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School Rankings

Best Community Colleges in Texas

Medinah Aina - February 21, 2022


Community colleges, also known as junior colleges, are two-year institutions where you can get an associate degree and potentially transfer to a four-year university or join a technical program and go straight into the job market. The academic programs offered by community colleges provide wonderful learning experiences for their students. If you’re reading this article, you’re probably wondering, “What are the best community colleges in Texas?”

Community colleges provide benefits such as being more affordable, offering transfer degree options, and being shorter.  We’ve listed the best community college programs offered by several colleges as well as the best online community colleges in Texas. We’ve even listed the best community colleges for business administration in Texas. If you’re interested in community colleges in Texas, read on.

How We Defined Our Texas Community College Rankings

After earning your high school diploma, community college is generally the next step. There are lots of community colleges in Texas, and choosing the best among them can be challenging. To determine our picks for the best, we’ve considered factors such as annual tuition cost, program range, graduation rates, job placement rates, transfer rates, options for online programs, and the number of students.

Using these factors, we’ve selected a handful of schools that stand out. These schools have transfer agreements with four-year institutions to allow qualified students to transfer for a college degree. They also have many students who are employed soon after graduation, various programs from different fields of study, affordable tuition, options for online courses, and higher graduation rates.

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The Top 10 Community Colleges in Texas

  1. Texas State Technical College
  2. Northwest Vista College
  3. Laredo Community College
  4. Lee College
  5. Lamar Institute of Technology
  6. Trinity Valley Community College
  7. Alvin Community College
  8. American Commercial College-Lubbock
  9. San Jacinto College
  10. College of the Mainland

The Best Community Colleges in Texas: Explained

School students in a class.
You can try to avoid expensive tuition and student loans by getting a two-year degree at a community college so you can experience on-campus student life and get your degree with this much more affordable option.

1. Texas State Technical College

TSTC is a public school in Waco, Texas. It is one of the most highly ranked schools in Texas and is known for its success in graduate work placement. The school has partnered with over 6,000 companies and has to maintain its high job placement rates to get funding. It is the ideal school for anyone wanting to get do technical programs and go straight into entry-level jobs after graduating.

Best Texas State Technical College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Automotive Technology
  • Associate Degree in Business Management Technology
  • Associate Degree in Culinary Arts
  • Associate Degree in Drafting and Design
  • Associate Degree in Nursing

2. Northwest Vista College

Northwest Vista College is a public two-year college in San Antonio, Texas. It was founded in 1994 and is one of five colleges in the Alamo Colleges District. It offers two-year associate degrees, one-year certificate programs, and pre-majors or transfer programs to larger universities in various fields. It is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Best Northwest Vista College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Humanities
  • Associate Degree in Business Administration
  • Associate Degree in Accounting
  • Associate Degree in Civil Engineering
  • Associate Degree in Digital Media

3. Laredo Community College

Laredo Community College is a public institution in Laredo, Texas. It was founded in 1947 and is part of the Laredo Independent School District. It has two campuses, one in Fort McIntosh and the other in South Laredo. It is accredited by SACSCOC. The school offers several two-year associate degrees and certificate programs, but some are only available at the South Laredo campus.

Best Laredo Community College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Liberal Arts
  • Associate Degree in Drafting and Design Technology
  • Associate Degree in Business Administration
  • Associate Degree in Nursing
  • Associate Degree in Mechanical Engineering

4. Lee College

Lee College is a public community college in Baytown, Texas. It was founded in 1934 and is recognized as one of the top community colleges in the United States. It offers over 100 associate degree programs, certificate programs, non-credit workforce, and community education courses. It also offers academic transfer programs for prospective students who want to get a four-year degree from another college and offers some classes for online students. It is accredited by SACSCOC.

