Academic Ranking of World Universities

Last updated
Academic Ranking of World Universities
Academic Ranking of World Universities logo.png
Categories Higher education
FrequencyAnnual
PublisherShanghai Ranking Consultancy (2009–present)
Shanghai Jiao Tong University (2003–2008)
Country China
LanguageTen languages including English & Chinese
Website www.shanghairanking.com

The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as the Shanghai Ranking, is one of the annual publications of world university rankings. The league table was originally compiled and issued by Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2003, making it the first global university ranking with multifarious indicators. [1] [2]

Contents

Since 2009, ARWU has been published and copyrighted annually by Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, an organization focusing on higher education that is not legally subordinated to any universities or government agencies. [3] In 2011, a board of international advisory consisting of scholars and policy researchers was established to provide suggestions. [4] [5] The publication currently includes global league tables for institutions and a whole and for a selection of individual subjects, alongside independent regional Greater China Ranking and Macedonian HEIs Ranking.

ARWU is regarded as one of the three most influential and widely observed university rankings, alongside QS World University Rankings and Times Higher Education World University Rankings . [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] It has received positive feedback for its objectivity and methodology, [10] [11] [12] but draws wide criticism as it fails to adjust for the size of the institution, and thus larger institutions tend to rank above smaller ones. [9] [13] [14]

Global rankings

Overall

Methodology

ARWU methodology [15]
CriterionIndicatorCodeWeightingSource
Quality of education
Alumni
  • 10%
Official websites of Nobel Laureates & Fields Medalists [Note 1]
Quality of faculty
  • Staff as Nobel Laureates & Fields Medalists
  • Highly cited researchers in 21 broad subject categories
Award
HiCi
  • 20%
  • 20%
Official websites of Nobel Laureates & Fields Medalists [Note 1]
Thomson Reuters' survey of highly cited researchers [Note 1]
Research output
  • Papers published in Nature and Science [* 1]
  • Papers indexed in Science Citation Index-expanded and Social Science Citation Index
N&S
PUB
  • 20%
  • 20%
Citation index
Per capita performance
  • Per capita academic performance of an institution
PCP
  • 10%
--
*
  1. Not applicable to institutions specialized in humanities and social sciences whose N&S scores are relocated to other indicators.

Reception

A survey on higher education published by The Economist in 2005 commented ARWU as "the most widely used annual ranking of the world's research universities." [16] In 2010, The Chronicle of Higher Education called ARWU "the best-known and most influential global ranking of universities". [17] EU Research Headlines reported the ARWU's work on 31 December 2003: "The universities were carefully evaluated using several indicators of research performance." [18] University of Oxford Chancellor Chris Patten has said "the methodology looks fairly solid ... it looks like a pretty good stab at a fair comparison." [19] Former Vice-Chancellor of Australian National University Ian Chubb has said "The SJTU rankings were reported quickly and widely around the world... (and they) offer an important comparative view of research performance and reputation."[ citation needed ] Philip G. Altbach named ARWU's 'consistency, clarity of purpose, and transparency' as significant strengths. [20] While ARWU has originated in China, the ranking have been praised for being unbiased towards Asian institutions, especially Chinese institutions. [21]

Criticism

The ranking has been criticised for "relying too much on award factors" thus undermining the importance of quality of instruction and humanities. [9] [22] [23] [24] A 2007 paper published in the journal Scientometrics found that the results from the Shanghai rankings could not be reproduced from raw data using the method described by Liu and Cheng. [25] A 2013 paper in the same journal finally showed how the Shanghai ranking results could be reproduced. [26] In a report from April 2009, J-C. Billaut, D. Bouyssou and Ph. Vincke analyse how the ARWU works, using their insights as specialists of Multiple Criteria Decision Making (MCDM). Their main conclusions are that the criteria used are not relevant; that the aggregation methodology has a number of major problems; and that insufficient attention has been paid to fundamental choices of criteria. [27] The ARWU researchers themselves, N.C. Liu and Y. Cheng, think that the quality of universities cannot be precisely measured by mere numbers and any ranking must be controversial. They suggest that university and college rankings should be used with caution and their methodologies must be understood clearly before reporting or using the results. ARWU has been criticised by the European Commission as well as some EU member states for "favour[ing] Anglo-Saxon higher education institutions". For instance, ARWU is repeatedly criticised in France, where it triggers an annual controversy, focusing on its ill-adapted character to the French academic system [28] [29] and the unreasonable weight given to research often performed decades ago. [30] It is also criticised in France for its use as a motivation for merging universities into larger ones. [31] Indeed, a further criticism has been that the metrics used are not independent of university size, e.g. number of publications or award winners will mechanically add as universities are grouped, independently of research (or teaching) quality; thus a merger between two equally-ranked institutions will significantly increase the merged institutions’ score and give it a higher ranking, without any change in quality. [14]

