The Princeton Review named Azusa Pacific University a top college in the west.

APU is 1 of 124 institutions recommended in the “Best Western Colleges” section of the 2015 Best Colleges. The rankings are broken down by region: Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, and West. Within each region, institutions are selected based on many factors, including academic excellence, campus life, and student feedback. Collectively, the 643 colleges chosen constitute about 25 percent of the nation's universities.

The Princeton Review surveys tens of thousands of students at hundreds of campuses nationwide each school year. The surveys contain more than 80 questions, including everything from “How many out-of-class hours do you spend studying each day?” to “How do you rate your campus food?” Some questions on the survey are open-ended and offer students the opportunity to answer with narrative responses. Rating categories include: Academics, Campus Life, Quality of Life, and Social Scene.