Best Colleges in Texas | BestColleges (2023)

Our higher education experts at BestColleges have ranked the best colleges in Texas based on quality and affordability. Find your future school on our list of the best Texas colleges.

by Staff Writers

Updated January 6, 2022

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"Bigger is better" applies to everything in Texas, including higher education. Texas houses five of the top 20 largest colleges and universities in the United States.

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Colleges in Texas enroll students from major cities and remote, rural areas. Popular majors include business, agriculture, and healthcare. The best colleges in Texas offer a variety of programs both on campus and online, including convenient, affordable programs open to out-of-state distance learners.

With so many options in the Lone Star state to choose from, we want to help you find the best program for your needs. Read on to explore our rankings of the best colleges in Texas.

What Are the Best Colleges in Texas? Here Are Our Top 10:

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#1 Rice University Houston, TX
#2 The University of Texas at Austin Austin, TX
#3 College Station, TX
#4 Texas Christian University Fort Worth, TX
#5 The University of Texas at Dallas Richardson, TX
#6 Laredo, TX
#7 Texas State University San Marcos, TX
#8 Trinity University San Antonio, TX
#9 LeTourneau University Longview, TX
#10 Southern Methodist University Dallas, TX

How We Rank Schools

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you will make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering school rankings that are transparent, inclusive, and relevant for online students.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our Ranking Methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

Related Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Best Accredited Colleges in Texas

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Best Colleges in Texas

  1. Rice University

    Location

    Houston, TX

    Graduation Rate

    95%

    View School Profile

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    A private university located in Houston, Rice University boasts an impressive 6-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. One of the best colleges in Texas, Rice offers over 50 undergraduate majors and dozens of graduate degree programs. Rice also offers three fully online master's degree programs.

    The University oversees six distinct schools, including the School of Architecture, the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business, the Shepherd School of Music, and the George R. Brown School of Engineering.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts, an essay, and letters of recommendation. Graduate admission requirements vary by program, but applicants should expect to submit transcripts, a resume, an essay, and letters of recommendation.

  2. Graduation Rate

    83%

    View School Profile

    A public university founded in 1883, UT Austin teaches more than 50,000 students annually. The university offers over 170 undergraduate degree programs and 100 graduate degree programs. Notable schools within UT Austin include the College of Pharmacy, Dell Medical School, Jackson School of Geosciences, and LBJ School of Public Affairs, among others.

    Tuition costs vary based on residency, degree program, and degree level. Undergraduate tuition ranges from about $5,300-$6,600 per semester for in-state, full-time students and $19,000-$23,000 for out-of-state, full-time students. Graduate tuition ranges from roughly $4,300-$5,400 per semester for in-state, full-time students and from $8,600-$10,000 for out-of-state, full-time students.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts, an essay, and short answers. Graduate applicants may need to submit transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, and recommendations.

  3. Texas A & M University-College Station

    Location

    College Station, TX

    Tuition

    $19118

    Graduation Rate

    82%

    View School Profile

    Located in College Station, Texas A&M University currently teaches more than 70,000 students per year. Seventeen schools make up Texas A&M, including the School of Law, School of Innovation, College of Liberal Arts, and College of Medicine. Texas A&M also offers students the opportunity to learn via two branch campuses in Galveston and Qatar.

    Tuition varies based on residency status and degree program. In-state undergraduate students can expect to pay at least $668 per credit, whereas out-of-state undergraduate students can expect to pay at least $1,598 per credit.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts and an essay. Depending on their program, graduate students may need to submit transcripts and GRE/GMAT scores, as well as other supplemental documentation.

  4. Texas Christian University

    Location

    Fort Worth, TX

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    Graduation Rate

    83%

    View School Profile

    Located in Fort Worth, Texas Christian University was formed in 1869 as the first co-ed institution west of the Mississippi.

