% vs. 50%)
  • The average total grant financial aid received by University of Central Florida students is 11.9% larger than aid received Penn State Main Campus ($9,708 vs. $8,678)

UCF vs. Penn State Admissions Difficulty Comparison

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

  • The average SAT score at Penn State Main Campus (1202) is 23 points higher than at UCF (1179)
  • Incoming Penn State students have a 1 point higher average ACT score (27) than students at UCF (26)
  • Penn State has a higher acceptance rate (75.9%) than UCF (44.4%)

UCF vs. Penn State Graduation Outcomes Comparison

Which is better, UCF or Penn State? 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 Penn State and UCF.

  • The graduation rate at Penn State is higher that University of Central Florida (87% vs. 63%)
  • Graduates from Penn State Main Campus earn on average $6,400 more per year than UCF graduates after ten years. ($55,300 vs. $48,900)
  • University of Central Florida students graduate with a $8,548 lower median federal student loan debt than Penn State graduates. ($18,270 vs. $26,818)
  • UCF graduates are paying $89 less per month on federal student loans than Penn State graduates. ($188 vs. $277)
  • More Penn State graduates are actively paying back their federal student loan debt than former UCF students, three years after graduation. (69% vs. 59%)

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