Results

Academic Ranking of World Universities, 2003-2018, Top ten Academic Ranking of World Universities.png
Academic Ranking of World Universities, 2003-2018, Top ten
Academic Ranking of World Universities (500) – Top 50 [32] [Note 2]
Institution200320042005200620072008200920102011201220132014201520162017201820192020
Flag of the United States.svg Harvard University 111111111111111111
Flag of the United States.svg Stanford University 223322232222222222
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Cambridge 532244455555543333
Flag of the United States.svg Massachusetts Institute of Technology 655555543343354444
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, Berkeley 444433324434435555
Flag of the United States.svg Princeton University 778888877776666666
Flag of the United States.svg Columbia University 1097777788888898887
Flag of the United States.svg California Institute of Technology 366666666667789998
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Oxford 9810101010101010101091077779
Flag of the United States.svg University of Chicago 1110989999999991010101010
Flag of the United States.svg Yale University 81111111111111111111111111111121111
Flag of the United States.svg Cornell University 121212121212121213131313131314121312
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, Los Angeles 151614141313131312121212121212111113
Flag of France.svg Paris-Saclay University 724861645249434540373942414641423714
Flag of the United States.svg Johns Hopkins University 242219201920191818171717161618181615
Flag of the United States.svg University of Washington 162017171616161616161615151513141416
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University College London 202526262522212120212120181716171516
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, San Diego 141313131414141415151414141415151818
Flag of the United States.svg University of Pennsylvania 181515151515151514141516171817161719
Flag of Switzerland.svg Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich 252727272724232323232019201919191920
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, San Francisco 131718181818181817181818182121212021
Flag of the United States.svg University of Michigan 211921212121222222222322222324272022
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg University of Toronto 232424242324272726272824252723232423
Flag of the United States.svg Washington University in St. Louis 222828282829293031313232322320202223
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Imperial College London 172323232327262624242422232227242325
Flag of Japan.svg University of Tokyo 191420192019202021202121212024222526
Flag of the United States.svg Duke University 323132313232313535363131312526262827
Flag of the United States.svg New York University 553229293031323129272727272929323027
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Tsinghua University 201-250202-301153-202151-200151-202201-302201-302151-200151-200151-200151-200101-150101-1505848454329
Flag of the United States.svg Northwestern University 293031332930302930303028272622252930
Flag of the United States.svg University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 525655595838394142414336393533303330
Flag of the United States.svg University of Wisconsin–Madison 271816161717171719191924242828282732
Flag of Denmark.svg University of Copenhagen 655957564645434043444239353030292633
Flag of Japan.svg Kyoto University 302122222223242427262626263235353234
Flag of Australia (converted).svg University of Melbourne 928282787973756260575444444039384135
Flag of France.svg PSL University /////////////////36
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Manchester 897853504840414438404138413538343336
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg University of British Columbia 353637363635363637394037403431433538
Flag of France.svg Sorbonne University ///////////////364439
Flag of the United States.svg University of Minnesota 373332323328282828292930303334374140
Flag of the United States.svg University of Texas at Austin 474036393839383835353639374451404541
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Edinburgh 434747525355535453515145474132323142
Flag of the United States.svg Rockefeller University 282930303032323433323433333736303543
Flag of the United States.svg University of Colorado Boulder 313435343434343232333334343843383844
Flag of Sweden.svg Karolinska Institute 394645485351504244424447484444443845
Flag of the United States.svg University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign 452525252626252525252528293037413845
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg King's College London 757780838381656368686759555046565147
Flag of the United States.svg University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas 343638383941484951484645444348484948
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Peking University 251-300202-301203-300201-300203-304201-302201-302151-200201-300151-200151-200101-150101-1507171575349
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, Santa Barbara 263534353536353233343541384245464849

Alternative

As it may take much time for rising universities to produce Nobel laureates and Fields Medalists with numbers comparable to those of older institutions, the Institute created alternative rankings excluding such award factors so as to provide another way of comparisons of academic performance. The weighting of all the other factors remains unchanged, thus the grand total of 70%.

