UT in International Academic Ranking

| Amr Shaker

Try to google ‘universities ranking’ and the results will show you hundreds of websites and lists claiming to have the only reliable or credible world universities ranking. In fact no one pays any attention or concern to these lists. There exist however very few lists that are relatively regardful and reliable.

Photo by: Gijs van Ouwerkerk

Examples of these lists are: ‘Times Higher Education Ranking’ and ‘ARWU Shanghai Academic Ranking’. The latter list is more internationally recognized by universities, governments and public media worldwide. ARWU mainly uses the following five objective parameters to rank world universities:

  • Number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals.
  • Number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific.
  • Number of articles published in scientific journals.
  • Number of articles indexed in Sciences Citation Index.
  • Per capita performance with respect to the size of the institution.

According to ARWU, University of Twente maintains an outstanding rank among the top 100 engineering and technology universities worldwide. The best overall rank UT has ever made on ARWU list was the 53rd worldwide, and that dated back to 2008. During the following years, while UT has maintained the same level of quality of education, other institutions made significant progress and raced past UT which led eventually to the steep decline in the UT international rank. This year, Eindhoven University of Technology is also present in the top 100 universities list, preceding UT with no less than 25 ranks. Delft University of Technology was regretfully missing from the ranking for this year.

Delft University of Technology is well recognized inside the Netherlands, it is declining however on the international level because most programs are taught in Dutch language and therefore inaccessible by international students and scholars. Percentage of international students in an institution plays an important role in determining the global recognition, and therefore the academic score on internationalism. Eindhoven University was a pioneer in internationalization; this gave the university a boost in the global ranking. Then university of Twente followed by offering several undergraduate, graduate and doctoral level programs fully in English. University of Twente is currently ranked the 33rd worldwide on the percentage of international doctoral students, and 76th worldwide on the percentage of international undergraduate students.

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