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Which Colleges/Uni's are the Most Conservative/Liberal ?

limnathlimnath Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member

For the sake of parents and friends who want to know, I'd like to ask the knowledgable people in this forum as to their opinion of what colleges in this country are most culturally liberal and most culturally conservative.

To help you in your list, I'd like to give some idea behind the words -- liberal and conservative.

These presentation are not exhaustive but will give you an idea of what I ahve in mind....

Colleges that are liberal have the majority of faculties and students who tend to favor the following view(s) :

* Government should correct economic deficiencies caused by an unregulated free market economy

* Public education could be improved by sepnding more money on failing districts and schools.

* If you do drugs, it's your business.

* Abortion should be completely legal and available.

* Government should strictly regulate the use and ownership of guns. Owning guns is dangerous and sketchy. Stricter control of the sale of guns will curb violent crime most.

* Social Security is a safety net and can be fixed by making the rich pay more.

* Taxes are something the rich should pay more of. They can afford it.

* Homosexuality is who you are and the lifestyle should be celebrated rather than looked on as an aberration. Gay Marriage should be legal.

* Tend to favor affirmative action for targeted minorities.

* Tend to believe that government should enforce strict environmental regulations regardless of its effect on business.

* It's more important for our government to help the poor and helpless.

* Everyone has a right to health care, even if they can't afford it.

* Military action that defies international consensus such as the United Nations is not justified.

* The death penalty is a violation of human rights.

* Leaders of countries have the right to be heard in a college forum, even when they support terrorists or are genocidal.

* Generally tend to trust government's ability to solve problems. Which means the federal government should do more to solve the nation's problems even if it means higher taxes.

* See FDR as the better 20th century president than Ronald Reagan.

* Are more disturbed by the opinions of those of the Rev. Pat Robertson than (former) Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders then

* Prefer Justices like Ruth Baden Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer over Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.

* The religious right is a threat to our political system.

* As a society, we should spend more money trying to find a cure for AIDS than for cancer and heart disease because AIDS threatens younger people.

* Gender integrated living in college should be encouraged.

* Right and wrong are a matter of personal opinion. One man's meat is another man's poison. All cultures have their own innate superiority and no one culture is superior over others.

Colleges that are culturally conservative tend to have faculty and students who believe that :

* Individual freedoms and property rights are representative of attendant moral, religious, political, and civil rights.

* In accordance with the Constitution, the federal government is limited to acting in those areas wherein the states themselves do not have that ability, in inter-state matters and in foreign relations.

* There is great importance placed on separation of powers, judicial review, and states' rights as opposed to federal power.

* Gay marriage should not be legal. Marriage is between a man and a woman.
* Public education could be improved by having a voucher system or keeping the Federal government out of education.

* If you do drugs, you should be punished.

* Affirmative Action is unfair, outdated, and hurts those with the most merit.

* Owning a gun is taking responsibility for one's own defense and should have minimal restriction.

* Social Security is simply a transfer payment that should be replaced by personal accounts.

* Taxes shuld be cut to stimulate the economy and give people more of their money back.

* It's more important for the government to reduce the national debt, deficit and cut spending.

* Health Insurance is an individual choice. Some people prefer not to have it.
* Abortion should be Restricted, discouraged, or illegal.

* Military action that defies international law ( e.g, the United Nations ) is sometimes justified.

* The death penalty is appropriate in select cases.

* Leaders of countries that support terrorists or are genocidal should NOT be given a public forum on campus.

* Generally tend to distrust government's ability to solve problems. Which means the federal government should not do more than it is constitutionally mandated.

* See Ronald Reagan as the better 20th century president than FDR.

* Are more disturbed by the opinions of those of (former) Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders then the Rev. Pat Robertson

* Prefer Justices like Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas over Ruth Baden Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer.

* The religious right is NOT a threat to our political system and their input should be encouraged.

* As a society, we should spend more money trying to find a cure for cancer and heart disease than AIDS because AIDS can be prevented by a change in lifestyle.

* We should have gender segregated dorms in college.

* Right and wrong are revealed truths, handed down by God. Not all cultures are equally good or superior. We should learn and emphasize the values that made western culture what it is today.

Needless to say, I understand that there are many who stand in the middle, but I believe that there are colleges that CONSISTENTLY have a campus culture that favor one over the other.

Can you help us identify which is which ?
Post edited by limnath on

Replies to: Which Colleges/Uni's are the Most Conservative/Liberal ?

