Georgia’s Best Private Colleges and Universities of 2021

Private colleges, unlike large public institutions, can be a great option for students wanting a more intimate campus experience, more personal attention from excellent professors, and more immediate access to support services. Here is our list of the best private colleges in Georgia.

Georgia’s Best Private Colleges and Universities of 2021

Colleges and Universities in Georgia

Georgia has 70 colleges and universities, 38 of which are public institutions. The University of Georgia, located in the city of Athens, is the largest, with over 35,000 students. Those attending Georgia State University and Georgia Southern University will enter into a friendly athletics rivalry. Tuition at Georgia State costs $9,000, and at Georgia Southern, $6,000. Of the 20 religiously affiliated schools, Emory University has both the highest tuition, just over $50,000, and student population, with over 13,000 in attendance. Whether you’re looking to earn your associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree, Georgia schools offer plenty of options.

Find college admissions consultants in your state.

Students can earn degrees in religious studies, business, social work, law, and computer science. Those looking to attend technical colleges can also choose from a handful of schools that offer two-year degrees in medicine, nursing, and education. Part of the University System of Georgia, Atlanta Metropolitan State college is the state’s most affordable college at $3,000, and its students can major in fields like mathematics, criminal justice, and philosophy.

The Blue Ridge Mountains, oak and hickory forests, and the Atlantic Coastal Plain all make their home in Georgia, but the state’s most notable landform is the Okefenokee Swamp, the largest such water-mass in North America. This diverse landscape in The Peach State provides Georgia’s college and graduate students with a beautiful backdrop for an education.

Georgia also offers a loan repayment program for qualifying graduates in the medical field through the Georgia Board of Health Care Workforce. Check out the best degree programs and top career paths this southern state has to offer.


What are Georgia’s Colleges & Universities?

Georgia’s Best Overall

What is a public college? And what is the difference between a private and public college?

Public and private colleges and universities operate under different business models — one is a private company with private funding; the other is owned by the state and receives both state and federal funding to operate. If you’re weighing the pros and cons of private vs. public college, consider that many public colleges provide diverse course offerings, influential professors, and an excellent return on your investment.

Public colleges are schools that receive most of their funding from tax revenues. As a result, the cost of a four-year degree at a public university is often lower than the equivalent cost at a private college — especially for students attending a public school in their home state. According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, the average annual cost (tuition, fees, room and board for full-time students) at a four-year public university was slightly over $20,000. In contrast, private universities cost, on average, nearly $43,000 annually.

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This list is composed entirely of private colleges and universities that offer four-year undergraduate degrees. We’ve identified 24 private universities in Georgia; 8 of which meet our criteria. The list below of the best private universities in the state satisfies the following four conditions:

  1. It must be a private, 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%.

How do we determine Georgia's best private 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.

Best Private Colleges & Universities in Georgia

  1. #1

    Emory University

    #108 institution's historical influence
    #41 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $54K

    Acceptance

    19%

    Graduation

    90%

    Student body

    13K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1445/32

    Atlanta, GA

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    What is Emory University known for?

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

    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Literature
    • Religious Studies
    • Law
    • Psychology
    • Philosophy
    • Business
    • Education
    • Political Science
  2. #2

    Morehouse College

    #442 institution's historical influence
    #1436 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $29K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1081/20

    Atlanta, GA

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    What is Morehouse College known for?

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

    • Education
    • Political Science
    • Literature
    • Religious Studies
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Engineering
    • Communications
    • Biology
    • Computer Science
  3. #3

    Spelman College

    #662 institution's historical influence
    #1205 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $30K

    Acceptance

    53%

    Graduation

    75%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/24

    Atlanta, GA

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    What is Spelman College known for?

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

    • Education
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Literature
    • Medical
    • Mathematics
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  4. #4

    Mercer University

    #625 institution's historical influence
    #1052 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $29K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    73%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1255/27

    Macon, GA

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    What is Mercer University known for?

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

    • Law
    • Education
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Philosophy
    • Religious Studies
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • Psychology
    • History
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  5. #5

    Agnes Scott College

    #1329 institution's historical influence
    #1444 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $44K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    72%

    Student body

    1K

    Decatur, GA

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    What is Agnes Scott College known for?

