CHAMPAIGN, Ill. Two guides that help students choose a college have named the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign a top value.
The Fiske Guide to Colleges 2002 names the UI one of 43 "best buys" based on the quality of the academic offerings in relation to the cost of attendance.
The Kaplan/Newsweek College Catalog 2002 recognizes Illinois as a top school in three areas "offers the best value for your tuition dollar," "supports diversity" and "is academically challenging."
The Fiske Guide, edited by former New York Times education editor Ted Fiske, reviews 300 colleges and universities, assessing each in terms of academic strength, social life and overall quality of life.
In terms of the quality of undergraduate life, Fiske describes UI students as "a happy, sociable bunch. This is, after all, the school that invented Homecoming."
Fiske also lauds the range of course work available at the eight undergraduate colleges, which offer more than 150 undergraduate programs.
"Dont be scared off by the enormity of the University of Illinois," he concludes. "Its size is probably its greatest asset drawing students from all over the world and offering them a multitude of opportunities not available elsewhere, so long as they seek them out."
In addition to the UI, three other Big Ten schools were named as "best buys" Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The Kaplan/Newsweek Catalog provides detailed admissions information on more than 1,000 colleges and universities nationwide compiled from surveys of high school guidance counselors.