Best Colleges in Washington DC

College on Capitol Hill

Live amongst monuments of our country as you learn to be part of it

Why spend a weekend in Washington D.C. sightseeing when you could spend years experiencing all our nation’s capital has to offer? Fifteen colleges and universities call this inter-state city home, as do many different cultures — and 200 foreign embassies and international organizations.* If you have an interest in government, law, lobbying, education, finance, public policy, scientific research, or more, come join us in the 4th largest metro economy in the United States. A degree here will start your career off on the right foot with average weekly wages of $1,575, the 4th highest in the country.

And while you’re finding your perfect university, you’ll find there’s plenty to do when the books close. From the National Mall and Zoo to festivals and other famous monuments, you can be entertained and educated at the same time — oh, and did we mention most of these attractions are free? So you can spend your money on the tasty dining options, farmers’ markets, and night life. At a Washington D.C. school, you’ll enjoy all four seasons of all four years. Explore your options and discover the university of your dreams today.

*dc.about.com *Bureau of Labor Statistics

Best Four Year Universities in Washington DC

Rank School Name Location Description   Rating
1 Georgetown University Washington, DC

Georgetown University offers 274 Degree programs. It's a large private university in a large city. In 2015, 7,857 students graduated with students earning 4,161 Master's degrees, 2,667 Bachelor's degrees, 989 Doctoral degrees, and 40 Certificates degrees.

Based on 32 Reviews
2 George Washington University Washington, DC

George Washington University offers 505 Degree programs. It's a large private university in a large city. In 2015, 11,281 students graduated with students earning 4,768 Master's degrees, 3,203 Bachelor's degrees, 1,906 Certificates degrees, 1,014 Doctoral degrees, and 390 Associate's degrees.

Based on 28 Reviews
3 American University Washington, DC

American University offers 226 Degree programs. It's a large private university in a large city. In 2015, 5,104 students graduated with students earning 2,310 Bachelor's degrees, 2,153 Master's degrees, 539 Doctoral degrees, 102 Certificates degrees.

Based on 40 Reviews
4 Howard University Washington, DC

Howard University offers 204 Degree programs. It's a medium sized private university in a large city. In 2015, 2,225 students graduated with students earning 1,343 Bachelor's degrees, 546 Doctoral degrees, 310 Master's degrees, and 26 Certificates degrees.

Based on 12 Reviews
5 Catholic University of America Washington, DC

Catholic University of America offers 285 Degree programs. It's a medium sized private university in a large city. In 2015, 1,909 students graduated with students earning 898 Bachelor's degrees, 737 Master's degrees, 258 Doctoral degrees, 11 Certificates degrees, and 5 Associate's degrees.

Based on 12 Reviews
6 Gallaudet University Washington, DC

Gallaudet University offers 73 Degree programs. It's a small private university in a large city. In 2015, 449 students graduated with students earning 262 Bachelor's degrees, 150 Master's degrees, 21 Certificates degrees, and 16 Doctoral degrees.

7 Trinity Washington University Washington, DC

Trinity Washington University offers 100 Degree programs. It's a small private university in a large city. In 2015, 490 students graduated with students earning 266 Bachelor's degrees, 194 Master's degrees, and 30 Associate's degrees.

8 University of the District of Columbia Washington, DC

University of the District of Columbia offers 85 Degree programs. It's a medium sized public university in a large city. In 2015, 758 students graduated with students earning 340 Bachelor's degrees, 276 Associate's degrees, and 142 Master's degrees.

9 Corcoran College of Art and Design Washington, DC

Corcoran College of Art and Design offers 0 Degree programs. It's a private university in a large city.

10 University of the Potomac-Washington DC Campus Washington, DC

University of the Potomac-Washington DC Campus offers 35 Degree programs. It's a private university in a large city. In 2015, 84 students graduated with students earning 56 Bachelor's degrees, 23 Associate's degrees, 4 Master's degrees, and 1 Certificates degree.

