News, On Campus

BC Falls One Spot to No. 36 in ‘U.S. News & World Report’ Rankings

U.S. News & World Report named Boston College the No. 36 best national college in its 2022 college rankings, a one-spot drop from last year’s ranking

BC tied the University of California, Irvine for the 36th spot.

U.S. News assesses colleges based on 17 measures of academic quality, including graduation and retention rates, financial resources per student, and undergraduate academic reputation. The rankings this year are based on data from the fall of 2020 or earlier, the U.S. News website reads.

“Notably, SAT/ACT scores mostly reflect a test-taking period from 2019 to early 2020, before the effects of the coronavirus were felt in the United States,” the website reads. “Nonetheless, to account for the disruption to higher education due to the ongoing pandemic, we slightly adjusted how we assessed SAT/ACT scores and made greater use of historic data for a few of the other ranking indicators.” 

BC placed higher than some peer schools—Boston University tied with Brandeis University at No. 42 and Northeastern University ranked 49th—while it fell below Tufts University at No. 28, the University of Notre Dame at No. 19, and Georgetown University at 23rd.

In ranking schools, U.S. News gives each school an overall score between zero and 100. Graduation and retention rates account for 22 percent of the total score, undergraduate academic reputation and faculty resources account for 20 percent each, financial resources per student make up 10 percent, and graduation rate performance is worth 8 percent. Student selectivity accounts for 7 percent, social mobility and graduate indebtedness for 5 percent each, and average alumni giving rate for 3 percent.

BC received a score of 76 out of 100, a one-point increase from last year. The University also ranked eighth in “Best Undergraduate Teaching,” fifth in “Service Learning,” 12th in “Learning Communities,” 16th in “First-Year Experiences,” 40th in “Most Innovative Schools,” 39th in “Best Value Schools,” and 27th in “Study Abroad.”

The Carroll School of Management also placed seventh in finance and 12th in accounting. 

BC also recently ranked No. 62, an 11 place drop from last year, in the 2021 Washington Monthly national university rankings. Compared to the U.S. News rankings, the Washington Monthly rankings place more of an emphasis on the public good, dividing it into three categories—social mobility, research, and promoting public service.

“It’s our answer to U.S. News & World Report, which relies on crude and easily manipulated measures of wealth, exclusivity, and prestige,” the rankings page reads. 

In the Washington Monthly rankings, Boston University ranked 89th, Northeastern University ranked 66th, and Tufts University ranked 36th. The University of Notre Dame ranked 13th and Georgetown University ranked 38th.

September 14, 2021