[photopress:mba_jiaotong_univesrsty.jpg,full,alignright]The story originally appeared in the Beijing Morning Post. It reported that Shanghai’s Jiaotong University, seen here, had published its 2007 university ranking and at the top came Harvard, Stanford and UC Berkeley. China’s top schools, Tsinghua and Peking University, come in at 167 and 228 on this list.
To compare consider that Japan’s Tokyo University is 20 and Taiwan University ranks 161. Cambridge and Oxford in Britain came in at 4 and 10.
According to this list of the top 100 best universities, 54 are located in the United States, 31 are in Europe, and nine in the Asia and Pacific region. Which might cause a small storm in a tea cup but, in fact, it is a pretty pointless exercise.
This is the fifth list Jiaotong University has published and is mainly based on six categories of criteria covering the number of alumni and staff winning Nobel and other academic prizes or having their research work published in domestic or the world’s top academic journals.
While it can be argued that rankings of universities are necessary for an increasing number of Chinese students who pursue higher education abroad lists like this, using an arbitary set of criteria, do not help.
The idea that Nobel prize winning is a way of judging university teaching excellence does not stand up to close examination.
In a sense, one way of looking at it is as a reverse listing. If the university staff is seriously occupied in having peer-reviewed papers published — publish or perish — then quite possibly they are not over-keen on teaching students.
Source: China Digital Times and China View