Covering the Land of Lincoln

10 Largest Universities In The United States

There are about 5,300 universities and colleges in the United States, including about 4,500 colleges. Texas, New York, California, and Pennsylvania are the four states with the most universities. US universities offer over two million courses as part of their 4- and 2-year college programs. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there are approximately 20 million students in U.S. colleges. While Harvard University, Stanford University, and the University of Chicago are among the best universities in the country, they are not the largest in terms of student enrollment. The largest universities in the USA by enrollment from 2020/21 are listed below.

1. University of Central Florida – 71,948 students

UCF College of Medicine in Orlando, Florida is located on the University of Health Sciences campus in the Lake Nona neighborhood of Orlando. Editorial source: JHVEPhoto / Shutterstock.com

The University of Central Florida (UCF) is the largest public university in the United States by enrollment with 71,948 students enrolled in the various courses in the fall semester 2020. The university was founded on June 10, 1963 and is nicknamed the Golden Knights. It is located in Orlando, Orange County, Florida. It is one of the state’s 12 public universities that make up the State University System of Florida. Approximately 85% of the students (61,456) are college students and 10,000 are working and graduate students. The number of enrollments at the university has increased by around 114%, from 33,453 in 2000 to over 71,000 in 2021. Female students currently make up 55% of total enrollments.

2. Texas A&M University – 71,109 students

Texas A and M unIVThe academic building of Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas. Editorial Credit: ShengYing Lin / Shutterstock.com

Texas A&M University, one of the founders of the Texas A&M University System, will be training 71,109 students as of 2021. The university hosts students from 124 countries and all 50 US states. However, Texas residents are the majority, making up about 85% of total student enrollment. This public research university was founded as the Agriculture and Mechanical College of Texas in 1876 and was the state’s first public college. A&M is best known for veterinary medicine. However, it also offers programs in engineering, business, and education. The main campus is located in College Station, Texas and spans 21 square kilometers, making it one of the ten largest campuses in the United States.

3. Ohio State University – 61,369 students

Ohio State UniversityUniversity Hall on the Ohio State University campus, Columbus, Ohio. Editorial Credit: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com

With around 61,369 enrollments on the Columbus Campus, Ohio State University is definitely one of the largest universities in the country. OSU is a public ivy and one of the best public universities in the US with over 7,310 academic staff and 27,158 administrative staff. Established in 1870 as the 9th University of Ohio under the name Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College, this public, land-assigned research school focuses on mechanical and agricultural disciplines. The Ohio General Assembly changed the school’s name to Ohio State University in 1878 and expanded its scope.

4. Florida International University – 58,928 students

Florida International UniversityAerial view of Florida International University, South Campus, Miami, Florida. Editorial source: Felix Mizioznikov / Shutterstock.com

Florida International University is the second largest college in Florida after the University of Central Florida and the fourth largest university in the country by enrollment. Founded in 1965, the university has grown to become the largest public research university in South Florida after enrollment. In the 2020-21 academic year, Florida International University enrolled 58,928 students on its main campus and other regional centers. The main campus, which accounts for about 87% of the university’s total student enrollment, is located in University Park in Miami, while the Biscayne Bay campus is located in North Miami. About 71% of the total enrollments are for Bachelor students.

5. University of Florida – 57,841 students

University of FloridaStudents walk outside on the quad lawn of the University of Florida college campus in Gainesville, Florida. Editorial source: Leigh Trail / Shutterstock.com

The University of Florida is a member of the State University System of Florida and is considered the fifth best university in the United States according to the US News & World Report in 2021. It is Florida’s third largest university by enrollment after the University of Central Florida and Florida International University with 57,841 students. The majority of the students (approx. 67%) are undergraduate students, 28% are university graduates and professionals and approx. 5% of the students are not classified. Around 4,000 of the entire student body complete their studies via the online system. UF was founded in 1853 and has been operating in the city of Gainesville since 1906.

6. The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign – 56,299 students

University of IllinoisStudents walk and sit outside on the quad lawn of the University of Illinois college campus at Urbana-Champaign. Editorial source: Leigh Trail / Shutterstock.com

The University of Illinois is a public research university located in Urbana and Champaign and a founding member of the University of Illinois System. It trains around 56,299 students and is the sixth largest public university in the country by enrollment. The university accepts students from all 50 states and over 100 other countries. There are over 10,000 international students, most of whom are mainland Chinese. About 55% of all students at the university are male and 45% female. Founded in 1867, U of I, Illinois is a public ivy offering over 250 undergraduate and graduate programs.

7. Georgia State University – 53,737 students

State University of GeorgiaGeorgia State University campus. Editorial source: Felix Mizioznikov / Shutterstock.com

Georgia State University (GSU) is a public research university in Atlanta, Georgia and a member of the University System of Georgia. It is the seventh largest public university in the United States by student population with approximately 53,737 undergraduate and graduate students. Of the total number of students, approximately 33,000 are enrolled on the main downtown Atlanta campus. The University of Georgia offers more than 250 graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 100 fields. The GSU was founded in 1913 and was nicknamed the Panther.

8. Arizona State University – 52,386 students

University of ArizonaA student rides a bike past the Victorian Old Main, one of the original Normal School buildings, built on the Arizona State University campus in Tempe in 1898. Editorial source: PICTOR PICTURE COMPANY / Shutterstock.com

Arizona State University (ASU) is a public research university with four campuses in the greater Phoenix area. Founded in 1885, the university is part of the Universities Research Association and offers over 300 undergraduate programs and 400 certificate and graduate programs. Although ASU has over 150,000 students enrolled, only about 56,400 students study on the Tempe Campus (main campus). Approximately 11,360 students study on the Phoenix Downtown campus, 5,200 on the polytechnic campus, and 54,000 attend online courses. The university has a rich faculty that includes Pulitzer Prize winners, Nobel Prize winners, members of the National Academy of Science, and MacArthur Fellows.

9. University of Minnesota-Twin Cities – 52,017 students

University of MinnesotaTate Laboratory on the University of Minnesota campus. Editorial Credit: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com

The University of Minnesota is a public research university located in the twin cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota. Founded in 1851, the Twin Cities Campus is the largest and oldest university campus in the University of Minnesota system and includes sites in the two cities. It is the ninth largest main campus in the country by enrollment with 52,017 students. The Twin Cities Campus has more than 300 educational, research and placement institutes and centers. The majority of students (63%) who enrolled in the University of Minnesota are Minnesota residents.

10. The University of Texas at Austin – 51,832 students

University of TexasCollege students at the University of Texas at Austin. Editorial source: stock_photo_world / Shutterstock.com

Approximately 51,832 students have enrolled for their higher education at the University of Texas at Austin, making it the 10th largest university by student population. UT Austin was founded on September 15, 1883 and has the seventh largest academic museum in the country, comprising more than nine million volumes. The majority of students who enrolled in the university are ethnic whites (39%), followed by Hispanic Americans (23%) and Asian Americans (20%). The university has students from over 120 countries and all 50 states.

Precedence university Location enrollment

1

University of Central Florida

Orlando Florida

71,948

2

Texas A&M University

College Station, Texas

71,109

3

Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio

61,369

4th

Florida International University

Miami, Florida

58.928

5

University of Florida

Gainesville, Florida

57,841

6th

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Urbana / Champaign, Illinois

56,299

7th

Georgia State University

Atlanta, Georgia

53,737

8th

University of Arizona

Tempe, Arizona

52,386

9

University of Minnesota

Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Minnesota

52.017

10

University of Texas at Austin

Austin, Texas

51,832

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