Why This Matters


    According to College Navigator, there are two institutions in Rhode Island that offer two-year associate degree programs.


    College Board estimates that, during the 2020-21 school year, the average Rhode Island resident paid approximately $4,836 in tuition at in-district community colleges.


    437,899 students enrolled in two-year institutions in the United States received financial aid during the 2018-19 school year. Aid opportunities include scholarships, grants, loans, and work-study opportunities.

Our Research

To create a comprehensive list of the learning opportunities and job training available in Rhode Island, we reviewed private and public community colleges as well as trade, technical, and vocational programs. Factors considered include tuition costs, the necessary number of credits to graduate, and the format of coursework (i.e. online, in-person, and blended).

When making our selections, we focused solely on accredited programs, which verifies the quality of the provided education. Many of these programs are accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), a regional accreditation that is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. We also featured programs that are accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), which confirms the value of programs on a national basis.

  • 27hours to write this article
  • 10universities and colleges we assessed
  • 13education programs we compared

The Top 50 Community Colleges in Rhode Island

Best Community Colleges in Rhode Island Badge
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What You Should Know About Graduating From Community College in Rhode Island

One of the most important factors to consider when researching community colleges is your earning potential. In 2020, the highest paying careers for associate degree holders living in Rhode Island were nuclear medicine technologists, radiation therapists, diagnostic medical sonographers, magnetic resonance imaging technologists, and cardiovascular technologists and technicians.

After receiving an associate degree, most students enter the workforce. The top five careers with the most job openings in Rhode Island are paralegals and legal assistants, computer network support specialists, preschool teachers, dental hygienists, and electronic engineering technicians.

In addition to reviewing jobs with high employment rates, you should take into account which occupations are projected to have low employment rates. Jobs expected to have the greatest decline for associate degree holders in Rhode Island are dental hygienists, preschool teachers (excluding special education), human resources assistants (excluding payroll and timekeeping), cardiovascular technologists, and architectural and civil drafters.

What’s Next?

While researching community colleges in Rhode Island, you should take into account the costs of higher education. This list features federal and state resources that connect associate degree students to scholarships, grants, and financial aid opportunities in Rhode Island.

  • Rhode Island Department of Education. The Rhode Island Department of Education helps students find scholarships by offering information about state loan programs and eligibility requirements.
  • Federal Student Aid. Every year, the U.S. Department of Education’s office of Federal Student Aid provides over $120 billion in scholarships, grants, loans, and other forms of financial aid. Students can check their eligibility at the FAFSA4caster and apply with the online FAFSA form.
  • CareerOneStop. Sponsored by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, CareerOneStop offers information about the scholarships available in each state. Students can easily navigate these scholarships by filtering this information by degree level and state. The site also provides details about award amounts, qualification requirements, application deadlines, and contact information.