U.S. News & World Report:

  • One of the top 100 liberal arts colleges in the U.S.
  • #16 Best Value College — a measure of academic quality and affordability
  • COA is among the colleges that have achieved the most significant positive movement in the U.S. News ranking over the last five years, jumping up more than 40 spots on the list.

Princeton Review:

COA ranks among the top colleges in the country on the Princeton Review’s lists including:

  • Best Campus Food: #6
  • LGBTQ-Friendly: #2
  • Professors Get High Marks: #11
  • Great Financial Aid: #11
  • Most Beautiful Campus: #16
  • Best College Dorms: #20

Green Colleges:

COA has been repeatedly recognized for our college-wide commitment to ecological practices.

  • Sierra Club’s Cool Schools: #1 (greenest college in America)
  • The Princeton Review’s Top 50 Green Colleges: #1
  • Popular Mechanics’ Greenest Colleges in America: #1

Washington Monthly:

  • Among the top 100 liberal arts colleges—this ranking is based largely on colleges’ contributions to the public good.
  • Best bang for the buck: #48 (a regional ranking based on the economic value that students receive per dollar spent on their education).

MacArthur “Genius” Award recipient:

COA is one of six colleges selected to receive a “genius” grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, who cited our innovative, mission-driven approach to liberal arts education.

“At this tiny Bar Harbor school, students ‘don’t just take classes’: they immerse themselves in experiences and in ‘an intimate, friendly community’ of do-ers and critical thinkers.… This unique educational model helps students ‘merge [their] talents/interests in a meaningful and applicable way,’ and allows for graduate-level research and real-world work experience at the undergraduate level…. Self-motivated learning is everything here, and College of the Atlantic is for ‘idealists with elbow grease.’”

— Princeton Review’s The Best 381 Colleges 2017


The COA research station lighthouse on Great Duck Island.The COA research station lighthouse on Great Duck Island. 


What they're saying...

  • NEWS
    College of the Atlantic Ranked #1 Green College
    The Princeton Review cites an experiential curriculum, a campus-wide focus on sustainability, and student involvement in environmental policy setting in naming COA the most environmentally responsible college in the U.S. and awarding the school a #1 ranking in their Top 50 Green Colleges of 2016.
  • NEWS
    College of the Atlantic Named Greenest College in America

    Sierra, the national magazine of the Sierra Club, names College of the Atlantic the greenest college in the country in its 10th annual “Cool Schools” ranking. The school jumps 15 spots from last year’s ranking of 16 to occupy the #1 slot “by a landslide.”

  • NEWS
    College of the Atlantic Ranked One of the Nation’s Best Institutions (Fox ABC Maine)
    College of the Atlantic is ranking high with the Princeton Review. It received a perfect score when it comes to its “green” rating. Those at the college say it is because of hard work from students, staff and faculty.