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The Best Universities in the World

Some universities are household names, not only that, but in the job market a degree from a prestigious university can open doors. A number of organizations and websites do an annual round-up of the best universities in the world. Even though the assessments are done by different teams the same universities consistently feature in the top ten. It is interesting to note that even the lists which include universities from across the globe still feature the same US and UK establishments among the top 10.

Articles > The Best Universities in the World
Times Higher Education (THE) Rankings
THE presents World University Rankings and World Reputation Rankings, they are perhaps the most respected of the ranking lists published annually.  This is their World University Ranking top 5. Their World Reputation Ranking only varies slightly with MIT replacing CalTech and a variation in the order.
  1. California Institute of technology (CalTech)
  2. Harvard University
  3. University of Oxford
  4. Stanford University
  5. University of Cambridge
The first non-US or UK university on the list is the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich at 13 followed by the University of Toronto at 20, the University of Tokyo at 23 and the National University of Singapore at 25. THE claims to be the only ranking list which judges universities across all of their core missions: teaching, knowledge, research, transfer and international outlook. They use 13 criteria to assess the universities. The list only includes universities which have an undergraduate program and excludes institutions which teach only one subject.
Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU)
  1. Harvard University
  2. Stanford University
  3. Massachusetts Institute of technology (MIT)
  4. University of California-Berkeley
  5. University of Cambridge

The first appearance of a university outside of the USA or the UK is the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich at 19, closely followed by the University of Tokyo at 21 and the University of Toronto at 24. ARWU takes into consideration university alumni and staff who are Nobel Laureates or Fields Medalists, the students' academic performance and university research achievements. They rank a total of 1,200 institutions.
U.S.News Best Global Universities Ranking
U.S.News offers a large number of ranking lists mostly focused on US colleges; however they also publish this list of Best Global Universities. Their list includes the US and 50 other countries and features 500 institutions. The ranking is based on 10 factors including academic achievement, research performance and reputation. 
  1. Harvard University
  2. Massachusetts Institution of technology
  3. University of California-Berkeley
  4. Stanford
  5. University of Oxford
The University of Toronto comes in at number 14, University of Tokyo at #24 and Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich at #26.
Despite the various ranking lists let's face it students choose their university based on finance, location and which institute accepts them! However the university's reputation undoubtedly plays a role in the student's selection and in the respect future employees give graduates.
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