University News

WIU: U.S.News Best Midwestern University

September 12, 2017

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL -- For the 13th consecutive year, Western Illinois University has been recognized as a "Best Midwestern University" by U.S.News and World Report.

In the U.S.News and World Report 2018 rankings, of the 37 Midwestern public universities in the top tier, Western is 10th in the Midwestern rankings. Western is also listed 61st of 122 public and private colleges and universities on the top Midwestern list of "Best Regional Universities." Western is one of four Illinois public universities appearing in the top 100.

"The fabric of our University is ultimately our people. Because of outstanding faculty, staff and students, Western Illinois University continues to achieve recognition from U.S.News & World Report, The Princeton Review, and others. We are continually recognized for our noteworthy programs, resources and faculty, staff and student accomplishments," said President Jack Thomas.

The institutions appearing on the "Best Regional Universities" list provide a full range of undergraduate majors and master's programs, but offer few, if any, doctoral programs. The rankings are based on several measures: undergraduate academic reputation (22.5%), graduation and retention rates (22.5%), faculty resources (20%), student selectivity (12.5%), financial resources (10%), graduation rate performance (7.5%) and alumni giving (5%).

Along with the "Best Midwestern" ranking, Western is also recognized as a "Best College for Veterans" (Midwest). WIU ranks 36th out of 54 Midwestern colleges and universities, and is one of two Illinois public universities in the rankings. WIU is among 77 Midwestern colleges and universities listed as a "Best Value School."

Western was recognized in the U.S.News rankings for graduation rates (six-year), freshmen retention rates, undergraduate business programs, undergraduate engineering programs (no doctorate), least debt (class of 2015), highest proportion of classes under 20 students, most international students, economic diversity and campus ethnic diversity.

In August, for the 14th consecutive year, WIU was named a "Best Midwestern College" by The Princeton Review, and as a "Best Bang for the Buck" Midwestern school and as one of the top master's degree granting institutions in the nation by Washington Monthly.

Western Illinois University provides a variety of outstanding undergraduate and graduate degree programs, including 12 renowned signature academic programs in high demand fields such as accountancy, nursing, engineering, agriculture, law enforcement and more, select doctoral programs and a distinguished Honors College.

For more information on academic programs at, visit

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