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The U.S. News and World Report released their annual college rankings for 2021 last night, with many North Carolina schools making the cut. See how your school stacks up against the top-ranked institutions in the country.
How the Rankings Work
U.S. News divided 1,829 schools into distinct groups based on their academic mission: national universities, national liberal arts colleges, regional (North, South, Midwest, West) universities, and regional (North, South, Midwest, West) colleges.
The rankings for each group were calculated based on 17 factors, including graduation and retention rates, undergraduate academic reputation, class size, student-faculty ratio, and financial resources per student. Non-academic factors such as social life and athletics were not taken into account.
This year, new factors were introduced to consider graduate indebtedness, while less weight was given to student excellence and alumni giving.
North Carolina had schools ranked in the top 15 for all four grouped categories. Duke University was #12 in the national universities ranking, Davidson College ranked #15 among national liberal arts colleges, Appalachian State University was the #6 regional university in the south, and High Point University was the #1 regional college in the south.
UNC-Chapel Hill was the fifth ranked public university in the nation. North Carolina had two other schools in the top-100 public universities, with NC State (32) and UNC-Wilmington (95). North Carolina A&T State University was the seventh ranked historically Black college or university and the top public HBCU in the nation.
Elon University dominated in the additional categories, ranking #1 in study abroad and learning communities and #2 in best undergraduate teaching, first-year experiences, senior capstone, and service learning.
See more detailed rankings of the North Carolina Schools below:
Duke University - 12
UNC-Chapel Hill - 28 (5)*
Wake Forest University - 28
North Carolina State University - 80 (32)
Elon University - 88
UNC-Wilmington - 187 (95)
Eastern Carolina University - 217 (109)
UNC-Charlotte - 227 (113)
Campbell University- 258
UNC-Greensboro - 258 (126)
North Carolina A&T State University - 272 (136)
Gardner-Webb University - 284
*public university rankings in parentheses
National Liberal Arts Colleges
Davidson College - 15
Meredith College - 136
Salem College - 140
UNC-Asheville - 140
Guilford College - 155
Warren Wilson College - 162
Regional Universities South
Appalachian State University - 6
Queens University of Charlotte - 13
Western Carolina University - 25
Lenoir-Rhyne University - 42
North Carolina Central University - 47
Winston-Salem State University - 59
University of Mount Olive - 65
Pfieffer University - 72
Methodist University - 73
UNC-Pembroke - 73
Fayetteville State University - 89
Regional Colleges South
High Point University - 1
Catawba College - 7
Barton College - 10
Belmont Abbey College - 18
Brevard College - 24
William Peace University - 24
Lees-McRae College - 26
Mars Hill University - 26
Elizabeth City State University - 36
Greensboro College - 36
North Carolina Wesleyan College - 47
Historically Black Colleges and Universities
North Carolina A&T State University - 7
North Carolina Central University - 11
Winston-Salem State University - 16
Elizabeth City State University - 22
Fayetteville State University - 24
Johnson C. Smith University - 36
Bennett College - 38 ●
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