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10 Popular Universities in Florida
We compiled the following list of popular schools in Florida based on enrollment, affordability, acceptance rate, graduation rate, and overall reputation.
All school data below comes from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Tuition and fees are from 2022-2023, while acceptance rates, enrollment statistics, net prices, and number of applicants are from 2021.
1. University of Florida
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $6,381 (in-state) | $28,659 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 30%
- Total Student Enrollment: 55,781
A large public university in Gainesville, UF received 51,000 undergraduate applications in fall 2021 — and admitted just 30%. Popular majors include biology, business, mechanical engineering, psychology, political science, and nursing.
UF has an active student life and Greek system, with over 60 fraternities and sororities. Its Florida Gators football team competes in the NCAA Division I Southeastern Conference. Many fondly refer to the school's home stadium as "The Swamp."
2. University of Miami
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $57,194
- Acceptance Rate: 28%
- Total Student Enrollment: 19,096
Located in a suburb of Miami called Coral Gables, UM is a popular private research university. Though its tuition costs may be higher than those at other Florida colleges, UM promises to meet 100% of admitted students' demonstrated financial need.
Popular majors include finance, nursing, psychology, marketing, and economics. The university is also famous for its marine science program offered by the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
3. Florida State University
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $5,656 (in-state) | $18,786 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 37%
- Total Student Enrollment: 45,130
FSU is a public university based in Tallahassee, the capital of Florida. In 2021, a whopping 94% of first-time FSU undergraduates received grants or scholarships.
The university also actively works to involve undergraduates in high-level research coursework — 25% of FSU undergrads work on research outside of class and go on to co-author research publications.
FSU's criminal justice program and film school are particularly renowned. Other popular majors include biology, finance, marketing, psychology, and political science.
4. University of Central Florida
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $6,368 (in-state) | $22,467 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 36%
- Total Student Enrollment: 70,310
UCF is the state's largest university, with a student population of 70,310. Based in Orlando, the university has several smaller regional campuses scattered around central Florida.
UCF's proximity to Disney World is evident in its most popular majors: hospitality, digital arts, and media management. Other well-liked courses of study include psychology, nursing, criminal justice, engineering, health services, business, and biomedical sciences.
5. Florida International University
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $6,565 (in-state) | $18,963 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 64%
- Total Student Enrollment: 56,664
A public research university based in Miami, FIU is especially known for its hospitality program, environmental research, and sustainability efforts. One of the school's most impressive centers is its Medina Aquarius Program, an underwater research facility.
Popular majors at FIU include biology, psychology, finance, hospitality, criminal justice, and international business. The college boasts a diverse student body, with students hailing from over 140 countries.
6. University of South Florida
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $6,410 (in-state) | $17,324 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 49%
- Total Student Enrollment: 49,708
A lush and vibrant city on Florida's Gulf Coast, Tampa is home to USF, a large public research university. The institution has a student population of 49,708 and received just over 50,000 new student applications in fall 2021.
The most popular majors at USF are health services, psychology, biomedical sciences, biology, nursing, and criminology. In 2021, 98% of beginning undergraduates received a grant or scholarship.
7. Florida Atlantic University
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $4,879 (in-state) | $17,324 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 78%
- Total Student Enrollment: 30,155
FAU is a public university in Boca Raton, which sits right on the southeast coast of Florida and boasts many beautiful beaches and parks. FAU has several successful Division I teams, making it a great choice for college sports lovers.
The institution specializes in marine biology, technology, and ocean energy research. Some of the most popular majors at FAU are biology, business, nursing, criminal justice, general studies, psychology, and marketing.
8. Florida A&M University
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $5,785 (in-state) | $17,725 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 35%
- Total Student Enrollment: 9,000
A public historically Black university in Tallahassee, FAMU is relatively selective, with an acceptance rate of just 35%. The institution receives around 9,000 applications each fall — the same as its total student enrollment.
Despite its name, agricultural and mechanical disciplines don't dominate academics at FAMU. The most popular majors here are actually business, health services, criminal justice, psychology, journalism, and general studies.
9. Nova Southeastern University
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $36,300
- Acceptance Rate: 90%
- Total Student Enrollment: 20,898
A private university in Fort Lauderdale, NSU prides itself on its small class sizes, with a 17-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. In 2021, 100% of the institution's incoming undergraduates received a grant or scholarship.
NSU is renowned for its marine biology and medical programs. Popular majors include biology, nursing, psychology, business administration, and neuroscience.
10. Miami Dade College
- Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $2,838 (in-state) | $9,661 (out-of-state)
- Acceptance Rate: 100%
- Total Student Enrollment: 44,002
MDC's claim to fame is that it's the most diverse institution in the U.S., with over 167 countries and 63 languages represented. Located in Miami, the college offers low tuition rates to both in-state and out-of-state students. It also has an open admissions policy, admitting anyone who applies.
MDC only offers undergraduate degrees and certificates, the latter of which are especially popular. The most popular bachelor's degrees at MDC are business administration, information technology, nursing, law enforcement, and cinematography.
