Student walking in front of ARH in spring


We think that our story speaks for itself. But it’s also nice to hear what others have said about us.

Grinnell is among the very best liberal arts colleges in the nation. Because, well, we’ve got a lot to offer. However, there’s a lot more to the story. And like the cover of a book, you can’t completely judge a college based on one number. So be sure to check out multiple rankings and sources. Look for a school that gets high marks in the categories that matter to you. Then, narrow your field from there.

Keep in mind where those numbers come from.

It’s your college experience and your perspective. So know that what you’re looking for may vary greatly from what your peers are seeking. Sometimes, the ratings can give a skewed picture. For example, a school that emphasizes public service could be ranked relatively low in alumni giving. Or a school with many adult students who come and go might be penalized for low graduation rates. However, rankings can be very helpful. Below is how Grinnell nets out with some of the most-used rankings. And of course, what you need to know about what’s behind the numbers.

U.S. News and World Report

The magazine provides one of the most-consulted ratings packages, ranking Grinnell 11th among the nation’s best national liberal arts colleges. U.S. News makes modest changes to the way it compiles its ratings each year. Rankings are based on factors such as high school class standing, graduation rate performance, and peer assessment.

Nation's Best Liberal Arts Colleges
Best Undergraduate Teaching
Best Value

Kiplinger's Best College Values

Kiplinger’s rankings examine a combination of academic quality, which accounts for almost two-thirds of the score, plus cost and financial information. Rankings are based on factors such as academic quality and generous financial aid (total annual cost includes tuition, fees, room, and board).

Best Values in Liberal Arts Colleges
Best Value Among All Colleges
Colleges Included in the Rankings

Princeton Review

Princeton Review puts out 62 rankings, based on an 80-question, ratings-based student survey. Questions cover school academics and administration, college life, and fellow students. Rankings are based on factors such as school academics, school administration, and college life and fellow students.

Best Science Lab Facilities
Best Athletic Facilities
Best Financial Aid

Washington Monthly

Since 2005, the Washington Monthly has ranked colleges based on what they do for the country. They rank liberal arts colleges—four-year institutions that award almost exclusively bachelor’s degrees and that focus on arts and sciences rather than professional programs—based on their contribution to the public good in three broad categories: social mobility, research, and promoting public service.

Research Rank
Service Rank

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