Vault Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Uppers

  • Located near exciting Chicago
  • High percentage of small classes and low student-teacher ratio

Downers

  • Most selective
  • Expensive

The Bottom Line

  • Northwestern University is a large, private university near Chicago, Illinois, that offers strong liberal arts and sciences programs through small classes and an attentive staff, and is also well known for its outstanding athletics.

Admissions

Northwestern is ranked twelfth in U.S. News & World Report's 2013 edition of "Best Colleges." The school is most selective, with an 18 percent acceptance rate.

A strong academic background and high test scores carry weight in the admissions process. The school also...  

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