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St. John's College

We are often called “the most contrarian college in America.” Or “the most rigorous college in America.” Or “the most intellectual college in America.” No matter how you define us, St. John’s College and our Great Books curriculum are unlike any other.

About the institution

At St. John's, students share a common curriculum centered on reading and discussing 200 of the greatest books in history. Students learn directly from Plato, Austen, Einstein, Woolf, and Du Bois, to name a few. Instead of lectures and majors, all classes are discussion-based exploring philosophy, literature, science, music, language, politics, and more. With a 7:1 student to faculty ratio, the college ranks #5 for best classroom experience and #9 for best undergraduate teaching.

Our welcoming community has fewer than 1000 students on two campuses: one in Annapolis, Maryland, and the other in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Students are free to transfer between the campuses.

The Santa Fe campus, in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, is a one-minute walk to some of the best hiking, biking, and skiing in America. Santa Fe is also home to more than 250 art galleries, great food, and live music. Nearly 400 Johnnies embrace the stunning natural environment and rich cultural heritage of New Mexico while reading great books on the placita, hiking 12,000-foot mountains, sculpting in the pottery studio, or socializing in the student-run coffee shop. Popular student groups include the culinary club, musical groups, intercollegiate archery, and the gaming club.

On the Annapolis campus, 500 students experience a historic college town along the Chesapeake Bay. Annapolis is close to Washington, DC, with dozens of nearby museums and cultural offerings. The college was founded here in 1696, making it the third oldest college in the United States, and students embrace long-held traditions such as waltz parties, intramural sports, and the famous annual croquet match against the Naval Academy. Popular student groups include musical ensembles, community service organizations, and the college’s theatrical troupe, King Williams Players.


Number of Undergraduate Students


Student to Faculty Ratio


Size of Instituition

Small Institution <5000


Selective (25-50% admitted). Students are admitted primarily based on their academic performance and essay responses.

Campus Style

St. John's has two campuses: one in Annapolis, Maryland, and one in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Education Model

St. John's is famous for our interdisciplinary, discussion-based Great Books curriculum.

Are there internship opportunities?

Yes - Over 50% of students do internships in the summer, many of which are funded by the Career Center.

Are there study abroad options?


Cost of Tuition



St. John's has a rich international diversity (over 20% of students) because we provide merit and need-based scholarships to international students.

Domestic and international students are eligible for merit and need-based scholarships. Domestic students are also eligible for government funding.

IB Grade Requirements

Holistic Review

UFP Grade Requirements



#1 in the USA for Most Students Getting PhD's in the Humanities (HEDS)


#5 Most International Students (US News)


#9 Best Undergraduate Teaching (US News)

Subject Name
Degree Area
American Studies
Language & Culture
Biological Sciences
Society & Social Sciences
English Literature and/or Language
English & Media
Society & Social Sciences
Society & Social Sciences
Liberal Arts Only
Liberal Arts & Sciences
Liberal Arts and Sciences
Liberal Arts & Sciences
Performing Arts
Society & Social Sciences
Philosophy Politics and Economics
Society & Social Sciences
Society & Social Sciences
Society & Social Sciences
Theology and Religious Studies
Society & Social Sciences

St. John's only offers one undergraduate degree: the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts.

Within that degree, students study over 20 interdisciplinary subjects including literature, philosophy, history, mathematics, physics, astronomy, biology, music, language, politics, psychology, and more.

We rank amongst the best colleges in America

#1 Most Students Getting PhDs in the Humanities (HEDS)
#4 Lots of Race/Class Interactions (Princeton Review)
#5 Best Classroom Experience (Princeton Review)
#5 Most International Students (US News)
#6 Best College Towns in America (Business Insider)
#6 Professors Get High Marks (Princeton Review)
#8 Most Accessible Professors (Princeton Review)
#9 Best Undergraduate Teaching (US News)
#10 Students Study the Most (Princeton Review)
#11 Happiest Students (Princeton Review)
#18 Most Innovative Schools (US News)
#20 LGBTQ Friendly (Princeton Review)
#29 Best Value (Princeton Review)
#39 Best Value (US News)

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