New Jersey’s Best Colleges and Universities of 2021

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

New Jersey’s Best Colleges and Universities of 2021

Colleges and Universities in New Jersey

Nearly half of the colleges and universities in this state are private, and tuition rates range from $6,000 to $52,000. With a graduation rate of 97% and a student population of just over 7,000, Princeton University is the state’s most esteemed institution. Narrowing in on the sciences and arts, this Ivy League school offers unique areas of study, including robotics, intelligent systems, and public life. The remaining 31 public colleges and universities range in tuition from $4,000 to $17,000.

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The state’s largest and top-ranked public research institution is Rutgers University. With campuses in New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden as well as smaller locations across the state, Rutgers awards degrees in physics, economics, criminal justice, and psychology. New Jersey also has 11 religiously affiliated colleges and universities, including the oldest diocesan university in the United States, Seton Hall University. This Roman Catholic university has a tuition rate of $42,000 and a student population of over 8,000.

New Jersey, known for its sandy shores and busy expressways, also has more diners than any other state in the U.S., as well as the world’s longest boardwalk, located in Atlantic City. Many influential people, including Buzz Aldrin, Frank Sinatra, and Thomas Edison, have called The Garden State home. Visitors can even peek at some of Edison’s early light bulbs at the Menlo Park Museum. And with 50 higher learning institutions to choose from, students can find a school that suits their career path and budget.

Learn more about earning your degree from one of New Jersey’s highly regarded colleges and universities.


What are New Jersey’s Colleges & Universities?

New Jersey’s Best Overall

Related: Differences between research universities and teaching colleges

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How do we determine New Jersey'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.


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 New Jersey for earning a bachelor’s degree.

We’ve identified a total of 28 colleges and universities in New Jersey, 21 of which meet 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 50%.

Best Colleges & Universities in New Jersey

  1. #1

    Princeton University

    Princeton , NJ
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $49K

    Acceptance

    6%

    Graduation

    98%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1515/34

    What is Princeton University known for?

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

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  2. Tuition + fees

    $56K

    Acceptance

    53%

    Graduation

    88%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1420/32

    What is Stevens Institute of Technology known for?

    Stevens Institute of Technology’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Chemistry
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Sociology

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  3. Tuition + fees

    $18K

    Acceptance

    66%

    Graduation

    70%

    Student body

    10K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1290/27

    What is New Jersey Institute of Technology known for?

    New Jersey Institute of Technology’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Engineering
    • Computer Science
    • Business
    • Physics
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    • Education
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • History
    REQUEST INFO
  4. #5

    Seton Hall University

    South Orange , NJ
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $45K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    72%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1240/26

    What is Seton Hall University known for?

    Seton Hall University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  5. #6

    Saint Peter's University

    Jersey City , NJ
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $39K

    Acceptance

    85%

    Graduation

    55%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1015/20

    What is Saint Peter's University known for?

    Saint Peter's University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Mathematics
    • Philosophy
    • Literature
    • History
    • Education
    • Economics
    • Political Science
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Communications

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  6. #7

    Monmouth University

    West Long Branch , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $41K

    Acceptance

    79%

    Graduation

    74%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1145/24

    What is Monmouth University known for?

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

    • Business
    • Medical
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Political Science
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    REQUEST INFO
  7. Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    19K

    What is Montclair State University known for?

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

    • Literature
    • Education
    • Philosophy
    • Business
    • Communications
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • History
    REQUEST INFO
  8. #9

    Caldwell University

    Caldwell , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $37K

    Acceptance

    92%

    Graduation

    64%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1045/20

    What is Caldwell University known for?

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

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Psychology
    • History
    • Nursing
    • Biology
    • Political Science
    • Communications
    • Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    REQUEST INFO
  9. Tuition + fees

    $16K

    Acceptance

    51%

    Graduation

    86%

    Student body

    9K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1260/27

    What is The College of New Jersey known for?

    The College of New Jersey’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Political Science
    • Engineering
    • History
    • Biology
    • Psychology
    • Philosophy
    • Computer Science
    REQUEST INFO
  10. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Student body

    4K

    What is Thomas Edison State University known for?

    Thomas Edison State University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Business
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Psychology
    • Communications
    • Computer Science
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  11. #12

    Rider University

    Lawrenceville , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $46K

    Acceptance

    76%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    4K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/22

    What is Rider University known for?

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

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

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  12. Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    76%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1075/20

    What is Rutgers University–Camden known for?

    Rutgers University–Camden’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Law
    • Political Science
    • Education
    • Psychology
    • Medical
    • Biology
    • History
    • Literature
    • Philosophy

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  13. #14

    Ramapo College

    Mahwah , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    72%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1130/23

    What is Ramapo College known for?

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

    • Education
    • Medical
    • Business
    • Biology
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Social Work
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Literature

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  14. #15

    Stockton University

    Galloway , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    74%

    Student body

    11K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1115/23

    What is Stockton University known for?

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

    • Education
    • Psychology
    • Business
    • History
    • Literature
    • Political Science
    • Criminal Justice
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Computer Science
    REQUEST INFO
  15. Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    74%

    Graduation

    65%

    Student body

    11K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1110/22

    What is Rutgers University–Newark known for?

    Rutgers University–Newark’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Literature
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Political Science
    • Engineering
    • Criminal Justice
    • Business
    • Computer Science
    • History
    • Mathematics

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  16. #17

    Rowan University

    Glassboro , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $13K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    68%

    Student body

    17K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/24

    What is Rowan University known for?

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

    • Medical
    • Education
    • Business
    • Biology
    • Engineering
    • Chemistry
    • History
    • Literature
    • Communications
    • Physics
    REQUEST INFO
  17. Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    81%

    Graduation

    56%

    Student body

    9K

    What is William Paterson University known for?

    William Paterson University’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Education
    • Communications
    • Business
    • Literature
    • Philosophy
    • History
    • Law
    • Nursing
    • Political Science
    • Medical

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO
  18. #19

    Centenary University

    Hackettstown , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $34K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    62%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1043/20

    What is Centenary University known for?

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

    • Education
    • Medical
    • History
    • Communications
    • Social Work
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Biology
    • Criminal Justice
    • Literature
    REQUEST INFO
  19. #20

    Kean University

    Union , NJ

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Acceptance

    78%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1010/20

    What is Kean University known for?

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

    • Education
    • Political Science
    • Business
    • History
    • Medical
    • Literature
    • Mathematics
    • Biology
    • Communications
    • Criminal Justice
    REQUEST INFO
  20. Tuition + fees

    $15K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    84%

    Student body

    47K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1320/28

    What is Rutgers University–New Brunswick known for?

    Rutgers University–New Brunswick’s faculty and alumni have been influential in:

    • Business
    • Political Science
    • Philosophy
    • Education
    • Biology
    • Medical
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics
    • History
    • Engineering

    Most Influential Alumni

    REQUEST INFO

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