U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report provides almost 50 types of numerical rankings and lists to assist students in narrowing down their college search. From national universities and liberal arts colleges to A-Plus schools for B-Plus students, students can find the colleges that are the best fit for them.
Schools in the National Universities category offer a full range of undergraduate majors, plus master's and Ph.D. programs. Liberal Arts Colleges emphasize undergraduate education and award at least half of their degrees in the liberal arts fields of study.
The four overall rankings – National Universities, Liberal Arts Colleges, Regional Universities and Regional Colleges – are based on factors that indicate academic quality, such as graduation rates and faculty resources.
U.S. News uses multiple measures to capture the various dimensions of academic quality at each college. They fall into eight broad areas: graduation and retention; graduation rate performance; social mobility; faculty resources; expert opinion; financial resources; student excellence; and alumni giving.
Princeton Review’s annual college rankings lists are entirely based on what students attending the schools in the Best Colleges book tell them about their colleges and their experiences at them via a student survey for each project. Each ranking list reports the top 20 colleges (of the 386 in the book) in a specific category.
In the most current edition of "The Best 386 Colleges" (published August 2020), the data is based on surveys of 143,000 students at the 386 schools in the book. Students are asked about: 1) their school's academics/administration, 2) life at their college, 3) their fellow students, and 4) themselves.
Each college gets a score for its students' answers to each survey question. Similar to a GPA, it is a metric that provides a numerical base to compare student opinions from college to college. Using these scores (which they compute out to several percentage points), they are able to tally the ranked lists. Schools that make it onto any of the 62 top 20 lists are those at which the surveyed students (as a group) indicated a very high consensus of opinion about that topic.
Note: No ranking list reflects The Princeton Review's opinion of (or rating of) the colleges. A college's appearance on a ranking list in the book is entirely the result of what its own students surveyed by The Princeton Review reported about their campus experiences as well as how they rated various aspects of their college life.
Colleges of Distinction
A College of Distinction is nationally recognized by education professionals as an excellent school. Many schools ranked by Colleges of Distinction are well-known to the general public, while many are not. If a school has been profiled by Colleges of Distinction, rest assured it has been honored for the excellence of its programs and will give you the tools for success.
A College of Distinction ranking means your institution has been categorized into four great distinctives – engaged students, great teaching, vibrant communities and successful outcomes. Schools meeting these criteria provide the best possible experience, both in and out of the classroom.
Professors encourage students and challenge them one-on-one. Professional experience comes from internships and research. And students learn to work with people from all walks of life, as they have had the opportunity to be active on campus, pursued service opportunities and traveled abroad.
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
The University of West Georgia has been recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for its institutional commitment to community engagement through teaching, research and public service with the Community Engagement Classification.
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching was created by Andrew Carnegie in 1905 and chartered in 1906 by an act of Congress as an independent policy and research center called to “do and perform all things necessary to encourage, uphold and dignify the profession of the teacher and the cause of higher education.”
UWG is one of only 119 U.S. colleges and universities to receive the elective classification in 2020 and will join the ranks of only 359 institutions nationally. Additionally, the university is one of only 44 institutions nationwide that received the classification for the first time.
Read more about UWG's Carnegie Foundation distinction.