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2017 Safest College Campuses Ranking Methodology

The 2017 Safest College Campuses ranking is based on key statistics and student reviews using data from the U.S. Department of Education. Top-ranked colleges offer a safe and healthy environment with little or no campus crime, drugs, or alcohol usage. Learn where our data comes from.

Factors Considered

FactorDescriptionSourceWeight
Campus Crime RateRate of nonsexual crimes committed on campus property per 1,000 students, as reported by the college.U.S. Dept. of Education25.0%
Local Crime GradeNiche's Crime & Safety Grade, which incorporates statistics that capture a location's general safety.Niche25.0%
Student Surveys on SafetyNiche survey responses scored on a 1-5 scale regarding campus safety at each school.Self-reported by Niche users25.0%
Residence Hall Date Violence RateIncidents of Residence Hall Date Violence per 1,000 students.U.S. Dept. of Education7.5%
Residence Hall Rape RateIncidents of Residence Hall Rape per 1,000 students.U.S. Dept. of Education7.5%
Alcohol-Related ArrestsRate of alcohol-related arrests on campus per 1,000 students, as reported by the college.U.S. Dept. of Education5.0%
Drug-Related ArrestsRate of drug-related arrests on campus per 1,000 students, as reported by the college.U.S. Dept. of Education5.0%

This ranking assesses 1,142 4-year colleges and universities. The same methodology is used to produce the Niche Safety Grade for each ranked school as well as additional 4-year colleges, community colleges, trade schools, and other 2-year programs. Statistics obtained from the U.S. Department of Education represent the most recent data available, usually from 2014–2016, as self-reported by the colleges.

For more details about how we calculate our rankings, click here.

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