How New England schools fared in U.S. News & World Report’s 2022 best college rankings

Some local institutions once again got top marks.

Pedestrians walk through Harvard Yard. Adam Glanzman/Bloomberg

Another pandemic school year is underway, and the latest annual rankings of colleges from U.S. News & World Report is out to inform high school students (and their parents) thinking about the future.

The publication released its 2022 Best Colleges rankings on Monday, and as in previous years, more than a few New England schools made the cut. For another year in a row, Harvard held its No. 2 place behind Princeton University, this time tying for the position with its Cambridge neighbor — the Massachusetts Institute of Technology — and Columbia University. Princeton has maintained the top spot in the category of National Universities for a decade.  


Massachusetts schools also had another strong showing in the top rankings of the National Liberal Arts Colleges. For another year in a row, Williams College held onto its No. 1 spot, followed (again) by Amherst College at No. 2. 

For the rankings, U.S. News evaluated more than 1,400 colleges and universities using 17 measures of academic quality along with the following weighted ranking factors: outcomes (40%), faculty resources (20%), financial resources (10%), student excellence (7%), and alumni giving (3%). 

“Students and faculty continue to feel the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, whether it’s through remote learning, mask-wearing or vaccine requirements,” Kim Castro, editor and chief content officer of U.S. News, said in a statement. “As communities work through these challenges, U.S. News is committed to providing information on the academic quality of institutions across the country, so prospective students and their families can make informed decisions throughout their college search.”

Below, a look at how New England schools fared in the two primary categories for 2022. See the full rankings here.

Best National Universities

Top three: 

  • 1. Princeton University (NJ) 
  • 2. Columbia University (NY)  
  • 2. Harvard University (MA) 
  • 2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MA)

New England schools in the rest of the top 100:

  • 5. Yale University (CT)
  • 13. Dartmouth College (NH)
  • 14. Brown University (RI) (tied with Vanderbilt University and Washington University in St. Louis)
  • 28. Tufts University (MA) (tied with New York University, University of California–Santa Barbara, University of Florida, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, and Wake Forest University) 
  • 36. Boston College (MA) (tied with University of California–Irvine) 
  • 42. Boston University (MA) & Brandeis University (MA) (tied with Case Western Reserve University, Tulane University, and University of Wisconsin–Madison)
  • 49. Northeastern University (MA) (tied with Lehigh University, Ohio State University–Columbus, Pepperdine University, Purdue University–West Lafayette, and Villanova University)
  • 63. University of Connecticut (CT) & Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA) (tied with George Washington University, Pennsylvania State University–University Park, and Rutgers University–New Brunswick)
  • 68. University of Massachusetts–Amherst (MA) (tied with Fordham University, Indiana University–Bloomington, Southern Methodist University, Texas A&M University, University of Minnesota–Twin Cities, and Yeshiva University)

Best National Liberal Arts Colleges

Top three: 

  • 1. Williams College (MA) 
  • 2. Amherst College (MA) 
  • 3. Swarthmore College (PA)

New England schools in the rest of the top 100:

  • 5. Wellesley College (MA)
  • 6. Bowdoin College (ME) (tied with United States Naval Academy)
  • 9. Middlebury College (VT) (tied with Carleton College)
  • 17. Colby College (ME), Smith College (MA), and Wesleyan University (CT) (tied with Barnard College and Colgate University)
  • 25. Bates College (ME)
  • 30. Mount Holyoke College (MA) (tied with Berea College, Bryn Mawr College, Kenyon College, and Scripps College) 
  • 35. College of the Holy Cross (MA) (tied with Pitzer College)
  • 46. Trinity College (CT) (tied with DePauw University, Furman University, and Hillsdale College)
  • 50. Connecticut College (CT) (tied with Dickinson College, Union College, and The University of the South)
  • 79. Bennington College (VT) (tied with Gustavus Adolphus College and Knox College)
  • 85. Wheaton College (MA) (tied with Allegheny College, University of Puget Sound, and Ursinus College)
  • 92. College of the Atlantic (ME) (tied with Augustana College, College of St. Benedict, Earlham College, Transylvania University, and Washington and Jefferson College) 
  • 98. Stonehill College (MA) (tied with Hampden-Sydney College, Hanover College, Hendrix College, Ohio Wesleyan University, Southwestern University, and Washington College)


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