A report by Times Higher Education, or THE, recently ranked UC Berkeley as the 10th best undergraduate research university from a total of 980 international institutions.
Last year, the publication ranked UC Berkeley number 13. THE reporter Ellie Bothwell attributed the climb to an improvement in the research and teaching environment on campus.
“Its nice to move up in the rankings, but … it doesn’t change much,” said campus spokesperson Dan Mogulof. “We know we have excellent professors and researchers. We are very confident that we have some of the most engaged and passionate students, and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters.”
THE conducts data-based research to determine the rankings, categorizing the institutions based on five main educational pillars: teaching, international outlook, knowledge transfer, research and citations.
In August, the Academic Ranking of World Universities named UC Berkeley the third-best research university in the world, and earlier this month, U.S. News and World Report ranked UC Berkeley the top public university in the nation for the 19th consecutive year.
THE has been ranking universities since 2004 and began as a partner with Quacquarelli Symonds, a company specializing in higher education and careers information, which it split from in 2010. In the past year, it has transitioned to having full control over its data collection.
To acquire its independent research, THE approaches universities for information, such as staff-to-student ratios and total published research. Additionally, it identifies top academics in a variety of fields and asks them where the most innovative research is happening in their respective disciplines.
In order to be ranked, universities must publish 1,000 articles in a five-year period and teach undergraduates.
According to Bothwell, published rankings are especially important for international students planning to spend their university years abroad.