Top 25 Best Colleges with the Highest Acceptance Rates | 2020 Rankings

Top 25 colleges with the highest acceptance rate

There’s a common misconception that a college having a high acceptance rate automatically makes it “less good.” Or that a low acceptance rate equates directly to quality. Neither is necessarily the case. There are plenty of schools with high acceptance rates that offer a fantastic, high quality education. 

And that’s exactly why we’ve made this list, to highlight some of the best colleges in the country that have high acceptance rates. For this list, we looked within College Raptor’s top 500 overall rankings and sorted them by who had the highest acceptance rates.

Check out the list below, and maybe even consider applying to a few!

Best Colleges with the Highest Acceptance Rates

The average ACT and SAT scores of students accepted into Covenant College range from 23--30 and 1,120--1,350 respectively. Popular majors at the school include English, Biology, and Psychology. Outside the classroom, Covenant college competes as the Scots. They have nearly 230 student athletes.
Location Lookout Mountain, GA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,046
Class sizes at this university are relatively larger, with 14 students for every 1 faculty member. Many of these classrooms will be training students in Maryville’s most popular major: Nursing. Besides academics, the university offers a number of sports including soccer, track, tennis, softball, and wrestling.
Location Saint Louis, MO
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 9,139
This school has colors of purple and gold, and students are known as the Highlanders. Their mascot, Luckey, cheers on over 240 student athletes as they compete in NCAA Division III (without football) sports. The college has many notable alumni, including professors, politicians, and business leaders, and more.
Location Houghton, NY
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,001
This university has a motto of “United We Stand, Divided We Fall.” The students go by the nickname of the Wildcats, with their mascot fittingly being Scratch the Wildcat. The almost 500 student athletes can be seen sporting school colors of blue and white at competitions. UK has a first year retention rate of 85%.
Location Lexington, KY
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 29,182
At Loyola University’s New Orleans branch, 99% of the student body receives grant aid. Popular majors include Psychology, Music Management, Business and Public Relations. The student to faculty ratio is 12 students for every 1 faculty member. Their mascot is Havoc T. Wolf, and students compete as the Wolf Pack.
Location New Orleans, LA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 4,261
KSU has only one school color: royal purple. The school has a motto of “Rule by Obeying Nature’s Laws.” Perhaps this ideal is why the university’s most popular majors are mainly science based, such as Animal Science, Human Development and Kinesiology.
Location Manhattan, KS
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 22,221
Over 500 students compete as athletes for this university, wearing the school colors of crimson and blue. Popular majors at the school include Journalism, Psychology and Accounting. The university has many notable alumni, including Fulbright scholars, NASA astronauts, and Nobel Prize laureates.
Location Lawrence, KS
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 27,690
The majority of first-year students attending this university are from the southern region of the United States. Students go by the nickname of the Blazers, and their mascot is Blaze the Dragon. The official school colors are green, white and gold. UAB tends to have larger class sizes, with a 19:1 student-to-faculty ratio.
Location Birmingham, AL
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 21,923
Principia College’s motto is “As the Sowing, The Reaping.” The school’s colors are blue and gold. Principia College is nonselective, with a 92% acceptance rate. The college offers a range of majors and programs. The most popular ones include Education, Business Administration and Management, and Mass Communication/Media Studies.
Location Elsah, IL
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 447
Cy the Cardinal is the mascot of Iowa State University. With over 400 athletes, Iowa State is notably in the Big 12 athletics conference and a member of the NCAA Division I. Besides athletics, the school is also known for its engineering programs. The most popular majors are Mechanical Engineering, Kinesiology, and Marketing.
Location Ames, IA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 34,992
Whitworth University is home of the Pirates---unofficially known as the Bucs. The school has just under 420 student athletes and is a part of the NCAA, including a football team of 110. Students wear crimson and black to cheer on their athletes. 97% of students receive grant aid to help pay for their higher education.
Location Spokane, WA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,776
Penn State Altoona is completely made up of undergraduate students, as the bachelor’s degree is the highest level offered. An equal number of men and women are accepted into the university. Electrical Engineering is the most popular major studied on campus. The four residence halls are named after trees---Oak, Maple, Spruce, and Cedar.
Location Altoona, PA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 3,244
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts doubles as an art school and an art museum. With this academy’s focus being in the arts, it is no surprise that popular majors include Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking, and Drawing. One notable alumni is filmmaker David Lynch, of Twin Peaks and Eraserhead fame.
Location Philadelphia, PA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 273
Valparaiso, commonly called Valpo, has brown and gold as its official school colors. A variety of majors are popular at the school, including Nursing, Mechanical Engineering, Finance, Psychology, and Biology. Valparaiso University does not have an application fee for its undergraduate students.
Location Valparaiso, IN
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 3,786
Illinois State University has a motto of “Gladly We Learn and Teach.” So it’sno surprise that the university produces some of the highest rates of teachers in the country. Besides academics, the school has over 400 athletes and offers a variety of sports---from gymnastics to baseball.
Location Normal, IL
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 20,635
Count Dracula would certainly approve of this university’s name, color (crimson), and mascot (Raf the Bat). Though he might not appreciate their motto---In Lumine Illo Tradimus Lumen--- In That Light, We Pass On The Light. Transylvania University has a 75% six year graduation rate, and an 82% freshman retention rate.
Location Lexington, KY
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 987
At Penn State Erie-Behrend, the most popular major offered is Mechanical Engineering. Students can expect that they will be pursuing this major in relatively small classrooms, with approximately 13 students for every 1 faculty member. The majority of first-year students originally called Pennsylvania their home state.
Location Erie, PA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 4,312
This academy does not have an application fee for its graduate students. Popular majors at the academy range from Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering to Homeland Security and Law Enforcement. Unlike other schools, students are required to live on campus in one of the three living facilities on campus.
Location Buzzards Bay, MA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 1,802
Out of those accepted into Martin Luther College, over 80% enroll. Martin Luther students most commonly major in Elementary Education, Pre-Theology, and Early Childhood Education. The student-to-faculty ratio at this college is 12:1. Their official school colors are red, black, and white.
Location New Ulm, MN
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 972
This university's motto is “Pro scientia et Sapientia” which, translated from Latin, means “For knowledge and wisdom.” It is clear that this motto is followed by noting the university’s many famous alumni, from the first African American student to attend a University in 1972 to William Faulkner, an author and Nobel Prize winner.
Location Mississippi University, MS
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 22,456
Western Washington University has gone through six different name changes, starting with the Northwest Normal School and landing on its current title. Their campus is located on Bellingham Bay, not far from the Sehome Hill Arboretum. Surrounded by nature, it’s no surprise that Environmental Science is one of the more popular majors.
Location Bellingham, WA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 16,121
The University of Puget Sound’s school motto, originally in Greek, which translates to mean: “To the heights.” The university does indeed aim high, offering 1,200 courses in over 50 disciplines. Puget Sound’s most popular majors include Psychology, Business Administration, and Biology. This university has school colors of maroon and white.
Location Tacoma, WA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,666
Penn State Harrisburg was established in 1966. Presently, popular majors include Mechanical Engineering, Psychology, and Accounting. The majority of students entering this college are originally from Pennsylvania. Similarly to its sister Penn State schools, PSH’s mascot is the Nittany Lion.
Location Middletown, PA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 4,933
Niagara University has school colors of purple and white. The colors are best represented by Niagara’s mascot, Monte the Eagle, who has white feathers and wears a purple jersey. The school is classified as NCAA Division I (without football). The university is unique in that the majority of student athletes are women.
Location Niagara University, NY
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 3,763
Founded in 1890, this school has three school colors: black, gold, and white. Dominican University of California student’s go by the nickname of ‘the Penguins,” with their mascot being Chilly the Penguin. The school’s motto, originally in Latin, means “Truth is a Flaming Torch.” The university also has 11 varsity athletic teams.
Location San Rafael, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,779

Interested in any of these schools? Check out College Raptor’s free match tool to see if they’re a good fit for you!

Methodology

Colleges are ranked based on a combination of factors, including graduation rates, campus diversity, endowment per student, and other data as reported via the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) for the most recently-available enrollment year. Some colleges may have been excluded from rankings based on certain criteria, including specialization and classification. Learn about our full methodology.

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