The rankings were significantly more competitive this year, with 1,600 schools rated, up from 1,400 last year.
Linfield also made the exclusive list of schools with the most students studying abroad, with more than half of its students participating.
Best College indicators included peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving.
Survey criteria also included assessment by high school counselors across the nation. Linfield’s ranking reinforces a 2010 Parade magazine survey of high school counselors, who named Linfield one of 26 preferred small private schools in the U.S.
The small college has received praise in recent years by The Washington Post, Atlantic, New York Times, Washington Monthly, Huffington Post, Princeton Review and other news outlets. Forbes named Linfield to their 2011 list of the nation’s “Top Colleges,” with only four Oregon schools, including Linfield, included in the top 200 undergraduate institutions.
Chartered in 1858, the school is one of the first colleges in the Pacific Northwest. Linfield illuminates the power of a small college, and is recognized for arts, sciences and professional programs, international emphasis, and commitment to social responsibility.