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Wall Street Journal Top College ranking

Kcar1234Kcar1234 0 replies2 threadsRegistered User New Member
The Top-Ranked Colleges are (From Wall Street Journal )

1. Harvard University

2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

3. Yale University

4. University of Pennsylvania

5. California Institute of Technology

6. Princeton University

7. Brown University

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Replies to: Wall Street Journal Top College ranking

  • RiversiderRiversider 838 replies101 threadsRegistered User Member
    8 Stanford
    9 Cornell
    10 Duke
    11 NU
    12 Johns Hopkins & Dartmouth
    14 U Chicago
    15 Columbia
    16 Rice
    17 Vanderbilt
    18 USC
    19 WUSL
    20 Amherst College
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    1) Harvard
    2) MIT
    3) Yale
    4) Penn
    5) CalTech
    5) Princeton
    7) Brown
    8) Stanford
    9) Cornell
    10) Duke

    11) Northwestern University
    12) Johns Hopkins University
    12) Dartmouth College
    14) University of Chicago
    15) Columbia University
    16) Rice University
    17) Vanderbilt University
    18) USC (Southern Cal)
    19) WashUStL
    20) Amherst College
    21) Williams College
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 5
    The top ranked public university is UCLA :

    #25 UCLA
    #27 Michigan
    #33 UNC
    #34 UCal-Berkeley
    #36 UC -Davis
    #37 UC-San Diego

    Correction in above lists: Stanford University & Brown University are tied at #7.
    edited September 5
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  • sushirittosushiritto 3980 replies12 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Where's UVa ranked?
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 5
    WSJ Top 10 Public Schools:

    #25 UCLA
    #27 Michigan
    #33 UNC
    #34 UCal-Berkeley
    #36 UC-Davis

    #37 UC-San Diego
    #42 Univ. of Washington--Seattle
    #46 Purdue
    #47 Illinois
    #50 Univ. of Virginia
    edited September 5
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  • RiversiderRiversider 838 replies101 threadsRegistered User Member
    UT Austin #61
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  • privatebankerprivatebanker 5269 replies76 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    A lot of this score (20 percent is student surveys). Limited numbers and wholly unreliable to discern small percentages of seperation.

    Also this ranking does not take into selectivity and student achievement. Diversity as measured by this list is also heavily weighted. All good in my book. But important to know the methodology.
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    "Engagement", drawn mostly from a student survey and with a 20% weighting, examines views on things like teaching and interactions with faculty and other students.
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  • CU123CU123 3578 replies68 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Oh wait, it the same 20 schools rearranged again.....I could use the same statistics weight them differently, and have a new number one each time.
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  • CaviteeCavitee 149 replies12 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Very odd ranking system. I think most people would be interested in the “outcomes” ranking. You can isolate each section and see the top schools for each subsection. Do that for “environment” and “engagements” and see what the top 20 in each look like...
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 6
    @Cavitee: "Outcomes" account for 40% of the weighting and measure things like the salary graduates earn and the debt burden they take on.

    Ranked by "outcome":

    1) Harvard & Princeton
    3) Yale & Duke
    5) Penn & Stanford
    7) Cornell
    8) CalTech & JHU
    10) Dartmouth & Chicago
    12) MIT

    13) Northwestern
    14) Amherst College
    15) Brown
    16) UCLA
    17) Williams College
    18) Michigan & UCal-Berkeley & Vanderbilt
    21) Columbia
    22) Rice

    23) WashUStL & UNC
    25) Wellesley College
    26) Univ. of Virginia
    27) USC
    28) Georgetown & UC-Davis & Illinois
    31) Univ. of Washington--Seattle
    32) UC-San Diego
    33) Georgia Tech

    34) Univ. of Florida
    35) Emory
    36) Pomona College & Middlebury College
    38) Carnegie Mellon University
    39) Notre Dame
    40) Wisconsin
    41) Boston College
    42) Tufts & Maryland

    44) Swarthmore College
    45) NYU & UC-Santa Barbara
    47) Carleton College
    48) Purdue
    49) Haverford College & Univ. of Texas--Austin
    51) Claremont McKenna College
    52) Bowdoin College
    53) Smith College & Texas A&M

    55) Barnard College
    56) Davidson College
    57) BYU
    58) Colgate University & Bates College & College of William & Mary
    61) Wesleyan University
    62) Michigan State Univ.
    63) Minnesota
    64) Boston University & Hamilton College

    66) Ohio State
    67) Washington & Lee & Virginia Tech & Univ. of Georgia
    70) Univ. of Miami
    72) Grinnell College

    edited September 6
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  • brantlybrantly 3938 replies69 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    University of Maryland at same level as Tufts? Above Swarthmore, Wesleyan, Bowdoin, and Carleton? That alone negates the reasonableness of the entire list.
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  • BKSquaredBKSquared 1375 replies7 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    ^Outcomes criteria, particularly the value added and student debt factors may explain Maryland's outcome ranking :

    "We look at the graduation rates for each institution (11%) – a crucial way to help students to understand whether colleges have a strong track record in supporting students enough to get them through their course and ensure that they complete their degrees...

