u.s. news & world report has issued its college rankings for best colleges 2010. harvard caught princeton for the #1 ranking. the top 10 are as follows:
4. cal tech
4. stanford (another california school in the top 10)
other notables (read: universities i like, attended, or choose to highlight) include:
11. dartmouth (beautiful, and winner of the new category in commitment to undergraduate teaching)
21. uc berkeley
24. ucla (which again beat #26 usc, and was ranked the #2 public university in the country ;-)
35. uc san diego
42. uc davis
42. uc santa barbara (tie)
46. uc irvine
58. pepperdine (which when i attended there had climbed into the top 50, sank to 58)
this means 9 california universities (cal tech, stanford, cal berkeley, ucla, usc, uc san diego, uc davis, uc santa barbara, and uc irvine) ranked in the top 50.
of course, many colleges that did not rank as high as they would like are already complaining about the formula used to compute the rankings. an associated press article reports that:
The ranking formula takes account of factors such as SAT scores, peer reputation, selectivity and alumni giving.
critics argue that too much emphasis is placed on library size, alumni giving, and university presidential voting, which can skew the objectivity of the vote (because each university president ranks his or her college higher than it should be), but because everyone most likely inflates their school’s status, it all evens out. other systems of college ranking place more of an emphasis on teaching, student debt upon completion, employability, and affordability.
then again, the schools in the top tier are largely recognized as being the best in the country. likewise, u.s. news and world report remains the standard for college rankings.