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2021 Best Colleges for Education

Approximately 267,136 education degrees were granted to students last year in the United States. With so many choices it can be difficult finding the best fit for you. This year's Best Colleges for Education ranking analyzed 622 colleges and universities that offer a bachelor's degree in education. We look at over 20 factors to determine the top 25 colleges for Education students.

Choosing a Great Education School

Best Colleges for Education Your choice of education school matters. Important measures of a quality education program can vary widely even among the top schools. Below we explain some of the most important factors to consider before making your choice:

Quality Overall is Important

The overall quality of a school is important to ensure a quality education, not just how well they do in a particular major. To take this into account we consider a college's overall Best Colleges ranking which itself looks at a collection of various factors like degree completion, educational resources, student body caliber and post-graduation earnings for the school as a whole.

The vast majority of the schools on this list are in at least the top 38% of our overall quality ranking.

Overall Best Colleges Rank  ( 524 to 1 )
Lowest Ranked Overall
Top Ranked Overall

Graduates Earn More After College

Education graduates from schools on this list tend to earn more after college than those from other schools. Recent education graduates from U.S. schools with a bachelors degree earned an average of $34,031 in 2017-2018.

Other Factors We Consider

In addition to the above, you should consider some of the following factors:

  • Major Focus - How much a school focuses on Education students vs. other majors.
  • Major Popularity - How many other education students choose this school.
  • Accreditation - Whether a school is regionally accredited and/or a recognized education related accrediting body.

Our full ranking methodology documents in more detail how we consider these factors to identify the best colleges for Education students.

Best Schools to Study Education in United States

Explore the top ranked colleges and universities for education majors. Only those schools that rank in the top 15% of all the schools we analyze get awarded with a place on this list. Of the 622 schools analyzed, only 25 earned the distinction of being on this list.

Top 25 Best Education Colleges

The College of New Jersey is one of the finest schools in the country for education. Located in the large suburb Ewing, TCNJ is a public college with a medium-sized student population. A Best Colleges rank of 167 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means TCNJ is a great school overall.

There are approximately 542 education undergrads studying this program at TCNJ.

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#2

Martin Luther College

New Ulm, MN

Martin Luther College is one of the best schools in the country for education. MLC is a fairly small private not-for-profit school located in the town of New Ulm. This college ranks 350th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Minnesota.

A popular major for education undergrads, there are roughly 169 learners studying this program at MLC.

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#3

Valley City State University

Valley City, ND

It's hard to beat Valley City State University if you wish to pursue education as a major. Located in the remote town Valley City, Valley City State University is a public college with a small student population. This college ranks 1110th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of North Dakota.

There are approximately 235 education undergraduates enrolled in this program at Valley City State University.

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#4

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

University of Florida is a great option for individuals interested in a Education degree. Located in the medium-sized city Gainesville, U of F is a public college with a very large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 85 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means U of F is a great college overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, U of F also offers 3 different higher degree levels in education, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree.

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Located in the city University Park, Penn State University Park is a public school with a fairly large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 112 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Penn State University Park is a great school overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, Penn State University Park also offers 2 different higher degree levels in education, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree.

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#6

Purdue University - Main Campus

West Lafayette, IN

Purdue is a very large public school located in the small city of West Lafayette. A Best Colleges rank of 84 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Purdue is a great school overall.

There are approximately 531 education undergraduates enrolled in this degree at Purdue.

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Located in the large city Minneapolis, UMN Twin Cities is a public college with a very large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 124 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means UMN Twin Cities is a great college overall.

There are roughly 897 education undergraduates enrolled in this program at UMN Twin Cities.

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Located in the suburb Newark, U of Delaware is a public college with a very large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 87 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means U of Delaware is a great school overall.

There are roughly 429 education undergrads enrolled in this program at U of Delaware.

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#9

Towson University

Towson, MD

Located in the small city Towson, Towson is a public college with a very large student population. This college ranks 490th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Maryland.

There are about 675 education undergraduates enrolled in this program at Towson.

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#10

Trinity Christian College

Palos Heights, IL

Trinity Christian is a small private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Palos Heights. This school ranks 605th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Illinois.

A preferred choice for education undergraduates, there are roughly 97 individuals enrolled in this degree at Trinity Christian.