    This pillar also includes a value-added indicator, measuring the value added by the teaching at a college to salary (12%). Using a value-added approach means that the ranking does not simply reward the colleges that cream off all the very best students, and shepherd them into the jobs that provide the highest salaries in absolute terms. Instead it looks at the success of the college in transforming people’s life chances, in “adding value” to their likelihood of success. The THE data team uses statistical modelling to create an expected graduate salary for each college based on a wide range of factors, such as the make-up of its students and the characteristics of the institution. The ranking looks at how far the college either exceeds expectations in getting students higher average salaries than one would predict based on its students and its characteristics, or falls below what is expected. The value-added analysis uses research on this topic by Brookings Institution, among others, as a guide.

    A new metric this year is debt after graduation (7%). The concern over student debt and the cost of higher education in general has come to the forefront of public discussion recently...

    This pillar also looks at the overall academic reputation of the college (10%), based on THE’s annual Academic Reputation Survey, a survey of leading scholars that helps us determine which institutions have the best reputation for excellence in teaching. We used the total teaching votes from our 2017 and 2018 reputation surveys."
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  • PublisherPublisher 7972 replies82 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 6
    Top 30 Private Schools ranked by "Average Net Price" (published cost of attendance inluding, tuition, fees, expenses and room and board) minus the average total of grants and scholarships.

    1) Princeton--$16,302
    2) Stanford--$16,562
    3) Harvard--$17,030
    4) Yale--$18053
    5) Pomona College--$18,427
    6) Amherst College--$19,519

    7) Wellesley College--$20,189
    8) Williams College--$20,380
    9) Swarthmore College--$20,444
    10) Duke--$22,011
    11) MIT--$22,230
    12) Dartmouth College--$22,303

    13) Columbia--$22,824
    14) Vanderbilt--$23,295
    15) Rice--$24,131
    16) CalTech--$24,466
    17) UPenn--$24,539
    18) Brown--$25,651
    19) Northwestern University--$26,099

    20) Emory--$26,867
    21) Georgetown--$27,420
    22) Notre Dame--$27,453
    23) WashUStL--$27,777
    24) Johns Hopkins University--$29,066
    25) Tufts University--$29,449

    26) Carnegie Mellon University--$29,817
    27) Cornell University--$31,449
    28) USC--$32,892
    29) Univ. of Chicago--$34,834
    30) NYU--$36,256
    edited September 6
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 276 replies0 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @Cavitee . . . a lot of the problem with outcomes' rankings is that they always refer to Payscale.

    Payscale is a wonderful service/site that gives incredible in-depth salary information for specific job description, company, geographic region, and industry. I'm not sure if linkedin -- another great service, social-media based -- actively assents to the use of its data for job placement wrt the colleges, but there are certainly some rankings that use it to try to head count those who are placed within, say, Oracle by college using linkedin, which is faulty. Payscale, however, does actively sell its services to college-ranking services with specificity to those which are outcome driven.

    Both Forbes' and WSJ's lists and a few others contract with Payscale which purports to have accurate information of salaries of the graduates of specific colleges with both median and mean at certain points of their careers, which is where it gets into trouble.

    Payscale has, though, improved its services in general, and in fact probably helps to drive salaries higher because it is disseminating these data more readily and helps to create more salary-competitive industry. And by overstating what the mean and median salaries of all colleges' graduates are -- one of its problems -- it might be helping to drive salaries higher because Payscale is so readily referenced.

    Before, it would only count salary data of those with baccalaureate degrees to compute the median/mean salary data for each college to find the truer effect of a college's reputation in enabling its graduates to land high-paying jobs. Now it has finally included the salaries of those with higher degrees and associates them with the persons' undergraduate colleges, which is certainly more the individuals' rather than their alma maters' accomplishment which it was trying to negate.

    The essence of the problem with Payscale wrt to associating salaries to specific colleges is its sampling method. There is a selection bias, because it only sees the top side of salaries of college graduates with its passive way of collecting their salary data and then associating them to the individual colleges, because the ones who will partake will seemingly, intuitively be those at the higher end.

    Payscale will state that it has, say, 30,000 survey-takers of Ohio State's alumni base. OSU has ~ 500,000 undergraduate alumni, so 30k/500k is an admirable 6%. However, these are persons who've self-selected themselves (the oft-used compound word on these boards) to openly display their salary history, and additionally, unless they send in their tax returns, the data could also be inflated.

