What Are The 12 Ivy League Schools and Their Ranking?

What are the 12 Ivy League Schools? If you have been looking for a comprehensive list of Ivy League Schools, then this article will provide you with the information you need, including the Ivy League Universities Ranking and the official link of each school.

Before we move into what this article is specifically all about, which is to discuss the list of Ivy League schools and ranking. We’ll also talk about how the phrase ‘Ivy League’ became associated with these universities and how the term ‘Ivy League’ does not necessarily interpret prestige.

The eight official schools in the list of Ivy League Schools are called Ivy League because they are among the Ivy League Athletic Conference, period! But as time goes on, because of the selective nature of these universities, and how prestigious they are, people started to interpret Ivy League to be the same thing as prestigious.

No doubt, these schools are prestigious and they have a very selective admission process, but that was not why they were initially called Ivy League schools, they were called Ivy League schools initially because they are among the Ivy League athletic conference.

As you read further in this article, you’ll understand that there are other universities that are not on this list but are more prestigious than some of the schools on the list of Ivy League schools

Since the general public associate Ivy League as prestigious, most people now think that the Ivy League schools are 12 in number, but before the end of this article you will get to understand why they think so and the other four schools that make up the 12 Ivy League schools.

You also get to see in detail the Ivy League schools ranking and whether the ranking matter as regards to courses offered and how good the schools are with respect to individual fields of study.

I will explain in detail the factors considered in the Ivy League schools’ ranking, then a table will be used to list these schools according to their rankings. You need to calm down and grab a bottle of whatever you like to drink and read this article to the end as you are about to find this article very interesting.

List of the 8 Ivy League schools

  • Brown University
  • University of Colombia
  • Cornell University
  • Dartmouth University
  • Harvard University
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Princeton University
  • Yale University

What are the Ivy League Schools? This is the question still to be answered in this article, and we are going to make use of this section of this article to make a list of Ivy League Schools in the world.

After we have listed them, we will make a list and discuss the Ivy League Schools Ranking before we draw this article to a close.

What Are The Ivy League Schools

Below is the list of the Ivy League Schools explained:

    #1. Brown University

    Brown University

    Brown University is an Ivy League school. The academic institution is a research university in Providence, Rhode Island. It is known for its rigorous and flexible open courses and program of studies – a kind of program that allows students to choose an individual program of study.

    In general, ivies are very selective and the Brown University is no different – having an acceptance rate of only 8%, and the average SAT and ACT score of students accepted in the school is  1440-1520 and 32-35 respectively.

    #2. Columbia University

    List of Ivy League Schools Ranking Columbia University

    Columbia University is an Ivy League school. The prestigious academic institution is located in New York. According to a 2020 Niche’s list of Best Colleges, Columbia University is ranked first among the best philosophy colleges in the United States, second among the best English colleges in the United States, and second among the best art colleges in the United States.

    The prestigious academic institution offers hundreds of research and study fields and more than 200 centres for research and institutes.

    Columbia University is more selective in the admission process – even more than Brown University. The school has an acceptance of 6%, on average students who gain admission into the school have SAT and ACT scores of 1450-1560 and 33-35 respectively. The university is one of the Ivy League schools in the United States.

    #3. Cornell University

    list of Ivy League Schools Ranking Cornell University

    Cornell University is an Ivy League school. The prestigious academic institution is located in Ithaca, New York, and has more than 15,000 students. Popular majors include biology, economics, and computer science.

    According to Best Niche Colleges, the school was ranked first among the best agricultural science colleges in the United States and third among the best architecture colleges in the United States.

    All the Ivies are very selective which explains why Cornell University operates on an acceptance rate of 11% and admitted students have SAT and ACT scores of 1390-1540 and 32-34 ACT on average respectively.

    #4. Dartmouth College

    list of Ivy League Schools Ranking Dartmouth College

    Dartmouth College is one of the Ivies. The school is very prestigious and it’s located in Hanover, New Hampshire – the first school in New Hampshire.

    Compared with other Ivy League schools on this list, this is a very small school with just over 4,000 students. Dartmouth follows the same route as other Ivies with an acceptance rate of 9%, making it very selective.

