Top US Universities 2022-23: Columbia plunges from 2nd to 18th position

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 Top US Universities 2022-23: Columbia plunges from 2nd to 18th position

Columbia University’s ranking among the top universities in the US fell from second to the 18th position in 2022-23, shows the latest report by US News and World Report.

In 2021, when it was ranked second, US News had ‘unranked’ the Ivy League university following allegations of incorrect data submitted by the institute.

Columbia University in a statement issued on September 9 had admitted to submitting incorrect information to the organisation, overstating its class sizes and the number of full-time faculty employed who hold terminal degrees. These factors are taken into account when calculating college ranks by the US News and World Report.

The university said it used “outdated and/or incorrect methodologies” in its previous years’ submissions for the rankings.

“The Columbia undergraduate experience is and always has been centered around small classes taught by highly accomplished faculty. That fact is unchanged. But anything less than complete accuracy in the data that we report – regardless of the size or the reason – is inconsistent with the standards of excellence to which Columbia holds itself. We deeply regret the deficiencies in our prior reporting and are committed to doing better,” Columbia’s provost, Mary Boyce, said in the statement.

This came after Dr Michael Thaddeus, a mathematics professor, questioned Columbia University’s drastic rise from 18th position in the year of its debut in 1988, to second position in 2021, surpassed only by Princeton and tied with Harvard and MIT. Thaddeus alleged data provided by the institute was botched. “Several of the key figures supporting Columbia’s high ranking are inaccurate, dubious, or highly misleading,” he said.

Thaddeus also released an extensive analysis on the institute’s faculty website in February this year, comparing the figures submitted to US News with numbers released internally by the institute.

In response, Columbia University has said it will not submit data to participate in the US News and World Report college ranking next year. The institute also launched a review on the faculty’s concerns over the data submitted to the organisation in the past.

This year, US News and World Report assessed 1,500 US institutions granting undergraduate degrees. Princeton University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology secured the first and second positions respectively for 2022-23. Harvard University, Stanford University, and Yale University were tied for the third position.

The rankings are made based on 17 parameters assessing academic quality including graduation and retention rate, undergraduate academic reputation, and financial resources per student, among others.

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