    The problem here lies in its passive collection of data without regard to scientific sampling methods. And Payscale does consider it to be a sample size, and it will boast how many millions it has on file. However, there is no regard to major, to geographic or demographic background, i.e., to actively obtain a representable makeup of OSU's alumni base to determine what the median/mean salary are at various stages of their careers. It probably just takes the average of those within the 30k and reports this at, say, the beginning of and at 10 years into their careers.

    Since Forbes' ranking gives a more informational database, I'll refer to it as an example of outcome bias. This bias is seen in the its ranking of the 450 colleges out of, I think it said, 4,400 four-years in the nation, and describes them as being the top tier of all colleges.

    In its outcomes for the 450, there was a mean of $56,508 starting salary, with a standard deviation of $7,369. That's incredibly high, probably too high and too well grouped together as is a complaint in this thread.

    And the average indebtedness including the service academies is $7,590 with an SD of $1,896, which manifests and even greater cookie-cutter group. One could only hope this is true with TCU having the highest indebtedness at $14,693 which is still pretty reasonable -- in addition to their full payers who wouldn't have any debt at all of course.

    It appears that the median salary of the 450 colleges' average salary is ~ $100,000 at ten years into their careers. That would be a top 10% wage-earner in the US. And as others have stated here for the WSJ rankings, there isn't a lot of separation in the salaries, though I don't have time to compute it because it would mean opening up all the hyperlinks for the colleges.

    With respect to a probable error in comparison between two colleges, I'll reference UCSD and UCLA. The Forbes' rankings database manifests an of outcome for the two is as follows:

    Salaries............................UCSD............................UCLA
    Starting........................$63,400.......................$62,000
    10-years In.................$123,700........................$116,100

    Certainly there is a disparity in WSJ's and Forbes' rankings in these figures.

    But I posit that UCLA should have a higher salary at 10 years in than UCSD's because:

    -- UCLA produces more attorneys compared to UCSD -- there are 23,200 licensed barristers in CA for the former, and 6,600 for the latter;

    -- UCLA sends more undergrads to med school than UCSD / year -- ~ 500 to about 250.

    -- UCLA students are more business-and-commerce inclined than UCSD's, which is fairly evident.

    The mitigating factor to the above is that UCSD's students are certainly overall more STEM-inclined than UCLA's. This would probably imply a greater starting salary for the former, but UCLA's should surpass SD's within or at the 10 years because of the above.

    And indeed the NYT's database of salaries manifests this with its median salaries at the age of 34 and above, with their salaries being comparable. According to this database, UCLA has 8.2% of one-percenters and SD has 6.3%. And this database would be more scientifically sound than Payscale's because there was no willful self-selecting by the NYT in collecting its data.

    Additionally, if one doubles the salary of the NYT's medians, then one comes close to matching Payscale's average for each college, with adjustments to the NYT's database as women having children and quitting work or having maternity leave. I don't think this is feasible. The average will certainly be materially and maybe considerably higher, but I don't think it would be about twice as much.
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  • BKSquaredBKSquared 1375 replies7 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    ^ I believe Forbes and the WSJ are using different measures when it comes to salary outcomes. Forbes is using early and mid career salaries, "The rankings are based on five general categories: Alumni Salary (20%), a combination of early and midcareer salaries as reported by the federal College Scorecard and PayScale data and research..." https://www.forbes.com/top-colleges/#3324cce91987 The WSJ is trying to measure "value added" -- whether the graduates avg salary exceeds some formulized expected value (see the quote in post #15). I am sure there are holes/room for debate in the nature and source of the data collected and in the methodology, but I appreciate how both publications are trying in essence to measure the value of a school's degree relative to the avg cost/debt burden to the students.
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 276 replies0 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    edited September 6
    @BKSquared . . . The concept of return on investment is a noble one if it were calculable. It really isn't though -- too convoluted to derive both upstairs and downstairs in addition to deriving an income stream. The attempts at ROI have been extremely poor from what I've seen.

    At least USN -- if this is whom you're critiquing -- added the metric of educating the poor, which hints at this, because their spots could have been taken by those who have incredible stats and set successful futures.

    In addition, both UCSD and UCLA were lauded in the NYT study as having the highest number of poor students jumping two quintiles of income from whence they came.

    Let me add that if ROI is always so great, then what would prevent some colleges from taking hypothetically full-tuition payers, which would => infinite return?
    edited September 6
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  • HeartofDixieHeartofDixie 246 replies6 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    My alma-matter(Samford University) moved to 3rd in the nation for student engagement, or at least that is what I saw posted.
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  • brantlybrantly 3938 replies69 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    ROI in the form of salary data is absurd.
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