Illinois College - Colleges of Distinction - Colleges of Distinction
Illinois College
"Illinois College, a small residential Phi Beta Kappa liberal arts college, offers an exceptional...
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Illinois College

Jacksonville, Illinois

For over 180 years, Illinois College has prepared young men and women for lives of leadership and service. With a remarkable academic program, extracurricular opportunities and outstanding facilities, Illinois College represents one of the best values in higher education today.


With an enrollment of 1,000, Illinois College launches students into thriving careers through a demanding curriculum of more than 45 majors and interdisciplinary programs in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The college’s 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio ensures comprehensive guidance for each student. A rich array of experiential learning opportunities including study abroad, student-faculty research, internships, community service projects, and Division III athletics complement the academic programs. The unique college-funded BreakAway program enables students to travel and study in the U.S. and beyond. Students discover their talents at Illinois College, and graduates carry with them skills that enable success anywhere in the world.

Student Profile

Fall 2014 Enrollment
957 undergraduate students
99% of undergrad students are full time
50% male — 50% female
19% of students are from out of state

Faculty Profile

2014-2015 Academic Year
81 full-time faculty
18 part-time faculty
11 to 1 student/faculty ratio

Residence Life

84% of students live on campus. Housing options include traditional residence hall rooms, suites, apartments and theme houses.

School Location

Jacksonville, Illinois. Located in the heart of the state, Illinois College sits less than two hours northeast of Saint Louis, Missouri, four hours from both Chicago and Indianapolis and just 30 minutes from the state capitol of Springfield.


76% of students began in Fall 2013 and returned in Fall 2014 (full time, first time freshmen)


75% of students graduated in 6 years


Nonresident aliens 3%
Hispanic/Latino 8%
Black or African American 12%
White 71%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%
Asian 1%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0%
Two or more races 3%
Race and/or ethnicity unknown 0%


llinois College offers 20 NCAA Division III teams within the Midwest Conference.

Colors: True Blue and White

Mascot: Blueboys and Lady Blues. The term Blueboy refers to a soldier in the Union Army, a role filled by 240 Illinois College students during the Civil War. The College’s rich history includes ties to Abraham Lincoln, the abolitionist movement and the Underground Railroad. The entire senior class of 1863 enlisted and Illinois College recognizes those soldiers who fought and died in the war by using “Blueboy” as the school’s official mascot.

Other Information

Illinois College is a private, Phi Beta Kappa liberal arts college, founded in 1829.

A Built-In Experiential Education

An education at Illinois College incorporates more than lectures, labs, papers and projects. The College believes in the value of a broad, immersive experience where students learn to connect information across disciplines, allowing true discovery and innovation to flourish. 100% of Illinois College students engage in experiential learning that puts theory into practice. Students apply what they learn in internships, research projects with faculty, service learning, and study abroad.


Illinois College has been ranked third in the nation for community service participation and hours served among liberal arts colleges. At Illinois College, service isn’t just a pastime; it’s woven into the fabric of the community.

Academics sit at the heart Illinois College’s liberal arts experience. Passionate professors foster in students desires for learning that extend far beyond their college years. This personal touch to education pervades all offices and services at the College.


The new BLUEprint general education program embeds exciting courses for students to find writing, speaking, ethics, diversity, and community engagement within the classes they want to take. Additionally, the College researches job market trends so that it can provide an education that directly prepares students for future employers. These courses prepare students to think broadly, identify and solve problems, communicate effectively, and navigate a changing world.

Small Classes for Big Results

In each of the 45 majors and programs, Illinois College prepares students to succeed. The College’s 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio ensures intense focus on and comprehensive guidance for each student.

Over 90% of the classes at Illinois College have 30 or fewer students, and only 2% of all classes hold more than 50. This means students have a chance to ask questions and discuss issues with their professors and with each other.  No matter the size, professors lead each class. These courses are taught by people dedicated to their fields, deeply involved in scholarly research that supports what they teach.

