Colleges With High Acceptance Rates

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Below you will find a 2017 comprehensive list of the 100 colleges with the highest acceptance rates in the nation for first-time, degree-seeking undergraduate students.

What Does a High Acceptance Rate Mean For You?

A high acceptance rate means that for all the students that apply, a good percentage of them will be admitted. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that just because a school has a high acceptance rate, it is easy to get into.

For purposes of looking at evaluating acceptance rates, none of the schools in our colleges with high acceptance rates have designated themselves as having open admission or open enrollment. Open admission means that the school will admit any student who applies as long as they have a valid high school diploma or GED.

Because none of the schools state that they have open admission, we can conclude that they do not and instead have a variety of admission requirements that must be met.

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Editor’s Analysis of The Colleges With High Acceptance Rates

An interesting thing to note is that although admission rates are high for the schools below, they have an average enrollment rate for first-time, degree-seeking undergraduate students of 37%. This means that of the over 518,000 students that were accepted to these schools, 67% of them chose a different school option. There are likely a number of reasons for this.

Another interesting thing is that 78% of the schools on this top 100 list are public colleges or universities. These public schools may have requirements around the percentage of students that they need to admit based on the amount of federal or state funding they receive. This means they will likely have a higher acceptance rate.

Fourteen percent of the schools with high acceptance rates are private, not-for-profit schools with a religious affiliation. The remaining eight percent are private, not-for-profit schools with no religious affiliation.

Many other colleges that are not listed below also have high admission rates. A good portion of those are open admission schools, as explained above. Many open admission schools are junior, community, or technical colleges.

Another group of schools that typically accept and enroll many of the potential students that apply, is online schools. Online colleges and universities are able to admit a large percentage of students due to the very unique circumstances that surround distance learning and online degree programs.