Best Lee College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Business Administration
  • Associate Degree in Computer-Aided Drafting and Design
  • Associate Degree in Humanities
  • Associate Degree in Nursing
  • Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies

5. Lamar Institute of Technology

Lamar Institute of Technology, also known as LIT, is a two-year college in Beaumont, Texas. It was founded in 1923 and offers over 50 career and technical programs, associate degree programs, and graduate programs. LIT has one of the highest job placement rates in the country at 90 percent. You’ll have plenty of job opportunities after attending this college. It is accredited by the SACSCOC.

Best Lamar Institute of Technology Programs

  • Associate Degree in Accounting Technology
  • Associate Degree in Health Information Technology
  • Associate Degree in Real Estate
  • Associate Degree in Graphic Design
  • Associate of Arts in Teaching

6. Trinity Valley Community College

Trinity Valley Community College, also known as TVCC, is a public community college in Athens, Texas. It has four campuses and offers several academic programs to help the student population transfer to universities and join the workforce soon after graduation. It was founded in the mid-1940s and is accredited by the SACSCOC. This college is also known for its cheerleading athletic program.

Best Trinity Valley Community College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Nursing
  • Associate Degree in Liberal Arts, Pre-Engineering
  • Associate Degree in Liberal Arts, Pre-Law
  • Associate Degree in Liberal Arts, Accounting
  • Associate Degree in Drafting and Design Technology

7. Alvin Community College

Alvin Community College is a public institution in Alvin, Texas. It offers workforce training, technical training, adult basic education, continuing education, and personal development programs. Students can earn an associate degree or a certificate from one of the many certification programs offered by the college. It is accredited by the SACSCOC.

Best Alvin Community College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Nursing
  • Associate Degree in Health Information Management
  • Associate Degree in Criminal Justice
  • Associate Degree in General Studies
  • Associate Degree in Welding Technology

8. Galveston College

Galveston College is a community college in Galveston, Texas. It was founded in 1967 and offers associate degree programs, academic transfer degrees, continuing education, and workforce programs. It also offers a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Management and Career Coaching, as well as financial aid services for its students. It was accredited by the SACSCOC.

Best Galveston College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Criminal Justice
  • Associate Degree in General Studies
  • Associate Degree in Logistics
  • Associate Degree in Health Sciences and Pre-Professional Health
  • Associate Degree in Social Work

9. San Jacinto College

San Jacinto is a community college in Texas and has multiple campuses across the state. It is a highly recognized community college and one of the top five finalists of the ASPEN prize. It offers over 80 programs across eight different areas of study. Its average class sizes have a student-teacher ratio of 20 to one , and it also offers online degree programs and a cosmetology program. It is accredited by SACSCOC.

Best San Jacinto College Programs

  • Associate Degree in Construction Management Technology
  • Associate of Applied Science, Paralegal Program
  • Associate Degree in Business Management
  • Associate Degree in Surgical Technology
  • Associate Degree in Culinary Arts, Restaurant Management

10. College of the Mainland

College of the Mainland is a public community college in Texas City, Texas. It is located on the mainland part of Galveston County, Texas, where the name originated. It offers adult education, distance education, continuing education, high school programs, cooperative education, online classes, associate degree programs, and technical courses. It is accredited by the SACSCOC.

Best College of the Mainland Programs

  • Associate Degree in General Studies
  • Associate Degree in Fire Technology
  • Associate Degree in Nursing
  • Associate Degree in Criminal Justice
  • Associate Degree in Health Information Management

Other Texas Community College Rankings

Students and their teacher sitting in a library.
You can flesh out your college career goals of meeting the educational requirements to earn degrees in fields that are relevant in today’s world by attending school in any one of Texas’ excellent community college districts.

Online community colleges offer affordable programs for degrees or online certificates for students to attend school and earn a degree from the comfort of their homes. Several community colleges offer fully online and hybrid programs. Here are our picks for the best online colleges in Texas.

