Last Updated on 11th July 2024

Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California | Rankings, Acceptance Rate and Tuition Fees

Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California

Best Liberal Arts Colleges in CaliforniaUS News RankingForbes RankingAcceptance RateTuition Fees
Pomona College51210%49,500 USD
Claremont McKenna College
72910%50,945 USD
Harvey Mudd College
232313%52,666 USD
Scripps College, Claremont336030%50,982 USD
Occidental College
3910249%51,070 USD
Pitzer College355414%50,430 USD
Thomas Aquinas College357575%26,000 USD
Westmont College10823683%45,304 USD
Whittier College
12734470%45,000 USD
American Jewish University
60%30,338 USD

Read: Best Liberal Arts Colleges 2020 | Top Liberal Arts Colleges Rankings in USA

California’s Top 10 Liberal Arts Colleges

Pomona College

Located in Claremont, California, Pomona College is a prestigious private liberal arts college established in 1887. Ranked in Tier 1 by U.S. News, it enrolls approximately 1,532 students. Tuition and fees total $37,017, with competitive SAT score ranges of 670-770 for Reading and Writing, and 670-770 for Math. Pomona College excels in majors such as Social Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, Computer Science, and Physical Sciences.

After financial aid, Pomona College’s average cost is $18,000. The college boasts a high graduation rate of 94% and a selective acceptance rate of 7%. Known for its rigorous academics and vibrant campus community, Pomona College continues to uphold its reputation as a top choice for students pursuing a liberal arts education.

For more information about Pomona College’s programs, admissions, and financial aid opportunities, visit their official website.

333 N College Way, Claremont, CA 91711, United States
Phone: +1 909-621-8000

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Claremont McKenna College

It is a private liberal arts college in Claremont, California and founded as a men’s college in 1946. Its Acceptance rate is 9%. Ranked of the college is 11 Tier 1 by U.S. News. Total enrollment is about 1400 and its tuition and fees is about 51000 USD. Claremont McKenna College is best known for its most popular majors in the field of liberal arts study like Econometrics and Quantitative Economics; Political Science and Government; Psychology; International Relations and Affairs; and Accounting.

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Claremont McKenna College average cost after financial aid is $22K, Graduation rate is 93% and Acceptance rate is 11%
Claremont McKenna College Address:
Address: 888 N Columbia Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, United States
Phone: +1 909-621-8000, Website:

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Harvey Mudd College: Leading Science and Engineering Institution

Harvey Mudd College, established in 1955, is a distinguished private residential undergraduate college specializing in science and engineering. Located in Claremont, California, it is renowned for its rigorous academic programs and commitment to STEM education. With a low student-to-faculty ratio of 8:1, Harvey Mudd provides personalized attention and a collaborative learning environment.

Ranked #23 among National Liberal Arts Colleges (tie), Harvey Mudd College boasts a total enrollment of 893 students. The total tuition and fees amount to $58,359 USD, reflecting its investment in high-quality education and resources. The college’s strong emphasis on science, engineering, and mathematics disciplines attracts students passionate about these fields from across the globe.

Harvey Mudd College prepares graduates for successful careers and advanced studies through its comprehensive curriculum and hands-on research opportunities. The institution’s commitment to innovation and academic excellence continues to solidify its reputation as a top choice for students pursuing STEM disciplines.

For more information about admissions, programs, and life at Harvey Mudd College, visit their official website.

Address: Harvey Mudd College, 301 Platt Blvd, Claremont, CA 91711, USA

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Scripps College: Leading Women’s Liberal Arts Institution

Located in Claremont, California, Scripps College is a top-ranked private residential women’s liberal arts college, founded in 1926. With a student-to-faculty ratio of 10:1, Scripps provides a personalized and supportive academic environment. The college enrolls 1,048 undergraduate students and hosts 19 post-baccalaureate students, fostering a close-knit community dedicated to academic excellence and personal growth.

Scripps College is consistently ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the United States, securing a Tier 1 position at #25 according to U.S. News. Its commitment to empowering women through education and leadership development is reflected in its rigorous curriculum and vibrant campus life.

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Address: 1030 N Columbia Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, United States

For more information about admissions, programs, and campus life at Scripps College, visit their official website.

Occidental College (Oxy): A Premier Liberal Arts Institution in Los Angeles

Occidental College, commonly known as Oxy, is a prestigious private liberal arts college located in Los Angeles, California. Founded in 1887, Occidental College has a rich history of academic excellence and a commitment to providing a well-rounded liberal arts education.

With a student-to-faculty ratio of 9:1, Occidental College emphasizes personalized learning and close interactions between students and faculty. The college enrolls approximately 2,055 students, maintaining a vibrant and inclusive community.

