Top Ten Universities in Texas

As the second most populous as well as the second largest state in the U.S. only behind Alaska, Texas can be a rewarding place to experience college life as you earn your degree. With consistently warm weather, hearty food, and country music festivals, this state has a lot to offer students.

The surprisingly diverse Texan geography consists of scenic hills, lakes, an abundance of bluebonnets (which also happens to be the state flower), and even beaches! Located at the very bottom border of the United States, Texas is considered a southwestern state and actually incorporates both extremely traditional southern as well as western characteristics and customs. And nothing beats good old southern hospitality!

For those of you interested in studying in the Lone Star state, here is a list of the top ten universities in Texas as of the conclusion of the 2012-2013 academic calendar year. The list is ranked and provided by 4 International Colleges and Universities, and each college’s statistics and information is retrieved from U.S. News.

Keep in mind that the list may not be ranked solely upon the university’s academic merits. The school’s classification may include student organizations, sports achievements, campus life, etc.

1). University of Texas, Austin (Austin, Texas)

National Rank: #46

  • Admission: 46.6%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 38,437
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 72% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1670-2060
  • ACT Mid-Range: 25-31

UT Austin is one of the largest schools in the United States, with more than 900 student run clubs and organizations. It is also known for having a very large and active Greek system. The school’s mascot Bevo the Longhorn supports its many NCAA Division I sports teams. Whenever a school team wins a national championship, the UT Tower will glow a #1.

2). Texas A&M University (College Station, Texas)

National Rank: #65

  • Admission: 63.5%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 39,867
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 60% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1580-1930
  • ACT Mid-Range: 24-30

Texas A&M University is short for what it used to be known, as Texas Agricultural and Mechanical College. This school started out as an all mens school but has since opened its doors to women as well. Texas A&M’s cadet corps is the highest ranking ROTC program in the country, aside from the formal military academies.

Every year, the school also hosts The Big Event, which encourages students to give back and do volunteer work in nearby cities.

3). Rice University (Houston, Texas)

National Rank: #17

  • Admission: 18.8%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 3,755
  • School Type: Private, coed
  • Setting: Urban
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT with writing component, At least two SAT subject tests
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 90% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 2020-2290
  • ACT Mid-Range: 30-34

Located in Houston, the nation’s fourth largest city, Rice University offers an abundance of activities that are both on and off-campus. Many pubs and coffeehouses are completely student run. Rice University freshmen are all assigned to one of eleven residential colleges, where they remain members throughout the rest of their college education. The Rice Owls (their mascot) are known for their strong baseball team.

4). University of North Texas (Denton, Texas)

National Rank: Not published

  • Admission: 64.0%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 28,325
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 17% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1440-1780
  • ACT Mid-Range: 20-26

The University of North Texas is well known for its College of Music, which holds about 1,000 performances annually and provides students with musical concerts. UNT is the 26th largest university in America, and was the first school to offer a jazz studies major. Singer Norah Jones attended and graduated from UNT.

5). University of Houston (Houston, Texas)

National Rank: #184

  • Admission: 63.6%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 31,764
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: Urban
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 32% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: Not reported
  • ACT Mid-Range: 22-27

Located in downtown Houston, the University of Houston sits in the perfect spot to allow students an opportunity to find part-time jobs and internships. As a research focused college, the surrounding city also gives students a base to seek out research and lab work. UH is well known for both its basketball and football teams.

The school also puts on an annual Frontier Fiesta, a day where the entire campus is transformed into a Fiesta City and holds cook-offs, concerts, shows, and more.

6). Texas Tech University (Lubbock, Texas)

National Rank: #165

  • Admission: 66.3%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 26,063
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 20% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1490-1780
  • ACT Mid-Range: 22-27

Texas Tech is located in the college town of Lubbock and is primarily a research institution. The school’s mascot is the Red Raiders, and is famous for its football and basketball teams. Texas Tech participates in the NCAA Big 12 Conference every year. One unique Texas Tech regulation is that all students must live on campus until they have fulfilled the minimum required thirty hours of coursework.

7). Southern Methodist University (Dallas, Texas)

National Rank: #58

  • Admission: 54.6%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 6,221
  • School Type: Private, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: United Methodist
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 47% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: 44% had grade point averages of 3.75+
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1760-2050
  • ACT Mid-Range: 27-31

Although originally founded by the United Methodist Church, Southern Methodist University holds and welcomes all types of religions and diversities. The school is located in the ideal city of Dallas, which gives students the opportunity to explore the activities offered off-campus. SMU holds two big annual events each year. There is the candlelit Festival of Lights each December, as well as the Mane Event which celebrates spring with food and music.

8). University of Texas, Arlington (Arlington, Texas)

National Rank: Not published

  • Admission: 69.0%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 25,419
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: Urban
  • Academic Calendar: Other
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 27% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1410-1760
  • ACT Mid-Range: 21-26

Situated in the Fort Worth area in downtown Arlington, UTA was founded as a military academy, and later joined the Texas A&M University system, before finally settling in the University of Texas school system. UTA has traditionally had very strong volleyball and basketball teams. Some fun school traditions include Bed Races, Ooozeball, and soaping the main UT Arlington fountain.

9). University of Texas, Dallas (Richardson, Texas)

National Rank: #151

  • Admission: 53.4%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 11,760
  • School Type: Public, coed
  • Setting: Suburban
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: None
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division III

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT, SAT subject tests required for some
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 42% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: 65% had grade point averages of 3.75+
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1700-2040
  • ACT Mid-Range: 26-31

UT Dallas has long been a research focused university, and is known especially for its space science exploration. Its large campus underwent a thirty million dollar Campus Landscape Enhancement Project which restored native trees and pedestrian pathways all over campus. The university has also been busy expanding building plans and adding new facilities.

Some university traditions include Ceremonial Mace, Legacy Lane, Splatterbeat, and rubbing Cecil Green’s head. As one of the university’s founders, a bronze statue was erected in Cecil Green’s honor, and it is now a tradition for students to rub the statue’s head for luck on the way to exams.

10). Baylor University (Waco, Texas)

National Rank: #77

  • Admission: 39.7%
  • Undergraduate Enrollment: 12,575
  • School Type: Private, coed
  • Setting: City
  • Academic Calendar: Semester
  • Religious Affiliation: Baptist
  • Athletic Association: NCAA Division I

Academic Stats (Provided by the College Board)

  • Required Tests: SAT or ACT
  • Class Ranks of Incoming Freshmen: 39% within top tenth percentile
  • GPA of Incoming Freshmen: Not reported
  • SAT Mid-Range: 1650-1980
  • ACT Mid-Range: 24-29

Baylor University holds its students to high standards of community service, and contributes to around 12,000 hours collectively each year to service projects. As a Baptist school, Baylor also regards religion seriously, and holds the annual student-led program Be The Change that is centered around giving religion “a global focus”. All freshmen are required to take one semester of chapel, and there is a daily prayer gathering at noon.

Baylor has its very own holiday, Diadeloso, where classes are cancelled for a day and students can attend a block party and free concerts. This school also has something called Dr. Pepper Hour, where students and faculty can get free ice cream floats every week.

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Ashley Yang

Ashley Yang

Ashley Yang will be entering her junior year at the University of California, Davis in the fall, where she is pursuing a double major in Economics and Communication. Outside of class, she loves to see her friends and family, jam out to T-Swift, make smoothies, and curl up and unwind with a relaxing book. Other interests of hers include ballet and gymnastics, skiing, travel, volunteer work, chick-flick movies, animals, and Christmas.
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