UW-Madison ranked 10th best public college by U.S. News & World Report

September 12, 2016 By Käri Knutson
The University of Wisconsin–Madison, whose campus is pictured, is 10th among public institutions in U.S. News & World Report‘s latest college rankings.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison, whose campus is pictured, is 10th among public institutions in U.S. News & World Report‘s latest college rankings.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison is 10th among public institutions in U.S. News & World Report‘s latest college rankings.

Overall, UW–Madison ranks 44th in a six-way tie. Last year, UW–Madison ranked 11th among publics and 41st overall in a six-way tie. The rankings, released today, include more than 310 national doctoral universities and will be included in the 2017 edition of America’s Best Colleges.

“We know that UW–Madison provides a quality education and experience for our students,” says Provost Sarah Mangelsdorf. “While rankings are only one measure of a university’s performance, we realize many students and families pay close attention to them in helping make decisions about college.”

The methodology used to produce the rankings is almost identical to last year’s, with a slight change in how the class size portion of the ranking is calculated. Criteria used include retention/graduation rates, academic reputation, financial resources, faculty resources and student selectivity.

One area UW–Madison scored highly in was “A Strong Commitment to Undergraduate Teaching,” ranking 14th  overall and tying for fifth public. This is the first year UW–Madison is included in this list, which was created in 2014.

The report also evaluated undergraduate engineering and business programs. For the third year in a row, the College of Engineering ranks 14th overall, and for the fourth year in a row, it ranks seventh among public doctoral institutions.

The undergraduate program at the Wisconsin School of Business is ranked 19th overall in a four-way tie and is ninth among public doctoral institutions. The insurance/risk management program is ranked fifth overall and third among public universities, while the real estate program is ranked first among public institutions for the fourth year in a row, and second overall for the third year in a row.

The engineering and business school rankings are based solely on the judgments of engineering and business deans (and senior faculty) who responded to an invitation to nominate peer institutions on a scale of one to five.

UW-Madison has performed well in other recent rankings including:

  • QS World University: Ranked 53rd, up from 54th last year. Criteria for the ranking included academic reputation, faculty-student ratio, citations per faculty, employer reputation, proportion of international students and proportion of international faculty.
  • Washington Monthly: Ranked 28th, based on three criteria: research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and Ph.D.s), social mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students) and service (encouraging students to give something back to their country).