Why This Matters


    According to College Navigator, Louisiana has 16 public colleges, 12 private non-profit organizations, and one private for-profit institution.


    According to College Board, the average cost of in-state tuition at a public college in Louisiana during the 2021-22 school year is $10,010.


    For the 2020-21 school year, the average amount of student aid for a full-time undergraduate student in the U.S. was $14,800.

Our Research

This list features some of the best brick-and-mortar schools in Louisiana. Each school featured is a nonprofit, accredited institution — either public or private — with a high standard of academic quality for post-secondary institutions. We included liberal arts colleges and research universities as well as small, midsize, and large institutions. Next, we compared this comprehensive list to a list of aggregated college rankings from reputable publications like the U.S. News & World Report among others to simplify a student’s college search. We pored through these rankings so students don’t have to.

The colleges on our list are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), a reputable organization that examines the objectives, quality, and overall effectiveness of education programs in the southern United States.

We evaluated each school on tuition costs, admission, retention and graduation rates, faculty, and reputation as well as the student resources provided for on-campus students. Then we calculated the Intelligent Score on a scale of 0 to 100. Read more about our ranking methodology.

The Top 50 Colleges in Louisiana

Best Colleges In Louisiana
Intelligent Pick
Tulane University
Best Public Institution
Louisiana State University
Best Public Research School
Louisiana Tech University
Best Catholic University
Loyola University New Orleans
Best Student-to-Faculty Ratio
Centenary College
Xavier University of Louisiana
Best Student Support Services
University of Holy Cross
Most Affordable
Northwestern State University of Louisiana
Best Scholarships
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Best for Culinary Arts
Nicholls State University

University of New Orleans

Southeastern Louisiana University

Southern University and A&M College

McNeese State University

Dillard University

What You Should Know About Graduating From College in Louisiana

Before embarking on a college education, it’s smart to consider the industries that offer the most job opportunities. As of October 2021, the five fastest growing industries in Louisiana were leisure and hospitality; goods-producing; professional and business services; retail trade; and education and health services.

In Louisiana, the top five fastest growing occupations for job seekers with a bachelor’s degree were data scientists, agents and talent managers, producers and directors, logisticians, and information security analysts.

In addition to the fastest-growing industries and occupations, it’s smart to know about the largest employers in the state. The employers that made this list include Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical, Hilton-New Orleans Riverside, LSU Inc., and the Jazz Casino Co. LLC.

What’s Next?

Financial aid makes it easier for students to pay for tuition, room and board, and other fees while in college. The following is a list of federal and state resources for undergraduate students in Louisiana.

  • Louisiana Board of Regents. The Louisiana Board of Regents provides information on the types of financial aid available to college students within the state. It also offers information on tuition and fees of all the colleges and universities.
  • Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The first place to look for financial aid when attending college is federal aid. Provided by the U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid is available through work-study programs, scholarships, loans, and grants. To find out if you are eligible, visit the FAFSA4caster, or fill out a free application online at FAFSA.
  • CareerOneStop. CareerOneStop is a searchable list provided by the U.S. Department of Labor. You can search for loans, scholarships, and other types of financial aid by the award type, amount, location, field of study, and deadline.