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School NameLocationAcceptance RateTypeIn-state TuitionOut-of-state Tuition
The University of Texas at El PasoEl Paso, TX100.0%Public $5,606 $17,506
The University of PhoenixTempe, AZ100.0%Private for-profit $9,690 $9,690
Brigham Young University-IdahoRexburg, ID99.6%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $3,830 $3,830
Harding UniversitySearcy, AR99.2%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $17,130 $17,130
CUNY Medgar Evers CollegeBrooklyn, NY99.2%Public $6,330 $13,440
Benedictine CollegeAtchison, KS99.1%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $25,950 $25,950
Lewis-Clark State CollegeLewiston, ID98.9%Public $6,000 $17,000
The Evergreen State CollegeOlympia, WA97.9%Public $7,512 $21,927
College of Staten Island CUNYStaten Island, NY97.6%Public $6,330 $13,440
Saint Mary's College of CaliforniaMoraga, CA97.5%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $42,780 $42,780
Utah State UniversityLogan, UT96.7%Public $5,617 $18,087
University of Akron Main CampusAkron, OH96.6%Public $8,618 $17,149
Clarion University of PennsylvaniaClarion, PA96.1%Public $7,060 $10,590
University of North GeorgiaDahlonega, GA96.1%Public $3,644 $13,004
Wright State University-Main CampusDayton, OH96.0%Public $8,730 $17,098
Colorado State University-PuebloPueblo, CO95.9%Public $6,159 $19,493
Edinboro University of PennsylvaniaEdinboro, PA95.7%Public $7,060 $7,414
University of WyomingLaramie, WY95.7%Public $2,856 $11,448
Indiana Wesleyan University-MarionMarion, IN95.2%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $24,728 $24,728
Southern Oregon UniversityAshland, OR95.2%Public $6,615 $20,835
College of Coastal GeorgiaBrunswick, GA95.0%Public $2,451 $9,058
Kansas State UniversityManhattan, KS94.9%Public $8,517 $22,596
Bethel UniversitySaint Paul, MN94.9%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $33,990 $33,990
Wichita State UniversityWichita, KS94.7%Public $6,081 $14,404
University of Wisconsin-PlattevillePlatteville, WI94.3%Public $6,418 $14,268
Missouri Southern State UniversityJoplin, MO94.1%Public $5,311 $10,622
Carroll UniversityWaukesha, WI94.0%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $28,825 $28,825
Bemidji State UniversityBemidji, MN93.8%Public $7,360 $7,360
North Dakota State University-Main CampusFargo, ND93.6%Public $6,762 $18,056
University of KansasLawrence, KS93.5%Public $9,123 $23,774
Samford UniversityBirmingham, AL93.3%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $27,520 $27,520
University of ToledoToledo, OH93.2%Public $8,052 $17,390
University of Wisconsin-StoutMenomonie, WI93.1%Public $7,014 $14,760
Palm Beach Atlantic UniversityWest Palm Beach, FL92.9%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $26,750 $26,750
Northeastern State UniversityTahlequah, OK92.8%Public $4,425 $11,775
Western Kentucky UniversityBowling Green, KY92.7%Public $9,482 $24,132
University of Central ArkansasConway, AR92.2%Public $5,918 $11,835
Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort WayneFort Wayne, IN92.2%Public $7,052 $18,380
University of the Incarnate WordSan Antonio, TX92.2%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $25,900 $25,900
University of Colorado Colorado SpringsColorado Springs, CO92.1%Public $6,384 $16,680
Troy UniversityTroy, AL91.9%Public $6,888 $13,776
Northern Kentucky UniversityHighland Heights, KY91.9%Public $8,736 $17,472
Southern New Hampshire UniversityManchester, NH91.7%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $30,006 $30,006
Lock Haven UniversityLock Haven, PA91.7%Public $7,060 $15,650
South Dakota State UniversityBrookings, SD91.7%Public $4,341 $6,512
Southwestern Oklahoma State UniversityWeatherford, OK91.6%Public $4,725 $11,175
Hawaii Pacific UniversityHonolulu, HI91.3%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $22,160 $22,160
University of MaineOrono, ME91.2%Public $8,370 $26,640
Iona CollegeNew Rochelle, NY91.2%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $33,124 $33,124
The University of MontanaMissoula, MT91.0%Public $4,603 $21,988
LIU BrooklynBrooklyn, NY90.9%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $33,678 $33,678
Murray State UniversityMurray, KY90.6%Public $6,552 $19,656
Loyola University New OrleansNew Orleans, LA90.3%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $36,214 $36,214
Nicholls State UniversityThibodaux, LA90.2%Public $4,922 $15,853
University of Wisconsin-Stevens PointStevens Point, WI90.1%Public $6,298 $14,565
Shepherd UniversityShepherdstown, WV89.9%Public $4,918 $13,766
University of Arkansas at Little RockLittle Rock, AR89.8%Public $6,180 $17,250
University of Wisconsin-River FallsRiver Falls, WI89.8%Public $6,428 $14,001
Pennsylvania State University-Penn State AltoonaAltoona, PA89.4%Public $13,658 $21,392
University of Northern ColoradoGreeley, CO89.3%Public $6,372 $17,958
Davenport UniversityGrand Rapids, MI89.2%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $15,192 $15,192
Arkansas Tech UniversityRussellville, AR89.1%Public $5,160 $10,320
University of KentuckyLexington, KY89.1%Public $9,687 $23,019
Shippensburg University of PennsylvaniaShippensburg, PA89.1%Public $7,060 $15,886
University of Puerto Rico-AreciboArecibo, PR88.9%Public $1,870 $3,891
University of Nevada-Las VegasLas Vegas, NV88.4%Public $6,277 $20,187
Indiana University of Pennsylvania-Main CampusIndiana, PA88.3%Public $7,060 $17,650
Southern Illinois University-EdwardsvilleEdwardsville, IL88.2%Public $6,930 $8,760
Columbia College-ChicagoChicago, IL88.1%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $23,640 $23,640
Missouri University of Science and TechnologyRolla, MO88.1%Public $8,286 $24,810
Southeastern Louisiana UniversityHammond, LA88.0%Public $5,278 $17,756
Marshall UniversityHuntington, WV87.9%Public $5,724 $14,512
University of Southern MainePortland, ME87.8%Public $6,578 $17,290
Western Oregon UniversityMonmouth, OR87.8%Public $7,746 $21,105
Illinois State UniversityNormal, IL87.7%Public $9,807 $14,157
Curry CollegeMilton, MA87.7%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $34,730 $34,730
Bloomsburg University of PennsylvaniaBloomsburg, PA87.7%Public $7,060 $17,650
Austin Peay State UniversityClarksville, TN87.7%Public $6,048 $20,880
University of Louisiana at MonroeMonroe, LA87.6%Public $5,484 $17,584
Iowa State UniversityAmes, IA87.2%Public $6,648 $19,768
Pennsylvania State University-Penn State Erie-Behrend CollegeErie, PA87.1%Public $13,658 $21,392
Emporia State UniversityEmporia, KS87.0%Public $4,662 $17,250
Canisius CollegeBuffalo, NY87.0%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $33,282 $33,282
New Jersey City UniversityJersey City, NJ86.7%Public $7,936 $16,765
MCPHS UniversityBoston, MA86.6%Private not-for-profit (no religious affiliation) $29,600 $29,600
Saint Cloud State UniversitySaint Cloud, MN86.2%Public $6,820 $14,738
Fort Lewis CollegeDurango, CO86.0%Public $5,856 $16,072
Fort Hays State UniversityHays, KS85.9%Public $3,574 $12,577
Missouri State University-SpringfieldSpringfield, MO85.9%Public $6,150 $13,020
Prairie View A & M UniversityPrairie View, TX85.9%Public $6,052 $18,579
Texas Woman's UniversityDenton, TX85.9%Public $4,760 $14,120
West Virginia UniversityMorgantown, WV85.8%Public $7,632 $21,432
University of Wisconsin-MilwaukeeMilwaukee, WI85.8%Public $8,091 $18,265
Portland State UniversityPortland, OR85.7%Public $6,750 $22,725
University of Cincinnati-Main CampusCincinnati, OH85.6%Public $9,322 $24,656
Indiana State UniversityTerre Haute, IN85.5%Public $8,380 $18,508
Lee UniversityCleveland, TN85.5%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $14,400 $14,400
Morehead State UniversityMorehead, KY85.4%Public $8,098 $20,246
University of Nebraska at KearneyKearney, NE85.4%Public $5,325 $11,595
University of Wisconsin-Eau ClaireEau Claire, WI85.2%Public $7,361 $14,934
Taylor UniversityUpland, IN85.1%Private not-for-profit (religious affiliation) $30,030 $30,030

Earn Your Associate or Bachelor’s Degree Online. You May Qualify For $6,095 in Grants!


Data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics, IPEDS Data Center. March 9, 2017.


Degrees Offered: Associate’s Optional, Bachelor’s Required
Enrolled: Greater than 500
Sort: Descending admission rate

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