Southwestern vs Trinity

Hi! I am a Psych major who is doing my undergrad college search right now. I have been accepted to Southwestern and Trinity and I’m having trouble between the 2. I have visited Southwestern and fell in love with the school and campus, but reading about trinitys rankings and such is making me question myself. I recently got accepted to trinity so that is why I’m now feeling this way. Any advice? Specifically looking at psychology and which school would be better

I think Trinity has a more prestigious reputation but (and) it is more conservative. Why don’t you email your AO and ask why Southwestern/Trinity is better? I like both schools as well!

Edited to add: Trinity has become a popular backup for UT and Rice for students that want to stay in-state.

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You sold me at I love the school and campus - if and only if you’ve also been to Trinity.

Both are fine. Neither is known nationwide. In fact, Trinity is 80% Texans.

What are you looking for after.

I would go after the school that is the best fit for you - and fit includes cost.

Good luck.

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Have you visited Trinity? Is it possible to do so? Visiting both campuses is ideal.

But the fact that you loved Southwestern says a lot, and it’s a great school. Best of luck to you!

I compared both Psych departments and Southwestern has a much better department. Professors looked much better and reading what students had to say about the professors at both schools it just looks like southwestern is better. And the cherry on top is that southwestern will accept all of my dual credits! While trinity will barely take any. Idk. Trinity just gives off a prestigious, better than everyone vibe that southwestern doesn’t. Southwestern seems more like a family! Thanks for the help!!


I would visit Trinity b4 writing it off and I don’t know what you plan to do (grad school or otherwise) but you should go to the best fit.

You’ve done a lot of things with Southwestern, putting in your mind it’s better. And it may be. And that’s fine.

But it sounds like you’ve yet to do the same with Trinity. I would look similarly under the hood.

Not to push you there - but so you give both a fair chance - at this point it seems like you’ve only given one a fair chance and made observations from afar about the other.

Good luck

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My daughter was accepted to both and attended Southwestern.
Both are great schools. Southwestern is smaller.

My D entered Southwestern with a bunch of AP/dual enrollment credit. She studied abroad twice-one summer and one semester, did a summer REU at Norte Dame U, and graduated in 3-1/2years. She completed an Econ major and her minor was only two courses short of a second major. She landed a dream job in her field of study when she graduated, and is currently working on a PhD. She also met some great friends there and Georgetown is a nice little town. She had a great experience at Southwestern.

Both schools are majority Texans but my daughter is not from Texas had friends from other states and at least one foreign country.


I’m not “homing” for Trinity - just that you really check both - because it seems like you checked one and not sure how deeply you checked it (or the other).

Things like psych are hard to grade - but department wise, there’s 12 profs - 10 regular and 2 visiting at Trinity. I put a link. They also have neuroscience.

Southwest has 6 profs and a part time.

I’d check the interests each has to see what lines up with you because there’s a lot of areas where psych can go. For example, two at Southwest show Human Sexuality and Sexual Motivation. Another looks at Human Mating and Physical Attractiveness. Another looks at Development Psych.

Trinity has a person who focuses on child psych, another who focuses on personality, and another that looks at cognitive causes of emotional disorders.

What is your interest and which school will match it? I would check the bios and course catalogs/major requirements through and through.

Good luck.

Psychology - B.S. | Trinity University

Our Faculty • Southwestern University


i’m a san antonio native who lives pretty close to trinity. i can’t really speak for the school itself because i don’t go there but i’m a big fan of the surrounding area. lots of cool places to shop and eat. of course the quality of your education should come first, and i wish you the best of luck!

My daughter was in the exact same position as you - deciding between these 2 schools for Psychology. She has decided on Trinity after multiple visits to each school and the surrounding area. Southwestern was the front runner until recently. They are both fantastic schools, but a big part of the decision was imagining her life outside the classroom/campus. Georgetown is a very small little town near the Southwestern campus, with a very Republican/Texas vibe. Going to the same few stores over 4 years might get boring, and Austin is realistically just too far for frequent visits. Southwestern also has a smaller campus and student body. The area around Trinity felt more modern/cosmopolitan. The Pearl area, 5 min drive south from campus, has a great selection of fantastic restaurants. The Quarry area, about 7 min drive North from campus, has everything a young adult needs - cinema, and a plethora of stores from Loft, Nordstrom rack, ulta beauty, starbucks , whole foods, and the list goes on. There are also many other bars, restaurants etc in the local area as well as the river walk.

Trinity is indeed about 80% Texan as someone mentioned, but Southwestern is closer to 90%. Also, Trinity will get more National recognition soon, as it has been reclassified as a National LAC. The new ranking will be revealed in US News Fall 2022, and the expectation is that it will attract more talent from OOS.

