Top Alabama Colleges

Learn about 9 of the Top Colleges and Universities in Alabama

Top Ranked U.S. Colleges: Universities | Public Universities | Liberal Arts Colleges | Engineering | Business | Women's | Most Selective

Alabama has a wide range of options for both public and private institutions.  From a large public university like the University of Alabama to small Huntingdon College, Alabama has schools to match a wide range of student personalities and interests. The 9 top Alabama colleges listed below represent such diverse school types and missions that I have simply listed them alphabetically rather than force them into any sort of artificial ranking -- it makes little sense to try and compare a large public university to a small private Christian college.  The schools were chosen based on factors such as academic reputation, curricular innovations, first-year retention rates, six-year graduation rates, selectivity, financial aid and student engagement.

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Auburn University
Auburn University. Robert S. Donovan / Flickr
  • Location: Auburn, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 28,290 (22,658 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: public university
  • Distinctions: over 140 degree programs; chapter of  Phi Beta Kappa for strengths in the liberal arts and sciences; over 300 student clubs and organizations; strong Division I athletic programs within the  Southeastern Conference
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the Auburn University profile
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Birmingham Southern College
Birmingham Southern College. goforchris / Flickr
  • Location: Birmingham, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 1,293 (all undergraduate)
  • Type of Institution: private Methodist liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: good financial aid; strong student-faculty interaction; featured in Loren Pope's Colleges That Change Lives; chapter of  Phi Beta Kappa for strong liberal arts and sciences; good financial aid; 13 to 1 student / faculty ratio
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the Birmingham-Southern College profile
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Huntingdon College
Huntingdon College. Spyder Monkey / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Montgomery, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 1,148 (all undergraduate)
  • Type of Institution: private Methodist college
  • Distinctions: 14 to 1 student / faculty ratio; average class size of 20; popular programs in business; most students receive grant aid; level tuition payments for four years
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the Huntingdon College profile
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Samford University
Samford University. Sweetmoose6 / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Birmingham, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 5,471 (3,341 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private Christian university
  • Distinctions: largest private university in Alabama; 138 undergraduate majors; 12 to 1 student / faculty ratio; no classes are taught by graduate students; good value; member of the NCAA Division I Southern Conference
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the Samford University profile
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Spring Hill College
Spring Hill College. Altairisfar / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Mobile, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 1,476 (1,381 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private Catholic college
  • Distinctions: 14 to 1 student / faculty ratio; average class size of 18; attractive 381-acre campus; good value; most students receive grant aid; popular programs in business and nursing; founded in 1830 (oldest Catholic college in the Southeast)
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the Spring Hill College profile
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University of Alabama in Huntsville Shelby Center for Science and Technology
University of Alabama in Huntsville Shelby Center for Science and Technology. Anivron / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Huntsville, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 8,468 (6,507 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: public university
  • Distinctions: 16 to 1 student / faculty ratio; popular programs in business, nursing and engineering; strong research initiatives including partnerships with NASA, the U.S. Army, Pratt & Whitney, and others; NCAA Division II Athletics (Division I Hockey)
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the University of Alabama in Huntsville profile
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University of Alabama
University of Alabama. maggiejp / Flickr
  • Location: Tuscaloosa, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 37,663 (32,563 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: public university
  • Distinctions: Alabama's flagship institution of higher learning; highly ranked public university; good value; chapter of  Phi Beta Kappa for strong liberal arts and sciences; strong athletic programs in the NCAA Division I Southeastern Conference
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the University of Alabama profile
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University of Mobile
University of Mobile. MattTheCat / Wikimedia Commons
  • Location: Mobile, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 1,480 (1,376 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: private Christian university
  • Distinctions: 13 to 1 student / faculty ratio; 800-acre campus; good value; broad academic offerings for a small college; popular programs in nursing, business and education
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the University of Mobile profile
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University of Montevallo Reynolds Hall
University of Montevallo Reynolds Hall. Courtesy of Matt Orton
  • Location: Montevallo, Alabama
  • Enrollment: 2,798 (2,409 undergraduates)
  • Type of Institution: public liberal arts college
  • Distinctions: good value; attractive 160-acre campus; center of campus is a National Historic District; 75 majors to choose from; 16 to 1 student / faculty ratio
  • For acceptance rate, test scores, costs and other information, visit the University of Montevallo profile
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Calculate Your Chances of Being Admitted
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Se​e if you have the grades and test scores you need to get into one of these top Alabama schools with this free tool from Cappex: Calculate Your Chances of Getting In

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South Central Region
South Central Region.

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