The Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020 have been released, and for the fourth year in a row The University of Oxford is in first place. The California Institute of Technology is second, with The University of Cambridge, Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology rounding out the top 5.
Times Higher Education (THE) is a nearly fifty-year-old organization dedicated to improving university education with data, analysis and insight. According to their website, THE has “unparalleled expertise” on university performance, with its tools being used by “many of the world’s most prestigious universities to help them achieve their strategic goals.”
Times Higher Education says theirs is the only university ranking that is audited by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Although Oxford is at the top of the 2020 rankings, the United Kingdom has seen its other schools move down the list this time around (Cambridge was #2 last year). On the other hand, both Canada and Italy saw their institutions move up. The United States, Germany, and Iran are also well-represented, with Iran having 11 universities ranked.
THE uses 13 different criteria to rank nearly 1,400 universities in 92 countries. The rankings are based on a university’s performance in teaching, research, citations and more.
Princeton, Harvard and Yale came in at 6, 7 and 8 respectively. By contrast, the U.S. News and World Report rankings have Princeton slotted at #1, ahead of MIT (tied for #3 with Columbia) and ahead of Stanford (#6)
The University of Chicago took the 9th spot in the Times Higher Education rankings, while Imperial College London came in at #10. The U.S. has 14 universities in the top 20, including UC Berkeley, UCLA, Johns Hopkins, the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell and Duke.
Latin America did not fare as well overall, but Brazil saw several of its schools added to the list for the first time. A handful of other nations made their first appearance in the rankings: Brunei, Vietnam, Cuba and Malta are all represented.
In taking the #1 spot, Oxford scored above 90 out of 100 in most categories. It achieved a score of 99.6 in research and 98.4 in citations, but only 65.5 in industry income. Its overall score is 95.4, while CIT is a close runner-up with an overall score of 94.5.
Stanford University was the top-ranked school in teaching, followed by CIT, Yale, Cambridge, MIT, Oxford and Princeton.