    TCU consists of 10 schools and colleges, including the Neeley School of Business, Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences, College of Fine Arts, and College of Education. Notable areas of study at TCU include aerospace studies, comparative race and ethnic studies, conducting, and dietetics.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts, an essay, and two letters of recommendation. Graduate admission requirements vary by program, but all graduate programs require applicants to submit their transcripts. TCU operates as a private school, and in-state and out-of-state students pay the same tuition rates.

  5. Graduation Rate

    72%

    View School Profile

    A public institution, UT Dallas currently teaches over 28,000 students annually. The university encompasses eight schools, including the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, and the Naveen Jindal School of Management. Notable degree programs include a bachelor of science in child learning and development, a doctor of philosophy in cognition and neuroscience, and a master of science in energy management.

    First-year students must submit transcripts and a resume, essay, and/or letters of recommendation. In-state applicants who graduated in the top 10% of their high school class receive automatic admission. Graduate admission requirements vary by program but applicants typically need to submit transcripts, a resume, an essay, and letters of recommendation.

  6. Texas A & M International University

    Location

    Laredo, TX

    Tuition

    $4744

    Graduation Rate

    46%

    View School Profile

    Located in Laredo, Texas A&M International University traces its roots back to 1970. The "international" in its name refers to its cooperation with institutions in Mexico and Canada to develop joint degree programs.

    TAMIU consists of five colleges, including the A. R. Sanchez, Jr. School of Business; College of Education; and College of Arts and Sciences. Notable degree offerings include a bachelor of science in petroleum engineering, a bachelor of arts in sociology, and a bachelor of science in nursing.

    First-year students must submit their high school transcripts and ACT or SAT scores. Graduate admission requirements vary by program, although most do not require GRE scores. The school also hosts 10 online graduate degree programs, including MBA and master of science in curriculum and instruction options.

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  7. Texas State University

    Location

    San Marcos, TX

    Tuition

    $13729

    Graduation Rate

    55%

    View School Profile

    Located in San Marcos and founded in 1899, Texas State University currently teaches more than 38,000 students each year. The university offers more than 200 degree options across 10 colleges. Notable degrees include a bachelor of science in anthropology, a bachelor of science in aquatic biology, and a bachelor of science in construction science and management.

    Undergraduate tuition costs $11,540 per semester for in-state, full-time students and $23,820 per semester for out-of-state, full-time students. Graduate tuition costs $347 per credit for in-state students and $756 per credit for out-of-state students.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts. Graduate admission requirements vary by program.

  8. Graduation Rate

    76%

    View School Profile

    Located in San Antonio and founded in 1869, Trinity University currently teaches about 2,500 students per year. Trinity offers about 50 undergraduate degree programs and six graduate degree programs across 27 academic departments. Notable areas of study include physics and astronomy, human communication and theatre, geosciences, and healthcare administration.

    Tuition costs approximately $1,910 per credit for undergraduate students. Total tuition for graduate programs ranges from about $8,000-$22,500.

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    First-year applicants must submit transcripts, an essay, and a teacher evaluation form. Graduate admission requirements vary by program.

  9. LeTourneau University

    Location

    Longview, TX

    Graduation Rate

    59%

    View School Profile

    A private institution located in Longview, LeTourneau University delivers all of its curriculum from a Christian perspective. Notable areas of study at LETU include aviation and aeronautical science, psychology and counseling, theology and vocation, and education.

    Students can choose from dozens of undergraduate majors and minors, as well as 14 master's tracks. LETU also offers many of its degree programs online, including an associate of science in cybersecurity and a master of science in healthcare administration. Online tuition costs $380-$410 per credit for undergraduates and $625-$800 per credit for graduate students.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts showing a GPA of at least 3.0. The school does not charge an application fee.

  10. Southern Methodist University

    Location

    Dallas, TX

    Graduation Rate

    78%

    View School Profile

    A private institution located in Dallas, Southern Methodist University currently teaches around 12,000 students annually. Although founded by the Methodist Episcopal Church, the university is nonsectarian in its teaching.

    SMU's colleges and schools include the Meadows School of the Arts, Lyle School of Engineering, Perkins School of Theology, and Dedman School of Law. Notable areas of study include African and Mexican-American studies, applied physiology and health management, business energy management, and human rights.