  • AlexandreAlexandre Super Moderator Posts: 24,187 Super Moderator
    Most top universities lean to the left. Of the top 50 universities, I can only think of 4 or 5 that would be slightly right of center and not a single one of them would qualify as "conservative". Here's how I would break down the top 50 universities by political leaning:

    Brandeis University
    Brown University
    Carnegie Mellon University
    Columbia University
    Cornell University
    Harvard University
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    New York University
    Stanford University
    University of California-Berkeley
    University of California-Davis
    University of California-Irvine
    University of California-Los Angeles
    University of California-San Diego
    University of California-Santa Barbara
    University of Chicago
    University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
    University of Pennsylvania
    University of Texas-Austin
    University of Washington
    University of Wisconsin-Madison
    Washington University-St Louis
    Yale University

    College of William and Mary
    Dartmouth College
    Duke University
    Johns Hopkins University
    Northwestern University
    Pennsylvania State University
    Princeton University
    Rice University
    Tufts University
    Tulane University
    University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
    University of Southern California

    Boston College
    Georgetown University
    Georgia Institute of Technology
    Lehigh University
    University of Notre Dame
    University of Virginia
  • JoejitsuJoejitsu Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    If you want to look at the most politically liberal list, here are the top 10 from Microsoft Encarta :

    Top 10 Most Politically Liberal Colleges - MSN Encarta

    Students at these ten schools wear their mantles of liberalism with pride. According to the Princeton Review' s annual survey of college students, students at these schools can never veer too far left of mainstream.
  • JoejitsuJoejitsu Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    Now here's Microsoft Encarta's Top 10 most politically conservative colleges...

    See here :

    Top 10 Most Politically Conservative Colleges - MSN Encarta

    Students at these schools responded with the top ten strongest right-of-center attitudes.
  • TheWatcherTheWatcher Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    From Alexandre's list above, it seems that the Liberal Colleges Outnumber the Conservative ones by a huge number. I will also concur that this observation is correct.

    Even the following article from the Washington Post agrees with my observation :

    College Faculties A Most Liberal Lot, Study Finds (washingtonpost.com)


    College faculties, long assumed to be a liberal bastion, lean further to the left than even the most conspiratorial conservatives might have imagined, a new study says.

    By their own description, 72 percent of those teaching at American universities and colleges are liberal and 15 percent are conservative, says the study being published this week. The imbalance is almost as striking in partisan terms, with 50 percent of the faculty members surveyed identifying themselves as Democrats and 11 percent as Republicans.

    The disparity is even more pronounced at the most elite schools, where, according to the study, 87 percent of faculty are liberal and 13 percent are conservative.

    "What's most striking is how few conservatives there are in any field," said Robert Lichter, a professor at George Mason University and a co-author of the study. "There was no field we studied in which there were more conservatives than liberals or more Republicans than Democrats. It's a very homogenous environment, not just in the places you'd expect to be dominated by liberals."

    Religious services take a back seat for many faculty members, with 51 percent saying they rarely or never attend church or synagogue and 31 percent calling themselves regular churchgoers. On the gender front, 72 percent of the full-time faculty are male and 28 percent female.

    The findings, by Lichter and fellow political science professors Stanley Rothman of Smith College and Neil Nevitte of the University of Toronto, are based on a survey of 1,643 full-time faculty at 183 four-year schools. The researchers relied on 1999 data from the North American Academic Study Survey, the most recent comprehensive data available.
  • Muffy333Muffy333 Registered User Posts: 2,108 Senior Member
    A lot of "liberal" colleges do not want to attract only liberal students; they want diverse students. So they actually keep their student body, by choice, less "liberal" than it would be if only students of a certain mindset were admitted. It isn't any fun to rally for causes if no one is against you!!!
  • limnathlimnath Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member

    A lot of "liberal" colleges do not want to attract only liberal students; they want diverse students. So they actually keep their student body, by choice, less "liberal" than it would be...

    Does this mean all other things being equal, you stand a better chance of being accepted in your application to these liberal colleges if you can show that you are a conservative ? Is there any proof of that in practice ?
  • Muffy333Muffy333 Registered User Posts: 2,108 Senior Member
    Above, I'm just spouting my own perceptions so don't have numbers. But I don't think you can be a true liberal if you only want to interact with other liberals.
  • JoejitsuJoejitsu Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    MOST CONSERVATIVE and LIBERAL colleges ( the list look pretty consistent with those of Princeton Review's and Encarta ) :



    The top 10 conservative colleges in alphabetical order are:

    1. Christendom College in Front Royal, Va.
    2. College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout; Mo.
    3. Franciscan University of Steubenville in Steubenville, Ohio
    4. Grove City College in Grove City, Pa.
    5. Harding University in Searcy, Ark.
    6. Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Mich.
    7. Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion, Ind.
    8. Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.
    9. St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa.
    10. Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, Calif.

    The colleges listed include traditional Catholic campuses, a robust Christian school, and an evangelical Christian university.

