15 Free and Cheap Universities in United States for International Students

In United States, there are a lot of affordable universities that you can find. Enrolling in these schools will help you fulfill your dream of studying in United States without paying a lot. These institutions also provide well-rounded academic programs and curriculums, allowing students to earn a degree with less burden on their pockets.

Now, if you’re planning to study in United States, you’ll have a lot of school options, as they are home to 1,484 universities. But if you’re looking for cheap universities in United States, make sure to read more!

How do I get admission to affordable universities in United States?

United States is home to 355,200 international students, and a lot of them enjoy quality education without paying high costs!

Applying to cheap universities in United States requires you to complete different requirements depending on your degree and chosen university. These usually include admission forms, language proficiency scores, and a visa. Check out our full guide to studying in United States for a more comprehensive guide!

What can I study at Best affordable universities in United States?

International students can study a variety of programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels in United States. For example, one of the best affordable schools in United States is the Berea College, which offers Appalachian Studies, Biology, and Engineering Technologies and Applied Design to students seeking a bachelor’s degree. At the master’s level, the Campbellsville University offers Computer Science, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Music.

Cheap Bachelor's Colleges and Universities in United States for International Students

Here is the list of affordable institutions in United States ordered by their tuition fee for international bachelor's students.

University Annual Bachelor’s International Tuition % Cheaper than Average*
United States Air Force Academy 0 USD 100%
Curtis Institute of Music 0 USD 100%
United States Merchant Marine Academy 0 USD 100%
United States Military Academy 0 USD 100%
Berea College 0 USD 100%
United States Naval Academy 0 USD 100%
Worcester State University 970 USD - 7,050 USD 97%
Delta State University 1,000 USD 97%
Seminole State College of Florida 1,915 USD - 7,594 USD 94%
Texas A and M University – San Antonio 4,624 USD 85%
Fayetteville State University 5,000 USD 84%
University of North Carolina at Pembroke 5,000 USD 84%
Midland College 5,319 USD - 6,480 USD 83%
Wayne State College 5,580 USD 82%
Peru State College 5,760 USD 82%

* Average Bachelor’s International Tuition is 30,800 USD for universities in United States.

1. United States Air Force Academy

The United States Air Force Academy prepares the cadets that will serve in the Air Force and in the Space Force of the US. The academy provides a comprehensive education that prepares aspirants not only for serving in the military but also for being excellent professionals. Instruction in the Air Force Academy includes military training, academic education, research opportunities, development of leadership skills, and athletics. They offer a wide variety of bachelor’s programs in the areas of sciences, technology, social sciences, and humanities, but their programs in engineering have a great reputation because of the innovative courses and the high-quality education provided to students.

2. Curtis Institute of Music

Curtis Institute of Music is a private music school that offers tuition-free education to aspiring musicians. It was established in 1924 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Students of the institute learn from several notable artists and music experts. 

3. United States Merchant Marine Academy

United States Merchant Marine Academy is a federal service academy that aims to train students who want to pursue a career in marine transportation, national security, and economics. It is known for its rigorous coursework with a heavy emphasis on practical learning. The academy is connected with multiple working commercial vessels abroad to allow students to gain real-world experiences during their stay.

4. United States Military Academy

The United States Military Academy, also known simply as West Point, was established in 1802 in West Point, New York as legislated by President Thomas Jefferson. It is among the service academies in the United States dedicated to educating future soldiers. The academy currently offers 36 majors in various disciplines designed to understand and serve the needs of society.

5. Berea College

Berea College was founded by Rev. John G. Fee to advocate for equality and excellence in education for men and women of all races. The college was named after a biblical town whose constituents were open and receptive to the gospel. It is also worth noting that Berea College is the only American College, consistently ranked at the top, that doesn’t charge tuition to its students through their No-Tuition Promise.

6. United States Naval Academy

United States Naval Academy provides undergraduate training to future leaders in the country’s Marine Corps and U.S. Navy. It competently prepares students by imposing a comprehensive curriculum and coursework. The institute is considered the second-oldest U.S. service academy and is very selective regarding admission.

7. Worcester State University

As it strives to be a center for innovation, Worcester State University offers students academic programs that mold them to be future leaders of the community. Worcester is also known for its competitive curriculums that sharpen students’ skills. A dynamic and vibrant community is also present within the campus through various organizations, activities, and facilities.

8. Delta State University

Delta State University is a public university located in Delta, Mississippi, United States. Historically, Delta State University was founded in 1924 by renovating the former Bolivar County Agricultural High School building in Cleveland. It started with a very small number of students, but after World War II, the number of students tripled, graduate programs were developed, and with the help of federal programs, tne school grew. Currently, Delta State University offers an undergraduate curriculum offering 12 bachelor’s degrees from 42 majors.

