UMN Peer Institutions

The University of Minnesota has peer comparison groups identified for each campus. These campus-selected peer groups are reviewed and updated periodically as campus priorities change. Additionally, natural or organizationally defined groupings are also frequently used in analytic comparisons. Overviews of both types of groups are available in the dashboard and  below.

Data Sources

*Morris' five aspirational peers appear in the dashboard with an asterisk.

Data for Penn State has been submitted to IPEDS as an all-campus aggregate since their 2019-20 submission. To facilitate comparisons, some IPEDS survey data continue to be published by campus on Penn State’s Institutional Research website; data that is unavailable by campus breakout is not included here.

Institutional logos were sourced from institutional websites and public image repositories.


Carnegie Classification (IPEDS)
The Carnegie Commission on Higher Education created a widely used taxonomy to group higher education institutions based on a range of criteria, from mission focus to enrollment. Data included here is from the most recent update, the Carnegie Classification Basic 2018. Additional information is available at

Full-time equivalent (FTE) staff (IPEDS)
Total FTE staff is the sum of all full-time equivalent staff. FTE staff is derived by adding the total full-time staff headcount to 1/3 of the total part-time staff headcount.

Related Resources
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Campus-Selected Peer Comparison Groups

Download: Campus Selected Peer Group Data [xlsx]

Crookston Campus
For planning and assessment benchmarking, Crookston has identified 11 institutions similar in academic program mix, enrollment, and student profile, and located in a relatively rural setting.

Duluth Campus
The Duluth campus comparison group includes 11 institutions, identified based on their similar academic programs, enrollment, degrees awarded, research activities, and their Carnegie Classification as Master’s Medium Programs. 

Morris Campus
The Morris campus has identified 15 institutions for its comparison group. These peer institutions come closest to aligning with the Morris campus’s distinctive identity as a public liberal arts college. Within these 15, Morris identified five as aspirational peers: DePauw University and Gustavus Adolphus, Kalamazoo, Macalester, and St. Olaf Colleges.

Rochester Campus
The Rochester campus established its inaugural peer group of nine institutions in 2021. The group includes newer institutions that value innovation; health and community connections; pedagogical and faculty research emphasis; and student demographics and institutional commitments to diversity, access, and equity.

Twin Cities Campus
The Twin Cities campus has identified 10 public research universities for primary comparison. While these institutions are among the most similar in size and complexity to the Twin Cities campus and the best available for comparison, the institutions have significant differences. Notably, the Twin Cities campus comparison group includes the very best public research universities in the United States. In using this peer group as a benchmark, the campus intentionally measures itself against the highest standards in the nation.

Other Comparison Groups

Download: Other Comparison Groups Data [xlsx]

In addition to the peer groups selected by each campus, other institutional groupings are also commonly used in reporting. For UMTC, institutions in the Big Ten athletic group and public institutions in the American Association of Universities (AAU) are commonly used for peer comparisons. For UMM, the U.S. institutions in the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC) are another source of comparison. For all UMN institutions, comparisons to other public four-year institutions within Minnesota provide another useful lens of analysis for certain metrics.