Purdue remains among nation's top universities

September 13, 2011

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University ranked 23rd among the nation's public universities and 62nd among all universities, according to U.S.News & World Report.

Purdue's overall scores in determining this year's rankings held steady or improved, as did those of other highly ranked universities. Last year, Purdue ranked 18th among public universities and 56th overall.

Purdue President France A. Córdova said several statistics important to the university are moving in a positive direction.

"We went up in several categories, such as our overall score, freshman retention rate, SAT scores among freshmen and freshmen who were in the top 10 percent of their high school class," she said. "The recognition of Purdue's strong presence in the student success rankings also is gratifying."

Purdue was again acknowledged for its achievements in four of eight student success categories. The categories, in which schools are listed but not ranked, are First-Year Experience, Internships, Learning Communities and Writing in the Disciplines.

Purdue was again ranked among the top 50 national universities by high school guidance counselors.

"These rankings reflect our efforts to improve the academic experience of our students," said Timothy D. Sands, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost. "They show that we are making progress toward our goal of making a difference for students."

Purdue's College of Engineering and Krannert School of Management earned overall rankings of ninth and 24th, respectively, and both had several highly ranked specialty programs.

The College of Engineering tied for ninth nationally among doctoral-granting universities, down from eighth last year. Purdue shared the No. 9 spot with Cornell University.

In engineering specialties, Purdue ranked first in biological/agricultural, fourth in aerospace/aeronautical, and fifth in both civil and industrial.

The Krannert School of Management was ranked 24th, down from 19th in 2010. Also ranked 24th were Boston College, Michigan State University and the University of Arizona. In management specialties, Purdue ranked second in production/operations management and tied for fourth in quantitative analysis/methods.

In specialty rankings, only the top five are now available. Extended specialty rankings are scheduled to be released at a later date.

The data for determining the nation's best institutions of higher education come from questionnaires U.S.News sends to all accredited four-year colleges and universities. The magazine then determines its rankings based on measures that fall into seven broad categories: assessment by administrators at peer institutions; retention of students; faculty resources; student selectivity; financial resources; alumni giving; and "graduation rate performance," the difference between the proportion of students expected to graduate and the proportion who actually do.

U.S.News bases its specialty rankings on a spring 2011 survey of deans and department heads at peer institutions. The programs receiving the most votes are listed.

U.S.News' college guidebook, "America's Best Colleges," contains a directory of the more than 1,400 institutions. Information on the rankings can be found at the U.S.News & World Report website at http://www.usnews.com/

More on Purdue's past U.S.News and other rankings is available at http://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/rankings/index.html 

Writer:  Greg McClure, 765-496-9711, gmcclure@purdue.edu

Sources:   France A. Córdova, president@purdue.edu

                    Timothy D. Sands, 765-494-9709, tsands@purdue.edu