Good luck in your decision!


Is COA a consideration ?

If your dual credits will allow you to graduate a year early, then Southwestern should be given serious consideration.

P.S. Just read Fiske Guide To Colleges. Fiske ranks Southwestern academics a bit higher than academics at Trinity University. Psychology seems to be a top major at Southwestern. As for surrounding areas, Southwestern offers quaint small city of Georgetown with booming Austin, while Trinity has San Antonio.

One overlap school in common = Rhodes College (Memphis, Tenn).

I think Fiske is out of date re academics. The student profile at Trinity has much higher GPA and Test scores. Trinity has been making big strides in recent years as they head towards reclassification, and I fully expect them to come in way above Southwestern in rankings.

Trinity 2025 profile mid range 1340- 1480. GPA 3.6 - 4.0 admissions rate 34%

Southwestern- SAT mid range 1150-1320. Admissions rate 50%

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Student profile is just one part of the Fiske Guide academic rating.

Agree that Trinity students have higher numbers.

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My niece graduated from Southwestern and loved it. She’s from Austin and made frequent trips there. It’s right down I35.

Her professors were very supportive and the school aided her efforts to get a Fulbright scholarship. It was delayed due to COVID but she just completed it in Uruguay. She also studied in Chile her junior year and is living there now.

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Yes, it is more than student profile, which is why Trinity is ranked higher than Southwestern in Niche, THE/WSJ, Forbes and college simply, to name a few. They all believe the academics and other factors are higher:

THE/WSJ - #38 Trinity, #89 Southwestern,
Forbes - #110 Trinity, #364 Southwestern

I have spent the past year analysing these 2 schools, and visiting, and I still believe Fiske is out of date re academics.

These rankings, I believe are the reason why OP is questioning Southwestern. He is correct in that Southwestern feels like family. It has a very ‘homey’ feel. It is palpable when you walk on campus. However, there are other factors to consider - such as surrounding area, faculty , ranking, hence his question.

Another thing OP might want to consider, is that Trinity no longer offers a BA in Psychology. You may want to dig into the courses offered a little further, if you were leaning towards a BA vs BS.

I’m following this thread! My 11th grader is interested in Trinity, Southwestern and Austin College. We’ve already toured Austin College…LOVED the school and the class he sat in on, HATED Sherman lol. We’re touring Trinity in 4 days, and will set up a tour at Southwestern later this Spring.

He’s still undecided on Major is equally interested in Science/STEM as he is the Humanities. We’ve heard that Trinity & AC are better for STEM while Southwestern is stronger in the Humanities? I’m not sure how much that rings true.

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I hear you on Sherman! We visited last year, and also loved the school, the faculty and students, but it was a hard no on the town (if you can call it that!).

Enjoy your visits!

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I know nothing about these schools but second this thought. It was very helpful for my DD to go over course requirements and descriptions in her major at different schools. At least in her major, they varied a lot.

ETA my DD went to a school that took all her DE credits and it was so nice for her to be able to dive in to her major with few gen eds to do, and with the extra space in her schedule, she could do a double major/minor, or graduate early. She is graduating early!


OP, I’m very curious what criteria you used to decide that Southwestern has a “much better” department? To me, it seems much smaller and much more narrowly focused on a couple of research topics. It’s in the school of arts as opposed to school of sciences, without the ability to do a dual psych/neurology degree, which, depending on what you’re planning to do upon graduation (counseling vs. research/PhD/med school) could also be a negative.

And are you saying students like professors at Southwestern better because you looked at professor reviews for both schools on sites like RateMyProfessor? Because if that’s what you did, then surely you noticed that the Trinity professors have 20-40 student reviews on there, going back 15 years, while most of the Southwestern profs only have 5-9 reviews. With a smaller sample size, I’d be very cautious about drawing conclusions.

Not saying Southwestern isn’t a very good school - one of my daughter’s friends is going there, but she’s also a recruited athlete, which made her choice easier. For you, I think you owe it to yourself to visit Trinity, meet with the actual professors (we did a tour of the department, and came away impressed) and then make up your mind.

Think about it this way: imagine if, after graduation, you interview with a company and absolutely love them. They offer you a job and give you a few weeks to decide. Then, during that time, a more well-known/prestigious company calls you in for an interview. Would you not even go interview, because you loved your first company so much? Look at the new job’s website and say, “eh, they don’t look as good as the people I already met and liked”?


I agree with looking at course requirements and mapping out what 8 semesters (or however many semesters you think you would be at the university) would look like for you.

Dual credit/AP/advanced standing is great…which can be for diving in to your major early…or it could be to explore other subjects, either that you might consider as an alternative major or just exploring because it sounds interesting. When you’re freed up from requirements that leaves more time for exploring.