GW fell out of the top 50 in U.S. News & World Report’s annual college rankings Tuesday, dropping one spot to No. 51.
Despite improvements in major rankings factors like faculty salaries, student retention and standardized test scores, the University has danced around that slot in the ranking for more than a decade. At No. 51, it is tied with Boston and Tulane universities.
The rankings are considered the gold standard in higher education, but administrators have typically stopped short of giving it much weight publicly until after the rankings are released.
“We certainly do pay attention to US News and World Report, for the undergraduate part of what we are,” Peg Barratt, dean of the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, said Monday. She added that the University is increasingly looking toward international rankings.
U.S. News used data, like alumni giving rate, student-faculty ratio and high school counselor ratings, from the last academic year. While indicators like SAT scores and faculty salaries increased, measures like acceptance rate and student retention between their first and second years declined.
At No. 50 last year, GW tied with Tulane and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institue, which catapulted to No. 42 in the 2013 rankings.
GW hovered near the top 50 mark for a series of years, holding the No. 53 spot in 2008 and 2009.