    First-year applicants must submit transcripts, a counselor recommendation, and a resume. Graduate admission requirements vary by program.

Best Community Colleges in Texas

Top Degree Programs in Texas

Best Online Master's in Psychology ProgramsBest Online Master's in Counseling ProgramsBest Online Associate in Medical Billing and Coding Programs

Best Online Colleges in Dallas Check out our ranking of the best online colleges in Dallas. Find a school that fits your academic and career goals. Staff Writers September 23, 2022
Best Online Colleges in San Antonio Check out the best online colleges in San Antonio. Find a school offering the program you need in the location you want. Staff Writers September 23, 2022
2022 Top Public Colleges and Universities in Texas ammitchell April 14, 2022

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Compare your school options.

View the most relevant school for your interests and compare them by tuition, programs, acceptance rate, and other factors important to find your college home.

FAQs

What is the #1 college in Texas? ›

University of Texas at Austin.

What is the easiest but best college to get into? ›

Easiest Colleges to Get Into 2022
  1. Adams State University. Location: Alamosa, Colorado.
  2. University of Texas at El Paso. Location: El Paso, Texas. ...
  3. Eastern Washington University. ...
  4. Dickinson State University. ...
  5. Presentation College. ...
  6. Eastern Oregon University. ...
  7. Wright State University. ...
  8. Western Kentucky University. ...

What college has the happiest student? ›

Top 25 Happiest Colleges
  • University of Iowa.
  • Fairfield University.
  • University of California, Berkeley.
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
  • Clemson University.
  • Rice University.
  • Auburn University.
  • Florida State University.
28 Aug 2022

What is the hardest college to get accepted into? ›

1. Harvard University — 3.19% With a record-low admission rate of just 3.19% for the class of 2026, Harvard currently ranks as the most difficult school to get into. This rate reflects admission into Harvard College, the Ivy League university's undergraduate school.

Is UT or A&M better? ›

The University of Texas at Austin is a much better academic institution than Texas A&M University. UT is ranked No. 52 in U.S. News' National University rankings, while A&M is No. 70.

What is the safest college in Texas? ›

2023 Safest Campus in Texas

According to niche.com, the safest college campus for 2023 in the state is in Waxahachie, Texas. Southwestern Assemblies of God University got an A+ ranking from the site for safety and a B- ranking overall.

What college has a 100% acceptance rate? ›

Colleges with the Highest Acceptance Rates - Top 100
SchoolLocationFall 2021 Acceptance Rate
Academy of Art UniversitySan Francisco, CA100%
Adams State UniversityAlamosa, CO100%
Alliance UniversityNew York, NY100%
Baptist College of FloridaGraceville, FL100%
17 more rows

What college has the highest GPA requirement? ›

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill tops the list with an average reported GPA of 4.39. Note that not all colleges report GPA for their incoming class.

What is the funnest college? ›

The 20 Most Fun Colleges In America
  1. #1 Clemson University. Clemson, South Carolina.
  2. #2 Penn State University. State College, Pennsylvania. ...
  3. #3 Syracuse University. Syracuse, New York. ...
  4. #4 Tulane University. ...
  5. #5 University of Iowa. ...
  6. #6 Virginia Tech University. ...
  7. #7 Kansas State University. ...
  8. #8 Florida State University. ...
6 Aug 2014

What is the hardest major? ›

What Are the 10 Most Difficult College Majors?
  • Economics – 2.95.
  • Biology – 3.02.
  • Geology – 3.03.
  • Philosophy – 3.08.
  • Finance – 3.08.
  • Physics – 3.10.
  • Computer Science – 3.13.
  • Mechanical Engineering – 3.17.
17 Sept 2022

What is the #1 university in the world? ›

List of top 1000 universities in the world
UniversityCountryQS 2023
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)United States1
Stanford UniversityUnited States3
University of OxfordUnited Kingdom4
University of CambridgeUnited Kingdom2
54 more rows

What's the hardest school in the world? ›

Topping the list of the hardest school to get into in the world is Stanford. It has been featured top of this list for several years and no other university anywhere in the world has managed to replace it yet.

