Top liberal arts colleges 2017

What are the top 4-year liberal arts colleges? Whether you’re looking to decide between a public or private university, find best-value colleges, or compare schools like Lee University, Warner Pacific College Adult Degree Program, and Warner Pacific College, we’ve got you covered.

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290

Number of
4-year liberal arts colleges

884,650

Students attending
4-year liberal arts colleges

$32,365

Average
in-state tuition

$34,018

Average
out-of-state tuition

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Amherst College

Amherst, MA

12 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Amherst College

Amherst, MA

Total undergraduates: 1,921
Acceptance rate: 14%
Average annual cost: $16,861
Average salary: $56,300
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Bowdoin College

Brunswick, ME

19 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Bowdoin College

Brunswick, ME

Total undergraduates: 1,952
Acceptance rate: 14%
Average annual cost: $23,156
Average salary: $55,300
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Carleton College

Northfield, MN

27 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Carleton College

Northfield, MN

Total undergraduates: 2,093
Acceptance rate: 20%
Average annual cost: $31,568
Average salary: $49,500
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Davidson College

Davidson, NC

25 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Davidson College

Davidson, NC

Total undergraduates: 1,928
Acceptance rate: 22%
Average annual cost: $22,865
Average salary: $51,800
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Haverford College

Haverford, PA

23 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Haverford College

Haverford, PA

Total undergraduates: 1,305
Acceptance rate: 24%
Average annual cost: $21,056
Average salary: $56,600
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Pomona College

Claremont, CA

7 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Pomona College

Claremont, CA

Total undergraduates: 1,677
Acceptance rate: 10%
Average annual cost: $18,423
Average salary: $51,400
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Swarthmore College

Swarthmore, PA

10 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Swarthmore College

Swarthmore, PA

Total undergraduates: 1,606
Acceptance rate: 12%
Average annual cost: $21,580
Average salary: $48,500
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Washington and Lee University

Lexington, VA

28 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Washington and Lee University

Lexington, VA

Total undergraduates: 1,867
Acceptance rate: 23%
Average annual cost: $21,379
Average salary: $72,900
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Wesleyan University

Middletown, CT

9 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Wesleyan University

Middletown, CT

Total undergraduates: 3,091
Acceptance rate: 22%
Average annual cost: $22,257
Average salary: $48,400
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Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Williams College

Williamstown, MA

2 Forbes

Top liberal arts colleges 2017

Williams College

Williamstown, MA

Total undergraduates: 2,233
Acceptance rate: 17%
Average annual cost: $21,546
Average salary: $54,200
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Our Methodology

We show up to 10 universities for our "best colleges" section. These universities are chosen based on Forbes or US News rank (depending on what you've chosen) and sorted alphabetically. If there are fewer than 10 universities that are Forbes (or US News) ranked, we add alphabetically. Forbes' 2016 Rank of America's Best Colleges factors in post-graduate success (including salaries and awards like MacArthur Fellowships, National Academy of Sciences seats, and performing arts honors), student debt, student satisfaction, graduation rate, and academic success (which includes how many students go on to get advanced degrees or receive prestigious fellowships).

Read more about the rankings. US News' 2016 Best Colleges Rankings are also based on a variety of factors, including graduation and retention rates, undergraduate academic reputation, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate, and alumni giving rate. Read more about their methodology. You can also sign up for a free RaiseMe profile to customize your college search by location, popular majors and more!

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