List of all Colleges in Washington DC

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School Logo School Name Average tuition Student Teacher Ratio Enrolled Students
Georgetown University Georgetown University Washington, DC
5/5
13 : 1 18,459
George Washington University George Washington University Washington, DC
5/5
17 : 1 26,212
American University American University Washington, DC
5/5
14 : 1 13,198
Howard University Howard University Washington, DC
4/5
10 : 1 10,002
Catholic University of America Catholic University of America Washington, DC
5/5
13 : 1 6,521
Gallaudet University Gallaudet University Washington, DC
4/5
8 : 1 1,477
Trinity Washington University Trinity Washington University Washington, DC
4/5
19 : 1 2,161
University of the District of Columbia University of the District of Columbia Washington, DC
2/5
16 : 1 4,805
University Logo Radians College Washington, DC 37 : 1 840
Bennett Career Institute Bennett Career Institute Washington, DC 45 : 1 311
University Logo Technical Learning Centers Inc Washington, DC 28 : 1 307
National Conservatory of Dramatic Arts National Conservatory of Dramatic Arts Washington, DC
3/5
6 : 1 39
Corcoran College of Art and Design Corcoran College of Art and Design Washington, DC
University Logo University of the District of Columbia-David A Clarke School of Law Washington, DC 9 : 1 313
University of the Potomac-Washington DC Campus University of the Potomac-Washington DC Campus Washington, DC
3/5
78 : 1 155
Wesley Theological Seminary Wesley Theological Seminary Washington, DC 26 : 1 589
Institute of World Politics Institute of World Politics Washington, DC 4 : 1 107
Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family Washington, DC 7 : 1 65
Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies Washington, DC 5 : 1 90
Washington Theological Union Washington Theological Union Washington, DC

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Questions About Going to College in Washington DC

How are the career opportunities for college graduates in Washington D.C.?

You shouldn't have to pound the pavement for long in D.C. Bouncing back vigorously from a tough period of low economic growth, Washington D.C. is experiencing an economic boom that bodes well for graduates. The District's steadily low unemployment rate has been hovering around an average of only 6.5 percent since November 2015. On top of that, you’ll find fairly high salaries, outstanding (maybe even overwhelming) networking opportunities, and internships everywhere, especially if you're going into politics. One downside though: everyone dreams to “make it” just like you. Thrive on that healthy competition and you'll find success in D.C.

Growing industries? What major companies/industries are hiring what type of graduates/skills in Washington D.C.?

While the foundation of D.C.’s job market is made up of business service jobs (think finance, law, IT, etc.), you can also correctly assume the area has government jobs galore, both full-time and contract. Additionally, you’ll find plenty of positions in the region’s several universities, such as Georgetown University, George Washington University, the University of Maryland, and Virginia Tech. Tourism is a constant as well. And again, politics consume the D.C. world. If you see yourself working as a lobbyist, assistant, strategist, or something else political sciencey, D.C. is certainly the place to get your foot in the door.

Is Washington D.C. more of a college town or a great place to start a career and family? What communities are best?

As one of the most unique locales in the country, D.C. is a town for professionals, for the movers and shakers new and old. Whether you’re partying in Adams Morgan every weekend or commuting to work on the metro every morning (or both), you oughta be prepared to live among aspiration.

Split into four “quadrants,” D.C. has four major communities each with its own little pockets of more nuanced neighborhoods known as wards. For college grads, Columbia Heights in North-Central, Dupont in the East, and Foxhall or the Palisades in the Northwest offer affordable housing and lots of peers.

While there are family-friendly residential communities, D.C. doesn’t quite offer your traditional suburban experience, at least not at a price the typical recent grad can afford. It’s a great place to kick off a career, but once grads have established themselves and decide they’re ready to start a family, many end up moving to the surrounding burbs of Rockville, Gaithersburg and Alexandria.

What do the locals in Washington D.C. like to do for fun?

Work. Just kidding, sort of. When it comes to fun, the D.C. grad’s fun is in the chase of a magnificent career while making ends meet, and doing leisure right in the downtime. High-energy nightlife is definitely accessible if desired, from quaint bars to upscale restaurants, to the excellent selection of concerts. Football is big here too. No matter what football team you’re rooting for, you’re bound to find a bar full of like-minded fans to root along with. (There’s a good bit of hockey enthusiasm as well. Go Caps!) And with so much free art and history surrounding you, taking a walk around the Lincoln Memorial (free) or a bike ride along the trails, or having a good old fashioned picnic after visiting the Smithsonian (free) are great activities for your weekend outing.

What's the dating scene like in Washington D.C.? Will I meet my perfect mate?

D.C. is teeming with motivated, well-dressed, well-educated 20- and 30-something-year-old workhorses who you can singly mingle with. Most people around your college-grad age will be living with roomies, since the housing here isn’t exactly cheap. And of course, this is D.C., so politics are bound to come up in conversation. You might run into a few big egos with strong opinions flowing that don’t flow with yours, but luckily, the District is quite a melting pot with someone to date for everybody...Unless you land a job in the CIA, the NSA, the FBI, or even NASA. Think your date can handle the secrecy? Eh, you’ll both get used to it.

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