What are this year’s best colleges?

The U.S. News & World Report announced its 38th edition of the Best College rankings for the 2022-23 year.

It evaluated 1,500 universities and colleges on 17 measures of academic quality.

According to its news release, there are some changes to this year’s rankings, such as:

  • Update to SAT/ACT calculation: For schools that reported SAT/ACT scores for less than 50% of new entrants in consecutive years, U.S. News did not use those scores to calculate the school’s ranking. Instead, U.S. News increased the weights of two other ranking factors like high school class standing and average graduation rate. This change was made due to the pandemic’s effects on testing in 2020, when the supply and demand for taking the SAT/ACT plummeted, particularly among students from low-income backgrounds.
  • More comprehensive measure of faculty resources: It includes highly credentialed faculty regardless of their employment contract. This change reflects the growing number of part-time instructors at schools.
  • Updates to the ranking categories: About 10% of ranked schools moved into different categories this year. This is due to the “2021 update” from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, which U.S. News has used since the first Best Colleges rankings in 1983 to compare schools with similar missions.

In its rankings, U.S. News prioritizes student retention rates, graduation rates, graduate indebtedness and social mobility to determine outcomes, as 40% of the methodology is around student outcomes.

“We feel like our job is to offer data that can make some really complicated decisions around college and where to apply and where to go a little bit easier for students and families,” Liana Loewus, managing editor for Education at U.S News & World Report, said to WTOP.

“We also see part of our goal is holding universities accountable for for having quality academics and gathering this kind of data is one way to do that.”

The college rankings are listed below:

National Universities
  1. Princeton University
  2. Harvard University
  3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  4. Yale University
  5. Stanford Universities

Most notable: No. 9. Johns Hopkins University;  No. 23. Georgetown University

National Liberal Arts Colleges
  1. Williams College
  2. Amherst College
  3. Swarthmore College
  4. Pomona College
  5. Wellesley College

Most notable: No. 11. Washington and Lee University

Top Public Schools

National Universities
  1. University of California, Los Angeles
  2. University of California, Berkeley
  3. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  4. University of Virginia
  5. University of California, Santa Barbara

Most notable: No. 10. William & Mary; tied for No.19 University of Maryland, College Park

National Liberal Arts Colleges
  1. U.S. Naval Academy
  2. U.S. Military Academy at West Point
  3. U.S. Air Force Academy
  4. Virginia Military Institute
  5. New College of Florida

Top Performers on Social Mobility

National Universities
  1. University of California, Riverside
  2. University of California, Irvine
  3. Rutgers University, Newark
  4. University of California, Merced
  5. Keiser University
National Liberal Arts Colleges
  1. Bennett College
  2. Tougaloo College
  3. Lake Forest College
  4. Salem College
  5. Spelman College
Tadiwos Abedje

Tadi Abedje is a freelance digital writer/editor for WTOP. He was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in Northern Virginia. Journalism has been his No. 1 passion since he was a kid and he is blessed to be around people, telling their stories and sharing them with the world.

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