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The latest USNWR rankings. What happened??

Chuck01Chuck01 2 replies1 threadsRegistered User New Member
Davidson has completely fallen out of the top ten, and dropped precipitously to 17. In just one year? How is that possible?
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Replies to: The latest USNWR rankings. What happened??

  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 29255 replies57 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Davidson is one my favorite schools and has become an admissions “bargain”, IMO

    It’s selectivity number has been rising. Fewer apps., my guess
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  • Chuck01Chuck01 2 replies1 threadsRegistered User New Member
    That can't be it. They had more apps last year.
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  • wisteria100wisteria100 4195 replies47 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    What are the top 10?
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  • AlmostThere2018AlmostThere2018 1302 replies46 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @cptofthehouse -- Actually, lowest admit rate ever this past admissions cycle and highest yield. And anyway, USNWR removed acceptance rate from their ranking formula a year or so ago so that wouldn't matter.

    Lots of ties as usual, so Davidson is really only a couple of 'slots' from last year's 10. I don't think it's a big deal. I know some folks treat these things as a measure of quality.; I don't. Davidson is great for learning. It's been great place for a long time and will be in the future. Sliding up and down rankings is just an external construct that doesn't have anything to do with what happens on campus.
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  • Chuck01Chuck01 2 replies1 threadsRegistered User New Member
    But it's not sliding "up and down the rankings -- only down. In fact, almost all of the the schools in the top 10 from last year stayed the same, only Davidson dropped so far down. Still trying to figure out why.
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  • PublisherPublisher 7785 replies80 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 8
    @wisteria100 : US News LACs

    1) Williams College
    2) Amherst College
    3) Swarthmore College
    3) Wellesley college
    5) Pomona College
    6) Bowdoin College
    7) Carleton College
    7) Claremont McKenna College
    7) Middlebury College
    10) Wash & Lee

    11) Colby College
    11) Haverford College
    11) Smith College
    14) Grinnell
    14) Hamilton College
    14) Vassar College
    17) Colgate University
    17) Davidson College
    17) USNA @ Annapolis
    17) Wesleyan

    21) Bates College
    21) USMA @ West Point
    23) Harvey Mudd
    23) Univ. of Richmond
    25) Barnard College
    25) Macalester College
    27) College of the Holy Cross
    27) Colorado College
    27) Kenyon College
    edited September 8
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  • merc81merc81 10262 replies156 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Davidson's drop is illusory (as would also be the case for most other apparent changes). By its overall score (86) it places the same distance from the third place colleges (Swarthmore/Wellesley, at 93) as the third place schools do from the first place school (Williams, set to 100).
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  • wisteria100wisteria100 4195 replies47 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Nice move up the charts for Holy Cross.!
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  • needscaffeineneedscaffeine 51 replies1 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    My son is a senior at Davidson. The President, Carol Quillen, sent out an email this morning to the community. I'm not sure I can post links to other sites but this is Davidson's explanation of the change in rankings: https://www.davidson.edu/offices-and-services/institutional-research/college-rankings/notes-us-news-rankings-2020
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  • homerdoghomerdog 4967 replies89 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 9
    Yeah. I had a feeling that the Pell Grant stats would hurt Davidson. Many of the schools ranked above Davidson have a larger percentage of Pell Grant kids. I got the feeling, even on campus, that Davidson isn't as diverse as the schools we visited ranked above it (Grinnell, Bowdoin, Carleton). I think it hurt them. Doesn't take anything away from all of the good things about the school.
    edited September 9
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  • homerdoghomerdog 4967 replies89 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Williams and Amherst in particular do a BIG push for URMs with low SES. I dug deep on this when S19 was applying. At Williams, 50% of the students are students of color and 22 percent receive Pell Grants. Amherst isn't far behind. Since USNWR is now using those stats to rank, it obviously hurts schools that are less diverse and that accept fewer Pell Grant kids.
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  • PublisherPublisher 7785 replies80 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 9
    @needscaffeine : Thank you for posting the email from Davidson's President. Very well done. Responsive, positive & to the point.

    Whether or not one is a fan of US News' rating & ranking of US colleges & universities, it seems clear that US News can have a positive effect on institutions of higher learning by its emphasis on various factors such as first year retention rate, small class sizes & socio-economic diversity.
    edited September 9
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  • wisteria100wisteria100 4195 replies47 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Actually @homerdog, while Williams and Amherst both do a great job enrolling urms, Amherst has the higher %
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  • klbmom18klbmom18 323 replies8 threadsRegistered User Member
    Yes, thanks for posting @needscaffeine (Love your user name)
    President Quillen is very impressive, and I'm not surprised she responded quickly.
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  • LindagafLindagaf 9155 replies492 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Does it matter? No. Find a different list where Davidson ranks more highly. You’ll find one.
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  • merc81merc81 10262 replies156 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 10
    Regarding Davidson's statement, they seemed to stretch a bit in saying,
    Our standardized test scores are lower than the top 10 schools, in part because we use more reliable indicators of success, such as whether an applicant took the most challenging classes available to them and how they did.
    Davidson's CDS registers a 73% level for students reporting a HS rank in the top 10%. In comparison, colleges within the US News top 10 uncommonly report 80% or higher for this figure.
    edited September 10
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  • needscaffeineneedscaffeine 51 replies1 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    edited September 10
    I was wondering about this statistic because Davidson has a pretty high percentage of students coming from private schools, and they don't always do class rank. Our local public school system dropped class rank recently. I looked up the Davidson CDS and only 34 % of incoming freshmen submitted class rank. I don't know enough about other LAC's to know if this is typical so I looked up a couple and their percentage of freshmen reporting class rank was even lower? This is interesting.
    edited September 10
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  • AlmostThere2018AlmostThere2018 1302 replies46 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 10
    This doesn't surprise me. When I attended a Davidson info session about three years ago they said class rank had moved down on their rubric in favor of GPA and rigor. In terms of 'hard measures' it was: GPA, rigor, test scores and then class rank -- in that order. There were of course the holistic aspects on the list too (ECs, leadership, etc.), some of which I seem to recall were listed higher than class rank.

    If top 10% of class is hurting them in rankings they may re-think this. If they do change it's the tail wagging the dog, sigh, but I suppose that's still the game.
    edited September 10
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  • merc81merc81 10262 replies156 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    People probably figured it out, but I meant "commonly" in #16.
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  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 12749 replies236 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 10
    I guess one can't use the "WASP" acronym that accurately now. Welcome, Wellesley :D

    1) Williams College
    2) Amherst College
    3) Swarthmore College
    3) Wellesley college
    5) Pomona College

    Then again, HYPSM is a bit out of order as well. Add a C or two :)
    edited September 10
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