Regionally Accredited Colleges in Florida

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regionally accredited colleges in florida

Florida provides a comprehensive selection of four-year colleges, universities and higher education institutions offering programs designed to meet the lifestyle and education requirements of a diverse group of aspiring students and career professionals. It is also home to some of the largest and most reputable higher education institutions in the nation, including Florida State University (in Tallahassee), University of Florida (in Gainesville) and University of South Florida (in Tampa).

Public Universities

The state of Florida has forty (40) public colleges and universities (even more than the state of Texas), all of which belong to the State University System of Florida or the Florida College System. The State University System of Florida (SUS, or SUSF) is comprised of 12 public universities that together represent over 320,000 students. The Florida College System (formerly the Florida Community College System) includes 28 public state colleges and community colleges which represent over 900,000 students. Together, these two systems make up Florida’s system of public higher education which is governed by the Florida Board of Governors and coordinated by Florida’s State Board of Education.

Of its 40 public universities, 11 are considered research universities, and of those 8 are classified by the Carnegie Foundation as Very High (VH) or High Research (HR) institutions. As more and more of Florida’s universities continue to receive record levels of research funding each year, the number institutions with “High Research Activity” within the state is expected to grow. Florida recently reached an all time high of $1.7 billion in annual research funding awards. Of that amount, about 65% ($1.1 billion) was provided by the federal government the rest came from private industry. An additional $500 million in research funding was donated by non-profit organizations, the state of Florida and other groups supporting research and development. Universities in Florida that are classified as Very High or High Research institutions include Florida Atlantic University, Florida Institute of Technology, Florida A&M University, Florida International University, Florida State University, University of Florida, University of Central Florida, University of Miami and University of South Florida.

Private Institutions

In addition to public institutions, Florida offers students a large selection of private colleges anduniversities-ranging from large universities like Nova Southeastern University and University of Miami to smaller liberal arts colleges such as Eckerd College, which is known for its marine science and environmental studies programs as well as its undergraduate study abroad program. In all, Florida is home to over 85 privately owned and operated four-year colleges, universities and trade schools, almost double the number of public institutions in the state.

The majority of the public colleges and universities in Florida, as well as most traditional private higher education institutions in the state, are regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Universities. However, many institutions, especially trade, technical and career schools, are not regionallly accredited. They are nationally accredited by organizations including the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS). Most regionally accredited institutions will not accept transfer credits from nationally accredited institutions. Before enrolling in any higher education program, we highly recommend that you (1) familiarize yourself with the differences between “Regional” vs “National” accreditation and (2) that you make sure you fully understand how the institution you plan on attending is accredited and the current status of their accreditation.

Below you can explore a comprehensive directory of over 110 public and private colleges and universities located in Florida that offer 4-year degree programs. To find a college or university in a specific region please make your selection from the Florida cities section below. If you’re not ready to pursue a four-year degree, we would recommend visiting the Florida Community Colleges page to review a list of community colleges and trade schools offering 2-year associate degree and career training programs.

Accredited 4-year colleges and universities in Florida listed by city.