Tag: SAT

Times Higher Education ranking tool to compare US universities

THEBy now most of us have been flooded with different kinds of rankings. THE, Shanghai and QS with their composite scores that rely rather heavily on research have been accompanied by a multitude rankings on all possible and impossible indicators – from university ICT visibility, employability and reputation to the best place to party.

THE World University Rankings has now also compiled a set of US universities in terms of Average SAT score, acceptance rate as well as total number of students enrolled. On THE website, one can also find the tool with out of state tuition fees included. Aligning these results with the ranking from the annual THE rankings, some interesting cases emerge.

The institutional profiles of the top universities clearly differ. Institutions such as UCLA and UC Berkeley have a much more open acceptance rate amongst the top ranked US universities. While Harvard has an acceptance rate of 6%, then Berkeley accepts 22% and UCLA 27% of the applicants, indicating that not all of the institutions in the top are equally selective. The institutions also vary greatly in terms of size, but it is not the case that the most selective institutions are the smallest, the emerging picture is rather varied. Harvard has in fact over 27 000 students, whereas CalTech has only just over 2200 students, and an acceptance rate of 13%. The highest acceptance rate amongst the top universities is at University of Washington which in the THE ranking is on the 25th place but takes in a whole 58% of the applicants.

The very largest institutions, University of Phoenix, Ashford, and Arizona State University are also amongst those that either are not ranked, or do not perform particularly well in the composite ranking. Of the five largest, only Arizona State University is part of the THE ranking, on #146 position. While on a global scale this is a good position, the students they attract in the US clearly have much lower average SAT scores than the better ranked institutions as their acceptance rate is at 89%. At the other end one can find Georgetown, a rather selective institution that accepts 18% of the students, but is well behind in the rankings of other equally selective institutions, being in fact ranked under Arizona, on #160.

News: American students unprepared for college?

SATtesytJust over a week ago College Board, a not-for-profit membership organization in the US, published data indicating that only 43% of the graduates from highschool in 2013 were academically prepared for college, a number that has remained the same in the last five years.

While the US is often considered the leading country with respect to the quality of their higher education institutions, this report also shows great disparity within the educational system.  During the release of the report, Cyndie Schmeiser told Chronicle of HE reporters that the fact that the number has remained unchanged is worrisome: “We are just not moving the needle as aggressively as it needs to be moved.”

SAT is one of the most important admissions exams used in the US, which is conducted in the form of a standardized test and conducted by the College Board. The SAT tests have been around since 1926 but has undergone major revisions, with the current test introduced in 2005. The majority of four-year institutions use SAT in their admission processes. The test includes measurement on three large areas – mathematics, critical reading and writing.