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Community Colleges in Illinois

Community colleges in Illinois are plentiful. With dozens of schools to choose from, the challenge for most students will be narrowing down the list to a handful to visit. The community college system is a public system of schools with unique features not found in most institutions. For example, the tuition at community colleges tend to be substantially less than public universities or private colleges as they are subsidized, in part by state funds. Additionally, community colleges in Illinois have a guaranteed admissions aspect to the school. In other words, any qualifying student can apply and study within a community college. This unique feature provides a platform to study, upskill, and advance based on your effort and ability.

Where to Find the Top Community Colleges in Illinois

Illinois community colleges can range from small to large with students ranging from under a thousand to over ten thousand given the college. Locating the best community college in Illinois is incumbent upon you to find. A cross-section of schools you can find below include City College of Illinois, Harper College, South Suburban College, Elgin Community College, College of DuPage, Morton College, Lewis and Clark Community College, Parkland College, Spoon River College, and Illinois Central College to list a few examples.

Best Illinois Community College Degrees

The best degree program for you will wholly depend on your aspirations, skills, and talents. Many students will work to earn an associate’s degree while others will leverage the curriculum to earn a certificate. In either case, the work you put into building your academic resume can set you up for success in the workplace and create a platform to continue learning at a 4-year college in Illinois after earning your undergraduate degree. The process starts by committing to yourself, your education, and your professional growth in a chosen field of study.

The following links may provide helpful information about community colleges in Illinois:

Metro Area Links for Community Colleges in Illinois

Community Colleges in Chicago, Naperville, Joliet

We have ranked the community colleges in the Chicago, Naperville, and Joliet area by the percent of students who either completed their degree or transferred to a 4-year institution. South Suburban College in South Holland, IL ranked as the #1 community college in this area. Visit their official website at http://www.ssc.edu/

South Suburban College Highlights

  • Serving students from South Holland and surrounding areas
  • 58% of students either graduated or transferred to a 4-year college/university
  • Tuition & fees are about $11,300 per year for state residents ($12,800 for out of state)

Top Community Colleges in Chicago, Naperville, and Joliet

Rate Institution Name Location Enrollment
58%South Suburban CollegeSouth Holland, IL4,000
55%McHenry County CollegeCrystal Lake, IL7,000
54%Waubonsee Community CollegeSugar Grove, IL11,000
54%Harper CollegePalatine, IL15,000
50%Elgin Community CollegeElgin, IL10,000
50%Kishwaukee CollegeMalta, IL4,000
50%Moraine Valley Community CollegePalos Hills, IL15,000
49%Oakton Community CollegeDes Plaines, IL10,000
48%Prairie State CollegeChicago Heights, IL5,000
48%Joliet Junior CollegeJoliet, IL15,000
47%City Colleges of Chicago - Kennedy - King CollegeChicago, IL4,000
47%College of DuPageGlen Ellyn, IL29,000
45%City Colleges of Chicago - Harry S Truman CollegeChicago, IL9,000
42%City Colleges of Chicago - Harold Washington CollegeChicago, IL9,000
41%College of Lake CountyGrayslake, IL15,000
41%Triton CollegeRiver Grove, IL12,000
38%City Colleges of Chicago - Wilbur Wright CollegeChicago, IL11,000
37%City Colleges of Chicago - Olive - Harvey CollegeChicago, IL3,000
37%Morton CollegeCicero, IL5,000
33%Malcolm X College - City Colleges of ChicagoChicago, IL6,000
33%City Colleges of Chicago - Richard J Daley CollegeChicago, IL8,000
23%Gateway Technical CollegeKenosha, WI9,000

Community Colleges in St. Louis

We have ranked the community colleges in the St. Louis area by the percent of students who either completed their degree or transferred to a 4-year institution. Kaskaskia College in Centralia, IL ranked as the #1 community college in this area. Visit their official website at http://www.kaskaskia.edu

Kaskaskia College Highlights

  • Serving students from Centralia and surrounding areas
  • 62% of students either graduated or transferred to a 4-year college/university
  • Tuition & fees are about $7,800 per year for state residents ($13,800 for out of state)

Top Community Colleges in St. Louis

Rate Institution Name Location Enrollment
62%Kaskaskia CollegeCentralia, IL4,000
47%Southwestern Illinois CollegeBelleville, IL10,000
43%Lewis and Clark Community CollegeGodfrey, IL8,000

Other Community Colleges in Illinois

The table below lists all the other community colleges in Illinois that do not belong to any large metropolitan or urban concentrated area. The table also displays the "Rate" column, which is the percent of students completing course work.

Rate Institution Name Location Enrollment
100%Frontier Community College - Illinois Eastern Community CollegesFairfield, IL2,000
77%Olney Central College - Illinois Eastern Community CollegesOlney, IL1,000
77%Lincoln Trail College - Illinois Eastern Community CollegesRobinson, IL1,000
77%Wabash Valley College - Illinois Eastern Community CollegesMount Carmel, IL4,000
69%Rend Lake CollegeIna, IL2,000
64%Shawnee Community CollegeUllin, IL2,000
58%Highland Community College - FreeportFreeport, IL2,000
55%Sauk Valley Community CollegeDixon, IL2,000
53%Illinois Valley Community CollegeOglesby, IL3,000
51%Spoon River CollegeCanton, IL2,000
51%Parkland CollegeChampaign, IL8,000
51%Southeastern Illinois CollegeHarrisburg, IL2,000
51%Carl Sandburg CollegeGalesburg, IL2,000
49%Danville Area Community CollegeDanville, IL3,000
49%Heartland Community CollegeNormal, IL5,000
48%Lake Land CollegeMattoon, IL5,000
48%John A Logan CollegeCarterville, IL4,000
47%John Wood Community CollegeQuincy, IL2,000
44%Lincoln Land Community CollegeSpringfield, IL6,000
44%Black Hawk CollegeMoline, IL5,000
44%Kankakee Community CollegeKankakee, IL3,000
43%Illinois Central CollegeEast Peoria, IL10,000
43%Rock Valley CollegeRockford, IL8,000
38%Richland Community CollegeDecatur, IL3,000

Notes: Tuition & fee amounts are for both Illinois in-state residents and out of state students, unless noted otherwise. The tuition information displayed is an estimate, which we calculated based on historical data and should be solely used for informational purposes only. Please contact the respective school for information about the current school year.

Source: IPEDS Survey 2012-2015: Data obtained from the US Dept. of Education's Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). Data may vary depending on school and academic year.