9. Seminole State College of Florida

Interested individuals can choose from various undergraduate programs at Seminole State College of Florida. These include associate, certificate, and bachelor’s programs. The college is also accessible through its four campuses: Sanford/Lake Mary, Oviedo, The Center for Economic Development at Heathrow, and Altamonte Springs. Based on the US News rankings, Seminole State College is 61st among southern regional colleges.

10. Texas A and M University – San Antonio

Texas A and M University in San Antonio considers itself a contemporary institution that strives to provide equal and inclusive opportunities to all students, helping them become responsible and global citizens of tomorrow. It offers around 45 bachelor’s and master’s programs across its three schools. The university campus was built with historically-styled architecture combined with state-of-the-art facilities that meet the needs of today’s students.

11. Fayetteville State University

Fayetteville State University is a historically black university providing quality education through a liberal arts foundation. The university offers over 78 student organizations, allowing students to enhance their academic skills and leadership potential. It maintains a safe space for everyone to study and achieve their dreams through academic excellence.

12. University of North Carolina at Pembroke

The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP) was established in 1887. This public institution is part of the University of North Carolina system that provides top-class higher education programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. In addition, UNCP has the safest learning environment among its member universities. It also has one of the most diverse communities as students and faculty members come from different US states and foreign countries.

13. Midland College

Midland College is devoted to acceptance and inclusion. It embraces the value of diversity, the dignity and means of all individuals, and the educational, professional, and individual development of students and workers. Since Midland College started offering its first classes in 1972, it has welcomed those from diverse cultures, religions, nationalities, and ideologies.

14. Wayne State College

Wayne State College is higher education institution in Nebraska that offers over 130 online and on-campus programs on the undergraduate and graduate levels. It was founded in 1910 as Nebraska Normal College and continues to put forward highly competent education to its youth. For more than 120 years, they have become internationally recognized and persist as a center of learning despite recent turmoil in the world. The school also has numerous facilities that cater to different needs such as recreation, athletics, extracurricular interests, and many more. If finding your family outside blood relatives is a necessity, there are around 110 student clubs and organizations available here.

15. Peru State College

Peru State College is a public college located in Peru, Nebraska. As the first institution in Nebraska, it was established in 1865 by the Methodist Episcopal Church. The college offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the following departments: School of Education, School of Arts and Sciences, and the School of Professional Studies.

Cheap Master's Colleges and Universities in United States for International Students

Here is the list of affordable institutions in United States ordered by their tuition fee for international master's students.

University Annual Master’s International Tuition % Cheaper than Average*
Curtis Institute of Music 0 USD 100%
Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science 0 USD - 14,700 USD 100%
United States Merchant Marine Academy 0 USD 100%
Nyack College 810 USD - 1,640 USD 96%
Delta State University 1,000 USD 95%
Milwaukee School of Engineering 2,754 USD 84%
Worcester State University 3,042 USD 83%
East Texas Baptist University 3,750 USD - 5,805 USD 78%
University of the Cumberlands 3,780 USD - 6,000 USD 78%
Point Loma Nazarene University 3,840 USD - 10,700 USD 78%
Northeastern State University 4,046 USD - 9,390 USD 77%
Central Methodist University 4,050 USD - 6,750 USD 77%
East Central University 4,260 USD 75%
Union College, Kentucky 4,440 USD 74%
Campbellsville University 4,485 USD - 14,100 USD 74%

* Average Master’s International Tuition is 17,000 USD for universities in united states.

1. Curtis Institute of Music

Curtis Institute of Music is a private music school that offers tuition-free education to aspiring musicians. It was established in 1924 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Students of the institute learn from several notable artists and music experts. 

If you're looking to save the most on your graduate studies abroad, Curtis Institute of Music should be at the top of your list. International students here pay only 0 USD annually for their master's degree.

2. Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science

One of the universities you should definitely check out for practical reasons is Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science. Here, you can finish your master's degree with minimal stress on your finances. After all, the tuition rate for graduate studies at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science is 0 USD to 14,700 USD.

Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science was established by the Mayo brothers, one of the first three-year university-based programs for the training of graduate physicians practicing their specialty. It is known to have the largest number of ACGME-accredited programs and the only graduate medical education institution in the world. Currently, the College has three campuses in Arizona, Florida, and Minnesota.

3. United States Merchant Marine Academy

United States Merchant Marine Academy is a federal service academy that aims to train students who want to pursue a career in marine transportation, national security, and economics. It is known for its rigorous coursework with a heavy emphasis on practical learning. The academy is connected with multiple working commercial vessels abroad to allow students to gain real-world experiences during their stay.

