The Best 5 Online Sources For College Rankings and Reviews

Get admissions information on Testing

Powered by Campus Explorer

Making the choice of which college to attend is one of the biggest decisions many young adults have to face. There are so many factors to consider and endless possibilities of universities available. A lot of students and families turn to college rankings to help make their choices. Online sources are a common way to go and there are a variety of great resources on the web that provide solid rankings. The ideal choices are those that provide factual information about schools and experiences from actual students. Here are the five best online sources for academic research:-

U.S. News and World Report

The U.S. News and World Report is an American news publication based out of Washington, D.C. It began reporting college rankings in 1985 and they are based on information collected from each institution, either from a yearly survey or the school’s website. The U.S. News and World Report is likely the most widely used online source for reviews of all types of universities. It is commonly called the “granddaddy” of university rankings and it provides a vast amount of lists of schools in various categories, such as best national universities, graduate schools, online programs, liberal arts programs, and most connected campus. It also provides rankings of specific programs like business, engineering, law, and medicine.

Princeton Review

The Princeton Review is a standardized test preparation organization based in Framingham, Massachusetts. It provides annual rankings based on what students attending the colleges report on surveys. The surveys include 80 questions regarding academics and administration, college life, fellow classmates, and the students themselves. Each institution receives a score based on the answers and the scores are used to tally ranked lists. Examples of ranking lists include best classroom experience, most accessible professors, best career services, happiest students, most beautiful campus, and party schools. The Princeton Review also provides ratings to universities in various categories, including admissions selectivity, financial aid, and fire safety. The ratings are based on surveys of administrators.


Forbes is a business magazine based out of New York, New York. Its Center for College Affordability and Productivity compiles data to publish the America’s Top Colleges lists every year, where it ranks the 650 best undergraduate schools in the U.S. The center gathers information on aspects that matter the most students, such as quality of instruction, high graduation rates, low debt levels, and great career prospects. The standings are based on five general categories: student satisfaction, success after graduation, debt, graduation rate, and competitive awards. Forbes also offers other lists like America’s Most Entrepreneurial Colleges, Private schools, and Midwestern Colleges.

College Prowler

College Prowler is an online guide company based out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It ranks colleges solely on reviews from actual students attending each school. Every school has a profile full of statistics and a report card with letter grades. The website provides recommendations, and an ability to search & compare programs. It also offers a database of scholarships and students are matched based on their qualifications.  It's important to note that most of these academic funds have an eligibility criteria.  Unfortunately most students will not qualify due to low GPA or other reasons. 
Another alternative for education guidance & scholarships is a monthly cash drawing offered by this website here. 


Newsweek is a weekly news magazine based out of New York, New York. It recently started ranking colleges through The Daily Beast. They are determined by assessing the size, location, and other aspects. It gathers information through statistics like credentials of incoming freshmen and acceptance rates, specialized data, and other websites. The lists include the most and least affordable schools, most rigorous institutions, top party schools, most liberal schools, happiest colleges, most conservative schools, and most stressful colleges.

Art Pollard is a college counselor and guest author at

You might also like:-Search Local Tutors Online

Repost This

Share Your Thoughts

Your Shout!