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September 9, 2015

U.S. News & World Report Announces the 2016 Best Colleges in the USA

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Photo: Princeton University Campus. Image provided by & copyright © Princeton University Office of Communications.

WASHINGTON, Sept. 9, 2015 — U.S. News & World Report today released the 2016 edition of Best Colleges to help domestic and international students compare the academic quality of U.S.-based schools. The new edition includes data on nearly 1,800 colleges and features rankings of 1,376 schools.

Princeton University remains No. 1 in the Best National Universities category, while Williams College once again tops the Best National Liberal Arts Colleges list. The University of California—Berkeley is the No. 1 Top Public School among National Universities.

The U.S. News rankings focus on academic excellence, with schools ranked on up to 16 measures of academic quality. The rankings emphasize outcomes, with graduation and retention rates carrying the most weight in the methodology at 30 percent. The top schools all have high six-year graduation rates and strong freshman retention rates:

“Taking into account how well a school supports its students from freshman year through graduation is important,” said Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer at U.S. News. “To find the best fit, students should consider a range of factors, from financial aid offerings and location to campus size and majors. The process can be overwhelming, but our rankings and advice content are a great place to start.”

The 2016 edition debuts a Most Innovative Schools list, featuring institutions making inventive improvements in terms of campus life, curriculum, facilities, faculty, students or technology.

“We are the only organization that has been ranking schools for over three decades,” said Robert Morse, chief data strategist at U.S. News. “Over that time we have improved our information and sharpened our methodology’s focus, with one of the biggest updates being a greater consideration of output measurements.”

The college ranking categories are based upon the 2010 Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching classifications. The Carnegie classification system has been used by U.S. News since the first Best Colleges rankings in 1983, because they are accepted as the basis for classifying schools by most higher education researchers.

U.S. News 2016 Best Colleges Rankings

Best National Universities — Top Ten

  1. Princeton University (NJ)
  2. Harvard University (MA)
  3. Yale University (CT)
  4. Columbia University (NY)
  5. Stanford University (CA)
  6. University of Chicago (IL)
  7. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  8. Duke University (NC)
  9. University of Pennsylvania
  10. California Institute of Technology
  11. Johns Hopkins University (MD)

Best National Liberal Arts Colleges — Top Ten

  1. Williams College (MA)
  2. Amherst College (MA)
  3. Swarthmore College (PA)
  4. Bowdoin College (ME)
  5. Middlebury College (VT)
  6. Pomona College (CA)
  7. Wellesley College (MA)
  8. Carleton College (MN)
  9. Claremont McKenna College (CA)
  10. Davidson College (NC)
  11. United States Naval Academy (MD)

Top Public Schools

National Universities — Top Five

  1. University of California—Berkeley
  2. University of California—Los Angeles
  3. University of Virginia
  4. University of Michigan—Ann Arbor
  5. University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill

Liberal Arts Colleges — Top Five

  1. United States Naval Academy (MD)
  2. United States Military Academy (NY)
  3. United States Air Force Academy (CO)
  4. New College of Florida
  5. Virginia Military Institute

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 8:46 AM | Link to this Post

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