UC Berkeley has placed 22nd in recently released 2012 QS World University rankings, down one place from last year but up from its 28th-place ranking in 2010.
The survey ranks universities on six factors, each on a 100-point scale, including academic reputation, citations per faculty, faculty to student ratio, employer reputation, the proportion of international faculty and the proportion of international students.
For 2012, the campus received a perfect score in regard to both academic and employer reputation and a 97.9 out of 100 for citations per faculty but only a 47.0 out of 100 for its faculty-to-student ratio. The report gave the campus an 86.1 and 78.8 for its proportion of international faculty and staff, respectively.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology came in first in the rankings, followed by the University of Cambridge and Harvard University.
The survey also ranks universities by individual subjects. Of the five subjects, UC Berkeley maintained its rank from 2011 in natural sciences, life sciences and medicine, engineering and technology and arts and humanities. Social sciences and management fell from fourth place to fifth.
Three other UC campuses were also ranked in the top 100, with UCLA at No. 31, UC San Diego at No. 70 and UC Davis at No. 100. The campus’s ranking places it below Stanford University, Cornell University and the University of Michigan and above Northwestern University.
In national university rankings released in August by the Washington Monthly, UC Berkeley dropped in rank from third to fifth between 2011 and 2012. That set of rankings uses a methodology that differs from that of the QS rankings since it measures the social mobility of students, service involvement and research as its primary considerations.
UC Berkeley placed fourth for the second year in a row in the 2012 Academic Ranking of World Universities by Jiao Tong University in Shanghai. Unlike the Washington Monthly report, the world ranking uses a rigorous numbers game to compile the final list, which considers factors such as research performance, prominent researchers, notable alumni and staff and the number of papers published and indexed by the university.
Berkeley ranked eighth in both 2005 and 2006 in the QS rankings, before the system changed the way it calculates its rankings in 2007.
“According to our campus data analysts, the changes in the QS methodology over time cause major shifts in where universities place in the rankings,” said Janet Gilmore, a campus spokesperson. “Individual rankings may fluctuate here and there due to changes in methodology or other factors, but, year after year, UC Berkeley consistently ranks among the best, if not ranked as the best, university. And that is a testament to the high-caliber work of our faculty, students and staff.”