The 25 most liberal colleges in America

Northwestern University/FacebookNorthwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, is one of the most liberal colleges in America.
  • Niche ranked the most liberal colleges in America as part of its annual series of college rankings.
  • Most of the top 25 are on the West Coast and in the Northeast.
  • Many small liberal arts schools make appearances on the list.

As part of its annual series of school rankings, Niche ranked hundreds of American colleges on a scale from most liberal to most conservative.

It might not come as a surprise that the most liberal colleges in the United States are mostly on the West Coast and in the Northeast and include many small liberal arts schools.

Niche based its rankings on surveys from students at each school, and factored in both the political leanings of the students and the survey-takers’ impressions of the political leanings of the rest of the student body.

Read on to find out which school is the most liberal in America.


25. University of California — Santa Barbara

Acceptance rate: 36%

Tuition: $US14,451 (in-state), $US42,465 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1120-1390


24. Fashion Institute of Technology — New York City

Flickr/Susan SermonetaNew York, New York

Acceptance rate: 40%

Net price: $US5,483 (in-state), $US14,863 (out-of-state)

SAT range: N/A


23. Kenyon College — Gambier, Ohio

Wikimedia Commons

Acceptance rate: 27%

Net price: $US53,560

SAT range: 1230-1440


22. Northwestern University — Evanston, Illinois

Acceptance rate: 11%

Tuition: $US52,678

SAT range: 1400-1560


21. State University of New York at New Paltz

Wikimedia Commons/crz4mets2

Acceptance rate: 43%

Tuition: $US7,775 (in-state), $US17,625 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1010-1200


20. University of Washington — Seattle, Washington

Wikimedia Commons

Acceptance rate: 45%

Tuition: $US11,207 (in-state), $US36,587 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1120-1370


Wesleyan University — Middletown, Connecticut

Acceptance rate: 18%

Tuition: $US52,804

SAT range: 1300-1480


18. Carleton College — Northfield, Minnesota

Acceptance rate: 23%

Tuition: $US52,782

SAT range: 1320-1540


17. State University of New York at Purchase

Wikimedia Commons/Rschaming

Acceptance rate: 44%

Tuition: $US8,498 (in-state), $US18,148 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 970-1180


16. Vassar College — Poughkeepsie, New York

Acceptance rate: 27%

Tuition: $US55,210

SAT range: 1330-1500


15. Smith College — Northampton, Massachusetts

Wikimedia Commons

Acceptance rate: 37%

Tuition: $US50,044

SAT range: 1240-1470


14. Bryn Mawr College — Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Acceptance rate: 40%

Tuition: $US14,451 (in-state), $US42,465 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1220-1450


13. Sarah Lawrence College — Bronxville, New York

Acceptance rate: 52%

Tuition: $US54,010

SAT range: 1170-1390


12. Howard University — Washington, DC

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Acceptance rate: 30%

Tuition: $US24,122

SAT range: 1040-1240


11. New York University — New York City

Melia Robinson/BI

Acceptance rate: 32%

Tuition: $US50,464

SAT range: 1250-1480


10. Oberlin College — Oberlin, Ohio

Acceptance rate: 28%

Tuition: $US53,460

SAT range: 1250-1450


9. American University — Washington, DC

American University

Acceptance rate: 36%

Tuition: $US46,615

SAT range: 1150-1340


8. Portland State University — Portland, Oregon

Portland State University

Acceptance rate: 89%

Tuition: $US8,783 (in-state), $US26,130 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 930-1160


7. Bard College — Annandale-On-Hudson, New York

Bard College

Acceptance rate: 56%

Tuition: $US52,906

SAT range: N/A


6. Mount Holyoke College — South Hadley, Massachusetts

YouTube/Mount Holyoke College

Acceptance rate: 52%

Tuition: $US47,940

SAT range: 1220-1490


5. University of California — Berkeley

Shutterstock

Acceptance rate: 17%

Tuition: $US14,170 (in-state), $US42,184 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1270-1540


4. Mills College — Oakland, California

Mills College

Acceptance rate: 84%

Tuition: $US46,236

SAT range: 925-1233


3. Columbia College Chicago — Chicago, Illinois

Shutterstock/Tupungato

Acceptance rate: 88%

Tuition: $US26,474

SAT range: N/A


2. San Francisco State University — San Francisco, California

Wikimedia Commons

Acceptance rate: 68%

Tuition: $US7,254 (in-state), $US19,134 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 860-1090


1. University of California — Santa Cruz

Acceptance rate: 58%

Tuition: $US14,020 (in-state), $US42,034 (out-of-state)

SAT range: 1060-1290

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