The tuition fee at United States Merchant Marine Academy for incoming international master’s students is 0 USD. With its cheap rates, you can guarantee you’ll get a quality education without breaking the bank!

4. Nyack College

Another affordable university to consider in United States is Nyack College.

Nyack College is a private Christian university located in New York City, the United States, with about 2,000 university students. The university consists of three academic disciplines: the United Theological Seminary, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the Graduate School, and is affiliated with the Christian and Missionary Alliance. The university has a long history of over 100 years, and was originally established as a missionary training center, but has since served as a university after being given the authority to award a bachelor’s degree in science and arts by the Ministry of Education.

The tuition fee in Nyack College for master’s program for foreign students starts from 810 USD.

5. Delta State University

Aside from its outstanding quality of education, Delta State University has some of the lowest tuition fee prices for foreign students who are planning to take a master's degree here. International master's students only pay as low as 1,000 USD yearly.

Delta State University is a public university located in Delta, Mississippi, United States. Historically, Delta State University was founded in 1924 by renovating the former Bolivar County Agricultural High School building in Cleveland. It started with a very small number of students, but after World War II, the number of students tripled, graduate programs were developed, and with the help of federal programs, tne school grew. Currently, Delta State University offers an undergraduate curriculum offering 12 bachelor’s degrees from 42 majors.

6. Milwaukee School of Engineering

Milwaukee School of Engineering is a specialized private institution. It offers a limited selection of undergrad and master’s programs; most of these courses focus on engineering. Because of its small population, the community is close-knit and attentive training is given to each student. MSOE is well-ranked, placing 9th among undergrad engineering programs in the US.

7. Worcester State University

As it strives to be a center for innovation, Worcester State University offers students academic programs that mold them to be future leaders of the community. Worcester is also known for its competitive curriculums that sharpen students’ skills. A dynamic and vibrant community is also present within the campus through various organizations, activities, and facilities.

8. East Texas Baptist University

East Texas Baptist University offers 45 bachelor’s degree programs and a wide range of online and on-campus master’s degree programs. Since this is a Baptist institution, Christian principles are at the core of education. These values are part of all programs, and students participate in a wide variety of activities, such as group prayers, chapel service, worships, and missions. That’s why the university is determined to provide a comprehensive transformative educational experience through which students will grow not only professionally but also spiritually and emotionally.

9. University of the Cumberlands

The University of the Cumberlands (UC) is a private university in Williamsburg, Kentucky. It was founded in 1888 as Williamsburg Institute by Baptist ministers. UC provides students with a broad liberal arts curriculum that includes Christian teachings. Students at UC are encouraged to put their faith into action through a student-centered community and to think critically in order to grow professionally and intellectually.

10. Point Loma Nazarene University

As a Christian institution associated with the Church of the Nazarene, Point Loma Nazarene University rears students academically and spiritually. It is also centered around the liberal arts; thus, most of its programs are related to the social sciences, humanities, and sciences. PLNU is ranked 327th in the Times Higher Education US College Rankings 2022.

11. Northeastern State University

Northeastern State University offers an exciting academic life spearheaded by its dedicated and diverse faculty. It highly encourages its students to participate in numerous research collaborations, allowing them to boost their practical experience. The university partners with various industry leaders to extend help to its students even after graduating.

12. Central Methodist University

Founded in 1854, Central Methodist University is a four-year, private liberal arts university. It aims to be a diverse and caring community, empowering students to become lifelong learners, committed to academic excellence, and prepared to engage in a complex world. Central Methodist University nurtures a spirit of community and caring among students, faculty, and staff.

13. East Central University

East Central University (ECU) is an outstanding student-centered institution in Oklahoma. They are known for having excellent programs in Education, Business, and Health Sciences. Various student clubs and extracurricular activities are also available to enhance campus life for its students. ECU offers excellent sports programs as well, nurturing quite a number of student-athletes.

14. Union College, Kentucky

Union College is a private college in Barbourville, Kentucky. It was the first college founded in the Kentucky mountains in 1879. Appalachian culture, Methodism, and the liberal arts experience serve as the foundation of the college. Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are available at Union College in a variety of fields.

15. Campbellsville University

Campbellsville University (CU) has several campuses in Kentucky and other learning centers across the country. Currently, it also offers select degree programs online. Moreover, CU is a Christian institution that has been regionally recognized for its quality of education. It has generated competent and responsible graduates who have found success in their careers.


It's important to take a look at all your options when selecting where to attend post-secondary school. With so many different types of schools, degrees, and universities in United States, it can be tough to know where to start looking.

So, make sure to explore the best public universities in United States as well if you're looking for affordable education!

We hope that this article on free and affordable institutions in United States for international students was helpful!