US News ranks best universities in the world, and Harvard tops the list

Second annual rankings released

U.S. News & World Report on Tuesday released its second annual global rankings, which compare universities across borders based on reputation and research opportunities—instead of the undergraduate experience compared by the national rankings.

The rankings this year include 750 institutions from 57 countries, an increase from last year's 500 universities in 49 countries.

See last year's rankings

The global formula used data from Web of Science and Thomson Reuters' InCites tool to analyze:

  • Global and regional reputations;
  • Citations and impact;
  • Awards of doctoral degrees;
  • Conferences;
  • Scholarly and book publications; and
  • International collaboration.

To ensure all data points are comparable, staple factors of the domestic rankings—such as undergraduate admission selectivity, entrance exam scores, and graduation rates—were omitted.

The United States had 181 institutions in the top 750, followed by China with 57 schools, the United Kingdom with 55 schools, Germany with 50 schools, and Italy with 38 schools.

American schools took eight of the top 10 spots overall:

1. Harvard University
2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
3. University of California, Berkeley
4. Stanford University
5. University of Oxford
6. University of Cambridge
7. California Institute of Technology
8. University of California, Los Angeles
9. Columbia University
10. University of Chicago

The new rankings also added an arts and humanities category to the subject rankings and an African category to the regional rankings (U.S. News & World Report release, 10/6; Morse, U.S. News & World Report methodology, 10/5).

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