2023 Best Undergraduate Education Schools in Georgia

2022-2023 Education Colleges of Distinction

Published: September 1, 2022

By: Colleges of Distinction Staff

Jump to: Georgia College | Georgia Southern University | Mercer University | Reinhardt University | Spelman College | Toccoa Falls College | Young Harris College | Frequently Asked Questions

Simply put, our nation’s teachers are our future; they shape the leaders, politicians, scientists, authors, and artists of tomorrow. Surely we can all recount a few special teachers that made an impact on our lives, and we have their hard work and dedication to thank for that. That is why Colleges of Distinction is proud to share a cohort of schools that excel in their commitment to nurturing and supporting future educators. Freshly selected for the 2022-2023 year, the Education Colleges of Distinction are sure to equip students with the necessary skills and experience needed to excel. Prospective students can choose from our hand-picked list of colleges and universities that offer the following distinct qualities:

Our California top colleges for education offer students an exciting place to learn and thrive, as proven by the following:

Stability and Excellence: These programs have reputations for quality and success, and students know that their degrees will be respected and desired by future employers. Institutions who have earned the education badge have the highest accreditations and have been awarding teaching degrees for at least ten years.

Multidisciplinary Exposure: One of the most important decisions a future teacher will make is what field of education they will go into. Whether it’s childhood, elementary, secondary, or special education, prospective students know there are options to explore at these schools. These well-rounded programs also allow students to earn a specialization to further define and hone their skill set.

Practical Experience: These colleges and universities go beyond the required number of hours of student teaching. They push their students to get practical experience as early and often as possible so they may be prepared and confident when they step into their first classroom.

Non-education Specializations: These programs encourage students to think and learn outside the box. Students can minor or specialize in a different discipline to round out their education and enhance their teaching.

Dedicated Advising and Counseling: The path to a teaching degree can be complex and overwhelming at times. Schools that have earned the Education badge have demonstrated a commitment to supporting students with excellent counselors and advisors.

High-Impact Practices: While all Colleges of Distinction are recognized for their high-impact practices, those with the Education badge ensure that their programs incorporate relevant and focused high-impact practices, including first-year seminars, service-learning among area schools, and collaborative projects.

Industry Connections: Students are able to forge connections for their career through internships, networking events, and alumni programs.

Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville, GA Georgia's Public Liberal Arts University

Georgia College

Milledgeville, GA ‧ Public ‧ 4-year

Founded in 1889 as a women’s college, Georgia College & State University is Georgia’s designated public liberal arts university. Nestled in historic Milledgeville, Georgia, the university provides students a practical education combined with real-world experience and experiential learning. Georgia College fosters students’ collegiate and professional growth in a close-knit, 17:1 student-to-faculty ratio.

With over 46 undergraduate programs, 150+ student organizations, and 34 graduate programs to choose from, students are encouraged to participate in intellectual and culturally vibrant activities. As a historic teaching and nursing college, Georgia College & State University consistently ranks among the best programs for both teaching and nursing undergraduate and graduate programs. Combined with affordable tuition, Georgia College is a top pick for students looking for dedicated faculty and staff, diverse academic programs, and a supportive student environment.

The John H. Lounsbury College of Education at Georgia College offers several award-winning undergraduate and graduate degrees. Instructional and school leaders gain valuable opportunities and benefit from the meaningful partnerships the university maintains with schools, districts, and other institutions and agencies. The COE is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (PSC) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

Acceptance rate 86% • Net price $20,958 • SAT Range 1100-1245 • Students submitting SAT scores 52%
Total Undergrad Population 6,873 • Setting Town • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 62% • Retention rate 82% • Student-to-faculty ratio 16:1

Learn more about Georgia College’s education program

Georgia Southern University

Statesboro, GA ‧ Public ‧ 4-year

Georgia Southern University
 is large enough to provide endless opportunities, but personal enough to feel like home, plus employers say our grads are ready from day one. With almost 27,000 students, approximately 141 different degree programs, three campuses built on a single vision of growing others, Georgia Southern University is moving ahead and ready for more. With historic brick streets or moss-dripping oak trees, our picturesque campuses may seem pristine, but there’s a lot of roll-up-your-sleeves work going on here. Research is focused on community impact. Teaching is focused on students. And students are focused on their future.

