Skip to content

Best Colleges In Dc

Last Updated on November 20, 2022 by Ibrahim Agboola

There are nineteen colleges and universities in Washington, D.C., that are listed under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. These institutions include five research universities, four master’s universities, and ten special-focus institutions. Sixteen of Washington, D.C.’s post-secondary institutions are private, of which three are for-profit. Only three of the city’s post-secondary institutions listed under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education are public. In addition to the institutions listed under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, Washington, D.C., has three additional private not-for-profit post-secondary institutions (Johns Hopkins University’s Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, NewU University, and St. Paul’s College) and two additional public post-secondary institutions (National Defense University and the Inter-American Defense College).

Washington, D.C.’s oldest post-secondary institution is Georgetown University, founded in 1789. Georgetown University is also the oldest Jesuit and Catholic university in the United States. Founded in 1821, George Washington University is the city’s largest institution of higher learning in terms of enrollment, as it had 25,653 students as of the spring of 2013. According to the United States Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences, Washington Theological Union is the city’s smallest with an enrollment of 80.

Best Colleges In Dc

Choosing from one of the more than 4,000 college degree-granting institutions in the United States can be one of the most stressful times in a high school senior’s life. Figuring out where to go is one consideration. Cost is another; Americans currently are carrying a collective $1.5 trillion in college debt that doesn’t go away even if they were to declare bankruptcy. So, many college students of tomorrow are looking for schools that will give them the most bang for their buck in terms of financial aid, job prospects, and networking opportunities.

One factor in the decision of where to go that can’t be ignored is a school’s location because of its influence on the overall college experience. The jobs students get to pay for textbooks or the fun events they go to with friends can largely depend on the city where their college is located. While some prospective college students are less concerned about the location of their chosen school than what the school has to offer, others specifically want to get their degrees from schools in a small town, or where they have access to the bright lights of a big city and all the options it provides. Others prefer to stay close to home or go to a school at a location they’ve only learned about in movies.

#8. Gallaudet University

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 59%
– SAT range: 800-1110
– ACT: 15-19
– Faculty ratio: 7:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 1,074
– Tuition: $16,558

#7. Howard University

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 41%
– SAT range: 1090-1290
– ACT: 22-28
– Faculty ratio: 8:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 6,090
– Tuition: $24,122

#6. Catholic University of America

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 83%
– SAT range: 1020-1230
– ACT: 22-28
– Faculty ratio: 7:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 3,194
– Tuition: $44,060

#5. George Mason University

– Location: Fairfax, VA
– Acceptance rate: 81%
– SAT range: 1100-1290
– ACT: 24-30
– Faculty ratio: 16:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 20,221
– In-state tuition: $11,924
– Out-of-state tuition: $34,370

#4. American University

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 29%
– SAT range: 1180-1350
– ACT: 26-30
– Faculty ratio: 11:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 7,764
– Tuition: $46,615

#3. George Washington University

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 41%
– SAT range: 1280-1440
– ACT: 29-32
– Faculty ratio: 13:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 10,893
– Tuition: $53,518

#2. University of Maryland – College Park

– Location: College Park, MD
– Acceptance rate: 45%
– SAT range: 1280-1470
– ACT: 29-33
– Faculty ratio: 18:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 27,708
– In-state tuition: $10,399
– Out-of-state tuition: $33,606

#1. Georgetown University

– Location: Washington D.C.
– Acceptance rate: 16%
– SAT range: 1350-1520
– ACT: 30-34
– Faculty ratio: 11:1
– Undergrads enrolled: 6,987
– Tuition: $52,300

Top Community Colleges In Washington DC Leading In Technology

There are a lot of ways to evaluate the top community colleges in Washington, D.C. to find the right fit. Academic programs, location, scholarship opportunities, and culture can all play a role in the selection process. However, technology is an essential part of the college experience you probably never considered.

An investment in technology indicates a growing school with a solid financial footing. Every career in the modern workforce involves using technology in some fasjion, so college students need technical training to become well-rounded career candidates. Community college technology can enhance the student experience by providing a platform for communicating with professors, students, and online learning.

“Finding the right college is really important, but more important is making sure that college has a program and an environment that motivates you,” says Isa Adney, author of “Community College Success.” In today’s tech-driven world, higher education communication tools are a critical part of the environment and college experience. To help you evaluate the best community colleges in Washington D.C., we’ve created a tech-driven guide to understanding your options.

The 8 Most Tech-Advanced Community Colleges in Washington, D.C.

Every community college in Washington, D.C. has technology in some capacity. GovTech estimates that in 2018, higher education spending on tech will reach $12.8 billion nationwide. However, some organizations go above and beyond in their commitment to fielding the most advanced and innovative communications tools and infrastructure.

What defines a tech-advanced, connected campus? There are a few criteria which can shape the student experience:

Criteria #1. A Fiber Network

College students use a lot of bandwidth for downloading homework assignments, running online applications, and streaming music. Not only is fiber-optic internet much faster than traditional high-speed internet, but it’s also much more reliable. Fiber offers equal upload and download speeds for fast file transfers and superior information security protection.

Criteria #2. Tech Personnel

Technology is transforming higher education and allowing colleges nationwide to provide higher-quality, accessible education at lower costs. As the industry faces digital transformation, the best community colleges in Washington, D.C. and nationwide have a fully-staffed team of experts whose primary role is to engage with technology. Personnel dedicated to maintaining communications tools nearly always signal better tech adoption across the campus and well-trained instructors and staff.

