UW News

August 27, 2018

Rankings: UW is No. 14 in the world, third among U.S. public universities, plus on Money and Washington Monthly best-of lists

UW News

The University of Washington is ranked No. 14 in the world — No. 3 among U.S. public universities — on the 2018 Academic Ranking of World Universities, released this month.

“At the University of Washington, we measure our success in terms of the positive impact created by our community of scholars, educators and alumni, so we are honored to be recognized by this ranking for the significance of that impact. Their incredible scholarship and discovery spans a wide range of disciplines, from population health to increased understanding of our whole world,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce said.

This global ranking was first published in 2003 by Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s Center for World-Class Universities. Since 2009, the ranking has been published by the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, which is not affiliated with any university. This year, the ranking included 1,000 universities around the world.

The consultancy calculates its rankings based on a university’s external recognition. The components of the ranking include: total number of alumni and faculty winning major awards; number of highly cited researchers employed; and the number of papers published and cited. The UW scored especially high in the number of faculty-authored articles indexed in major science and social-science citation indices. More information about the ranking’s methodology is available on the organization’s website.

The UW placed well in two other rankings, also released this month. The UW is in the top 20 on MONEY Magazine’s 2018 list of Best Colleges for Your Money. The university tied for 19th place on the list.

MONEY magazine evaluates colleges on educational quality, affordability and alumni success. In MONEY’s rankings, educational quality is based on six-year graduation rates. Affordability is evaluated based on the net costs students pay (after aid is subtracted), the length of time it takes students to earn degrees, and the amount students and parents typically borrow through federal programs. Long-term affordability measures include student loan default and repayment rates. And alumni success is based on salary data from several online sources, as well as data on schools’ track records of moving low-income students into the upper middle class.

MONEY’s rankings include only U.S. colleges that have a graduation rate that is at or above the median for its institutional category, or it must fall within the top 25 percent of MONEY’s “value-added” graduation analysis. In other words, MONEY only includes colleges with a graduation rate that is unusually high compared to schools whose students have similar test scores and socioeconomic backgrounds, according to the magazine.

Finally, the UW ranked No. 15 in the national universities category of the 2018 Washington Monthly College Rankings. The Monthly says the magazine calls attention to colleges that serve the best interests of taxpayers and the country as a whole—including by enrolling and graduating students of modest means.