Personal Faculty Relationships

Students discover their talents at Illinois College, and graduates carry with them skills that enable success anywhere in the world. First-Year Seminar teachers guide their students through decisions to help them make the best of their college careers. This means that faculty members get to know students’ strengths, goals, and hopes. Every year at, students take time at graduation to comment on how their relationships with the faculty made their time at Illinois College meaningful and enriching. Whether faculty engage discussion in the classroom, collaborate with students on research, or simply share friendly small-talk outside the classroom, students agree that the excellent and student-focused faculty define the Illinois College experience.

The educational experience of Illinois College does not stop when students leave the classroom. In fact, there are so many out-of-class learning opportunities at Illinois College that students quickly discover how impossible it would be to participate in all of them.

Guest Speakers

Convocation speaker series bring authors, artists, activists, and athletes to speak to students each week. Students can even earn credit toward graduation for attending.

Student Activities

Over 80 student organizations, clubs, ensembles, and teams mean that no matter what you’re interested in, Illinois College offers something for everyone. For example, Literary Societies, similar to fraternities and sororities, include literary, fraternal, and social activities in one organization. Illinois College began establishing these societies in 1843 and remains one of the only colleges in the country to continue the historic tradition. Students can also join the Leadership Program, which offers members specialized training through coursework, service, and mentorship.

The Center for Student Involvement and Student Activities Board sponsor events so that movies, ski trips, comedians, and bands can keep students busy every weekend.

A Place to Call Home

Eighty-four percent of Illinois College students live on campus, which means students stay engaged in campus life and activities long after classes are done for the day.

Guaranteed Success

Nearly 100% of graduates are either employed or in graduate school within one year of graduation. 62% of the Class of 2014 had already accepted a job or were enrolled in continuing education for fall before graduation.

According to recent surveys, 98% of Illinois College graduates believe their communication skills and problem solving abilities are equally as or more proficient than their colleagues.

Loyal Alumni

Illinois College graduates generously give back to the College, whether they work for the Peace Corps or Fortune 500 companies. Over 25% of alumni donate money annually (more than double the national average) and return to campus regularly for networking events, Homecoming, and as guest lecturers in classes.


Automatic consideration for academic scholarships ranging from $10,000 to $18,000 takes place for all admitted students and notification of your scholarship is included in your letter of admission. Merit scholarships are awarded on the basis of a student’s overall academic record, standardized test results if included, and personal involvement in both school and the community.



2,749 Total Applicants
1,488 Total Admissions
253 Total Freshmen Enrollment

54.13% of applicants admitted

Application Requirements

How to apply for admission:                                       

  • Submit a free application for admission at or
  • Provide an official high school transcript along with a Secondary School Report completed by your high school counselor
  • Consider sending ACT and/or SAT scores. Illinois College operates test optional admission. Students wishing to include their scores in the application should submit them to the Office of Admission.


Application review begins immediately upon receiving a complete application for admission. Decisions are mailed on a rolling basis beginning in October of a student’s senior year.   


Net Price Calculator


Tuition $28,660
Fees $550
Total $29,210
Room and Board (on campus) $9,190
Room Only $4,890
Board Only $4,300
Estimated Total On Campus $38,400


Financial Aid Breakdown 2014-2015

100% of full-time first-time undergraduates receiving any financial aid
94% of full-time first-time undergraduates receiving student loan aid

$21,783 Average amount of federal, state, local, or institutional grant aid received
$7,619 Average amount of student loan aid received by full-time first-time undergraduates

Annual IC Service Blitz to help 16 area locations

The tradition of sharing and caring through service in the Jacksonville area will be on display Sunday, August 31, starting at 1:30 p.m. when teams of Illinois College students, faculty and staff tackle a variety...

Students present research at annual science conference

The projectors barely had time to cool from the fourth annual Illinois College Celebration of Excellence before nine students were off to another round of presentations at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Illinois State...


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