Three Western programs named among global elite

Three Western programs now count themselves among the global elite, as Nursing, Philosophy and Psychology were named among the Top 50 programs in the world, according to the 2016 QS World University Rankings by Subject, released today. In total, Western programs ranked among the world’s elite institutions in 28 of 42 areas.

In the organization’s sixth annual subject-based rankings, QS broke down more than 15,530 programs within 4,226 universities worldwide – including 24 Canadian – in 42 disciplines based on academic and employer reputation surveys and academic citations per faculty member. Specific rankings were released for the Top 50 institutions in every category, and then grouped into 50-university chunks for the remainder of the rankings.

While Nursing (No. 28), Psychology (No. 36) and Philosophy (No. 38) broke the global Top 50, Western also boasted an additional 17 subjects moving up in the rankings.

Within the QS category Arts & Humanities, Philosophy (38), English Language and Literature (101-150), History (151-200) and Modern Languages (201-250) were ranked among the world’s best.

Within Engineering & Technology, Western ranked globally in Mineral and Mining (51-100), Chemical Engineering (101-150), Civil and Structural Engineering (151-200), Computer Science and Info Systems (201-250), Electrical Engineering (201-250) and Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing (201-250).

Within Life Sciences and Medicine, Western ranked globally in Nursing (28), Psychology (36), Medicine (101-150), Pharmacy and Pharmacology (101-150) and Biological Sciences (251-300).

Within Natural Sciences, Western ranked globally in Geography (101-150), Environmental Science (151-200), Earth and Marine Sciences (151-200), Chemistry (201-250), Mathematics (201-250) and Physics and Astronomy (301-350).

Within Social Sciences and Management, Western ranked globally in Business and Management Studies (51-100), Economics and Econometrics (51-100), Statistics and Operational Research (51-100), Accounting and Finance (101-150), Sociology (151-200), Education (151-200) and Communication and Media Studies (151-200).

Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) each led in 12 positions. Top-ten places this year for Canada are shared between four of its institutions. The University of Toronto finished highest of any Canadian university, ranking No. 3 for Nursing. The University of Alberta followed close on its heels, coming No. 4 for Nursing.

The University of Toronto and the University of Alberta’s Nursing courses are two of 63 newly ranked courses for Canadian universities, the fifth-highest number after China, Australia, the United Kingdom and United States.

“Canada’s 466 ranked positions are distributed across all 42 subjects and 24 different universities, emphasising that they are producing world-class education across the entirety of the subject spectrum, widely distributed among their universities,” said Ben Sowter, Head of the QS Intelligence Unit. “The metrics by which QS determines the final positions are four in number, and taking an average of all ranked Canadian institutions for each one illustrates the generally positive performance of the nation’s universities as a whole.”