Connecticut’s Best Liberal Arts Colleges and Universities of 2021

Liberal arts colleges are a great option for students seeking a well-rounded education in an intimate campus setting. The best liberal arts colleges in Connecticut offer a diverse selection of degree programs with opportunities for a highly individualized educational experience.

Connecticut’s Best Liberal Arts Colleges and Universities of 2021

Colleges and Universities in Connecticut

As the fourth oldest learning institute in the United States, Yale enrolls just over 15,000 students at its New Haven campus. Higher education in Connecticut includes both public and private institutions that offer associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. With 19 public schools and 20 private schools, students have a variety to choose from. Tuition for most of the state’s community colleges averages $4,000, while the cost for other public schools ranges from $8,000 to $16,000.

Students interested in psychology, economics, and communications can check out the University of Connecticut (UConn), which is home to the premier research institute for ecological psychology. Sacred Heart University, a Roman Catholic university, is known for its religious studies and business programs. And those looking for a smaller student population may want to check out Manchester Community College, which enrolls about 4000 students and offers affordable degrees in literature, biology, and social work.

Students in Connecticut can choose from a variety of higher education experiences fitting a full spectrum of budgets and career goals. Learn more and begin earning your degree from one of Connecticut’s top colleges or universities.


What are Connecticut’s Colleges & Universities?

Connecticut’s Best Overall

Related: Differences between research universities and teaching colleges

A liberal arts college is a school that puts a premium on undergraduate studies and offers a broad range of subjects for students to study. A college of liberal arts typically provides smaller class sizes, more direct engagement with professors, and, most importantly, the opportunity to sample a wide range of subject areas on the way to a bachelor’s degree. We’ve identified a total of 15 liberal arts colleges and universities in Connecticut, 10 of which meet our criteria. The list below of the best liberal arts schools in the state satisfies the following four conditions:

  1. It must be a non-profit institution.
  2. It must be fully accredited.
  3. It must offer a broad range of bachelor’s degrees.
  4. It must have a graduation rate of greater than 50%.

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How do we determine Connecticut's best colleges and universities?

Methodology

The people affiliated with a school are ultimately what make it great. This is why, at the undergraduate level, we rank the best colleges and universities based on what we call “Concentrated Influence”. Concentrated Influence takes the combined influence score of a college or university’s top academic influencers (including faculty and alums) and divides it by the school’s total number of undergraduates.

Using concentrated influence gives small and mid-sized schools an opportunity to shine by taking away the size advantage of larger universities. A small school with proportionately more influential faculty than a large school, whose influence in absolute terms may be bigger, will nonetheless score higher in a concentrated influence ranking. Our approach highlights undergraduate schools that truly rank for excellence, regardless of size.

If you are serious about finding the best colleges and universities for a bachelor’s degree, you should be asking where the most influential professors are teaching and whether their graduates are themselves advancing the school’s reputation for academic excellence.

Most ranking sites rely on an opaque combination of reputation surveys and arbitrary performance metrics. Concentrated Influence provides a ranking that is free from bias, insulated from manipulation, and reflective of real-world educational outcomes.

10 Best Liberal Arts Colleges & Universities in Connecticut

  1. #1

    Wesleyan University

    Middletown , CT
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $59K

    Acceptance

    21%

    Graduation

    91%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Wesleyan University known for?

    Wesleyan University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • History
    • Mathematics
    • Political Science
    • Economics
    • Religious Studies
    • Physics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. #2

    Connecticut College

    New London , CT

    Tuition + fees

    $59K

    Acceptance

    38%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1380/31

    What is Connecticut College known for?

    Connecticut College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • History
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Political Science
    • Mathematics
    • Philosophy
    • Engineering
    • Economics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  3. #4

    Fairfield University

    Fairfield , CT
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $51K

    Acceptance

    56%

    Graduation

    82%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1280/28

    What is Fairfield University known for?

    Fairfield University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Education
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • Communications
    REQUEST INFO
  4. Other Rankings

    Acceptance

    20%

    Graduation

    86%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1305/27

    What is United States Coast Guard Academy known for?

    United States Coast Guard Academy’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Political Science
    • Earth Sciences
    • Computer Science
    • Sociology
    REQUEST INFO
  5. Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    70%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    4K

    What is Eastern Connecticut State University known for?

    Eastern Connecticut State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Literature
    • Business
    • Political Science
    • History
    • Communications
    • Biology
    • Psychology
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    REQUEST INFO
  6. #7

    Albertus Magnus College

    New Haven , CT

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    49%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    970/19

    What is Albertus Magnus College known for?

    Albertus Magnus College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Business
    • Social Work
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Political Science
    • History
    • Criminal Justice
    • Philosophy

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  7. #8

    University of New Haven

    West Haven , CT

    Tuition + fees

    $42K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1125/24

    What is University of New Haven known for?

    University of New Haven’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Criminal Justice
    • Business
    • Education
    • Computer Science
    • Engineering
    • Political Science
    • Biology
    • History
    • Law
    • Chemistry

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  8. Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    65%

    Graduation

    52%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1065/20

    What is Central Connecticut State University known for?

    Central Connecticut State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Engineering
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  9. Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    80%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1000/20

    What is Southern Connecticut State University known for?

    Southern Connecticut State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • History
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • Medical
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
    • Communications

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO

Find the Best Schools in Connecticut for your Major

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