08 June 2017

The Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings have just been published ahead of the usual schedule.

These rankings, which date back to 2004 when QS had a partnership with the Times Higher Education Supplement, include six metrics: citations per faculty (20%), faculty student ratio (20%), international faculty (5%), international students (5%), employer survey (10%) and academic survey (40%). Bibliometric data are derived from the Scopus database.

There have been no changes in methodology this year so the rankings are fairly stable. Although the US and the UK continue to dominate the upper reaches of the rankings – with nine out of the top ten places – other regions are now rising steadily.

Asian universities have continued to do well. One remarkable achievement is Nanyang Technological University in Singapore which is now in eleventh place compared with 39th in the 2014-15 rankings and ahead of the National University of Singapore. There are now six Chinese universities in the top 100 compared with four last year, although top ranked Tsinghua university slipped back one place.

Leading Russian universities such as Lomonosov Moscow State University, St Petersburg State University and Novosibersk State University have made significant gains.

The Arab Region is another area of growth. There are now three Saudi universities in the top 400, all of which have improved since last year, in addition to one each from Egypt, Lebanon, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates.

The top five universities overall are:

  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA
  2. Stanford University, USA
  3. Harvard University, USA
  4. California University of Technology (Caltech), USA
  5. University of Cambridge, UK.

The top universities for each indicator are:

Academic reputation; Harvard University, USA

Employer reputation; Harvard University, USA

Faculty student ratio; Baylor College of Medicine, USA

Citations per faculty; King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Saudi Arabia

International faculty; American University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

International students; INSEAD, France.


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