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Barron's "Most Competitive Schools"


Replies to: Barron's "Most Competitive Schools"

  • tokenadulttokenadult Registered User Posts: 17,471 Senior Member
    tokenadult -- you[r] explanation seems to describe a category called: what are the stats of the least impressive student admitted?

    Peace to all of you who are doubting the list. I'm not defending the list here--I didn't compile it--but I'm explaining what the list purports to do. The list indeed does consider how likely it is for a general applicant to get into the BOTTOM of a college's admitted class--that, after all, is "competitiveness" from the point of view of an applicant--and while there may be some debate around the margins, and there is definitely no magical cut-off line between being just on the list and just off the list, the list says what it says, and may help applicants assess their chances of getting into different colleges. The list doesn't purport to be a list by college quality (although smart students on campus does tend to help the quality of a college's overall experience).

    I cited the focused book in which the exact list from the opening post appears, and also cited a newer publication from Barron's, in which the list has been updated (and expanded, now including more colleges). Barron's does NOT "show the work" of exactly how it weights its calculations, but it does describe its methodology in a paragraph you can find in those books that shows what factors are considered. And, yes, the only reason Bucknell wasn't included in the specialized volume is that its administration declined to have it included in that volume. (Barron's doesn't name which college declined, but by looking at the earlier edition of its comprehensive guidebook it's possible to see which college was left out.)

    LOOK IT UP yourself to see what Barron's says about the Barron's methodology. Write to the Barron's editors if you disagree with them. I don't publish the books, so writing to me won't change the lists a whit.
  • keeferkeefer - Posts: 616 Member
    Bates was on there on previous publications, so were Michigan and Berkeley. I think they have to put in some new schools from time to time to spark interests in the book and rotate around and sell more books.
  • AlexandreAlexandre Registered User Posts: 24,563 Senior Member
    Barron's initial publication (back in the 1980-1992 timeframe) was called "America's Best Colleges". It listed the top 50 Liberal Arts Colleges and Universities in the nation. That book was actually very good...as good as Fiske, possibly even better. They later ceased publishing that book and started publishing America's Most Selective (or most competitive) schools, which, as most of us can agree, is quite laughable.
  • UCBChemEGradUCBChemEGrad Registered User Posts: 10,277 Senior Member
    It's not typical for barrons to come up with a list and leave out U Wisconsin-Madison...:D
  • legend.draculalegend.dracula Registered User Posts: 648 Member
    lol can u give me the link to the barron's thing
  • swish14swish14 Registered User Posts: 1,325 Senior Member
    no way Richmond or UNC should be on this list.
  • gellinogellino Registered User Posts: 3,017 Senior Member
    It's not typical for barrons to come up with a list and leave out U Wisconsin-Madison...

    That's because this is barrons the publication; not barrons the poster.
  • 1980collegegrad1980collegegrad Registered User Posts: 1,503 Senior Member
    I can recall Barron's being the gold standard for college selection in the 80s. Seems like US News has supplanted their spot.
  • swish14swish14 Registered User Posts: 1,325 Senior Member
    I agree and I think that is sad. They have really expanded who they rank as most competitive. I can remember when there were only about 30 schools total on the list.
  • Luckie StarchildLuckie Starchild Registered User Posts: 330 Member
    I'm surprised by the inclusion of George Washington University and The College of New Jersey.
  • tokenadulttokenadult Registered User Posts: 17,471 Senior Member
    They have really expanded who they rank as most competitive.

    That's because of the push-back they get from fans of colleges that are not listed at first, just as you can see in this thread. All lists of good/best/selective/competitivelife-changing/etc. colleges expand over time.
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