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Best Colleges & Universities in Texas
Top Consensus Ranked Schools 2018

Texas consensus badge

To identify the Best Colleges in Texas for 2018 we averaged the latest results from the most respected college ranking systems with thousands of real student review scores from around the web to produce a unique College Consensus rating for each school. You won’t find a more comprehensive ranking of the top colleges and universities in Texas anywhere. Read more about our rankings methodology and sources at our about page.

1

Trinity University

75.5
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
76.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
74.4
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

2

Rice University

75.2
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
68
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
82.4
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

3

Texas Lutheran University

71.8
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
72.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
71
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

4

The University of Texas at Austin

71.3
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
62
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
80.6
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

5

Texas A & M University-College Station

69
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
57.7
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
80.2
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

6

Southern Methodist University

68.6
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
60.6
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76.6
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

7

Texas Christian University

68.3
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
57.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
79
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

8

Howard Payne University

67.5
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
54
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
81
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

9

University of Dallas

66.6
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
57.3
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
75.8
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

10

Southwestern University

66.4
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
56.3
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76.5
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

11

Saint Edward’s University

66.2
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
53.3
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
79
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

12

McMurry University

66
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
56
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

13

Austin College

65.4
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
56.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
74.3
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

14

Baylor University

64.7
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
55.4
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
74
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

15

Southwestern Adventist University

64.5
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
52
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
77
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

16

LeTourneau University

64.4
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
57.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
71.3
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

17

East Texas Baptist University

63.8
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
55
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
72.5
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

18

Abilene Christian University

62
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
49.7
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
74.2
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

19

Hardin-Simmons University

61.7
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
50
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
73.3
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

20

St Mary’s University

61
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
50.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
71.5
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

21

Texas Tech University

60.4
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
44.8
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

22

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

60.1
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
44.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
75.7
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

23

Dallas Baptist University

59.7
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
43
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76.3
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

24

Texas A & M International University

59.5
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
43
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
76
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

25

Lubbock Christian University

59.4
COLLEGE CONSENSUS
38.5
PUBLISHER CONSENSUS
80.3
STUDENT CONSENSUS
Accessed July, 2018

Texas has a lot of land, a lot of people, and a lot of need for higher education opportunities to keep the state’s professionals, leaders, and workers up to date and productive. And, in grand Texas tradition, the state has done it in a big way, with no less than six public university systems that include some of the best colleges in Texas. The University of Texas and the Texas A&M systems are the largest and best-known, funded by the highly lucrative Permanent University Fund (which is fueled by oil and mineral rights on public land). Other public university systems in Texas include:

  • Texas State System
  • Texas Tech System
  • University of Houston System
  • University of North Texas System

Texas also has a wealth of private research institutions, like Rice University, an institution frequently named among the Southern Ivies, and known for one of the best campus recreation centers and some of the best college dorms in the nation). There are also a host of religious universities, from Catholic to Baptist, including the University of Dallas, Texas Lutheran University, and St. Edward’s University. Texas is known as a highly religious state, and these Christian colleges and universities are a deeply-rooted part of Texas’ educational and cultural identity.

Making the Best Colleges in Texas

As its reputation goes, Texas is a place that does things its own way, and has from the beginning. The second-largest state in the union – in population and land size – Texas could be several states, and that’s true geographically, culturally, and even politically. Texas has three of the largest cities in the US: Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas-Fort Worth, and in these cities, urban life is at its grittiest and busiest. Then there are the vast plains and deserts, where massive, sprawling ranches, farms, and emptiness creates isolated pockets of rural life that are just as much Texas as the cities. The southern border is home to some of the fastest-growing communities in the US, especially in the Rio Grande Valley and don’t forget the Republic of Austin – one of the most distinctive, innovative, and hip cities in the world.

Texas is also a highly diverse people, with Hispanic and Latinx Americans making up 40% of the population and growing. Of course, Texas was once Mexico, and Hispanic culture is deeply ingrained in Texas life, from the Tejano music of the border region to the never-ending parade of taco trucks in Austin. A relatively small African-American population (around 11%), largely centered around Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth, has led a cultural resurgence in the 21st century, drawing on a history of influence (particularly in the rodeo and blues music), and a contemporary confluence of hip-hop music, gastronomic innovation, and political activism.

The Future of Texas Higher Education

Somehow, Texas’ higher education system needs to meet the needs of all these communities, regions, and people groups – veterinary and agricultural sciences for the ranching and farming regions; engineering and business training to support the growing tech hubs around Austin (the Silicon Hills) and Dallas (the Silicon Prairie); professional services like education and healthcare throughout the state. And the best colleges in Texas have made the state a mecca for higher education, especially healthcare and technology. Thanks to Hispanic-Serving institutions like UT Rio Grande Valley, Texas has become a leading state for Latinx college enrollment, as younger generations of Latinx students claim their place in Texas culture and professional life.

Texas already has one of the best higher education systems by any measure: the sheer number of affordable public universities; the number of globally and nationally-recognized public and private research universities, which include not just some of the best universities in Texas, but in the world; the continued growth of Texas’ top cities, and the steady development of higher education opportunities in those cities; and the outreach that regional campuses and online education can provide to Texas’ rural communities, where higher education is especially in need. With initiatives like Sam Houston State University’s planned medical school, huge research grants at institutions like Texas A&M, and legislative efforts to increase public funding, the future of higher education in Texas is a bright as the Texas sun.