2020 Public and Private Colleges and Universities with the Highest Student Satisfaction Rates
Deciding on a college home is not an easy choice for high school students. There are so many factors to think about. We know that students are concerned about location, campus activities and academic programs, but what statistics or numbers should they be looking at? Some people say that they should be looking at an institutions graduation and retention states, while I don’t disagree, I think that there is another vital statistic that trumps them all. What am I referring to? Student satisfaction scores. Schools obtain these scores by surveying recent graduates to see how satisfied they were with their total college experience; academics, housing, food services, internships, campus activities, etc. The score ranges from 0 to 100, and to me is the one statistic that tells me whether or not former students believe that their financial and time investment paid off. In this piece, I will rank and discuss the private colleges and universities with the highest student satisfaction scores.
- Princeton University – This university boasts a student satisfaction rate of 85%. Named the top school in the nation for 2018, Princeton was founded in 1746, making it one of the first institutions of higher education in America and home to the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and School of Engineering and Applied Science. Princeton also takes top honors in best value and best undergraduate teaching.
- The University of Notre Dame is a private Catholic school just 100 miles away from Chicago. A strong athletic program (especially football!) are among the many things that make students’ experience here exceptional. Notre Dame boasts a student satisfaction score of 78%.
- Harvard University – Founded in 1636 and one of eight Ivy League campuses, Harvard ranks second among universities nationwide. Getting accepted at this private school isn’t easy; Harvard is one of the most selective schools in the United States, but it also has a 97% retention rate among freshmen. Harvard is heaven for book lovers and home to the largest academic library in the world. It’s also a great place to network. Harvard tends to produce American presidents, Nobel laureates, and future billionaires. One of the things prospective students appreciate most about Harvard is that unlike other top schools which tend to skew towards the sciences, Harvard divides equal attention to humanities as it does to science. Harvard boasts a student success core of 76.67%.
- Columbia University – Three prestigious schools make up the university undergraduate program: Columbia College, the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and the School of General Studies. Columbia is ranked in 5th place nationwide, and the school is a best-value university. The freshman retention rate here is 99%, which indicates an immense level of satisfaction with the school. Columbia boasts a student satisfaction score of 76.33%.
- Duke University – Duke is 9th in the nation among nationally-ranked universities. This private school has ten colleges and offers prestigious degrees in business, law, medicine, engineering, public policy, and nursing, to name a few. Duke is also considered a best-value school and offers outstanding undergraduate teaching, and it’s well-known for its basketball program. Duke boasts a student satisfaction score of 76%.
- University of Virginia – Tied for 25th place nationally, this school was founded by Thomas Jefferson. It is well-known for its schools of engineering, business and administration, law, and medicine. UVA boasts a student satisfaction score of 76%
- College of William and Mary – Ranked at 32nd in the nation, the College of William and Mary is the second oldest institution of higher education in the United States. The College of William and Mary boasts a student satisfaction score of 69.33%
- Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus – The Georgia Institute of Technology is a campus filled with dedicated faculty researchers who are happy to let undergraduate students in on the action. Students enjoy a 20:1 student-faculty ration across popular majors like Engineering, Computer and Information Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Biological and Biomedical Sciences. I Looking for an opportunity to get involved with contracts sponsored by the government and important industries? Look no further than the George Tech Research Institute (GTRI) in the Georgia Institute of Technology. GTRI isn’t just focused on discovery. Faculty actively seek out groundbreaking opportunities and patents them. Moreover, students can get involved in faculty research and even receive the President’s Undergraduate Research Awards as a salary. Georgia Tech boasts a student satisfaction score of 67.00%.
- Clemson University – Clemson offers rigorous academics and rich co-curricular activities. Its an excellent choice for veterans and identified as a best-value choice. Clemson boasts a student satisfaction score of 66.67%
- Texas A&M University – College Station – Formerly known as Texas Agricultural & Mechanical College, A&M is a public research school known for its veterinary medicine, but it also has highly respected programs in business, education, and engineering. This university boasts a student satisfaction score of 64.33%
- Auburn University – Many people consider Auburn one of the best places to live in Alabama, and students at the university also enjoy the city and all it has to offer. This school focuses on research as a result of being a land, sea, and space grant institution. Freshmen live on campus, but all other students must find off-campus housing. This university boasts a student satisfaction score of 62.33
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