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Types of Colleges

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Types of Colleges

There are more than 4,000 colleges and universities in the United States. Students should find a college option that best fits their academic, social and financial needs.

 

Even though each college is unique, they have some similarities. Throughout this site, you’ll see Oregon’s colleges and universities grouped into three main categories: public community colleges, public 4-year universities, and independent, not-for-profit colleges and universities.

2-YEAR COLLEGES

4-YEAR COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES

Public* Community Colleges

Public* Universities

Independent, Not-for-Profit Universities

Degrees Offered

Certificates
Licenses
Associate Degrees (A.A., A.S.)
Transfer Degrees (AAOT)

Bachelor's or Baccalaureate Degrees (B.A., B.S., BFA)
May also offer graduate degrees:
Master's Degrees (M.A., M.S., MAT, MBA, etc.)
Law Degree (J.D.)
Doctorate (Ph.D., Ed.D., etc.)

Bachelor's or Baccalaureate Degrees (B.A., B.S., BFA)
May also offer graduate degrees:
Master's Degrees (M.A., M.S., MAT, MBA, etc.)
Law Degree (J.D.)
Doctorate (Ph.D., Ed.D., etc.)

*public = recieves funding from federal and state governments  

Oregon is also home to some private, for-profit colleges. They are also sometimes called career or technical colleges. These institutions may offer certificates, licenses, and undergraduate or graduate degrees. Many of these colleges have specialized or technical programs (such as culinary or cosmetology schools). They operate as for-profit businesses, meaning that they are funded by tuition and are expected to make money for their owners or shareholders. Learn more about whether a private, for-profit college is for you.

There are many other ways that colleges can be categorized. Most colleges and universities fit into multiple categories. For example, there are liberal arts colleges and professional schools; there are single-sex schools and schools with a special mission; there are military academies and religiously-affiliated schools. You can learn more about ways to categorize schools at BigFuture.org. (Note that not all of these types of colleges can be found in Oregon.)