What GPA does UT require? ›

3.0 GPA. A grade-point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) or a comparable GPA in upper-division work—junior- and senior-level courses—and in any graduate work already completed is also required.

Is it harder to get into A&M or UT Austin? ›

Therefore, the acceptance rate alone is not a good indicator that The University of Texas at Austin (UT) is a better school or will be more difficult for you specifically to get into. On the flipside, Texas A & M University-College Station (TAMU) is easier to get into based on acceptance rate alone.

Can you get into UT Austin with a 3.5 GPA? ›

UT-Austin External Transfer Admissions Recommendations

UT reads and scores all transfer applications. Generally speaking, competitive applicants have at least a 3.5 GPA for all college courses.

What is the safest university in the US? ›

Study: These are the Safest College Campuses in America
RankStateUniversity/College
1IDAHOBrigham Young University-Idaho
2MICHIGANOakland University
3KENTUCKYNorthern Kentucky University
4RHODE ISLANDUniversity of Rhode Island
56 more rows

Is Rice a liberal school? ›

For instance, at Houston's Rice University — the most liberal school in the Texas sample — half (50 percent) of students identify as somewhat or very liberal while 7 percent identify as somewhat or very conservative, making it far less liberal than peer elite schools such as Washington University in St.

Is UNT school safe? ›

UNT Overall Crime Stats

That works out to 14.80 incidents per 1,000 students, considering that the student body population is 39,336.

Which university in USA is easiest to get into? ›

Popular Colleges with High Acceptance Rates
RankCollegeAcceptance Rate
Rank 1College University of KentuckyAcceptance Rate 90.79%
Rank 2College University of KansasAcceptance Rate 93.01%
Rank 3College Kansas State UniversityAcceptance Rate 94.07%
Rank 4College Iona CollegeAcceptance Rate 91.46%
21 more rows
1 Nov 2018

What GPA do I need to get into Berkeley? ›

GPA and test scores of middle 25%-75% students
High School GPA4.15 - 4.30
SAT Evidence Based Reading & Writing660 - 750
SAT Mathematics680 - 790
SAT Essay16 - 19
2 more rows

How many colleges should I apply to? ›

There is no magic number, but five to eight applications are usually enough to ensure that a student is accepted into a suitable institution (depending, of course, on the individual student's record and circumstances). This number should be made up of a combination of “safety,” “match,” and “reach” colleges.

Can you get into a university with a 2.0 GPA? ›

Unofficially, 2.0 is the lowest GPA accepted into a standard college, so while there's a chance that college admission is possible, it's not likely at more than a few institutions.

What college has lowest acceptance rate? ›

Top 100 - Lowest Acceptance Rates
SchoolLocationFall 2021 Acceptance Rate
Stanford UniversityStanford, CA4%
Yale UniversityNew Haven, CT5%
Brown UniversityProvidence, RI6%
Columbia UniversityNew York, NY6%
17 more rows

Which college has the lowest graduation rate? ›

United States Colleges Ranked by Lowest Graduation Rate
SchoolGraduation Rate
Oklahoma State University Oklahoma City Oklahoma City, OK5.7%
Blinn College Brenham, TX5.8%
Dallas College Dallas, TX5%
Ecclesia College Springdale, AR5.9%
14 more rows

What is the highest GPA ever recorded? ›

A GPA higher than 5.0 is rare, but school point systems are occasionally structured so that students taking advanced classes can rack up bonus points. One student even managed to land a stunning 10.03 GPA by taking 17 advanced classes at a school that awarded bonus points.

What's the lowest GPA you can get? ›

The lowest possible grade is usually equal to a 0.0 on any scale and most times correlates to an "F" or the failing grade for the course. The scale coverts linearly from the 0.0 to 4.0 with your grade whether you are on a number or letter grading system for the class.