Occidental College boasts a high freshman retention rate of 91%, reflecting its supportive environment and strong student engagement. The college offers a diverse range of popular majors including Economics, Diplomacy and World Affairs, Mathematics, Biology, Sociology, Psychology, Urban and Environmental Policy, among others.

Address: 1600 Campus Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90041, United States

Pitzer College: A Distinguished Liberal Arts Institution in Claremont

Located 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles in Claremont, California, Pitzer College is a renowned private residential liberal arts college. Established in 1963, Pitzer College has built a reputation for its commitment to social justice, environmental sustainability, and interdisciplinary education.

Total Enrollment: 1,062 students
Student-Faculty Ratio: 11:1
Popular Majors:

  • Psychology
  • Environmental Analysis
  • Economics
  • Sociology
  • Media Studies
  • Self-designed degrees

Pitzer College emphasizes a personalized learning environment with a low student-to-faculty ratio, fostering close relationships between students and faculty. The college encourages interdisciplinary studies, allowing students to explore diverse academic interests and tailor their educational experiences through self-designed degrees.
Programs and Ranking

Pitzer College offers a diverse range of academic programs across various disciplines, with a strong focus on social sciences, environmental studies, and media studies. The college is known for its innovative approach to education and its commitment to community engagement and global citizenship.

Address and Website
Address: 1050 N Mills Ave, Claremont, CA 91711, United States

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Thomas Aquinas College, Santa Paula

Thomas Aquinas College is a liberal arts college in Ventura County, California. It was founded in 1971 and the college has 439 students. Generally, the college has been provided Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts degrees. Thomas Aquinas College ranked 800th US Rankings 2018 by times higher education. Address: 10000 Ojai Rd, Santa Paula, CA 93060, United States

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Westmont College, Santa Barbara

Westmont College is a liberal arts college in Montecito near Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara County, California. It was established on October 29, 1937 and its graduation rate is 78%. Business, Management, Marketing; Recreation, Leisure, and Fitness Studies; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Communication and Journalism; and English Language and Literature are the popular majors of Westmont College. Address: 955 La Paz Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93108, United States

Whittier College, Whittier

Whittier College is a private liberal arts college in Whittier, California, United States and Whittier has 1,700 undergraduate and graduate students. It was founded in 1887. The student-faculty ratio is 12 to 1 and its graduation rate is 65%. Address: 13406 E, Philadelphia St, Whittier, CA 90602, United States

American Jewish University, Bel Air

American Jewish University (AJU) is a Jewish institution in Los Angeles, California and it was founded in 1947. Address: 15600 Mulholland Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90077, United States

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Best Small Colleges in California for Liberal Arts

  • Allan Hancock College
    800 South College Drive, Santa Maria, California 93454 USA
  • California State University-Northridge
    18111 Nordhoff St, Northridge, California 91330 USA
  • Pepperdine University
    24255 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, California 90263 USA
  • Pasadena City College
    1570 E Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, California 91106 USA
  • Scripps College
    1030 North Columbia Avenue, Claremont, California 91711 USA
  • Cypress College
    9200 Valley View, Cypress, California 90630 USA
  • Soka University of America
    1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo, California 92656 USA
  • Los Angeles Valley College
    5800 Fulton Avenue, Valley Glen, California 91401 USA
  • Antelope Valley College
    3041 West Ave K, Lancaster, California 93536 USA
  • College of the Desert
    43-600 Monterey Ave, Palm Desert, California 92260 USA
  • San Bernardino Valley College
    701 South Mount Vernon Avenue, San Bernardino, California 92410 USA
  • Los Angeles City College
    855 N Vermont Ave, Los Angeles, California 90029 USA
  • Southwestern College
    900 Otay Lakes Rd, Chula Vista, California 91910 USA
  • Community Christian College
    1174 Nevada St Suite 200, Redlands, CA 92374, United States
  • Porterville College
    100 E College Ave, Porterville, CA 93257, United States
  • College of the Canyons
    26455 Rockwell Canyon Rd, Santa Clarita, CA 91355, United States

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Best Private Liberal Arts Colleges in California, USA

  1. Pomona College
  2. Claremont McKenna College
  3. Harvey Mudd College
  4. Occidental College
  5. Pitzer College

Liberal Arts Colleges in Northern California

Westmont College
Address: 955 La Paz Rd, Santa Barbara, CA, United States
Ph: +1 805-565-6000

Thomas Aquinas College
Address: 10000 Ojai Rd, Santa Paula, CA, United States
Ph: +1 805-525-4417