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List of All Colleges in Florida
We've compiled an exhaustive list of all four-year nonprofit schools in Florida. The table below contains information on total student enrollment, average net price, acceptance rate, and number of applicants.
|School||Total Student Enrollment||Avg. Annual Net Price||Acceptance Rate||Number of Applicants|
|Ana G. Mendez University||5,150||$10,876||100%||N/A|
|Ave Maria University||1,302||$18,643||64%||3,705|
|College of Central Florida||5,331||$9,396||100%||N/A|
|Daytona State College||11,613||$7,929||100%||N/A|
|Eastern Florida State College||12,677||$4,775||100%||N/A|
|Edward Waters University||2,871||$13,228||80%||6,254|
|Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach||9,593||$35,923||72%||9,255|
|Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide||12,720||$15,600||70%||1,278|
|Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University||9,000||$12,539||35%||8,717|
|Florida Atlantic University||30,155||$8,771||78%||25,148|
|Florida Gateway College||2,792||$2,803||100%||N/A|
|Florida Gulf Coast University||15,909||$9,840||89%||14,462|
|Florida Institute of Technology||7,830||$32,314||66%||10,650|
|Florida Institute of Technology-Online||1,461||$24,297||100%||147|
|Florida International University||56,664||$9,398||64%||16,406|
|Florida Memorial University||1,028||$17,486||57%||3,501|
|Florida Polytechnic University||1,563||$9,376||55%||2,124|
|Florida Southern College||3,386||$25,783||61%||10,759|
|Florida SouthWestern State College||14,756||$8,254||100%||N/A|
|Florida State College at Jacksonville||20,717||$3,062||100%||N/A|
|Florida State University||45,130||$12,684||37%||65,235|
|Gulf Coast State College||4,377||$4,163||100%||N/A|
|Indian River State College||14,461||$3,902||100%||N/A|
|Keiser University-Ft. Lauderdale||19,861||$31,984||96%||4,120|
|Lake-Sumter State College||4,342||$5,457||100%||N/A|
|Miami Dade College||44,002||$4,211||100%||N/A|
|New College of Florida||659||$9,727||74%||1,650|
|North Florida College||1,182||$3,910||100%||N/A|
|Northwest Florida State College||4,697||$5,992||100%||N/A|
|Nova Southeastern University||20,898||$26,530||93%||11,749|
|Palm Beach Atlantic University||3,687||$27,881||90%||1,923|
|Palm Beach State College||24,151||$9,277||100%||N/A|
|Pasco-Hernando State College||9,257||$5,305||100%||N/A|
|Pensacola State College||8,604||$3,464||100%||N/A|
|Polk State College||9,044||$8,227||100%||N/A|
|Ringling College of Art and Design||1,663||$51,318||69%||2,117|
|Saint Johns River State College||6,318||$6,250||100%||N/A|
|Saint Leo University||9,523||$18,336||71%||10,086|
|Santa Fe College||12,830||$11,341||100%||N/A|
|Seminole State College of Florida||15,315||$3,481||100%||N/A|
|South Florida State College||2,777||$3,958||100%||N/A|
|St Petersburg College||24,543||$2,477||100%||N/A|
|St. Thomas University||5,921||$28,550||71%||6,737|
|State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota||8,424||$12,485||100%||N/A|
|The Baptist College of Florida||446||$9,256||100%||36|
|The College of the Florida Keys||865||$16,338||100%||N/A|
|The University of Tampa||10,794||$34,720||54%||32,904|
|The University of West Florida||13,288||$10,344||53%||8,660|
|Trinity Baptist College||365||$17,098||43%||279|
|Trinity College of Florida||204||$14,857||47%||137|
|University of Central Florida||70,310||$11,575||36%||48,929|
|University of Florida||55,781||$9,809||30%||51,207|
|University of Florida-Online||5,168||$9,024||66%||1,766|
|University of Miami||19,096||$34,492||28%||42,245|
|University of North Florida||16,594||$7,746||77%||16,004|
|University of South Florida||49,708||$11,419||49%||50,352|
|Webber International University||812||$26,710||46%||1,795|
Frequently Asked Questions About Colleges in Florida
What is the No. 1 college in Florida?
The University of Florida is one of the most popular colleges in Florida, with a stellar reputation. The institution has a total student population of 55,781 and received a staggering 51,207 applications in fall 2021.
Ultimately, though, the best college in Florida for you will depend on your budget, interests, and goals. Some students might prefer large public universities with Division I sports teams, while others might prefer small liberal arts colleges. When looking at schools in Florida, consider your preferences for factors like size, location, cost, academics, and community.
What is the hardest college to get into in Florida?
The University of Miami is the most selective college in Florida, with a 28% acceptance rate in fall 2021, according to NCES data. That year, the school received 42,245 new student applications — double its total student population of 19,096.
Do I qualify for in-state tuition in Florida?
You (or your parents or guardians) must be a resident in Florida for at least 12 consecutive months to qualify for in-state tuition. Though Florida residents may qualify for in-state tuition in some border states, those exceptions aren't as common for out-of-state students attending colleges in Florida.
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