What are the university rankings?
University rankings are widely recognized tools that evaluate and compare universities worldwide based on various criteria. These rankings help students, researchers, and institutions make informed decisions about higher education. Several prominent ranking systems exist, such as the QS World University Rankings, U.S. News & World Report's Best Global University Rankings, Times Higher Education World University Rankings, and the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as the Shanghai Rankings.
Explore different university ranking systems:
These institutions from the U.S. and more than 90 other countries have been ranked based on 13 indicators that measure their academic research performance and their global and regional reputations. Students can use these rankings to explore the higher education options that exist beyond their own countries' borders and to compare key aspects of schools' research missions. These are the world's 2,000 top universities.
The 20th edition of the QS World University Rankings features 1,500 institutions across 104 locations and is the only ranking of its kind to emphasise employability and sustainability.
This year, we've implemented our largest-ever methodological enhancement, introducing three new metrics: Sustainability, Employment Outcomes and International Research Network.
The results draw on the analysis of 17.5m academic papers and the expert opinions of over 240,000 academic faculty and employers. Massachusetts Institute of Technology celebrates twelve years at the top, the University of Cambridge retains 2nd place while the University of Oxford (3rd) climbs one position.
The Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024 include 1,904 universities across 108 countries and regions. The table is based on our new WUR 3.0 methodology, which includes 18 carefully calibrated performance indicators that measure an institution’s performance across five areas: teaching, research environment, research quality, industry, and international outlook.
This year’s ranking analysed more than 134 million citations across 16.5 million research publications and included survey responses from 68,402 scholars globally. Overall, we collected 411,789 datapoints from more than 2,673 institutions that submitted data. Trusted worldwide by students, teachers, governments and industry experts, the 2024 league table reveals how the global higher education landscape is shifting.
View the World University Rankings 2024 methodology The University of Oxford tops the ranking for the eighth year in a row, but others in the top five have seen shifts in their ranks. Stanford University moves up to second place, pushing Harvard University down to fourth. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) climbs up two places to third this year. The University of Cambridge slips to fifth place, after being in joint third place last year.
The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) was first published in June 2003 by the Center for World-Class Universities (CWCU), Graduate School of Education (formerly the Institute of Higher Education) of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, and updated on an annual basis. Since 2009 the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) has been published and copyrighted by ShanghaiRanking Consultancy. ShanghaiRanking Consultancy is a fully independent organization on higher education intelligence and not legally subordinated to any universities or government agencies. ARWU uses six objective indicators to rank world universities, including the number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals, a number of highly cited researchers selected by Clarivate, a number of articles published in journals of Nature and Science, a number of articles indexed in Science Citation Index Expanded™ and Social Sciences Citation Index™ in the Web of Science™, and per capita performance of a university. More than 2500 universities are actually ranked by ARWU every year and the best 1000 are published.