Alternative Rankings (500) – Top 10 [Note 2]
Institution2014 [33] 2015 [34]
Flag of the United States.svg Harvard University 11
Flag of the United States.svg Stanford University 22
Flag of the United States.svg Massachusetts Institute of Technology 43
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, Berkeley 34
Flag of the United States.svg California Institute of Technology 55
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Oxford 66
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg University of Cambridge 87
Flag of the United States.svg University of California, San Diego 78
Flag of the United States.svg University of Washington 109
Flag of the United States.svg Yale University 910

Subject

There are two categories in ARWU's disciplinary rankings, broad subject fields and specific subjects. The methodology is similar to that adopted in the overall table, including award factors, paper citation, and the number of highly cited scholars.

Natural Sciences [35] EngineeringLife SciencesMedical SciencesSocial Sciences
Atmospheric ScienceAerospace EngineeringAgricultural SciencesClinical MedicineBusiness Administration
ChemistryAutomation & ControlBiological SciencesDentistry & Oral SciencesCommunication
Earth SciencesBiomedical EngineeringHuman Biological SciencesMedical TechnologyEconomics
EcologyBiotechnologyVeterinary SciencesNursingEducation
GeographyChemical EngineeringPharmacy & Pharmaceutical SciencesFinance
MathematicsCivil EngineeringPublic HealthHospitality & Tourism Management
OceanographyComputer Science & EngineeringLaw
PhysicsElectrical & Electronic EngineeringLibrary & Information Science
Energy Science & EngineeringManagement
Environmental Science & EngineeringPolitical Sciences
Food Science & TechnologyPsychology
Instruments Science & TechnologyPublic Administration
Marine/Ocean EngineeringSociology
Materials Science & EngineeringStatistics
Mechanical Engineering
Metallurgical Engineering
Mining & Mineral Engineering
Nanoscience & Nanotechnology
Remote Sensing
Telecommunication Engineering
Transportation Science & Technology
Water Resources

Regional rankings

Considering the development of specific areas, two independent regional league tables with different methodologies were launched - Ranking of Top Universities in Greater China and Best Chinese Universities Ranking.

Greater China

Methodology

Methodology of Greater China Rankings [36] [Note 2]
CriterionIndicatorWeight
Education
  • Percentage of graduate students
  • Percentage of non-local students
  • Ratio of academic staff to students
  • Doctoral degrees awarded
  • Alumni as Nobel Laureates & Fields Medalists
  • 5%
  • 5%
  • 5%
  • 10%
  • 10%
Research
  • Annual research income
  • Nature & Science Papers
  • SCIE & SSCI papers
  • International patents
  • 5%
  • 10%
  • 10%
  • 10%
Faculty
  • Percentage of academic staff with a doctoral degree
  • Staff as Nobel Laureates and Fields Medalists
  • Highly cited researchers
  • 5%
  • 10%
  • 10%
Resources
  • Annual budget
  • 5%

Results

Greater China Rankings (100) – Top 10 [Note 2] [37]
Institution201120122013201420152016201720182019
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Tsinghua University 111111111
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Peking University 775542222
Flag of Hong Kong.svg The Chinese University of Hong Kong 656755443
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Zhejiang University 10991099554
Flag of Hong Kong.svg The University of Hong Kong 364665685
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg University of Science and Technology of China 91110884766
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai Jiao Tong University 151212121210877
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Fudan University 1610111110129108
Flag of the Republic of China.svg National Tsing Hua University 433223339
Flag of the Republic of China.svg National Taiwan University 1223379910

Notes

  1. 1 2 3 Official datum sources adopted by ARWU: Nobel Laureate Web, Fields Medalist Web, Thomson Reuters' survey of highly cited researchers & Thomson Reuters' Web of Science.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Order shown in accordance with the latest result.

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