Washington Monthly Names UT 19th-Best University in U.S.

College rankings are a funny thing. On one hand, the criteria used to calculate them are often controversial, even arbitrary. But they still pull a lot of weight–especially the U.S. News & World Report rankings, which reward selectivity and wealth.

So the Washington Monthly set out to create, as they call them, “College Rankings That Aren’t Ridiculous.” With the aim of measuring how colleges impact the public good—not just how they impact individual students—they examined universities’ performance in three categories: social mobility (how many low-income students attend), research (publications and PhDs), and service (giving back to the community).

Then they synthesized those three scores to rank national universities—schools with PhD programs, including both public and private schools, Ivy Leagues, and state flagships.

UT-Austin came in at #19, ahead of Columbia, Rice, and the University of Pennsylvania. Other standout numbers: #11 for the number of science and engineering doctorates awarded, and #29 for the percentage of federal and work-study funds spent on service.

See the full rankings here.


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