Since 1906, the University’s hallmark has been a culture of engagement that bridges theory with practice, extends the learning environment beyond the classroom and promotes student growth and life success. 10 years in a row named “Military Friendly”, 11-time top eco-friendly campus, top 10 best hidden gem public universities and with inclusive excellence a core value, Georgia Southern is ready to help students shine.

Georgia Southern University College of Education is the premier and primary educator of teachers in Southeast Georgia, and Eagle Educators are known throughout the state and nation for their achievements and dedication to the field of education. The College of Education offers students multiple program opportunities spanning all three Georgia Southern locations and online.

Programs offered by the COE prepare future teachers, school psychologists, counselors, school library media specialists, instructional technologists, researchers and leaders through intensive field experiences, cutting-edge technology and research-based instruction. With more than 100 faculty members who are experts in the field, students learn in an environment exemplified by a free exchange of ideas, high academic expectations, and individual responsibility for academic achievement.

Acceptance rate 91% • Net price $15,463 • SAT Range 993-1170 • Students submitting SAT scores 67%
Total Undergrad Population 26,949 • Setting Town • Public 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 54% • Retention rate 79% • Student-to-faculty ratio 22:1

Learn more about Georgia Southern’s education program

Mercer University

Macon, GA ‧ Private ‧ 4-year

Mercer University, one of America’s oldest and most distinctive universities, is located right in the heart of Georgia. Founded in 1833, Mercer is the only university in the South to offer liberal arts, law, medicine, engineering, and pharmacy at the same institution. In addition, Mercer also offers business, teacher education, nursing, music, and theology. With over 60 undergraduate programs to choose from, students are sure to find the degree that fits their interests.

Mercer’s reputation for exceptional academics in an engaged learning environment continues to grow. Mercer University has earned national recognition from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching for its commitment to community engagement and has also been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for distinguished community service.

Mercer University has been teaching Georgia’s teachers and educational leaders for more than 100 years, and we are committed to building a strong foundation for tomorrow’s world-changers.

Mercer’s Tift College of Education provides a curriculum that empowers educators and fuels their desire for teaching and inspiring students. We offer a variety of degree and certification programs that are approved by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and designed for aspiring teachers as well as those with experience in the field.

Acceptance rate 78% • Net price $21,693 • SAT Range 1180-1340 • Students submitting SAT scores 50%
Total Undergrad Population 9,006 • Setting City: Midsize • Private 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 73% • Retention rate 87% • Student-to-faculty ratio 14:1

Learn more about Mercer’s education program

Reinhardt University logo

Reinhardt University

Waleska, GA ‧ Christian ‧ 4-year

Since 1883, Reinhardt has focused on meeting student needs one person at a time. Reinhardt’s emphasis is on personalized education, best provided in small classes by talented professors who challenge and care about their students.

Students find Reinhardt’s academic programs engaging, challenging, and rewarding — an investment that yields positive returns to their personal and professional lives. Graduates take full advantage of Reinhardt’s opportunities and enter their professions with the richness of a broad liberal arts education. They are well prepared, having gained specific professional skills through their participation in engaged classroom experiences, co-curricular enrichments, challenging research projects, rewarding service initiatives, exciting internships, and life-transforming studies abroad.

You will have the opportunity to impact the lives of so many students and future community leaders. Talk to any teacher and you will hear wonderful stories of how former students return to share how their lives are different as a result of that teacher’s influence. Studying to be a teacher at Reinhardt is a life-changing experience. Small class size will gives professors the opportunity to collaborate with you so you will be successful in making a difference in the classroom, one child at a time.

Acceptance rate 99% • Net price $22,645 • SAT Range 940-1160 • Students submitting SAT scores 58%
Total Undergrad Population 1,399 • Setting Rural • Private 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 35% • Retention rate 60% • Student-to-faculty ratio 13:1

Learn more about Reinhardt’s education program

Spelman College logo with motto: A Choice to Change the World

Spelman College

Atlanta, GA ‧ Private ‧ 4-year

Maximize your potential at Spelman College. Spelman is a Private HBCU school in Atlanta, Georgia with many undergraduate degrees to choose from. As the nation’s oldest and most renowned historically Black college for women, Spelman College’s fundamental foundation is to educate women and develop educators. From elementary to higher education, Spelman has cultivated education leaders who serve the world. In the introduction of the College’s 100th anniversary book, “Spelman: a centennial celebration 1881-1981,” Beverly Guy-Sheftall references a journalist’s “assertion” made during the College’s 50th anniversary: “No history of women’s education in America would be complete without the story of Spelman.”

