UCSB ranked number 33 on the Times Higher Education list of the world’s top 200 universities, moving up two spots from last year’s list.
Times Higher Education, a British magazine that reports on university news, has ranked universities worldwide for 10 years now developing ranking lists that are based on 13 factors in five different categories. Earning a total score of 68.4, UCSB received impressive scores across the board but particularly in the areas of “citation impact,” “industry income” and “international mix.”
Citation impact, which assesses a university’s ability to contribute new knowledge and ideas, is measured by the number of times a university’s published work is cited. UCSB was awarded a 99.4 in this category, scoring higher in this category than any other UC school.
With a higher level of diversity this year, UCSB also showed significant improvement in the international mix category, receiving a 61.8 as opposed to last year’s score of 58.3.
Although UCSB has been included in many rankings, Times Higher Education public relations consultant Fran Langdon said the Times Higher Education list is unique since it compares an international range of universities.
“World University Rankings tables are important because they paint a full picture of global higher education,” Langdon said in an email. “They permit an informed judgment on a country or individual university’s performance against its counterparts, identifying its strengths but also its areas for improvement.”
Langdon said countries with many high-performing universities may benefit from such rankings because they can “encourage both political and economic growth, attracting both international students and investment from industry.”
According to Langdon, teaching and research are two of the most important areas to focus on when improving higher education, and students seem to think UCSB’s increasingly prestigious reputation is beholden to its professors.
“Much of our increase in prestige is due to our great professors,” Viviana Romero, a third-year global studies major, said. However, Romero said the growing prestige of the university also creates a more academically competitive environment.
“I feel like there is more pressure on students to know what’s going on, as professors are advancing in material and there’s more room to fall behind,” Romero said.
Despite the challenge of succeeding in difficult classes, UCSB’s rising reputation as a notable world-class institution has also led to a rise in school spirit for some students.
“I think it’s awesome that I’m attending a school whose reputation is on the rise,” Elizabeth Sheffield, a first-year undeclared major, said.
A version of this article appeared on page 1 of Tuesday October 8, 2013′s print edition of The Daily Nexus.