UW-Madison graduate schools score highly in 2021 rankings

March 17, 2020 By Mike Klein
Photo: Aerial view of central campus, including Bascom Hall and Van Hise Hall

UW-Madison graduate programs are ranked highly in the 2020 edition of U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Graduate Schools.” Photo: Jeff Miller

UW–Madison graduate programs are once again ranked among the nation’s best in the 2021 edition of U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Graduate Schools.”

“Our graduate programs feature top-tier faculty, encourage a spirit of scholarly collaboration, and prepare students to be leaders in their fields,” says Graduate School Dean William J. Karpus. “These latest rankings are one of many indicators of the excellence that characterizes graduate education across UW–Madison’s broad fields of study. What unites them all is the commitment to research, scholarship, and the Wisconsin Idea that positively impacts people in our state and around the world.”

Highlights include the School of Education ranking fourth nationwide (tied for first among public universities), and the School of Pharmacy ranking seventh. Two programs were ranked first nationwide, and both are within the School of Education: curriculum and instruction, and printmaking.

School of Education Dean Diana Hess, the Karen A. Falk Distinguished Chair of Education, said she’s “thrilled” that the school has been ranked the top public school of education, in a tie with the University of California-Los Angeles.

“Additionally, the fact that many of our departments and programs are so highly rated is a testament to the collective contributions of our many talented and dedicated faculty and staff,” Hess said. “The depth of our highly regarded programs is a great strength of ours.”

Pharmacy School Dean Steven M. Swanson said it’s exciting to be recognized as one of the nation’s top pharmacy schools. “We’re proud that our Doctor of Pharmacy program produces pharmacy leaders who are changing lives and improving patient health in Wisconsin and around the world,” Swanson said.

U.S. News does not rank all programs each year. View last year’s rankings.

The UW–Madison programs ranked this year are:

  • Business: 37th for full-time MBA program (two-way tie); 28th for part-time MBA program (three-way tie). Ranked specialties include  marketing (23rd), and real estate (third).
  • Education: Fourth (three-way tie). Ranked specialties include administration and supervision (fourth), educational psychology (third), elementary teacher education (fourth), secondary teacher education (second), higher education administration (14th in a two-way tie), special education (sixth), student counseling and personnel services (sixth), curriculum and instruction (first in a two-way tie), and education policy (fourth).
  • Engineering: 24th (three-way tie). Ranked specialties include agricultural (12th in a three-way tie), biomedical (24th in a four-way tie), chemical (11th in a two-way tie), civil (16th in a five-way tie), computer (14th in a four-way tie), electrical/electronic/communications (14th in a five-way tie), environmental (21st in two-way tie), industrial (sixth in a five-way tie), materials (16th in a three-way tie), mechanical (17th in a seven-way tie), and nuclear (5th).
  • Law: 38th (four-way tie). Ranked specialties include dispute resolution (37th in a seven-way tie), clinical training (44th in a 10-way tie), environmental law (41st in a eight-way tie), health care law (40th in a six-way tie), , international (32nd in a four-way tie), legal writing (51st in a 12-way tie), tax law (55th in an eight-way tie), business/corporate (48th in a four-way tie), contracts/commercial (29th in a five-way tie), criminal (33rd in 10-way tie), and constitutional (38th in a six-way tie).
  • Medicine: 27th for medical research, 18th for primary care. Ranked specialties include family medicine (4th), radiology (17th in a three-way tie), and surgery (27th).
  • Nursing: 31st (four-way tie) for schools with a doctor of nursing practice.
  • Public Affairs (La Follette School): 25th (seven-way tie). Ranked specialties include health policy (10th in a two-way tie), public policy analysis (15th in a two-way tie), and social policy (fifth).
  • Health Specialties (not ranked annually): audiology, listed as University of Wisconsin AuD Consortium (34th in a two-way tie), clinical psychology (fifth in a three-way tie), physical therapy (25th in a nine-way tie), occupational therapy (17th in a six-way tie), pharmacy (seventh in a six-way tie), speech-language pathology (third in a three-way tie).
  • Fine Arts (not ranked annually): 15th (eight-way tie). Ranked specialties include printmaking (first).