Is a 4.9 GPA good? ›

What is a Good Unweighted GPA? A high school transcript that contains an even mix of As and A-s will produce a GPA of 3.85, exactly halfway between the 3.7/A- and the 4.0/A. More As than A-s will come out to a GPA of 3.9 and above, which is generally considered a very high GPA.

What is the biggest college in Texas? ›

Texas Colleges Ranked by Largest Enrollment

Below is a ranking of the 170 colleges in Texas with the largest enrollment of full and part time students. Dallas College tops the list with a population of 74,781 students.

What is a Tier 1 university? ›

Tier I definition*

A very high research focused university. • Top 2.5 percent of higher education.

What is Texas A&M known for? ›

Texas A&M is a land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant university known for its programs in engineering, technology, and agriculture.

Is A&M a top school? ›

Texas A&M University is the Best Public College in Texas and the Best Value College in Texas, according to Money's 2022 Best Colleges ranking. Texas A&M ranked No. 23 overall on the Best Public Colleges list and No. 27 overall in the Best Value category, as well as No.

Is Texas or Texas A&M more popular? ›

Now, the Aggies have surpassed the Texas fan base, as 22 percent of the Lone Star State identifies as Texas A&M fans to 20 percent Longhorn fans. Texas can thank Johnny Football and Kevin Sumlin for those changes. Not surprisingly, there is also a partisan divide between the two schools in the state.

What is the smallest university in Texas? ›

Texas Colleges Ranked by Smallest Enrollment

Below is a ranking of the 170 colleges in Texas with the smallest enrollment of full and part time students. The College of Saint Thomas More tops the list with a population of 10 students.

What tier is A&M? ›

Texas A&M University is the ​sixth largest university in the United States and the largest university in Texas. As a Tier 1 research institution, our university features nationally ranked programs in engineering, agriculture and life sciences, chemistry, architecture and business.

Is Texas a Tier 1 state? ›

The University of Texas at San Antonio is the latest public university to achieve the distinctive statewide Tier One status, which qualifies the school for access to $6 million in state funding annually to help attract prominent scholars and improve university research initiatives.

What tier is Harvard? ›

Tier 1 schools include: Stanford, Harvard, Princeton, Yale, MIT, UChicago, Caltech, Columbia, Brown, Northwestern, The University of Pennsylvania, Dartmouth, Duke, Vanderbilt, Cornell, Johns Hopkins, and Rice.

What GPA does Texas A&M require? ›

With a GPA of 3.68, Texas A&M requires you to be above average in your high school class. You'll need at least a mix of A's and B's, with more A's than B's. You can compensate for a lower GPA with harder classes, like AP or IB classes.

What is the average GPA for A&M? ›

Average GPA: 3.68

The average GPA at Texas A&M is 3.68. This makes Texas A&M Strongly Competitive for GPAs. (Most schools use a weighted GPA out of 4.0, though some report an unweighted GPA.

Is Texas A&M a public ivy? ›

It's the only non-Ivy League school among the universities tied for No. 1. And Texas A&M ranks ahead of vaunted colleges such as Brown, Penn and Tufts. Sometimes it's awfully good to be the outlier.

Why is Texas A&M so popular? ›

Texas A&M has earned reputation for excellence through high-quality academic programs, expert faculty, commitment to research and alumni outcomes. As an institution, we've been ranked at the top for state, national and global levels.

What is America's biggest college? ›

Ten largest public university campuses by enrollment during the 2019–20 academic year
RankingUniversityLocation
1University of Central FloridaOrlando, Florida
2Texas A&M UniversityCollege Station, Texas
3Ohio State UniversityColumbus, Ohio
7 more rows

Which Texas college has the most money? ›

Best Colleges in Texas by Salary Potential
RankSchool NameEarly Career Pay
Rank:1Rice UniversityEarly Career Pay:$77,900
2The King's UniversityEarly Career Pay:$64,300
3Texas A & M University-College StationEarly Career Pay:$64,400
4Southern Methodist UniversityEarly Career Pay:$64,700
21 more rows

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