College and university rankings are updated regularly by the organizations that compile them—the links below represent a sample of the many rankings available.
- U.S. News and World Report (National rankings)
- Times Higher Education
- QS World University Rankings
- Princeton Review
Statement on Rankings: Key Features of the Educational Experience at the University of Chicago
The University of Chicago offers a rigorous, empowering and highly engaged undergraduate education. We provide a range of information to help prospective undergraduates decide if the intellectually invigorating education at UChicago is a good fit for them. Much discussion and controversy has arisen over how media outlets and other organizations use changing data and formulas to create university rankings—sometimes producing shifts in rankings without underlying changes at the schools themselves. We recommend that students and families look with curiosity and skepticism at such shifts, since the schools themselves are the same, but a third party is now evaluating them differently.
Typically, we don’t comment on the various rankings, but we do look at the factors that underpin them. This time is different. U.S. News and World Report made changes to its ranking for 2023 which we strongly believe work against the interests of students who value an in-depth academic experience: Class size is no longer part of the rankings calculation, even though small classes are fundamental to the kind of deep classroom experience we offer. The new rankings also no longer consider the educational achievement level of instructors in the calculation of rank.
We are proud that UChicago has ranked at or near the top of U.S. universities on measures of class size and the educational achievement of instructors. A hallmark of the UChicago experience is when small classes of students analyze a text or conduct research with a highly published professor who is considered an expert in their field. These are among the reasons why UChicago is home to some of the most intellectually ambitious faculty and students in the world. They are why our students don’t simply learn established facts but are prepared to create and innovate new methods of thought. A ranking that fails to consider such factors does a disservice to students and families in our view. UChicago will continue to stay true to the educational principles that make an education here so transformative.
UChicago values the academic preparation and demonstrated academic achievement of our students. If you are a student who would enjoy learning how to deconstruct the statistical and analytical criteria of the rankings as well as debating with others their historical, philosophical, sociological, economic and political implications, we’d love to see your application.
UChicago’s Participation in Providing Data
Fundamentally, a ranking of schools is an opinion. It is among the many sources of information that students and families can use for comparative insights into different schools. At UChicago, we have long encouraged families to approach rankings with their own critical thinking and look beyond them to the fundamentals of a university’s academic program, culture and opportunities for enrichment. A successful education depends more on finding an institution that meets a student’s individual needs and goals than upon any statistical formula.
Over the past year, many universities—and individual schools (law, medical, business) within those universities—have announced that they will no longer participate in the U.S. News rankings and other external rankings. UChicago will continue to furnish information for undergraduate program rankings. That said, no ranking should serve as a university’s guide. We prefer to shine a light on the substantive attributes that make the University of Chicago distinctive, including our unabashed enthusiasm for the life of the mind—the conviction that ideas matter, that they are worth discussing, and that a single viewpoint or style of thought should not be imposed. Our faculty expose students to contrasting views, confident in students’ abilities to think critically and choose their own paths. Our curriculum reflects a belief in generalist education and interdisciplinarity, and students learn from a faculty dedicated to teaching and serious inquiry. Our faculty produce path-breaking ideas about the most important questions through intense inquiry, a multiplicity of approaches and dialogue with practitioners. Our commitment to the core missions of excellence in scholarship and teaching has made our University eminent and we believe it will make it ever more so in the future.