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Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools

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2021 Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools

375 Colleges
$30,751 Avg Salary
$23,628 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree School for You

In 2018-2019, 547,539 degrees and certificates were awarded to liberal arts general studies students, making the major the most popular in the country.

When it comes to higher education, there are a lot of options for students. You can choose a traditional brick and mortar school, or with the growth of online education, you can attend a school half-way across the country without even leaving your house. Also there are many trade schools that offer short-term programs that open up more career options.

Along with in-depth profiles of schools and the programs they offer, Course Advisor has created the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools to help you in your search for the best school for you. This report analyzed 375 schools in the United States to see which ones offered the best bachelor's degree programs for students. The factors used to develop this ranking include those related to how in-demand the school is, the overall quality of the school, and post-graduation wages, and more.

View our full ranking methodology.

2021 Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools in the United States

Check out the liberal arts bachelor's degree programs at these schools if you want to get the best education that money can buy.

Top 25 Top Schools for a Bachelor's in Liberal Arts

#1

Excelsior College

Albany, NY

Our analysis found Excelsior College to be the best school for liberal arts general studies students who want to pursue a bachelor’s degree in the United States. Located in the city of Albany, Excelsior College is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

The average amount in student loans that liberal arts majors at Excelsior College take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $10,991. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $91.

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#2

Bentley University

Waltham, MA

You’ll join some of the best and brightest minds around you if you attend Bentley University. The school came in at #2 on this year’s Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Waltham, Bentley is a private not-for-profit school with a medium-sized student population.

The average amount in student loans that liberal arts majors at Bentley take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $22,090. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $262, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#3

Saint Joseph's University

Philadelphia, PA

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Saint Joseph’s University. It ranked #3 on our 2021 Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Philadelphia, St. Joe's is a private not-for-profit college with a moderately-sized student population.

Liberal Arts majors at St. Joe's take out an average of $26,923 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $274.

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You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend American Public University System. It ranked #4 on our 2021 Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. American Military University is a fairly large private for-profit school located in the town of Charles Town.

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#5

DePaul University

Chicago, IL

Out of the 375 schools in the United States that were part of this year’s ranking, DePaul University landed the # 5 spot on the list. Located in the large city of Chicago, DePaul is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

On average, liberal arts graduates from DePaul take out $32,748 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $346.

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#6

Georgetown University

Washington, DC

Georgetown University did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #6 on the list. Located in the large city of Washington, Georgetown is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population.

Liberal Arts majors at Georgetown take out an average of $27,996 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $255.

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#7

Villanova University

Villanova, PA

Villanova University came in at #7 in this year’s edition of the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Located in the large suburb of Villanova, Villanova is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population.

While working on their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts majors at Villanova accumulate an average of around $25,348 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $280, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#8

Charter Oak State College

New Britain, CT

Charter Oak State College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #8 on the list. Charter Oak State College is a small public school located in the suburb of New Britain.

While working on their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts majors at Charter Oak State College accumulate an average of around $18,685 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $174, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

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Southern New Hampshire University ranked #9 on this year’s Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. SNHU is a very large private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Manchester.

While working on their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts majors at SNHU accumulate an average of around $14,613 in student debt. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $130.

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#10

University of Iowa

Iowa City, IA

University of Iowa came in at #10 in this year’s edition of the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Iowa is a fairly large public school located in the small city of Iowa City.

Liberal Arts majors at Iowa take out an average of $23,313 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $251.

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#11

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, IN

University of Notre Dame did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #11 on the list. Located in the suburb of Notre Dame, Notre Dame is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

On average, liberal arts graduates from Notre Dame take out $17,621 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $197.

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Arizona State University - Skysong did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #12 on the list. Located in the large city of Scottsdale, ASU - Skysong is a public school with a very large student population.

Liberal Arts majors at ASU - Skysong take out an average of $23,738 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $245.

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#13

Xavier University

Cincinnati, OH

With a ranking of #13, Xavier University did quite well on this year’s best schools for liberal arts general studies students working on their bachelor’s degree. Xavier is a moderately-sized private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Cincinnati.

The average amount in student loans that liberal arts majors at Xavier take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $22,767. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $241, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#14

Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Drexel University landed the #14 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree liberal arts general studies programs. Drexel is a very large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Philadelphia.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts graduates from Drexel carry an average student debtload of $27,155. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $275, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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South Dakota State University landed the #15 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree liberal arts general studies programs. Located in the remote town of Brookings, South Dakota State is a public college with a large student population.