    Admitted students at this world-class academic institution have SAT and ACT scores of 1,420-1560 and 31-35 ACT respectively.

    #5. Harvard University

    List of Ivy League schools rankings  Harvard University

    Harvard University is a very popular school – probably the most prestigious of all the Ivies. The school is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The academic institution is not too large, but medium in size – accommodating approximately 7,000 students.

    Like with other Ivies, Harvard is a very select school with an acceptance rate of only 5%. Admitted students usually have SAT and ACT scores of 1460 – 1580, and 33 – 35 respectively.

    According to the recent Niche Best Colleges, Harvard University is one of the top Ivy League schools and occupies the first position in offering the best degree programs in the fields of biology and political science.

    Also Read: Free Online Courses at Harvard University with Certificate

    #6. Princeton University

    Princeton University

    Princeton University is an Ivy League school. The academic institution is located in New Jersey. Founded in 1746, this school is the fourth of the oldest universities in the United States.

    The school isn’t a very large school. Rather is a medium-sized school that accommodates only 5,000 students, and like other Ivies, the school is very selective with an acceptance rate of only 5%.

    Some of the most popular degrees offered at the institution are computer engineering, economics, and public policy analysis.

    The academic institution is one of the most prestigious among the Ivy League schools and ranks second among the best universities in the United States for research on political science and public policy analysis.

    SAT and ACT scores of students range from 1440 to 1570, and 32 to 35 respectively.

    #7. University of Pennsylvania

    University of Pennsylvania

    The University of Pennsylvania is also popularly referred to as Penn. The school is an Ivy League school located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    Unlike some of the medium-sized Ivies. The school is a fairly large school, with an average of 10,000 students enrolled. The school follow the same route of selectivity in admitting students as the acceptance rate of the school is 8%.

    Popular degrees programs offered by the prestigious University of Pennsylvania include finance, nursing, and business. It is one of the most popular Ivy League schools. The school ranks first among American business universities. The average range of SAT and ACT scores are 1420 – 1550, and 32 – 35 respectively.

    #8. Yale University

    Yale University

    Yale University is an Ivy League liberal arts and research college located in New Haven, Connecticut. It ranks first among the best universities in the United States and is also one of the Ivy League schools with an acceptance rate of 6%.

    The school ranks first among the best universities for studying history. Like other prestigious schools on the list, the school ranks are very selective with respect to their acceptance rate.

    The school admits students with average SAT and ACT scores of1460-1570 and 33-35 respectively.

    What is an ivy league school?

    What Are The 12 Ivy League Schools and Their Ranking?

    The Ivy League colleges are currently the most prestigious of all universities in the United States of America. The schools are so prestigious that it is a dream come true for one to get into any of them

    These prestigious institutions on this team are Brown University, Harvard University, Cornell University, Princeton University, Dartmouth University, Yale University, Columbia University and the University of Pennsylvania. 

    Of all the academic institutions in the United States of America for higher learning these colleges are considered to be the most top-notch universities, they are also the most sought-after schools and have a very selective acceptance rate.

    Why are Ivy League schools famous?

    The main reasons why Ivy League universities are so popular are:

    1. Reputation

    Ivy League colleges are the oldest institutions in the United States. As such, they have taken longer to build their reputation than any other school in the United States.

    2. Huge alumni network

    As the oldest academic institutions, they have an extensive alumni network that can provide excellent mentors and good job opportunities if needed.

    3. Academic excellence

    The Ivy League offers the best academic leadership. They just don’t argue about it. Almost every course in these universities has the best contributors in the form of professors, researchers and students.

    Are the Ivy League Schools 12 or Just 8 in number

    The truth is that Ivy League schools are only 8 in number, but most people think that they are 12 because the remaining four schools that make up the number are so prestigious that most people consider them to be among the Ivy League Schools.

    Before we go on to talk about the list of Ivy League Schools we will first, list these for other universities, to get them out of the way. These schools we are going to list below are not Ivy League schools, but they are prestigious even more than some of the Ivy League schools.

    We are going to list them to make sure that you know they are not on the list of  Ivy League schools, but they are prestigious. After we’ve talked briefly about these 4 universities, we will go on to talk about the Ivy League school rankings and all the information that will be important in this article.