Criteria #3. Commitment

The best Washington, D.C. community colleges know that technology is an advantage for students, and their commitment is clear regarding the resources and effort they’ve dedicated to adopting and integrating new technologies. The leading colleges may have campus-wide communication systems, student apps, and use technology to enhance classroom learning.

UDC

UDC Community College

The University of the District of Columbia Community College (UDC-CC) is a Washington, D.C. open-enrollment, public junior college with a Spring 2018 enrollment of 1,875 students. UDC-CC currently offers WiFi internet connectivity to students, and an Office of Information Services dedicated to maintaining academic technology resources and networks.

Several academic programs have a strong focus on technology, including two-year AAS degrees in Computer Science, Business Technology, and Computer Accounting Technology.

UDCWDLL

UDC Workforce Development and Lifelong Learning Center

The Workforce Development and Lifelong Learning (WDLL) Center at The University of the District of Columbia is a Washington, D.C., open-enrollment program committed to providing career-focused training in seven areas identified as critical skill gaps in the greater DC area.

Program offerings include Automotive, Construction, Early Childhood, Healthcare, Hospitality, IT, Logistics, and basic adult literacy and math coursework. WDLL is part of the same network of programs as UDC-CC, allowing students to benefit from campus internet connectivity and dedicated IT staff.

PGCC

Prince George’s Community College

An accredited community college located in Largo, Maryland, Prince George’s Community College (PGCC) has 40,000 students and over 100 fields of study. PGCC has had an intercampus fiber internet loop since 2015 and offers coursework in fiber-optic internet technology for future technicians.

Personnel at PGCC dedicated to information technology includes the “Owl Success Track” staff who support first-year students in becoming acclimated to the college’s tech resources. Investments and innovations include a campus-wide emergency alert system, student apps, tech support, and wireless mobile charging stations campus-wide.

CSM

College of Southern Maryland

Located in La Plata, Maryland, College of Southern Maryland (CSM) is a rural community college serving a student body of nearly 25,000 on a 173-acre campus. Currently, students have access to 10 certificate and two-year degree programs in technology fields ranging from cybersecurity to web development.

The La Plata Office is home to many tech-dedicated personnel, including an Office of Information Management and a Technical Training Center. CSM’s Strategic Plan illustrates a commitment to evolving with technology and social change while maintaining fundamental principles.

AACC

Anne Arundel Community College

Located on a 230-acre campus in Arnold, Maryland, Anne Arundel Community College (AACC) has a student enrollment of over 53,000 and over 1,600 full and part-time staff members. Fiber resources have recently significantly expanded in Anne Arundel County, reaching 52 buildings in the public school system.

This community college’s strategic plan includes some tech objectives, including increasing student engagement with academic and support programs and redesigning the campus alert system. Tech resources at AACC include loaner laptops, extended helpdesk support hours, and continual software improvements.

HCC

Howard County Community College

Located in Columbia, Maryland, Howard County Community College (HCCC) has over 10,000 students. A fiber network was installed on campus in 2015, providing students with campus-wide access to secure, high-speed internet.

HCCC has made some innovative technology-related investments in recent years, including the addition of a smart power software to improve campus sustainability. Students are provided with cybersecurity awareness training and password management tools in addition to online portals for course management and registration.

MC

Montgomery College

Montgomery College is a public community college with an enrollment of over 60,000 students at three campus locations in Rockville and Takoma Park, MD. This fully-accredited college offers more than 600 courses in 40 areas of study, including two-year degrees in liberal arts, sciences, applied sciences, education, and fine arts.

In 2016, the Instructional and Informational Technology team at Montgomery College faced a need to upgrade the infrastructure to a Unified Communications System. As one of the largest and most highly-regarded community colleges in Washington, D.C. and the nation, Montgomery needed to solve the challenges of staff working remotely, rising student expectations, and an aging communications infrastructure.

“Our students, faculty, and the broader community expect a best-in-class education experience, and this means putting a technology infrastructure in place to enable learning and working without boundaries,” said former IT CIO and VP Carl Whitman.

Montgomery selected a Broadsoft-powered Unified Communications System offered by Washington, D.C. fiber internet provider Atlantech Online to create a next-generation connected campus powered by fiber-optic connectivity. Students and staff now benefit from unique, state-of-the-art collaborative technologies on laptops and mobile, productivity tools for all devices, and improved communications throughout the campus community.

NOVA

Northern Virginia Community College

Formally known as “NVCC” but more commonly abbreviated as “NOVA,” Northern Virginia Community College is the largest multi-campus community college in Virginia and the second-largest in the U.S. With campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudon, Manassas, Springfield, and Woodbridge, NOVA has a student body of over 77,000 and more than 2,500 full-time faculty and staff.

Information is not made available on the school website about whether NOVA’s campus network is fiber-based. NOVA has many dedicated teams focused on technology, including web services, technology training, online learning, and instructional technology. Students can benefit from cutting-edge investments, including 35,000 online video tech training tutorials, and unique “web mashup” services.

Selecting the Best Community College in Washington, D.C.

The right community college is a highly individual choice. Prospective students in the greater DC area have a wealth of options within several hours’ distance, including renowned schools in Maryland, Virginia, and DC. Selecting the right college should involve considerations of school reputation, academic programs, costs, scholarship opportunities, and total student experience—including technology.

Regardless of whether you’re headed for a tech-focused career, your future jobs will involve a great deal of technology on a day-to-day basis. Tech plays a vital role in communications between students and instructors, and for group collaboration. Choosing a community college with a commitment to tech innovation is often a healthy way to prepare for a positive experience and a fulfilling career.