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Located in the suburb Orlando, UCF is a public school with a very large student population. This college ranks 312th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Florida.

There are roughly 1590 education undergraduates enrolled in this program at UCF.

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Illinois State is a fairly large public school located in the suburb of Normal. This school ranks 331st out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of Illinois.

There are roughly 848 education undergrads studying this degree at Illinois State.

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#13

SUNY Geneseo

Geneseo, NY

Located in the distant town Geneseo, SUNY Geneseo is a public school with a moderately-sized student population. This college ranks 277th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of New York.

With 208 students enrolled, SUNY Geneseo is one of most popular schools to study education in United States.

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Ohio State is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Columbus. A Best Colleges rank of 175 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Ohio State is a great college overall.

Ohio State offers education degrees as low as a Associate's and all the way up to a Research / Scholarship Based Doctorate's.

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#15

Rider University

Lawrenceville, NJ

Located in the large suburb Lawrenceville, Rider is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. This college ranks 410th out of 1,715 colleges for overall quality in the state of New Jersey.

With 196 students enrolled, Rider University is one of most popular colleges to study education in United States.

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Located in the large suburb College Park, UMCP is a public school with a fairly large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 117 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means UMCP is a great college overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, UMCP also offers 2 different higher degree levels in education, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree.

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#17

SUNY Cortland

Cortland, NY

Located in the town Cortland, SUNY Cortland is a public college with a medium-sized student population. This school ranks 446th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of New York.

SUNY Cortland is a fairly popular college to study education in United States exceeding 471 graduations last year.

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Located in the distant town Kearney, UNK is a public college with a medium-sized student population. This college ranks 543rd out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Nebraska.

In addition to its bachelor's programs, UNK offers a Master's Degree in education.

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Located in the city Raleigh, NC State is a public college with a very large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 105 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means NC State is a great college overall.

For those interested in something more advanced, NC State also offers 2 different higher degree levels in education, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree.

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#20

Baylor University

Waco, TX

Baylor is a large private not-for-profit school located in the midsize city of Waco. A Best Colleges rank of 153 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Baylor is a great school overall.

A popular choice for education undergraduates, there are about 188 learners studying this degree at Baylor.

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#21

Boston University

Boston, MA

Located in the large city Boston, Boston U is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 49 out of 1,715 colleges nationwide means Boston U is a great school overall.

There are approximately 754 education undergraduates enrolled in this degree at Boston U.

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Ohio State University - Marion Campus is a small public school located in the distant town of Marion. This college ranks 1028th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Ohio.

With 29 undergraduates, Ohio State University - Marion Campus is one of most popular colleges to study education in United States.

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#23

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Located in the medium-sized city Tallahassee, Florida State is a public school with a very large student population. A Best Colleges rank of 160 out of 1,715 schools nationwide means Florida State is a great college overall.

With 456 undergraduates, Florida State University is one of most popular colleges to study education in United States.

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Ohio State University - Mansfield Campus is a small public school located in the rural area of Mansfield. This college ranks 1077th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Ohio.

Ohio State University - Mansfield Campus is a fairly popular college to study education in United States exceeding 30 graduations last year.

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#25

Auburn University

Auburn, AL

Auburn is a fairly large public school located in the city of Auburn. This school ranks 209th out of 1,715 schools for overall quality in the state of Alabama.

For those interested in something more advanced, Auburn also offers 2 different higher degree levels in education, the most popular of which is a Master's Degree.

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Rest of the Top 50 Best Colleges for Education