    Also Read: How to get into an Ivy League School and their Acceptance Rate

    Other four Schools that people mistake for Ivy League Schools

    This list is not the list of Ivy League Universities. They are schools that are so prestigious to the extent they are considered Ivy League schools, but they are not officially on the list of Ivies.

    They are listed here for clarification purposes.

    Stanford University

    Stanford is probably the one most confused with any of the Ivy League Schools. According to the US News national ranking, the school ranks 6th with Penn. Its popularity may be due to its very competitive admission rate of only 4%.

    stanford university

    MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

    MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is a respected and selective school with an acceptance rate of 7%. It ranks third in the US National Rankings alongside Yale and Columbia.

    non ivy league schools - MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

    Northwestern University

    Northwestern is often mistaken for an Ivy League school because of its high rank and selective acceptance. It ranks number 9 in the United States national rankings and has an acceptance rate of only 8%.

    Northwestern University Ivy league Schools

    University of Chicago

    The University of Chicago ranks 6th alongside Stanford and Penn. Its acceptance rate is just 7%, which puts it on the same level as most Ivy leagues.

    University of Chicago

    History of “Ivy League School”

    It has been written more than once by historians that it was in a 1937 article that Caswell Adams coined the term.

    This was during the period when he was writing about the Columbia/University of Pennsylvania football game and it is said that he was frustrated because he is not allowed to report on his alma mater, complaining about the old “Ivy-covered” universities, which led him to call them the “Ivy League.” In 1945, eight schools signed an Ivy League agreement on academic standards and football schedules. In 1954 another agreement was signed to include other sports.

    There is another theory that talks about how Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and another school, believed to be Dartmouth or Columbia, formed a conference called the ” Four League”. This is always written in Roman numerals.

    Also read: Indiana University Bloomington: Admissions, Ranking, Requirements

    Member Schools Collaborations

    The member schools collaborate through the Ivy League Council led by the students – their meetings are usually during the fall and spring of every year and are attended by individuals who are appointed to represent each Ivy League school.

    The body that is in charge of the Ivy League colleges is a body that involves the ivy league presidents, known as the Ivy Group Presidents. They have meetings and talk about things that concern their schools and a way to advance more progressively

    Universities conduct academic collaborations through the IvyPlus Exchange Scholar Program. This program gives the students the flexibility of cross-registering at one of the Ivies or other eligible schools, such as Stanford University, University of Chicago, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and University of California, Berkeley.

    Where are the 8 Ivy League schools located?

    • Brown University, is one of the 8 ivy league schools. The school is located in Providence, Rhode Island.
    • Columbia University is located in New York City, New York
    • Cornell University is located in Ithaca, New York
    • Dartmouth College is located in Hanover, New Hampshire
    • Harvard University is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • The University of Pennsylvania is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    • Princeton University is located in Princeton University
    • Yale University is located in New Haven, Connecticut

    Ivy League Schools Ranking

    Ivy League Schools Ranking
    Ivy League Schools Ranking

    The Ivy League schools Ranking is released annually by major publications, to the delight of students, alumni, and college staff whose schools have soared, and much to the chagrin of those whose schools have collapsed.

    Current and past students often use these ivy league schools ranking to brag about their rights, and many journalists, media representatives, and educators downplay their importance by citing methodological problems and prejudices. 

    However, in retrospect, it doesn’t put off high-performing applicants and parents wanting to know which Ivy League school is the best.

    The interest in this answer stems from the fact that the Ivy League is synonymous with a low acceptance rate, resected, and most powerful universities. In other words, not only are the Ivy League admission rates very selective and among the lowest in the country, but every school has a strong brand that follows alumni throughout their education, professions, and careers.

    Below is the ranking of the Ivy League schools in the table; generally ranked according to so many factors by the official platforms

    Princeton UniversityPrinceton, NJ1
    Harvard UniversityCambridge, MA2
    Columbia UniversityNew York, NY3
    Yale UniversityNew Haven, CT4 (tie)
    University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia, PA8
    Dartmouth CollegeHanover, NH13
    Brown UniversityProvidence, RI14 (tie)
    Cornell UniversityIthaca, NY18

    Also read: Admission in US Universities for International Students

    Why the Ivy League schools’ ranking doesn’t matter

    We have made a list of Ivy League Schools plus ranking. But the rankings in this article should not make you look down on any of the Schools.

