Princeton Review gives top rankings to Elon’s study abroad and theater programs

For the ninth year in a row, Elon is ranked among the nation's 376 top colleges and universities by The Princeton Review. The 2012 college guide, released Aug. 1, also ranks Elon’s study abroad program as #4 in the nation, and Elon’s theater program as #15.

Only about 15 percent of America’s 2,500 four-year colleges and three colleges outside the U.S.A. are profiled in the book, which is The Princeton Review’s flagship college guide. It includes detailed profiles of the colleges with rating scores for all schools in eight categories, plus ranking lists of top 20 schools in 62 categories based on The Princeton Review’s surveys of 122,000 students attending the colleges.

The 80-question survey asks students to rate their own schools on several topics and report on their campus experiences at them. Topics range from assessments of their professors to opinions about their financial aid and campus food. In addition to the rankings for study abroad and theater, Elon is listed on the “school runs like butter” and the “financial aid not so great” lists.

In its “Inside Word” section, Princeton Review says the following: “Elon has worked hard to elevate its national profile, and admissions standards have risen with the school’s reputation. Today, Elon has more than enough solid performers to fill its incoming class with accomplished, capable students; there are no seats left over for slackers.”

Elon students responded to a Princeton Review survey during the 2010-11 academic year, describing their views of the university’s academic programs and campus life. They gave high marks to Elon’s computer facilities, the administration of the university and the low cost of living.

Their compiled comments included the following statements, as published in Elon’s Princeton Review profile:

You will work your butt off in the classroom,” students assure us, “but that is not where your day ends—you get involved outside the classroom and gain more knowledge” through “extensive undergraduate research, service learning, study abroad, and internship opportunities.

…students are most vocal about the “amazing study abroad program,” through which Elon seeks to transform a student into a “world citizen rather than just another American with a college degree. Elon also boasts “one of the very best performing arts schools with a liberal arts education,” including “a great dance department.”

The class sizes are small, and professors take an interest in student achievement both inside and outside of academics.” “The class size and teacher/student ratio, I’m convinced, are the main reasons I am succeeding at this school,” one student believes.

Elon is one of 10 North Carolina colleges and universities included in the Princeton Review’s “Best 376 Colleges” guide. Other North Carolina schools include Duke University, Wake Forest University, Davidson College, Guilford College, Warren Wilson College, UNC-Chapel Hill, North Carolina State University, UNC-Asheville and UNC-Greensboro.

“The Best 376 Colleges” is the 20th edition of The Princeton Review’s annual “best colleges” book. It is one of about 150 Princeton Review books published by Random House in a line that also includes test-prep guides for the ACT, SAT, SAT Subject Tests, and AP exams, plus “The Complete Book of Colleges,” and “Paying for College Without Going Broke.” The Princeton Review is headquartered in Framingham, Mass. and has editorial offices in New York City and test preparation locations across the country and abroad. The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University and it is not a magazine.