"For the Class of 2014, there were 7,753 applicants with 2,746 acceptances, resulting in an acceptance rate of 35.42 percent"
The numbers used for USNWR were from 2009...
I think we might be talking about two different things. Do you think the rank is going to go up this year, and then down the next?
I am sorry if I appear to be obnoxious, I don't intend it.
Apparently, for the most recent USNWR, they used the 2009 statistic since that is what they list in their school facts. Although between 2010 and 2011, the acceptance rate rose, but since the last USNWR acceptance statistic, it has dropped. I don't know when they publish the newest magazine with rankings, but my guess is they are either using 2010, or 2011. Either way, it's still a decrease, leading to a probable bump. That, and the endowment rebound.
I'm just curious, what difference does the ranking make? Especially if we're talking about #34 going to #29 or #37? My guess is, longer term, the continuing financial squeeze and retrenchment at Brandeis will inevitably hurt programs down the road, and that should negatively affect the ranking (although it may not, given the weighting that factors like acceptance rate have.) Also the squeeze on financial aid may actually increase their acceptance rate, as more accepted students turn them down in favor of equally-ranked more generous schools. I don't see how Brandeis will increase its excellence and perception while cutting costs - nice trick if they can pull it off.
CAorBust, you have a fundamental misunderstanding about Brandeis' financial situation and the direction (which is in fact upward) of its academic programs.
Brandeis is not in a long-term financial squeeze. The recent economic downturn affected all schools. More forthrightly than most, Brandeis stepped up to make strategic cuts that do not materially affect undergrads and that strengthen the academy for the long run, while simultaneously innovating programs and building state of the art facilities--e.g. the new science center and Humanities center.
Although belt-tightening in certain areas, those are small individually and where the university isn't excellent. In fact, Brandeis has added exciting new programs like an undergrad Busness major and the independent-study Justice Brandeis Semester. Resources are being plowed into student aid. The school is focused on building from its strengths--i.e. an excellent small liberal arts college within a top-notch research university--where prominent professors teach in small classes.
The reports of Brandeis's budget issues lack context and have been overblown due to the administration's inartful handling of its proposal to sell a few paintings from its world-renowned Rose Art Museum--which caused international attention to be focused on this issue. As mentioned, Brandeis is hardly alone in this economy. According to news reports, many universities, even Harvard, are making budget cuts in response to severely diminished endowments and donations. Brandeis has pledged to maintain financial aid and maintain, or improve, its world-class education by resisting the type of budget cuts that could undermine its core mission. The now-on-hold art-sale proposal was just one way it was considering to fund that pledge. And now, happily, the endowment has significantly rebounded The key here is that during the height of the economic downturn, and continually, Brandeis has prioritized students over things.
As evidence of Brandeis' success is the fact that it was just named one of the Princeton Review's Best Value Colleges for 2011. See:
Also FYI, here's a recent piece explaining that many of Brandeis' departments are amont the very best in the nation. Although focused on PHD programs, this is significant for undergrads since, at Brandeis, undergrads and grads work side by side with the same professors--a virtue of its small research university combination:
If you don't work for Brandeis already, you should! You seem to be posting many detailed responses to anyone who has any concerns whatsoever about Brandeis (overkill, anyone?)
You seem to have missed the main point of my post, which was questioning what difference rankings or incremental changes in rankings make? I hope that is not the most important criterion for choosing a college, and I hope you would agree with that. Especially when those rankings can be gamed or depend on factors that have little to do with academic excellence.
While Brandeis is an excellent university, it is not necessarily the best school for everyone, contrary to what most of your posts seem to convey.
And I stand by my statement that it is difficult to increase rankings by improving programs when there is an ongoing financial imperative to get resources and costs in line. The cost cutting at Brandeis goes way beyond the Rose Art Museum, while tuition increases have been steep the last few years. And I don't know anything about financial aid, but judging from the posts on this forum many admits seem to be pretty disappointed in their financial aid offers.