CU scored 98.2 out of 100 in the survey’s analysis of how many times work by faculty members is cited by other academics. The measure is an indicator of how influential faculty members are in their disciplines.
CU’s score is the 13th-highest ranking, placing it above such renowned schools as Oxford and Cambridge universities in the United Kingdom and Yale University and Johns Hopkins University in the United States.
The report is in line with prior studies from other publications, CU-Boulder spokesman Bronson Hilliard said.
“That’s not surprising,” he said. “We have one of the most productive research faculties in the world, and certainly the U.S.”
In addition to producing research that impacts their disciplines and peers, CU faculty often include undergraduates on their teams to help develop their skills and careers, Hilliard said.
Princeton University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology topped the citations list with scores of 100.
CU ranked 77th in the overall rankings, which measured factors such as the learning environment, international outlook of staff and students and volume of research produced.
CU-Boulder was the only institution in Colorado to make the top 200. Colorado School of Mines was in the 201-to-225 tier, and Colorado State University was ranked in the 226-to-250 tier.
Ranking colleges can be tricky and confusing, and summarizing a university’s quality in one score is only useful to a point, Hilliard said. Still, the rankings show the influence of CU.
“It’s great for Colorado, great for our students and great for prospective faculty and students,” Hilliard said.
Success in rankings also helps CU show lawmakers, federal agencies and taxpayers they are getting value for the money and resources they commit, Hilliard said.
“They’re getting an institution that is making a difference on a world scale and spinning off companies with that research,” Hilliard said.
The World University Rankings are compiled by Times Higher Education, which originally was affiliated with the Times of London. Its rankings are compiled in conjunction with Thomson Reuters. The purpose of the rankings is to help students and academics determine the academic strengths of institutions.
The rankings are online at timeshighereducation.co.uk/world-university-rankings/.