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August 24, 1998

UCSC advances in national college ranking

New survey from U.S. News & World Report rates campus in top 20 of public universities

By Elizabeth Irwin

In its assessment of colleges and universities for 1999, U.S. News & World Report names UCSC one of the 20 best public campuses in the country. UCSC tied with three other top-ranked institutions for 17th place in the popular survey's list of national public universities. This rating places UCSC at a higher rank than in last year's survey, in which the campus was rated at number 25.

The ranking is based on a measure of seven indicators of academic quality: academic reputation, student retention, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, graduation rate performance, and the alumni giving rate. The survey appears in the magazine's 12th annual "America's Best Colleges" guidebook, on newsstands beginning August 24.

"This is wonderful news," stated Chancellor Greenwood. "I am especially pleased to note the strong improvement in UCSC's rating compared to last year's assessment, which also was a record high for this campus. UC Santa Cruz is gaining increasing national recognition for its academic excellence, and I'm glad to see another example of public appreciation."

In another recent survey, UCSC was rated 11th in the country among public research universities for overall research quality. Published in a book titled The Rise of American Research Universities: Elites and Challengers (H. D. Graham and N. Diamond, Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997), the same survey ranked UCSC 1st in the Social Science Index and 6th in the Arts and Humanities Index.

The other three campuses sharing 17th place with UC Santa Cruz in this year's U.S. News survey are the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Washington, and the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities.

In general, the 1999 survey underscored the continuing prominence of the University of California among national universities. UC Berkeley was named 1st in the nation for overall quality, in a tie with the University of Virginia. UCLA, UC San Diego, and UC Irvine each ranked among the top 10 in this survey. All of the UC campuses were rated within the top 26.

U.S. News reported a refinement of methodology this year, putting more emphasis on outcome measures than in the past, in addition to other measures of quality.

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