    Young America's Foundation insists that it is not a college rating organization. The top 10 list was produced in response to a frequently asked question of which colleges the organization recommends to those seeking conservative colleges.

    Other schools the conservative organization recommends that are not liberal arts colleges include military colleges such as West Point and Annapolis.

    Just prior to the release of the most conservative colleges, Young America's Foundation listed "The Dirty Dozen" - the most bizarre, politically correct college courses in the nation, or what the Foundation called "troubling instances of leftist activism."

    Based on research on scores of courses from hundreds of the nation's leading schools, "The Dirty Dozen" are:

    1. Occidental College - The Phallus
    2. University of California-Los Angeles - Queer Musicology
    3. Amherst College in Massachusetts - Taking Marx Seriously: “Should Marx be given another chance?”
    4. University of Pennsylvania - Adultery Novel
    5. Occidental College - Blackness
    6. University of Washington - Border Crossings, Borderlands: Transnational Feminist Perspectives on Immigration
    7. Mount Holyoke College - Whiteness: The Other Side of Racism
    8. University of Michigan - Native American Feminisms
    9. Johns Hopkins University - Mail Order Brides: Understanding the Philippines in Southeast Asian Context
    10. Cornell University - Cyberfeminism
    11. Duke University - American Dreams/American Realities
    12. Swarthmore College - Nonviolent Responses to Terrorism

    Other courses that could have easily made the list ("Dishonorable Mentions”) include UC-Berkeley's Sex Change City: Theorizing History in Genderqueer San Francisco; Cornell University's Sex, Rugs, Salt, & Coal; Hollins University's Drag: Theories of Transgenderism and Performance; and Hollins University's Lesbian Pulp Fiction.

    I hasten to add that there is a problem with the above list as it applies to the most liberal colleges.... They are simply highlighting ONE COURSE among the hundreds being offered on campus. You don't and cannot judge the entire campus culture based on the ideas of a few professors and their bizzare courses. So thake their "liberal" list above with caution.
  • JoejitsuJoejitsu Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member

    But I don't think you can be a true liberal if you only want to interact with other liberals.

    I don't think this is a trait that's characteristic of liberals either. A lot of conservatives I know don't just want to dialogue with people who share their beliefs.
  • lolabellelolabelle Registered User Posts: 2,293 Senior Member
    Tufts is definitely not just "left of center" -- it's liberal. Trust me: GOPers and libertarians feel overwhelmed by the majority liberals there!
  • NewEngSocSciManNewEngSocSciMan Registered User Posts: 790 Member
    Very, very, very liberal: Hampshire and Swarthmore
  • Fanatic517Fanatic517 Registered User Posts: 268 Junior Member
    I'm rather ashamed that Oberlin is not on any of those lists.
  • NewEngSocSciManNewEngSocSciMan Registered User Posts: 790 Member
    Good point: Oberlin, Hampshire, Swarthmore, then.

    And I would probably include Bard, Reed, Marlboro, Eugene Lang (i.e. The New School), too.
  • TheWatcherTheWatcher Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    Based on the Ops' list, these colleges are bound to be liberal because the GAY LIFESTYLE is widely accepted and celebrated ( according to Princeton Review ). See here :


    School Name Save Apply Request Info
    1 Macalester College

    2 New College of Florida

    3 New York University

    4 Simon's Rock College of Bard

    5 College of the Atlantic

    6 Stanford University

    7 Wellesley College ( Hello Hillary Clinton --- This is her alma mater )

    8 Mount Holyoke College

    9 Bennington College

    10 Emerson College

    11 Sarah Lawrence College

    12 Bryn Mawr College

    13 Eugene Lang College--The New School for Liberal Arts

    14 Beloit College

    15 Hampshire College

    16 Harvey Mudd College

    17 Lawrence University

    18 Grinnell College

    19 Swarthmore College

    20 Cornell College ( Note -- this is the college, not the Ivy League University ).
  • TheWatcherTheWatcher Registered User Posts: 59 Junior Member
    The following schools are listed by Princeton Review as NOT considering alternative lifestyles and alternative... which, based on the OP's criteria, implies cultural conservatism.

    SEE HERE :

    1 Hampden-Sydney College

    2 Baylor University

    3 Wheaton College (IL)

    4 University of Notre Dame

    5 University of Tennessee--Knoxville

    6 Grove City College

    7 Trinity College (CT)

    8 Samford University

    9 Washington and Lee University

    10 Seton Hall University

    11 Brigham Young University (UT)

    12 Pepperdine University

    13 Valparaiso University

    14 Hanover College

    15 Texas A&M University-College Station

    16 University of Utah

    17 William Jewell College

    18 Calvin College

    19 Miami University

    20 Purdue University--West Lafayette
This discussion has been closed.