Which is the best colleges ranking list?

<p>Hi,
Recently I've been wondering which is the most trustworthy colleges ranking list. There are US news ranking, Forbes, Washington Monthly, collegeXpert and so on.
At each ranking list I see the college name in totally different and distant position.
So do you know the factor for each ranking list and which one can i use to choose college from?
Well I want to find a liberal art college that is favorable for studying medicine later so what so you think is the most important factor? The school's reputation? High position in the ranking list? Great department of science? Great career service?....?
Thank you so much!</p>

<p>Each of these rankings reflects a different perspective on how to evaluate colleges. Each one is only as trustworthy as its its data sources and the suitability of its criteria for your own needs. In my opinion, the most useful one for many students is Kiplinger’s. It presents important information about costs and financial aid in a way that allows you to compare many schools quickly and easily (though the cost comparison may distort reality for people who don’t closely match the averages). I think Washington Monthly may be interesting to policy-makers who want to evaluate how well colleges are addressing certain social needs … but it’s not the most useful tool for individual families trying to choose good, affordable colleges. US News is useful for the underlying data (derived mostly from the Common Data Set files) but is very misleading (as most of these rankings are) in assigning a one-up integer ranking to every school (as if every college is exactly one place better or worse than adjacent schools within a pecking order that applies equally well to every student.) </p>

<p>Virtually any LAC (or university) can give you the pre-med training you want. Along your path to med school, presumably you want to learn a few things that will satisfy your own curiosity and make you a more interesting person as well as a better doctor. Pick a school where you will feel at home as you go through that process. It’s fine to match schools against your GPA, SATs and ECs (so you don’t wind up being way above or below the average ability) but don’t overlook personal preferences for location, size, atmosphere. Finally, do not get in over your head financially. Med school is extremely expensive.</p>

<p>Great advice from tk21769. </p>

<p>I would also suggest investing in a good, subjective guide book (Fiske was most helpful for our purposes). Kiplinger’s numbers (especially with regard to need-based and merit aid) were extremely helpful as we narrowed down our son’s list. </p>

<p><a href=“http://www.kiplinger.com/fronts/special-report/college-rankings/index.html”>http://www.kiplinger.com/fronts/special-report/college-rankings/index.html</a></p>

<p>You know, I’d just about ignore the rankings completely except for the most rudimentary information, and instead refer to a solid college guidebook, of which there are a few well written ones. You can get basic information (number of students, description of majors and tuition cost) from just about anywhere. But the guidebooks can be much more insightful, particularly the ones that publish student opinions. </p>

<p>I agree with Lake Washington - One can no better rank entire colleges than one could rank countries. Yet there are aspects of colleges that can be compared. The Princeton Review does a pretty good job of this, basing lists on surveys of 100s of students per college. Not perfect, but better than the highly manipulatable USNWR number crunching.</p>