May 10th, 2019
BY GERALD M. BRADSHAW
Bradshaw College Consulting
and metrics in the ranking process.
Granted, the annual "beauty contest" fails to take into account the true quality of education at an institution and there is little data to support
the magazine's conclusions. Schools are accused of playing the system to raise their place in the rankings and the publication stops short of
providing information about learning or future employment outcomes.
The use of peer assessments and high school counselor input is suspect in the opinion of many college presidents. Competition among colleges
and universities is fierce, and they use elements of these reports as a measure of their success and as a marketing tool. They tout the fact that the rankings indicate the quality of their faculty and the student body. Magazine rankings can be a guide to variety of higher education possibilities.
Here are some examples of the overall rank of a variety of top schools by U.S. News and World Report for 2019:
- Indiana University is No. 89 on the list. Acceptance rate: 76%
- Purdue is ranked 56th. Acceptance rate: 57%
- Notre Dame is No. 18. Acceptance rate: 19%
- Harvard is No. 2. Acceptance rate: 4.5%
- Princeton is ranked No. 1. Acceptance rate: 4.9%
Magazine's annual college ranking
a guide to higher education possibilities
Despite the negative assessment of the annual rankings report by many, college rankings can be an important consideration for the college
applicant for a number of reasons.
For example, admission selectivity rates are often used by companies and organizations as a gauge in recruiting employees. When employers
are considering new hires, the years of hard work and preparation that precede admission to a top college are taken into consideration. These
student will have had high scores on entrance examinations and have an exemplary extracurricular activity record. After all, these companies
are putting their futures in the hands of these new recruits. And, translated into practical terms, if you will be applying for a summer internship
during your college years, the selectivity of your college can be a huge advantage.
To get an internship at one of the top firms is not easy. The profile of the successful internship candidate is heavily skewed toward students at
schools that score well in the rankings. Companies know that top colleges already have done much of the work for them by vetting students
through the competitive application process. It is a fact that many students are offered full-time employment after completing summer
To be sure, magazine rankings are not perfect predictors of future employment success but they can provide a guide to the variety of higher
education possibilities for parents and students. You will need to supplement that knowledge with other resources that will give you a complete
picture of the college experience at each school. Applicants will then have the responsibility to make sure that their college choice and that
school's academic offerings are a "good fit" for their career aspirations.
Gerald Bradshaw is a top US college admissions consultant with Bradshaw College Consulting.
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