U of T in top 20 in new rankings

The University of Toronto placed 19th in the 2011–2012 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, down two spots from last year.

To develop the most comprehensive, well-rounded standard in comparing university performance, THE modified the criteria over the past two years to avoid disadvantaging smaller universities. The current method of analysis looks at five categories: teaching and learning environment, volume and quality of research, citations and research influence, industry income, and international outlook.

U of T achieved an overall score of 81.6%. Per category, the university received its highest scores in research (87.4%) and citation (86.5%), followed by teaching (76.9%), international outlook (69%), and industry income (44.9%).

Similarly to other university rankings, such as Newsweek, the method of analysis developed by THE relies heavily on research criteria. In total, the research and citation categories amount to 60% of the total evaluation. Teaching quality of learning environment count for 30%, industry income for 2.5%, and international outlook for 7.5%.

A table on the THE website and an iPhone app allow users to manipulate the weight of each category. This changes the rankings based on the individual priorities of the user.

The University of Toronto houses 18 faculties, schools, and institutions, and boasts the fourth-largest academic library in the world.

Eight other Canadian universities ranked among the top 200. Alongside U of T, the University of British Columbia and McGill University placed in the top 50.

“Over the years, the Times Higher Education has consulted widely and strengthened their measurement systems with important innovations such as a survey of teaching and learning environments,” said U of T president David Naylor. “I am delighted to see our dedicated faculty, and those of many sister institutions, recognized for their inspiring teaching and world-leading research.”

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