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Best Online Community Colleges in Texas

  1. South Texas College. This is a public community college in the Rio Grande Valley region of South Texas. It offers online courses to students who can’t afford to visit campus. The online degree programs provide low-cost tuition and convenience to students in over 35 programs.
  2. Tyler Junior College. This public community college in Tyler, Texas, is one of the largest two-year education institutions in Texas. It offers over 155 degrees and certificates in six different fields of study. Their wide range of courses are available in fully online, on-campus, and hybrid learning formats. All formats are eligible for transfer options. This is a prime example of Texas’ pride in community college excellence.
  3. Western Texas College. WTC is a public community college in Snyder, Texas, founded in 1969. It offers in-person and fully online degree programs to its students. Upon acceptance, students will have to speak with an online advisor about their course choices and other academic decisions.
  4. Frank Phillips College. Frank Phillips College is a community college in Borger, Texas, and has three other branches. It offers both on-campus and fully online classes in various areas of study. Be sure to research its options for scholarships as well.
  5. Navarro College. Navarro College is a public community college in Corsicana, Texas, and has four other branches across the state. It offers in-person, fully online, and hybrid courses. The online courses also have more affordable tuition rates for low-income students.

Best Community Colleges for Business Administration in Texas

  1. Galveston College. Galveston College is a public community college in Texas that offers various associate degree programs, including degrees for those who want to learn business administration . The Associate Degree in Business Administration is designed for students who want to pursue a higher degree in business administration, accounting, economics, finance, marketing, or management.
  2. Blinn College, Brenham Campus. Blinn College is a public two-year college in Texas with four different campuses across the state, with Brenham being its main campus. It offers over 60 associate degree and certificate programs in fields that will help you land entry-level professional jobs. The business administration and management program prepares students to join the workforce after graduation.
  3. Kilgore College. Kilgore College is a public two-year school in Texas. It offers associate degree, transfer degree, and certificate programs. The business administration program is available to students as a certificate, associate degree, or credit transfer to a four-year school after completion.
  4. Paris Junior College. Paris Junior College is a public college in Texas with three campuses. It offers a vast array of courses in seven fields of study, including business. The business field offers a degree in business administration that seeks to provide students with the knowledge required for a career or to transfer to a four-year university.
  5. Odessa College. Odessa College is a comprehensive two-year school in Odessa, Texas. It offers over 45 associate degree programs, including one in business administration. The business administration program is designed to help students gain the skills required to start a career or transfer to a four-year college in a related field.

Should You Attend Community College in Texas?

Yes, you should attend community college in Texas if you live in-state and need an alternative to a four-year college education. Community colleges are a good choice for those who want to gain technical skills, can’t afford private college tuition, or don’t want to spend four years in school.

A Google school search will yield several educational options at community colleges, including associate degrees, certificate programs, adult education, and workforce programs. The tuition is significantly cheaper than a university and certain programs can be used to get into a four-year institution. After completing a two-year program, you can earn a bachelor’s degree if you meet the educational requirements to transfer to college.

Best Texas Community Colleges FAQ

What is the number 1 community college in Texas?

The number one community college in Texas is the Texas State Technical College. It offers many programs from different fields and has partnerships with various companies to get its students jobs soon after graduation, making it one of the schools with the highest job placement rates. It also offers transfer degrees to allow students to transfer credits and earn bachelor’s degrees.


Does Texas offer free community college?

Texas does not offer free community colleges, but students can research financial aid options like institutional scholarships and get reduced tuition. There are also Texas Promise Programs that can help you cover the cost of tuition, fees, and books. All you have to do is apply to a participating school and check the requirements.

Is community college free in Texas?

No, community college is not free in Texas. However, tuition at a community college is significantly cheaper than university tuition. There are financial aid opportunities available to make it even more affordable.

How many community colleges are in the state of Texas?

There are 63 community colleges in the state of Texas. You can earn college credit at any one of them to transfer to a four-year university. Most of them offer academic pathways to help distance learners and other eligible students get the education they need to have more employment opportunities after completing the programs.

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Medinah Aina

About the author: Medinah is an expert copywriter and web designer, helping people learn more about education and careers in technology. She values in-depth research and providing accurate, helpful information. Medinah holds a BSc in Social Work from the University of Lagos and an Eduonix Certification in copywriting.

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