Where DC-area schools rank on new ‘Top Colleges’ list

In this Feb. 26, 2019 photo, people walk across a quad at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

There’s a new list of the top colleges and universities in the U.S. — this time from The Wall Street Journal.

Among schools in the broader D.C. area scoring highly on the list are Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, at No. 12; Georgetown University, at No. 29, and the University of Virginia, at No. 50.

The rankings evaluate a total of 800 colleges and universities based on a number of factors, including graduate salaries and debt burdens; the academic resources schools offer; how schools engage with students; and diversity.

The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Rankings are designed to emphasize “how well a college will prepare students for life after graduation.”

Harvard is the top-ranked school overall. Rounding out the top three are the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Yale.

More than a dozen schools across D.C., Maryland and Virginia ranked in the top 200. See the full list of local rankings below.

The rankings are based on federal data, including from the U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid office and a number of other sources. The rankings also take into account survey responses from about 174,000 students about “whether they feel inspired and motivated by their classmates, whether they think their college is worth what they and their families are paying, and if they’d choose the same school if they had to start all over again.”

Among the schools cited by students as being worth the cost, the U.S. Naval Academy tied with Brigham Young University at No. 1. The Virginia Military Institute, in Lexington, Virginia, was ranked at No 4. Washington and Lee University, also in Lexington, tied for eighth place with a number of colleges, including Yale.

One area school with an overall high ranking did poorly when it came to student perceptions about the value of their education, The Wall Street Journal reported. George Washington University, which scored 72 on the overall, had the fifth-worst score based on whether students thought their college education was worth the cost. Tuition and fees at the school exceed $50,000, WSJ noted.

Overall local rankings:

  • Johns Hopkins University (No. 12)
  • Georgetown University (No. 29)
  • University of Virginia (No. 50)
  • University of Richmond (No. 66)
  • Washington and Lee University (No. 70)
  • George Washington University (No. 72)
  • University of Maryland, College Park (No. 75)
  • William & Mary (No. 79)
  • U.S. Naval Academy (No. 80)
  • Virginia Tech (No. 105)
  • Howard University (No. 117)
  • American University (No. 131)
  • Catholic University (No. 153)
  • Virginia Military Institute (No. 176)
  • George Mason University (No. 184)
  • University of Maryland, Baltimore County (No. 283)
  • Towson University (No. 394)

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