Help Finding Illinois Colleges

Where to Start Looking to Find Illinois Colleges

Illinois Highway SignStudents starting the college search process by looking for Illinois colleges should visit the What’s Next Illinois website. It has basic search functions for all 2 and 4 year public and private institutions in Illinois along with the usual planning timelines. The site allows students to create an account that includes creating a portfolio to track all documents (testing and financial) and a journal for notes and comments.

Users can estimate their EFC using the site’s generic calculator or search for scholarships using the scholarship finder. The site includes the opportunity to practice completing a college application along with completing the actual application. Registered users can also access test prep tools.

Illinois Colleges Summary

Public Private
Number 11 44
Students 52% 48%
50-50 6 12
5/4 Yr Grad Rate 47.1% 46.2%
Test Scores

ACT Avg 75%
Composite 20.6 24
English 20.2 25
Math 20.7 25
Top Ten Colleges Applied To
  • University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Illinois State University
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Chicago
  • Southern Illinois Univ-Carbondale
  • Depaul University
  • Western Illinois University
  • Eastern Illinois University
  • Loyola University of Chicago

The website lists Illinois Student Assistance Commission outreach events as well as ISAC Corps members. The ISAC website has information on prepaid tuition, the State Scholar Program, and the transcript exchange for Illinois schools. Potential transfer students should visit the iTransfer website for more information on both public and private schools.

Some Numbers to Help You Find a College

Illinois has 55 four-colleges with 500 or more full-time undergraduates. Of the 244,425 students, 52% attend the 11 public institutions in the state compared to the 48% at Illinois’ 44 private colleges.

The average four-year graduation rate for private Illinois colleges is 46.2% and the five-year rate for public-institutions with available information is 47.1%. A total of 18 Illinois colleges meet the DIY College Rankings 50-50 profile requirements.

In Illinois, the average Composite ACT score was 20.6. The English scores was 20.2 and the Math score was 20.7. The 75th% Composite score was 24, English was 25, and Math was 25. A total of 39 colleges reported ACT 75th% Composite scores were at or above this level.

The top 20 colleges ACT test takers in Illinois applied to:

  • University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign
  • Northern Illinois University
  • Illinois State University
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Chicago
  • Southern Illinois Univ-Carbondale
  • Depaul University
  • Western Illinois University
  • Eastern Illinois University
  • Loyola University of Chicago
  • Southern Illinois Univ-Edwardsville
  • University of Iowa
  • Columbia College Chicago
  • Univ of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Northeastern Illinois University
  • Bradley University
  • College of Du Page
  • Joliet Junior College
  • Northwestern University
  • Illinois Institute of Art The

List of Illinois Colleges

In the following table, the four-year graduation rate is used for private colleges and the five-year rate for public colleges. The data are based on the data available from IPEDS in January of 2014 which are available on the DIY College Search spreadsheet.

Illinois Colleges with Graduation Rates and Test Scores

4/5 Yr
Augustana CollegePrivate2532736921840
Aurora UniversityPrivate260838755005302416596
Benedictine UniversityPrivate291637762418508
Blackburn CollegePrivate53136612612541
Bradley UniversityPrivate463255636502822920
Chicago State UniversityPublic301213384852014797
Columbia College-ChicagoPrivate92242927934
Concordia University-ChicagoPrivate140733555755602316807
DePaul UniversityPrivate1365751626406272724205
Dominican UniversityPrivate179456575906002415709
Eastern Illinois UniversityPublic790655652413702
East-West UniversityPrivate761624859
Elmhurst CollegePrivate286457685906102621344
Eureka CollegePrivate69239736856202716221
Greenville CollegePrivate115544615955902618110
Illinois CollegePrivate961515815074
Illinois Institute of TechnologyPrivate261038546307103019456
Illinois State UniversityPublic1714068742513722
Illinois Wesleyan UniversityPrivate200878606507003027134
Judson UniversityPrivate74734655506102620326
Knox CollegePrivate1392717822201
Lake Forest CollegePrivate1534625722738
Lewis UniversityPrivate361140566106402517332
Lincoln Christian UniversityPrivate57423675706102612910
Lincoln CollegePrivate803734403701916957
Loyola University ChicagoPrivate895252586506502928976
McKendree UniversityPrivate163733665205702515878
Millikin UniversityPrivate216145556005602618922
Monmouth CollegePrivate123044622214793
Moody Bible InstitutePrivate237748856106002713378
National Louis UniversityPrivate686225111965
North Central CollegePrivate256057602720737
North Park UniversityPrivate183438425905802519535
Northeastern Illinois UniversityPublic546413635855952113373
Northern Illinois UniversityPublic1449449565705802516568
Northwestern UniversityPrivate854286187607803427113
Olivet Nazarene UniversityPrivate269444792718243
Quincy UniversityPrivate110242915105202415258
Robert Morris University IllinoisPrivate3065692818157
Rockford UniversityPrivate86729405405302319849
Roosevelt UniversityPrivate277927766005832525011
Saint Augustine CollegePrivate12377958
Saint Xavier UniversityPrivate238233495505602516027
School of the Art Institute of ChicagoPrivate238734786306202742882
Southern Illinois University CarbondalePublic1238743515505702413399
Southern Illinois University EdwardsvillePublic964846825385752515562
Trinity Christian CollegePrivate107544826205402623456
Trinity International University-IllinoisPrivate78145915005602717075
University of ChicagoPrivate555986137807903429924
University of Illinois at ChicagoPublic153815364630640268697
University of Illinois at SpringfieldPublic194846565906502612781
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignPublic3111882636807903115610
University of St FrancisPrivate141134525205402514775
Western Illinois UniversityPublic916150632314133
Wheaton CollegePrivate243576697207003223640

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