Where Can I Find Information on Different Colleges?

There are a variety of online resources available for students who want to find information on different colleges, including the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) College Navigator, the U.S. Department of Education website, the College Board website, U.S. News & World Report's list of the top-ranked colleges, and individual school websites.

College Navigator

Searches for colleges can be made through the National Center for Education Statistics' College Navigator tool, which is provided through the U.S. Department of Education. The site is searchable by state, ZIP code, type of college and degree level. The College Navigator also allows a prospective student to search by major and has a comprehensive list, including sub-categories, of every field. Colleges can be saved to a 'My Favorites' folder for further study, and results can be exported to a spreadsheet for further analysis. The College Navigator also provides information on:

  • Student population
  • Institution type
  • Student-faculty ratio
  • Financial aid
  • Degrees offered
  • Tuition and fees
  • Campus housing availability

U.S. Department of Education

A database of accredited programs and colleges is available through the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) website. Nearly 7,000 colleges are listed in the DOE database, and students may search for schools by name, address, state or city. The information provided on postsecondary institutions can help prospective students find schools in their area and check their accreditation.

The College Board

The College Board, a non-profit organization that helps produce the SATs, provides a database of over 3,700 colleges. Students may search for colleges based on a number of filters, including:

  • School type
  • Selectivity
  • Location
  • Majors
  • Cost
  • Campus activities
  • Diversity

U.S. News and World Report

Each year, U.S. News and World Report provides rankings for all national universities and liberal arts colleges in the country. There are also specialized lists, such as the top public schools and the schools that provide the best value. In addition, U.S. News and World Report includes a profile for each school with relevant information about academics and campus life.

For 2017, the top three ranked national universities were:

  • Princeton University
  • Harvard University
  • University of Chicago (tie)
  • Yale University (tie)

The three best liberal arts colleges were:

  • Williams College
  • Amherst College
  • Wellesley College

School Website

Another place to gather information on a prospective school is through the college's own website. On these websites, students can find:

  • Admission requirements
  • Financial information
  • Academic programs
  • Campus life highlights

Through online resources available through individual schools, private organizations and government agencies, prospective students can find a wealth of information about colleges they are considering attending.

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