Acceptance rate 53% • Net price $43,920 • SAT Range 1050-1200 • Students submitting SAT scores 71%
Total Undergrad Population 2,207 • Setting City: Large • Private 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 75% • Retention rate 89% • Student-to-faculty ratio 11:1

Learn more about Spelman’s education program

Toccoa Falls College

Toccoa Falls, GA ‧ Christian ‧ 4-year

Toccoa Falls is the perfect academic community for students who are looking for an institution that will positively impact both their academic and spiritual lives. Founded in 1907 in the beautiful foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Toccoa Falls’ first president, Dr. Richard Forest, was convinced of the importance for all students to receive a quality Christian education. Over one hundred years later, TFC is still following his motto: Where Character is Developed with Intellect.

Toccoa Falls College is serious about providing solid academics that build skills for a lifetime, and equally serious about promoting a solid Christian worldview that provides a stable foundation for a meaningful life.

Toccoa Falls College offers students the opportunity to prepare to become an educator in public and private schools. The Teacher Education Department offers six majors including Early Childhood for grades preschool to grade 5, Middle Grades for grades 4-8, Music Education for grades K-12, English Education, History Education and Broad Field Science Education for grades 6-12. In addition to those majors we offer the English as a Second or Other Language (ESOL) Endorsement which can be added to any of the education majors, and the Reading Endorsement which is embedded within the Early Childhood major.

The Teacher Education Department faculty share a combined total of 60 years’ experience as K-12 educators with candidates pursuing educational careers. 

Acceptance rate 58% • Net price $22,359
Total Undergrad Population 1,698 • Setting Town • Private 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 48% • Retention rate 58% • Student-to-faculty ratio 16:1

Learn more about Toccoa Falls’ education program

Young Harris College

Young Harris, GA ‧ Private ‧ 4-year

Founded more than 130 years ago by The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College has been transformed into a progressive model of liberal arts education featuring innovative academic programs, state-of-the-art facilities, and competitive NCAA Division II athletics. Young Harris College has a close-knit environment that brings students and faculty together, fostering strong relationships that last long after graduation.

At YHC, students can choose from 31 majors and 25 minors that teach skills guaranteed for success. They are trained to develop the strong critical thinking, communication, and social skills that make them stand out to employers. Outside the classroom, YHC’s holistic approach to learning allows students to take on leadership roles and even add new offerings to the College’s 60+ organizations.

The Department of Education Elementary Program trains and equips students to teach elementary aged students in accordance with requirements established by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission.

The Department of Education Elementary Education Program is built on the same liberal arts core as other programs of the College. The major has been created to provide students with opportunities to understand classroom instructional theory, best practices, and leadership skills both in the classroom and field experiences offered by the department.

Acceptance rate 65% • Net price $20,704 • SAT Range 930-1160 • Students submitting SAT scores 31%
Total Undergrad Population 1,417 • Setting Rural • Private 4-year
Graduation rate (6 year) 44% • Retention rate 60% • Student-to-faculty ratio 11:1

Learn more about YHC’s education program

What it’s like to attend education schools in Georgia and other FAQ:

What are average tuition costs in Georgia?

The average undergraduate tuition & fees for colleges in Georgia is $5,056 for in-state students at public institutions, $16,206 for out-of-state students at public institutions, and $19,931 for students at private institutions.

Cheapest education degree program in Georgia

Georgia Southern University has an average net price of $15,463 making it the least expensive education degree program in South Carolina that made our list.

Easiest education degree program to get into in Georgia

Reinhardt University has an acceptance rate of 99%, making it the least exclusive college with an education program on our list.

Education degree program with lowest student debt in Georgia

Toccoa Falls College has a median total debt after graduation of $22,009. This is the typical debt for a student who completed their undergraduate degree.

Most popular education degrees in Georgia

The largest share of education degrees awarded in Georgia in 2020 were specialized by the following:
Elementary Education and Teaching
Early Childhood Education and Teaching
Junior High/Intermediate/Middle School Education and Teaching
Special Education and Teaching – General
Physical Education Teaching and Coaching

See The Top Education Colleges of Distinction of 2022-2023

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