Liberal Arts majors at South Dakota State take out an average of $23,935 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $251.

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#16

Harvard University

Cambridge, MA

Harvard University did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #16 on the list. Located in the medium-sized city of Cambridge, Harvard is a private not-for-profit college with a very large student population.

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#17

William Jewell College

Liberty, MO

With a ranking of #17, William Jewell College did quite well on this year’s best schools for liberal arts general studies students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in the large suburb of Liberty, William Jewell is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly small student population.

On average, liberal arts graduates from William Jewell take out $22,422 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $263, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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Brigham Young University - Provo did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #18 on the list. Located in the midsize city of Provo, BYU is a private not-for-profit school with a very large student population.

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Hobart and William Smith Colleges ranked #19 on this year’s Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. The Colleges is a small private not-for-profit school located in the distant town of Geneva.

Liberal Arts majors at The Colleges take out an average of $21,917 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $246, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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Thomas Edison State University came in at #20 in this year’s edition of the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Located in the small city of Trenton, TESU is a public college with a large student population.

The average amount in student loans that liberal arts majors at TESU take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $12,867. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $102.

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#21

Grand View University

Des Moines, IA

Grand View University landed the #21 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree liberal arts general studies programs. Located in the midsize city of Des Moines, Grand View University is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts graduates from Grand View University carry an average student debtload of $21,272. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $195, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#22

Union College New York

Schenectady, NY

With a ranking of #22, Union College New York did quite well on this year’s best schools for liberal arts general studies students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in the small city of Schenectady, Union College Schenectady is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

On average, liberal arts graduates from Union College Schenectady take out $19,680 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $208.

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#23

Columbia College

Columbia, MO

Columbia College ranked #23 on this year’s Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the medium-sized city of Columbia, Columbia College Missouri is a private not-for-profit college with a medium-sized student population.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, liberal arts graduates from Columbia College Missouri carry an average student debtload of $23,614. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $208.

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#24

Providence College

Providence, RI

Providence College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for liberal arts general studies students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #24 on the list. Providence is a small private not-for-profit school located in the medium-sized city of Providence.

Liberal Arts majors at Providence take out an average of $25,363 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $259, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#25

Belmont University

Nashville, TN

Belmont University ranked #25 on this year’s Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Nashville, Belmont is a private not-for-profit college with a moderately-sized student population.

The average amount in student loans that liberal arts majors at Belmont take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $26,649. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $259, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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Rest of the Top Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools

#28

University of North Dakota

Grand Forks, ND
#35

Endicott College

Beverly, MA
#38

James Madison University

Harrisonburg, VA
#40

Wesleyan University

Middletown, CT
#43

University of Kansas

Lawrence, KS
#45

Longwood University

Farmville, VA
#46

University of Bridgeport

Bridgeport, CT
#48

George Mason University

Fairfax, VA
#49

University of Northern Iowa

Cedar Falls, IA

Remaining Award Winners

This section represents the rest of the schools awarded a Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools badge. Showing in this list means the school was ranked in the top 15% of the 375 different United States liberal arts general studies schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
51 Rochester Institute of Technology Rochester, NY
52 Westfield State University Westfield, MA
53 University of Connecticut Storrs, CT
54 Wayland Baptist University Plainview, TX
55 Bay Path University Longmeadow, MA
56 Rider University Lawrenceville, NJ

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Here are some additional great schools for Liberal Arts General Studies students that almost earned our Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools award.

Rank College Location
57 William Peace University Raleigh, NC
58 University of Massachusetts - Dartmouth North Dartmouth, MA
59 Saint Mary’s College of California Moraga, CA
60 Bridgewater College Bridgewater, VA
61 Pennsylvania State University - World Campus University Park, PA
62 Loyola Marymount University Los Angeles, CA
63 University of North Texas Denton, TX
64 The University of Texas at Arlington Arlington, TX
65 Eastern Illinois University Charleston, IL
66 CUNY Graduate School and University Center New York, NY
67 Simpson College Indianola, IA
68 Indiana University - Purdue University - Indianapolis Indianapolis, IN
69 Middle Tennessee State University Murfreesboro, TN
70 University of South Carolina - Columbia Columbia, SC
71 Western Illinois University Macomb, IL
72 The King’s College New York, NY
73 Washington State University Pullman, WA
74 Texas State University San Marcos, TX
75 Northern Arizona University Flagstaff, AZ

Liberal Arts General Studies by Region

View the Best Liberal Arts General Studies Bachelor's Degree Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • Read more about our ranking methodology.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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