#26

Harding University

Searcy, AR
#31

Wartburg College

Waverly, IA
#32

Hope College

Holland, MI
#33

Western Washington University

Bellingham, WA
#34

Michigan State University

East Lansing, MI
#35

New York University

New York, NY
#37

Hofstra University

Hempstead, NY
#38

University of Louisville

Louisville, KY
#39

Lebanon Valley College

Annville, PA
#40

Clemson University

Clemson, SC
#42

University of Georgia

Athens, GA
#43

Ball State University

Muncie, IN
#44

Salisbury University

Salisbury, MD
#45

Kansas State University

Manhattan, KS
#46

The University of Alabama

Tuscaloosa, AL
#48

Taylor University

Upland, IN
#49

DePaul University

Chicago, IL

Additional Award Winners

This section shows the remainder of the schools awarded a Best Colleges for Education badge. Showing in this list means the school was ranked in the top 15% of the 622 different United States education schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
51 Appalachian State University Boone, NC
52 Elon University Elon, NC
53 Washington State University Pullman, WA
54 East Carolina University Greenville, NC
55 SUNY Potsdam Potsdam, NY
56 Lee University Cleveland, TN
57 University of Missouri - Columbia Columbia, MO
58 Ithaca College Ithaca, NY
59 University of Maine at Farmington Farmington, ME
60 Utah State University Logan, UT
61 Bethel University Minnesota Saint Paul, MN
62 Miami University - Oxford Oxford, OH
63 Winona State University Winona, MN
64 Arizona State University - Tempe Tempe, AZ
65 University of South Florida - Main Campus Tampa, FL
66 Concordia College at Moorhead Moorhead, MN
67 University of Northern Iowa Cedar Falls, IA
68 Temple University Philadelphia, PA
69 Indiana University - Bloomington Bloomington, IN
70 University of South Dakota Vermillion, SD
71 Valparaiso University Valparaiso, IN
72 Marquette University Milwaukee, WI
73 Whitworth University Spokane, WA
74 Florida International University Miami, FL
75 Lipscomb University Nashville, TN
76 Augustana University Sioux Falls, SD
77 Calvin University Grand Rapids, MI
78 Central Washington University Ellensburg, WA
79 Catholic University of America Washington, DC
80 University of South Carolina - Columbia Columbia, SC
81 Seton Hall University South Orange, NJ
82 Duquesne University Pittsburgh, PA
83 University of Kansas Lawrence, KS
84 Wheaton College Illinois Wheaton, IL
85 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC
86 Bellarmine University Louisville, KY
87 Florida Atlantic University Boca Raton, FL
88 Augustana College Rock Island, IL
89 University of Nevada - Reno Reno, NV
90 Mississippi State University Mississippi State, MS
91 Kent State University at Kent Kent, OH
92 University of Wisconsin - Madison Madison, WI
93 Texas Christian University Fort Worth, TX

Honorable Mentions

These are some additional schools worth mentioning that are also great but just didn't quite make the cut to earn our top Best Colleges for Education award.

Rank College Location
94 Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant, MI
95 University of Cincinnati - Main Campus Cincinnati, OH
96 Monmouth University West Long Branch, NJ
97 CUNY Hunter College New York, NY
98 Grand Valley State University Allendale, MI
99 University of Alabama at Birmingham Birmingham, AL
100 Pennsylvania State University - Harrisburg Middletown, PA
101 Edgewood College Madison, WI
102 University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh Oshkosh, WI
103 Western Carolina University Cullowhee, NC
104 University of North Florida Jacksonville, FL
105 Emporia State University Emporia, KS
106 Bridgewater State University Bridgewater, MA
107 University of Minnesota - Duluth Duluth, MN
108 Northern State University Aberdeen, SD
109 University of the Pacific Stockton, CA
110 Berry College Mount Berry, GA
111 CUNY Queens College Queens, NY
112 Benedictine College Atchison, KS
113 Wayne State College Wayne, NE
114 University of Dayton Dayton, OH
115 The College of Saint Rose Albany, NY
116 Bradley University Peoria, IL
117 University of Portland Portland, OR
118 Gonzaga University Spokane, WA
119 Providence College Providence, RI
120 University of Wisconsin - Stout Menomonie, WI
121 West Chester University of Pennsylvania West Chester, PA
122 Western Michigan University Kalamazoo, MI
123 Kutztown University of Pennsylvania Kutztown, PA
124 George Fox University Newberg, OR

Education by Region

View the Best Colleges for Education for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
The Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Education Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Teacher Education Grade Specific 100,925
Educational Administration 44,381
Teacher Education Subject Specific 43,516
General Education 31,066
Special Education 30,639

View All Education Related Majors >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Social Sciences 203,399
Psychology 177,655
Communication & Journalism 122,154
Family, Consumer & Human Sciences 59,281
History 32,806

View All Education Related Majors >

Notes and References

  • The bars on the spread charts above show the distribution of the schools on this list +/- one standard deviation from the mean.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to Horadrim. More about our data sources and methodologies.

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