    Agnes Scott College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

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

    Most Influential Alumni

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  6. #6

    Wesleyan College

    #1749 institution's historical influence
    #173 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    60%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1030/19

    Macon, GA

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    What is Wesleyan College known for?

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

    • Education
    • Literature
    • History
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Communications
    • Religious Studies
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. #7

    Berry College

    #2280 institution's historical influence
    #1112 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $38K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    70%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1205/27

    Mount Berry, GA

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    What is Berry College known for?

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

    • Education
    • Mathematics
    • Business
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Literature
    • Biology
    • Philosophy
    • Medical
  8. #8

    Covenant College

    #3871 institution's historical influence
    #1384 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $37K

    Acceptance

    98%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1215/26

    Lookout Mountain, GA

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    What is Covenant College known for?

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

    • Philosophy
    • Religious Studies
    • Education
    • History
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Economics
    • Psychology
    • Computer Science

    Most Influential Alumni

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Oglethorpe University

#1707 institution's historical influence
#643 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$41K

Acceptance

67%

Graduation

51%

Student body

1K

Median SAT/ACT

1195/25

Atlanta, GA

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What is Oglethorpe University known for?

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

  • Business
  • History
  • Literature
  • Political Science
  • Philosophy
  • Engineering
  • Communications
  • Biology
  • Physics
  • Psychology

Most Influential Alumni

Piedmont University

#5351 institution's historical influence
#1284 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$28K

Acceptance

70%

Graduation

43%

Student body

2K

Median SAT/ACT

1060/21

Demorest, GA

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What is Piedmont University known for?

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

  • Literature
  • Education
  • Business
  • History
  • Medical
  • Mathematics
  • Political Science
  • Communications
  • Biology
  • Nursing

Most Influential Alumni

Brenau University

#3627 institution's historical influence
#489 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$32K

Acceptance

92%

Graduation

41%

Student body

2K

Median SAT/ACT

1030/20

Gainesville, GA

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What is Brenau University known for?

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

  • Education
  • Medical
  • Business
  • History
  • Nursing
  • Computer Science
  • Sociology
  • Literature
  • Psychology
  • Biology

Most Influential Alumni

LaGrange College

#4126 institution's historical influence
#1431 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$32K

Acceptance

60%

Graduation

44%

Student body

<1K

Median SAT/ACT

1074/21

Lagrange, GA

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What is LaGrange College known for?

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

  • Education
  • Nursing
  • Medical
  • History
  • Political Science
  • Biology
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • Chemistry

Most Influential Alumni

Andrew College

#5511 institution's historical influence
#768 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$19K

Acceptance

59%

Graduation

29%

Student body

<1K

Median SAT/ACT

905/16

Cuthbert, GA

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What is Andrew College known for?

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

  • Education
  • Nursing
  • Communications
  • Literature
  • History
  • Medical
  • Mathematics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Psychology

Most Influential Alumni

Toccoa Falls College

#5277 institution's historical influence
#590 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$21K

Acceptance

58%

Graduation

49%

Student body

1K

Median SAT/ACT

1035/19

Toccoa Falls, GA

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What is Toccoa Falls College known for?

Toccoa Falls College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  • Education
  • History
  • Business
  • Psychology
  • Nursing
  • Literature
  • Religious Studies
  • Biology
  • Communications
  • Philosophy

Most Influential Alumni

Truett McConnell University

#8011 institution's historical influence
#966 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$22K

Acceptance

97%

Graduation

35%

Student body

2K

Median SAT/ACT

1040/20

Cleveland, GA

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What is Truett McConnell University known for?

Truett McConnell University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  • Education
  • Biology
  • Business
  • History
  • Religious Studies
  • Medical
  • Literature

Young Harris College

#2960 institution's historical influence
#1453 overall school desirability

Tuition + fees

$30K

Acceptance

65%

Graduation

44%

Student body

1K

Median SAT/ACT

1040/20

Young Harris, GA

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What is Young Harris College known for?

Young Harris College’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

  • Education
  • Political Science
  • History
  • Literature
  • Communications
  • Biology
  • Mathematics
  • Religious Studies
  • Economics
  • Psychology

Most Influential Alumni

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