    Most people would agree that Harvard, Yale, and Princeton are considered the most respected and elitist Universities in the Ivy League. Depending on your child’s interests, preferred environment, and opportunities, some schools may be more suitable than others, that is why your criteria should not be based on ranking only.

    ivy league schools universities

    Why should you pay attention to Ivy League universities?

    When you start looking for undergraduate and graduate degrees, these universities are likely to catch your attention first for a variety of reasons.

    The first thing is that the resources owned by these universities are what they use to attract young hardworking and enterprising students from all over the world like you. The second thing is that these schools are prestigious and will help any student who graduates from any one of them be at the top of their professional careers.

    As a student, you can vigorously advance your career in law, medicine, electrical engineering, business, etc. with the recourses these prestigious schools offer.

     The Ivy League universities truly dominate the fields mentioned above when it comes to producing world-class students in those fields. When you students those degrees in any of the ivy league colleges you will become very valuable after graduation.

    It is also important that you know that these schools are not cheap. In fact, they are among the most expensive schools in the – if you’re hoping to attend any of these prestigious institutions then you be ready to pay something between US$55,000 and US$60,000 per year.

    Fortunately, they also provide a lot of financial aid to the best students in the form of scholarships. You may be one of them!

    Average Cost of an Ivy League College

    In the 2020-21 school year, the average tuition fee for an Ivy League school is US$56,746. The following table shows the tuition fees charged by each of the eight schools and the overall estimated fees. These universities are listed in order from the cheapest to the most expensive tuition.

    Ivy League School2020-21 Tuition2020-21 Average Attendance Fees
    Harvard College$49,653$76,479
    University of Pennsylvania$53,166$79,635
    Princeton University$53,890$83,241
    Dartmouth College$57,796$79,525
    Cornell University$58,586$77,952
    Brown University$59,254$80,448
    Yale College$59,950$77,750
    Columbia University$61,671$80,339

    What Are the Ivy League Average Acceptance Rates?

    Getting into an Ivy League school is not easy. In the previous admission year, all but one of the Ivy League schools accepted less than 7% of applicants into different undergraduate programs.

    Recently, Harvard—one of the most selective universities in the Ivy League—accepted just 3.2% of more than 61,000 applicants for the Class of 2026.

    Brown UniversityProvidence, RI6%
    Columbia UniversityNew York, NY4%
    Cornell UniversityIthaca, NY9%
    Dartmouth CollegeHanover, NH6%
    Harvard UniversityCambridge, MA4%
    Princeton UniversityPrinceton, NJ4%
    University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia, PA6%
    Yale UniversityNew Haven, CT5%

    Is an Ivy League school right for you?

    Because of the low acceptance rate of Ivy League colleges, you need more than just a good academic resume to get into any of these universities. You need a lot of hard work commitment and dedication to come through for yourself

    If you started thinking of any of these prestigious Universities after you have completed your high school then you may have started very late as to get into any of these schools you need to start very early to prepare for it.

    These early preparations to get into these schools may include attending AP classes in your high school and making sure you work extremely hard for a particular SAT grade, and also if it is your goal to be a student of a school in the Ivy League team then you need to sacrifice social time.

    No need to say that these Ivy League institutions will guarantee you a successful career and it is not a new thing that to achieve a successful career in life you need to work very hard and make some notable sacrifices. 

    What to consider before applying to any of the 12 Prestigious Schools Listed Here.

    There are definite things to bear in mind before applying to any of the ivy league Universities on this list.

    Irrespective of the ivy league schools ranking on this we have discussed a few points of the things one should consider before thinking of attending the ivy league schools which we have discussed on the list of ivy league schools in this article.

    Consider the Environment of the Ivy League Schools

    For example, if your child is interested in studying political science or theatre, Yale is a good choice. Cornell, on the other hand, might be the best option if your child is looking to get into tech or hotel management.

