A group affiliated with the Stanford University Graduate School of Education has put out an interesting analysis and report “A ‘Fit’ Over Rankings: Why College Engagement Matters More Than Selectivity”. Basically it says that college rankings are not a useful indicator for quality or outcomes from a student’s perspective. Students and parents would be better off ignoring rankings when choosing a college or university. “Selectivity” (how hard it is to get an offer) is not a reliable indicator either.
What is important is “engagement” inside and outside the classroom. Opportunities for internships (or co-op), mentors, long-term projects (maybe like student design teams?) are all examples of “engagement” that they cite in the report. There are lots of other interesting details and observations, so I highly recommend having a look at it if you’re thinking about applying to university.
2 thoughts on “Ignore the Rankings”
The Dean of Admissions at Yale university had written an article on this topic more than five years ago. It had helped me help my son in making a rational decision while choosing his university. My son had sent him a “thank you” email for this advice. It is quite concise. Here is the link to that article:
Thanks, yes that’s a nice article. It emphasizes the importance of making rational decisions based on personal factors, rather than irrational decisions based on criteria that some publication comes up with, and I agree.