You're really going to let this one ranking article make you feel that UCSD isn't a good school anymore? Congrats to UC Davis for ranking up, but that does not make UCSD worse.
Anyways, UCSD is higher ranked than UCD in many other ranking articles. UCSD will always be a good school, especially for engineering, biology, chemistry, economics, political science, mathematics, psychology etc., you name it. Many of UCSD's departments are top 20. Who are you to say UCSD is not a top tier school anymore?
Just because of one ranking article where UCD went up one spot?
Because USNEWS reflects people's predispositions about the relative rankings of universities the best. Essentially, what schools--on average--lead their graduates to the best post-graduate career paths (usually based on post-graduate income, national/international competitive scholarships and fellowships, acceptance rates to top graduate and professional schools, etc.).
Any ranking that places the Ivy League schools well out of contention for #1 are seldom considered seriously by the general public. This is why I don't know of a single person at Northwestern who has even heard of the Washington Monthly ranking. It's a specialized ranking for those who want to support a university that has focused on social mobility, etc., but it's definitely not the list that corporate recruiters consult with when they're deciding which colleges to target, for example.
Washington Monthly doesn't rank it technically by the best but more by the impact of the colleges. USNEWS is pretty much the standard and will continue to be.
UCSD and UCD have always been the same in my eyes. They were both ranked #8 publicly last year. Rankings are completely worthless anyways. The entire UC system is very good and that's all that really matters.
But employers realize there's a difference between a Berkeley and a Merced grad, regardless of the reputation of the UC system.
And within tiers, rankings don't matter much. The only time they make an impact is when hard cut-offs are used (e.g., recruiting purposes). McKinsey recruits at USNEWS Top-25, for example, meaning that UCSD undergraduates are out of luck.
I don't know if you're aware of this, but a few years back, the top 3 UCs (Berkeley, LA, SD) were far ahead of the next three (Irvine, Davis, SB) in the USNEWS ranking. Over the past 4 years or so, Berkeley and LA have maintained their position around the T20-T25 while UCSD has been falling slowly while the mid-3 have been slowly creeping up in rankings.
I agree in that this doesn't really matter too much practically, but in terms of changes in perception (especially to prospective undergraduates selecting colleges), it does.
I too am interested in what metrics UCSD has weakened at according to USnews. If its is any of the money related metrics, I think we should be fine in the future since our new chancellor has a pretty good track record at raising money at CMU. He also apparently has a strong "business sense".
If he can actually raise our endowments into the billions like he expects to, I am sure we will move up in the rankings over the years.
this is really off topic,. but what's the deal with Ivy leagues... Id the education style much better than other colleges? Or do they just have better facilities there to help students understand the concepts more easily?
There's also an endogeneity problem in trying to figure out why students from Ivys and other top schools tend to do better in the long run since, on average, the best high school students tend to go to the best colleges and universities.
Now that I've gotten a taste of both a public school education (UCSD for undergrad) and a private school education (graduate school), there isn't much difference in curriculum or education style. The premium in going to these schools is that you'll get more opportunities than you would at other schools.