BlueSky Ranking Of University Rankings 2022/23 – North America
When QS Quacquarelli Symonds and Times Higher Education partnered to publish their first THE-QS World University Ranking in 2004, Harvard University ranked #1. Nearly twenty years later, Harvard is still at the top, but not in either of the rankings that QS and THE now publish separately. In 2022/23, the rankings dominance that Harvard continues to enjoy is in the two other major global university rankings, published by US News and ARWU Shanghai.
The BlueSky Thinking Ranking of University Rankings aggregates the performance of the world’s leading academic institutions across all four major global rankings. Each of them uses a different methodology and measures different things with the inherent limitations of each assessment, so doing particularly well in one ranking and less well in another is reflected in the overall average score.
And for the regional results for North America, Harvard is the only member of the fabled Ivy League schools to make the top 5. Of the four others, MIT is just across the Charles River while the three others are all in California.
Five years ago, Stanford held the top spot when combining the results of all four world university rankings, but in 2022/23 shares #2 with MIT. UC Berkeley has made the most significant gain among the top 10, climbing an impressive 4 places to #5. This strong performance is matched by Canada’s top ranking institution, University of Toronto which also rose 4 places to share #13 with UCLA.
University of British Columbia and McGill University complete the trio of Canadian schools in the North American top 25, while further down the league table the the University of Alberta has also progressed in the past 5 years, climbing 6 places to #42.
University of Southern California, Emory University and Vanderbilt University have also made significant advances.
Among those that have lost ground since 2018, Duke University is down 5 places to #20 compared to other US and Canadian schools, as are the University of Wisconsin-Madison at #27. Ohio State, Purdue University and Rice University saw the biggest falls of 8 places, followed by the University of Colorado – Boulder down 6 places.
There are winners and losers in every ranking of course, and all of the institutions in the top 50 are leading lights for European research, academic reputation and learning. But in a competitive higher education landscape, the BlueSky Ranking of University Rankings 2022/23 highlights fascinating regional and international shifts over the past five years.
Don’t forget to check out results for the rest of the world:
Global Top 100: BlueSky Thinking Ranking of University Rankings 2022/23 – Global
Asia & Oceania Top 30: BlueSky Thinking Ranking of University Rankings 2022/23 – Asia & Oceania
BlueSky Ranking of the University Rankings 2022/23 – North America
|Rank in N.America 2022/23||Rank in N.America 2017/18||Institution Name||Country||THE 2023||QS 2023||USNews 2022/23||ARWU 2022||5-year Change|
|2||3||Massachusetts Institute of Technology||USA||5||1||2||3||1|
|4||4||California Institute of Technology||USA||6||6||9||9||0|
|5||9||University of California, Berkeley||USA||8||27||4||5||4|
|9||6||The University of Chicago||USA||13||10||22||10||-3|
|10||11||University of Pennsylvania||USA||14||13||15||15||1|
|11||10||Johns Hopkins University||USA||15||24||10||14||-1|
|13||17||University of Toronto||Canada||18||34||18||22||4|
|13||13||University of California, Los Angeles||USA||21||44||14||13||0|
|15||14||University of Michigan-Ann Arbor||USA||23||25||19||28||-1|
|17||20||New York University||USA||24||39||31||25||3|
|18||18||University of California, San Diego||USA||32||53||20||21||0|
|19||19||University of Washington||USA||26||80||6||17||0|
|21||21||University of British Columbia||Canada||40||47||35||44||0|
|22||25||University of Texas at Austin||USA||50||72||43||37||3|
|24||26||Washington University in St Louis||USA||57||118||32||27||2|
|25||27||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill||USA||69||102||41||29||2|
|26||24||University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign||USA||48||85||74||49||-2|
|27||22||University of Wisconsin-Madison||USA||81||83||63||33||-5|
|28||28||Carnegie Mellon University||USA||28||52||118||125||0|
|29||36||University of Southern California||USA||65||134||80||53||7|
|30||30||University of California, Santa Barbara||USA||64||149||67||57||0|
|31||29||Georgia Institute of Technology||USA||38||88||51||175||-2|
|33||35||University of California, Davis||USA||63||102||73||125||2|
|35||34||University of Maryland||USA||104||164||57||50||-1|
|36||33||University of Minnesota Twin Cities||USA||101||185||57||44||-3|
|37||32||Ohio State University||USA||112||140||55||125||-5|
|40||41||University of Pittsburgh||USA||144||181||45||82||1|
|41||38||Pennsylvania State University||USA||151||93||84||125||-3|
|42||48||University of Alberta||Canada||118||110||136||92||6|
|44||43||University of California, Irvine||USA||95||235||84||61||-1|
|45||40||Purdue University – West Lafayette||USA||127||129||140||83||-5|
|46||49||University of Florida||USA||151||188||98||94||3|
|48||42||University of Colorado, Boulder||USA||148||317||70||51||-6|
|49||53||University of California Santa Cruz||USA||192||375||105||175||4|
|50||57||University of California San Francisco||USA||–||1100||16||19||7|
University Rankings Methodologies
Each of the major university rankings uses a different methodology and weights the use of different data to produce their league tables, so it is important to understand what is being measured. In simple terms:
THE – the performance indicators are grouped into five areas: Teaching (the learning environment); Research (volume, income and reputation); Citations (research influence); International Outlook (staff, students and research); and Industry Income (knowledge transfer).
Teaching (30%); Research (30%); Citations (30%); International Outlook (7.5%); Industry Income (2.5%).
QS– six indicators looking at four broad categories: research reputation, the learning and teaching environment, research impact, and internationalisation.
Academic Reputation (40%); Employer Reputation (10%); Citations per Faculty (20%); Faculty Student Ratio (20%); International Student Ratio (5%); International Faculty Ratio (5%)
ARWU – considers every university that has any Nobel Laureates, Fields Medalists, Highly Cited Researchers, or papers published in Nature or Science. In addition, universities with a significant amount of papers indexed by Science Citation Index-Expanded (SCIE) and Social Science Citation Index (SSCI) are also included.
Quality of Education (10%); Quality of Faculty (40%); Research Output (40%) Per Capita Performance (10%)
US News – calculates the rankings using 13 indicators and weights that U.S. News chose to measure global research performance.
Global Research Reputation (12.5%); Regional Research Reputation (12.5%); Publications (10%); Books (2.5%); Conferences (2.5%), Normalized Citation Impact (10%); Total Citations (7.5%); Number Of Publications Among 10% Most Cited (12.5%); Percentage Of Total Publications Among 10% Most Cited (10%); International Collaboration – Relative To Country (5%); International Collaboration (5%); Number Of Highly Cited Papers Among Top 1% Most Cited In Respective Field (5%); Percentage Of Total Publications Among Top 1% Most Highly Cited Papers (5%)
About the author
Matt Symonds is Chief Editor of BlueSky Thinking. He is the S of QS, co-founding QS Quacquarelli Symonds, publishers of the QS World University Rankings and numerous business school rankings.
In 2010 Matt was the media consultant for Times Higher Education to support the launch of their own THE World University Rankings, and has subsequently worked for THE and WSJ for business school rankings.
Matt writes about Higher Education and management for Forbes, BBC, Times of India and formerly The Economist and Bloomberg.