Virginia Tech was ranked among the top 50 "best value" public universities for 2011, according to The Princeton Review, who teamed with USA Today, to present its list, "'The Princeton Review Best Value Colleges for 2011."

The list, which features 100 schools in all, includes 50 public and 50 private colleges and universities. Of the 50 schools chosen in each category, the top 10 are ranked one to 10, and the remaining 40 are listed in alphabetical order and unranked.

The Princeton Review selected the institutions as its "best value" choices for 2011 based on its surveys of administrators and students at more than 650 public and private colleges and universities. The selection criteria covered more than 30 factors in three areas: academics, costs of attendance, and financial aid, using the most recently reported data from each institution for its 2009-10 academic year.

Virginia Tech was ranked eighth in the 2010 survey.

“It is unclear why we slipped out of the top 10, but as it is with most of these rankings, any slight change in factors can move one's ranking,” said Larry Hincker, associate vice president for university relations. “Still, our inclusion indicates a quality academic offering at a competitive price.”

To earn a place on the list, a school must be academically outstanding. It must also offer value in one of two ways: either by charging a comparatively lower price (including room and board and mandatory feeds) or by making a comparatively higher cost of attendance affordable to students it admits who demonstrate financial need.

Virginia Tech continues to increase its affordability for students by increasing instructional funding for student financial aid. More than 60 percent of Virginia Tech students receive some type of financial aid. The Funds for the Future program, for example, protects certain groups of low-income undergraduates from increases in tuition and fees, and reduces other unmet needs for certain groups of low-income undergraduates.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.