District of Columbia

District of Columbia

District Of Columbia Colleges

The District Of Columbia

The nation’s capital is home to many colleges and universities, all packed into a very small area. At 68 square miles, the District packs in a very large population into a very small amount of space. Because the District’s colleges are primarily private, most of the students who attend school within the nation’s capital are primarily from out-of-state or international. The District of Columbia is unique, not only because it is not a state, but also because any prospective student who went to primary and secondary school in the District, and graduated from one of the high schools therein, is granted in-state tuition at any public four-year institution in the country. This leaves local students in a very unique position to gain entrance into many of the top-ranking colleges across the country, for a much lower price than other out-of-state students.

capitol building at night

As of 2015, there are only three public universities in the District: The University of the District of Columbia (including the David A. Clarke School of Law), the National Intelligence University, and the National Defense University. The National Intelligence and National Defense Universities are both run by the federal government, and only open to those serving in the armed forces. The University of the District of Columbia is open to all students, both local and out-of-state. Founded in 1851, UDC is one of the oldest colleges in the District. It hosts a student population of around 5,000 undergraduates and graduates.

Many of the best and most well-known private universities call the District of Columbia home. In all, there are fourteen accredited, not-for-profit four-year and graduate institutions in the District and three for-profit private universities. The for-profit universities include rather recognizable names (University of Phoenix and Strayer University) as well as one local institution (University of the Potomac). Among the not-for-profit colleges, prospective students will find some of very well-respected and highly recognized names: American University, Catholic University of America, Gallaudet University, George Washington University, Georgetown University and Howard University. There are also some lesser-known private institutions, including the Institute of World Politics, the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies, Trinity Washington University, Washington Theological Union, Wesley Theological Seminary and Graduate School USA. Two others, John Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, and St. Paul’s College, each reside in the District but do not have any known accreditation.

Prospective students will find the private schools in the District to have deep historical roots and significant placements in national and regional rankings. One of the best known and highest ranked in the District, Georgetown University is also one of the oldest institutions in the country. Founded in 1789, the university is ranked favorably by the U.S. News and World Report, at #21 among national universities. Several other universities in the District are also ranked nationally, including American University (ranked #72), George Washington University (ranked #57), Howard University (ranked #135) and The Catholic University of America (ranked #123). Howard University holds the unique distinction of being the highest ranked HBCU in the country. Gallaudet University (ranked at #19 among regional universities), is one of the few post-secondary schools in the country specifically devoted to the education of the deaf hard of hearing.

Those interested in attending schools in the District unfortunately have to pay higher-than-average tuition rates. This is due to the fact that most colleges in the District are private institutions, with tuition rates that dwarf even many other private institutions across the country. Fortunately, the post-graduation salaries for most of these institutions is well above the national

average, with Georgetown boasting an astounding post-graduation salary for its graduates at over $80,000 ten years out.

american university 2American University

  • Site –
  • Address – 4400 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016
  • Enrollment – 13,061
  • Tuition – $21,278
  • Phone – 202-885-6000
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logo catholic universityCatholic University

  • Site –
  • Address – 620 Michigan Ave NE, Washington, DC 20064
  • Enrollment – 6,699
  • Tuition – $40400
  • Phone – 202-319-5000
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Corcoran-College-of-Art-and-DesignCorcoran School of Art 888-CORCORAN

  • Site –
  • Address – 500 Seventeenth Street NW Washington, DC 20006
  • Enrollment – 350
  • Tuition – $16,283
  • Phone – 888-Corcoran
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gallaudet 2Gallaudet University 202-651-5000

  • Site –
  • Address – 800 Florida Ave NE, Washington, DC 20002
  • Enrollment – 1870
  • Tuition – $16,900 with room and board
  • Phone – 202-651-5000
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george washington 2George Washington University

  • Site –
  • Address – 2121 I St NW, Washington, DC 20052
  • Enrollment – 25,613
  • Tuition – $48,800
  • Phone – 800-447-3765
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georgetown district of columbiaGeorgetown University

  • Site –
  • Address – 3700 O St NW, Washington, DC 20057
  • Enrollment – 17,858
  • Tuition – $44,280
  • Phone – 202-687-3600
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HowardUniversityLogoHoward University

  • Site –
  • Address – 2400 Sixth St NW, Washington, DC 20059
  • Enrollment – 10,265
  • Tuition – $21,450
  • Phone – 202-806-6100
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trinity-washington-universityTrinity College

  • Site –
  • Address – 125 Michigan Ave NE, Washington, DC 20017
  • Enrollment – 2,100
  • Tuition – $33,136
  • Phone – 202-884-9000
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Vocational, Career, & Trade Schools

capitol building

Argosy University

Potomac College

Strayer University

The Sanz School

Online Degrees and Programs In DC

Most of the colleges and universities in Washington D.C. have online degree programs available for prospective students. Because the District only has one public university, prospective students can expect to pay much more in tuition and per-credit costs than in other places in the United States. However, the quality of the online education that can be obtained in these colleges is high, as most of the private institutions are well-ranked.

American University, one of the top-ranked schools in the nation, offers several online degree programs for those enrolled in its prestigious institution. Students interested in obtaining a Bachelor’s degree online will have to look elsewhere, however those interested in a Master’s degree may find what they are looking for here. American University offers nine Master’s degrees online, and one certificate. This includes some degree programs that can be found at most colleges that offer online degree programs, such as Business Administration, but is mostly composed of Master’s degree programs that are often not offered online, such as Economics, International Relations, International Service, Strategic Communication, and Analytics.

Unlike American University, the top-ranked George Washington University offers undergraduate and graduate programs through its online system, and includes several Doctoral degrees as well. Prospective students interested in earning an undergraduate degree online through the college will find the school offering an Engineering Bachelor’s degree (Professional Studies in Integrated Information, Science and Technology), Medicine and Health Sciences degrees (including two Associate’s degrees and five Bachelor’s degrees, including one in Medical Laboratory Science), a Nursing Bachelor’s and a Bachelor of Professional Studies in Police and Security Studies. The school also offers 31 graduate certificates across a wide range of fields and interests, 33 Master’s degrees in many varying fields of study and six Doctoral degrees (three in Engineering, and three in Nursing).

There are also several other, more well-known and national universities offering online degrees in the state, including Kaplan University and the University of Phoenix. These for-profit schools offer programs at a less expensive cost than most of the not-for-profit institutions, but may not offer some of the same benefits and name recognition that come with the more expensive private institutions. Still, most of the colleges and universities in the state do have some of the highest post-graduation salaries that can be found anywhere in the country, including the for-profit institutions. Graduation rates tend to trend lower at the for-profit institutions, but this can be attributed to the much higher acceptance rates typical of these schools.