Louisiana’s Best Colleges & Universities of 2021

Here are the best colleges and universities in Louisiana. Our list will help you find the right kind of school for you.

Louisiana’s Best Colleges & Universities of 2021

Colleges and Universities in Louisiana

Though the culture in Louisiana is sure to draw you in, the affordability of its 26 public colleges and universities also makes it an appealing place to earn your degree. Seven community colleges average $4,000 for tuition, and the cost to attend its public institutions ranges from $5,000 to $12,000. With just shy of 27,000 students, Louisiana State University (LSU) is the largest public university, boasting a tuition rate of $12,000.

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LSU, located in Baton Rouge, offers degrees in engineering, education, theater, and landscape architecture. For those looking to merge their faith with their education, the state also has eight religious institutions, including Catholic, Methodist, and Baptist schools. Prospective students can also attend one of 10 private colleges, including Tulane University and Louisiana Culinary Institute. Tulane University’s tuition rate is $55,000, and it is best known for its medical and law schools. Attorneys in Louisiana who have debt from law school may be eligible to receive $5,000 annually through the Loan Repayment Assistance Program from the Bar Foundation.

Jazz, beignets, and Mardi Gras — the culture, food, and music of Louisiana make it an irresistible place to indulge. This L-shaped state is nicknamed The Pelican State, but the American alligator is also known to roam its lands. Wildlife aside, Louisiana is home to 36 higher education institutions that award associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees.

Louisiana offers a variety of higher education experiences, serving a full range of budgetary needs and career goals. Find out more about earning your degree from one of Louisiana’s colleges or universities.

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Related: Differences between research universities and teaching colleges

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

The best colleges pound for pound!

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.

Find out more about our ranking methodology here.

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Every fall, more than 2 million high-school graduates will enroll in colleges and universities across the United States. Finding the best college for your educational, personal, and professional goals may be challenging. The purpose of this ranking is to help you manage this challenge with an accurate, objective, and up-to-date ranking of the best colleges and universities in Louisiana for earning a bachelor’s degree.

We’ve identified a total of 21 colleges and universities in Louisiana, 10 of which satisfy our criteria. The list below of the best schools in the state focuses on those that offer four-year undergraduate degrees, includes both public and private colleges and universities, and also meet the following two conditions:

  1. It must be fully accredited.
  2. It must have a graduation rate of greater than 40%.

10 Best Colleges & Universities in Louisiana

  1. Tulane University
    #1

    Tulane University

    #141 institution's overall influence
    #107 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $57K

    Acceptance

    11%

    Graduation

    83%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1440/32

    New Orleans, LA

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    What is Tulane University known for?

    Tulane University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Law
    • Biology
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Literature
    • Education
    • Political Science
    • History
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

  2. Loyola University New Orleans
    #2

    Loyola University New Orleans

    #826 institution's overall influence
    #348 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $41K

    Acceptance

    72%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/25

    New Orleans, LA

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    What is Loyola University New Orleans known for?

    Loyola University New Orleans's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Law
    • Business
    • Philosophy
    • Economics
    • Education
    • Political Science
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • History
    • Religious Studies

    Most Influential Alumni

  3. Louisiana Tech University
    #3

    Louisiana Tech University

    #809 institution's overall influence
    #608 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    64%

    Graduation

    54%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1162/25

    Ruston, LA

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    What is Louisiana Tech University known for?

    Louisiana Tech University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Business
    • Education
    • History
    • Computer Science
    • Political Science
    • Chemistry
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • Psychology
  4. Xavier University of Louisiana
    #4

    Xavier University of Louisiana

    #1778 institution's overall influence
    #528 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $25K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1075/23

    New Orleans, LA

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    What is Xavier University of Louisiana known for?

    Xavier University of Louisiana's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

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

    Most Influential Alumni

  5. Louisiana State University
    #5

    Louisiana State University

    #181 institution's overall influence
    #1396 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    73%

    Graduation

    64%

    Student body

    27K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1195/26

    Baton Rouge, LA

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    What is Louisiana State University known for?

    Louisiana State University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Law
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Education
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  6. Centenary College of Louisiana
    #6

    Centenary College of Louisiana

    #2595 institution's overall influence
    #1451 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $37K

    Acceptance

    64%

    Graduation

    48%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/25

    Shreveport, LA

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    What is Centenary College of Louisiana known for?

    Centenary College of Louisiana's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

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

    Most Influential Alumni

  7. University of Louisiana at Lafayette
    #7

    University of Louisiana at Lafayette

    #824 institution's overall influence
    #165 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $10K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    15K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1144/23

    Lafayette, LA

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    What is University of Louisiana at Lafayette known for?

    University of Louisiana at Lafayette's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

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

    Most Influential Alumni

  8. McNeese State University
    #8

    McNeese State University

    #2188 institution's overall influence
    #233 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    63%

    Graduation

    41%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1125/22

    Lake Charles, LA

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    What is McNeese State University known for?

    McNeese State University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Literature
    • Engineering
    • History
    • Nursing
    • Mathematics
    • Criminal Justice
    • Medical
    • Chemistry
    • Political Science

    Most Influential Alumni

  9. Nicholls State University
    #9

    Nicholls State University

    #2796 institution's overall influence
    #1409 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1086/22

    Thibodaux, LA

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    What is Nicholls State University known for?

    Nicholls State University's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Mathematics
    • Communications
    • Literature
    • Biology
    • Nursing
    • Psychology
  10. University of Louisiana at Monroe
    #10

    University of Louisiana at Monroe

    #1993 institution's overall influence
    #1403 overall school desirability

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    40%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    /21

    Monroe, LA

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    What is University of Louisiana at Monroe known for?

    University of Louisiana at Monroe's faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • History
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Communications
    • Literature
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

Find the Best Schools in Louisiana for your Major

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