Accredited colleges and universities have had their educational programs and faculty evaluated by an outside agency. Those agencies ensure that the school provides a high-quality education to its students, so to have your degree recognized by employers, it’s critical to attend an accredited institution. Below you’ll find information on higher education in the state and helpful resources on online colleges in Maine.
- School Search
- Accreditation Agencies
- Education Links
- Notable Schools
Accredited Online Colleges Database
The following agencies accredit schools in Maine. These agencies, however, only issue institution-wide accreditation; they do not provide program-specific accreditation. For information on particular programs, refer to our subject pages.
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NEASC)
- Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)
- Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET)
- Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS)
- Council on Occupational Education (COE)
- Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)
- Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS)
Higher Education Links
For more information on higher education in Maine, or to explore educational legislation in the state, take a look at the state’s board of education. You can also use the resources below for more general information on Maine’s accredited colleges and universities.
Picking a school can be a daunting task, especially when considering the sheer number of accredited colleges there are in the state. Our database below can help with narrowing down your options for your specific area. In addition, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most notable accredited online and campus-based schools in the state to help you begin your school search.
Maine is home to a number of innovative public universities. Find out about a few of those schools below.
University of Maine
As Maine’s largest university, the University of Maine enrolled 10,901 students during the fall of 2013 alone. Located in the small, northeastern town of Orono, the University of Maine affords easy access to the Atlantic, as well as more than 200 student organizations on campus. High-achieving students may be invited to join the UMaine Honors College, which offers a rigorous course of study to its enrollees. The school also has the state’s largest library.
University of Southern Maine
Only slightly smaller than its northern cousin, the University of Southern Maine enrolled 9,382 students for the 2013-2014 school year. Students have a wide range of undergraduate majors to choose from, and the school is committed to teaching skills that students can apply in a post-graduate employment. USM also fosters environmental stewardship and sustainable development. Notable alumni include Kate Chappell, the founder of Tom’s of Maine.
Maine Maritime Academy
For a much more intimate experience, learners may consider the Maine Maritime Academy, which enrolled only 993 students for the fall of 2013. Students may choose either a regimented or non-regimented program. Those choosing the former are considered to be midshipmen, and they train on the Ship of Maine. Approximately half of the student population is in a regimented program, though only 5% of graduates take a commission in the military. The school has an annual Celebration of Achievement to honor its best and brightest.
Though the northeast is a hotbed of selective colleges, Maine is proud to have several of the highest-ranked private schools in both the area and the country.
University of New England
Maine’s largest private college enrolled 5,666 students during the fall of 2013. The University of New England, founded in 1831, actually has two campuses, with its main hub in Biddeford. Students on that campus can enroll in the College of Arts and Sciences, as well as choose from more than 40 different educational programs. UNE contains the state’s only medical school, with a comprehensive medical education program that’s unusual for a private university.
According to U.S. News, Bowdoin is the No. 4 best liberal arts college in the country. Only 1,839 students were enrolled for the fall of 2013. This selective school offers its learners 40 programs of study, a coastal studies center, and a scientific field station. The school’s Peucinian Society, one of its many student organizations, is one of the oldest in the country. In addition, poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is an alumnus of Bowdoin.
Another highly rated school, Bates College is No. 22 on U.S. News’ list of national liberal arts colleges. It’s similar to Bowdoin in size, with only 1,753 students for the fall of 2013, but sets itself apart in its abolitionist roots. The founders believed in providing equal educational opportunities to all, and the college remains committed to that mission. Students have the opportunity to study abroad as well as to take part in a five-week “short term” in the spring, during which they study one topic or organize an off-campus project. Notable alumni of Bates College include Mary Mitchell, the first woman to graduate from a New England college.