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Top Ranked North Carolina Colleges


The Best Colleges in North Carolina Ranked for 2019

These are the best four year colleges in North Carolina as ranked by CollegeSimply. This North Carolina ranking is a subset of our national ranking of the best colleges in America. Our ranking methodology is purely statistical and not subjective in nature. Measuring factors include but are not limited to: student body intellect as indicated by admission scores, graduation rate and admission selectivity. In order to be considered for the ranking, a school must offer four year undergraduate degrees, selectively admit students and be a non-profit institution. Leading the 2019 ranking as the best college in North Carolina is Duke University.

List of The Best Colleges & Universities in North Carolina
Rank College National Academic Rank1 National Selectivity Rank2 National Graduation Rank3
1 Duke University 23 18 18
2 Davidson College 64 46 35
3 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 68 65 61
4 North Carolina State University at Raleigh 129 321 263
5 Elon University 219 732 122
6 University of North Carolina School of the Arts 309 106 610
7 Salem College 281 454 759
8 University of North Carolina at Wilmington 253 733 373
9 Appalachian State University 352 821 421
10 University of North Carolina at Asheville 382 1,138 521
11 University of North Carolina at Charlotte 353 704 757
12 Gardner Webb University 606 361 700
13 Laurel University 696 225 552
14 Western Carolina University 608 152 873
15 Warren Wilson College 310 1,107 1,045
16 Meredith College 652 789 580
17 Queens University of Charlotte 607 1,106 522
18 Piedmont International University 818 66 981
19 Catawba College 1,004 188 730
20 Barton College 854 151 979
21 St. Andrews University 698 176 1,110
22 Campbell University 651 1,167 699
23 East Carolina University 695 1,105 579
24 University of North Carolina at Greensboro 697 1,077 758
25 Wake Forest University 1,586 82 66
26 Greensboro College 855 175 1,209
27 Methodist University 816 453 1,239
28 Mount Olive College 1,084 289 1,043
29 Montreat College 817 672 1,330
30 William Peace University 892 494 1,311
31 Johnson C Smith University 1,184 143 1,291
32 Mars Hill University 1,005 477 1,265
33 Pfeiffer University 1,006 705 1,044
34 North Carolina A & T State University 1,034 580 1,179
35 Elizabeth City State University 1,170 519 1,076
36 Livingstone College 1,194 137 1,472
37 Wingate University 856 1,452 760
38 Mid Atlantic Christian University 1,118 363 1,494
39 North Carolina Wesleyan College 1,117 362 1,557
40 Lenoir Rhyne University 730 956 980
41 Winston Salem State University 1,155 734 1,180
42 Chowan University 1,183 518 1,438
43 Belmont Abbey College 815 1,552 1,264
44 Fayetteville State University 1,154 763 1,421
45 Brevard College 1,581 224 1,329
46 University of North Carolina at Pembroke 1,085 1,168 1,344
47 North Carolina Central University 1,143 1,232 1,266
48 Cabarrus College of Health Sciences 927 1,266 1,778
49 Saint Augustines College 1,188 1,021 1,548
50 Bennett College for Women 1,193 1,365 1,238

Ranking Methodology

Overall Rank is calculated based on the following school characteristics.

1National Academic Rank is calculated using standardized test admission data as well as GPA data for admitted freshman.
2National Selectivity Rank is based on admission selectivity for incoming students starting the 2016-2017 academic year.
3National Graduation Rank is based on the percentage of students graduating with bachelor's degrees within six years.