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Top Maryland Colleges

15 of the Top Colleges in Maryland

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Top Ranked Colleges: Universities | Public Universities | Liberal Arts Colleges | Engineering | Business | Women's | Most Selective

Maryland has excellent higher education options for both public and private institutions.  From a large public university like the University of Maryland to tiny St. John's College, Maryland has schools to match a wide range of student personalities and interests. The 15 top Maryland colleges listed below represent diverse school types and missions, so I have simply listed them alphabetically rather than force them into any sort of artificial ranking. That said, Johns Hopkins is the most selective and prestigious institution on the list. The schools were chosen based on factors such as academic reputation, curricular innovations, first-year retention rates, six-year graduation rates, selectivity, financial aid and student engagement.

Compare Top Maryland Colleges: SAT Scores | ACT Scores

Annapolis (United States Naval Academy)

Annapolis - USNA
Rory Finneren / Flickr

Goucher College

Goucher College Athenaeum
Photo Credit: Tom McDowell
  • Location: Towson, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 2,279 (1,481 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: 10 to 1 student / faculty ratio; new $48 million student center; eight miles from downtown Baltimore; chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society for strong programs in the liberal arts and sciences 
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the Goucher College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Goucher admissions.

Hood College

Hood College
Sarah Camp / Flickr
  • Location: Frederick, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 2,493 (1,432 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private master's-level college
  • Distinctions: 13 to 1 student / faculty ratio; high graduation rate for its student profile; one hour from Washington D.C. and Baltimore; good grant aid
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the Hood College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for Hood admissions.

Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University
Laughidea / Wikimedia Commons

Loyola University Maryland

Loyola College of Maryland
Crhayes88 / Wikipedia Commons

McDaniel College

McDaniel College
cogdogblog / Flickr
  • Location: Westminster, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 3,607 (1,695 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio; average class size of 17; located half an hour from Baltimore and one hour from D.C.; chapter of Phi Beta Kappa for strong programs in the liberal arts and sciences
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the McDaniel College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for McDaniel admissions.

MICA, the Maryland Institute College of Art

MICA - Maryland Institute College of Art
ramsey everydaypants / Flickr
  • Location: Baltimore, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 2,084 (1,862 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private college of art
  • Distinctions: one of the country's top studio art programs; rich history (founded in 1826); 10 to 1 student / faculty ratio; students come from 48 states and 52 countries; impressive number of Presidential Scholars and Fulbright Scholars
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the MICA profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for MICA admissions.

Mount St. Mary's University

Mount St. Mary's University
Guoguo12 / Wikimedia Commons

St. John's College

St. John's College Annapolis
smi23le / Flickr
  • Location: Annapolis, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 540 (463 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: no textbooks (only great works of Western civilization); common curriculum for all students; 8 to 1 student / faculty ratio; 20 student seminars taught by two faculty members; extremely high placement rate for law school, med school and graduate school
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the St. John's College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for St. John's admissions.

St. Mary's College

Saint Mary's College of Maryland - SMCM
jbweir / Flickr
  • Location: St. Mary's City, Maryland
  • Enrollment: 2,060 (2,017 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: public liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio; attractive 319 acre water-front campus; historic location; chapter of Phi Beta Kappa for strengths in the liberal arts and sciences
  • For acceptance rate, costs and other information, visit the St. Mary's College profile.
  • GPA, SAT and ACT graph for St. Mary's admissions.
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