    It is important to consider each school’s environment when applying for Ivy League schools. Penn, for example, may offer more immediate access to work with low-income communities than Princeton. Additionally, the decision on where your child wants to apply should affect whether your child wants to go to school in an urban, suburban, or rural setting. For example, would you like to live in a big city or be closer to nature?

    Consider the Ivy League School Student Body

    Another important variable for your child to think about is the size of the student’s body. 6 of the 8 schools enrol between 4,000 and 7,000 students while only 2, Penn and Cornell, enrol more than 10,000 students. Whether your child wants to be part of a relatively small or large student body can add to their overall happiness and social opportunities at school.

    After all, campus culture varies from school to school. For example, Harvard encourages close student relationships through its boarding system, while Brown is widely recognized as the most progressive school in the Ivy League.


    We have discussed some of the most important information about Ivy League universities and colleges, including why people think that there are 12 ivy league schools.

    Since you have come to understand that these schools are prestigious and very selective in offering admission, you need to start preparing early and make sure that you worked extremely hard to get in.

    Another important thing you should take note of is the competitive nature of the schools. If attending an Ivy League school is your dream then take advantage of the 12 schools discussed here where 8 of them are the official Ivy League schools.

    All you need to do is check the average number of students applying to each institution and choose the one with the list number of applicants and then work very hard, you might end up getting in.

    Your own need and academic priorities should not be trivialised. Make sure that the school you want to choose meets your academic ambitions so that you will not end up studying in a big school without meeting your personal academic goals. 

    Frequently Asked Questions about the Ivy League Schools

    What is Ivy League?

    The term “Ivy League” appeared in 1954, when the NCAA First Athletic Conference was established. At the time, the elitism of the participating schools was truly attributed to their prestige in sports such as basketball.

    But recently, schools are considered to be an ivy league if they are academically prestigious

    Where are the 12 Ivy League schools located?

    Brown University, is one of the 12 ivy league schools. The school is located in Providence, Rhode Island. Columbia University is located in New York City, New York; Cornell University is located in Ithaca, New York; Dartmouth College is located in Hanover, New Hampshire; Harvard University is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts; The University of Pennsylvania is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Princeton University is located in Princeton; Yale University is located in New Haven, Connecticut.

    Are there 8 or 12 Ivy League schools?

    The Ivy League Schools are 8 in number. We only included the extra four schools in this article because they are prestigious and people always mistake them for Ivies.

    Why is MIT not an Ivy League?

    The only reason Duke University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Stanford University are not Ivy League colleges is that they were not good at sports when the Ivy League were founded.

    These 3 universities easily rank among the best 15 schools in the United States and offer similar career prospects and educational standards as Ivy League schools

    Is Stanford an Ivy?

    Stanford University is not technically an Ivy League school. This is because Stanford University did do well in sports and was not included as the group were created to include academic institutions that were prowess in sports activities.

    The Ivy League school was formally established in 1954 and consists of eight universities: Harvard University, Yale University, Columbia University, Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, Brown University, Dartmouth University and Cornell University.

    Why is Stanford not an Ivy League school?

    Although Stanford, Duke, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology are obviously prestigious schools. Compared with the Ivy League schools, they have a high national ranking and low selectivity, but they are not Ivy League schools, just because they are not members of the Ivy League Conference formed back in 1945.

    Which Ivy League school is the best?

    For example, Harvard ranks first in the United States in the Wall Street Journal rankings – this actually tells us that Harvard is also the highest-ranked Ivy League college.

    What is the easiest Ivy League school to get into?

    Although which Ivy League schools are the easiest to enter is still controversial, according to some stats, Cornell, Dartmouth and the University of Pennsylvania are by far the easiest Ivy League schools to enter.

    The aforementioned school have the highest acceptance rate for the class of 2025.

    Are there any Ivy League schools in California?

    The answer is a no, you will not see any Ivy League school in California. All the ivy league colleges are located in Northeastern Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, and in Rhode Island.

    However, California has many academic institutions that are very prestigious and competitive such as the University of California System, Stanford University, Caltech, University of Southern California, and Pomona College.


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