In some countries, those considering enrolling in a Catholic university may have a choice between a few universities or none at all. In the United States, they have a choice between about 250 Catholic colleges and universities. In 2018, of 6.5 million students enrolled in Catholic post-secondary institutions globally, 1.3 million were enrolled in the United States. If one considers only university students, the country accounted for 22 percent of all students enrolled in Catholic universities globally (0.9 million of a total of 4.2 million, including students pursuing ecclesiastical studies).
Choosing the right university for one's education requires access to information. Multiple university rankings are available today. These rankings can be useful, but they can also have perverse effects. We do not provide rankings on this website, but we aim to make information on Catholic universities more easily available to help inform the choice of those considering enrolling.
For the time being, we only provide on this page a comprehensive list of Catholic colleges and universities in the United States. Soon we will provide comparable data for the various universities. We also plan to share results from research assessing how well Catholic universities are doing, and more importantly, how they could improve the education they provide. If feedback on this page is positive, we will assess whether it is feasible to provide in the future similar data on Catholic universities in other countries. To provide feedback, please contact us.
Note: Bishop John Carroll, SJ (photo), founded Georgetown University, the oldest Catholic university in the United States.
This page provides a quick introduction to some of the reasons why a Catholic university may be the right choice for a prospective student as well as a list of Catholic colleges and universities in the United States. We plan to provide soon comparative data on the characteristics of the various colleges and universities as well as related research.
Why Studying at a Catholic College or University?
The Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities (ACCU) estimates that there are more than 250 Catholic institutions of higher education in the United States. The apostolic constitution Ex corde Ecclesiae issued by Pope John Paul II in 1990 states that Catholic institutions of higher learning should be defined by a shared Christian vision and goals, reflection in the light of faith, fidelity to tradition, and a commitment to service. Catholic colleges and universities welcome students from all backgrounds. Indeed, less than half of students at Catholic institutions are Roman Catholic according to available estimates. Below are useful infographics generated by ACCU on Catholic colleges and universities in the United States: