Kiplinger's names Willamette best value

Willamette University is ranked 53rd for best value among the nation’s private liberal arts colleges, according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

The 2011 report ranked 200 schools that best combine outstanding quality with affordability — with quality accounting for two-thirds of the total assessment. Willamette’s ranking climbed 11 spots from 2010.

Kiplinger’s considers such criteria as average student debt, standardized test scores, student-to-faculty ratio, graduate rate and net price — the cost after factoring in need- and merit-based financial aid, excluding loans.

More than 600 private institutions were evaluated for the listing.

This year, Willamette was also named as one of the nation’s “Best 376 Colleges” by The Princeton Review and among the top tier of liberal arts colleges in the country in U.S. News & World Report’s 2012 edition of “Best Colleges.”