BYU lands in top 20 on best colleges list; University of Utah in top 50

Sep 18, 2023, 5:14 PM

road, BYU sign and athletic field...

Brigham Young University in Provo on Wednesday Sept 21, 2022. (Jeffrey D. Allred / KSL)

(Jeffrey D. Allred / KSL)

SALT LAKE CITY — The Wall Street Journal included BYU at number 20 and the University of Utah at 43 in its rankings of the best colleges in the U.S.

Brigham Young University had an overall score of 83.4, scoring well in several sub categories under more broad categories of student outcomes, survey results, diversity and cost and returns. The news outlet that ranks colleges based on financial value, scored the Provo-based University best in salary impact compared to similar colleges where it scored a 95.


Its lowest score was diversity, where it notched a 33. BYU also scored well in its graduation rate compared to similar colleges with an 82, both of the highs in the category of student outcomes, that counts as 70% of the total score.

Princeton University was the top school with a 91.6 score, followed by MIT (90.4), Yale (90.3), Stanford (90.1) and Columbia (89.7) in the top five. Private schools dominated the top of the list with the University of Florida getting the highest public school marks, ranked 15, one of only two public schools in the top 20.

The University of Utah’s lowest score was also diversity with a 47 while also scoring high in salary impact (88) and graduation rates (82) compared to similar colleges. The schools were similar with years to pay off net price with 1 year and 5 months for Utah, and 1 year and 2 months for BYU.

The University of Utah stadium is captured at the south most side of campus. (KSL TV)

Weber State University landed at 267, Utah Valley University and 278 and Utah State University at 293.

U.S. News and World Report also lists the best colleges for 2024, but with different results. It also listed Princeton in the top spot, followed by MIT, Harvard, Stanford and Yale. It ranked BYU and U of U tied at 115. USU was 269.

To read the methodology click here and scroll down.
To read the U.S News methodology click here.

Rounding out WSJ’s top 20 schools are:

  • 6. Harvard University
  • 7. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 8. Amherst College
  • 9. Claremont McKenna College
  • 10. Babson College
  • 11. Swarthmore College
  • 12. Georgtown University
  • 13. Vanderbilt University
  • 14. Lehigh University
  • 15. University of Florida
  • 16. Duke University
  • 17. Rose-Hulman Institude of Technology
  • 18. California Institute of Technology
  • 19. New Jersey Institute of Technology
  • 20. BYU

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BYU lands in top 20 on best colleges list; University of Utah in top 50