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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

‘Best college value’ rankings hurt AZ universities

Each year new college rankings flood the Internet. Recently Time’s Money magazine released its annual rankings for best value colleges in the United States.

The rankings, according to Money, were based on a combination of factors like affordability, educational quality, and alumni earnings. These factors culminate in determining the best value for one’s educational dollar.

Out of the 736 schools that were ranked, the UA was listed at No. 147, one behind Cal State Fresno, and Lawrence University.

This ranks the UA in the top 20 percent of all universities listed. Other in-state universities did not do as well, with ASU at No. 354 and NAU at No. 562.

Last academic year, all three in-state universities had better rankings. One factor may be the decision by Gov. Doug Ducey and the Arizona Legislature to approve $100 million in education cuts to in-state universities. Money does not explicitly state whether the budget cuts were a direct result of the drop in the rankings for the UA.

Even though the UA dropped on Money’s list, the Center for World University Rankings lists the UA as the 68th best university in the world, which is two spots better than its 2014 ranking.

In a press release by UANews, UA president Ann Weaver Hart stated, “The University of Arizona does very well in international rankings thanks to the productivity and achievements of our faculty and the employability of our graduates.”

Like Money, the CWUR bases its rankings on various factors ranging from quality of education to how often the university was cited in research papers.

Tamara Statman, a political science freshman, believes many students use college rankings to determine where they want to go.

“Students want to be able to compare schools and see how they stack up against one another,” she said.

Students are not limited when it comes to comparing rankings produced by magazines and websites such as US News & World Report, Money, CWUR, Forbes, The Princeton Review and more. 

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