From the College Solution Blog by Lynn O’Shaughnessy
I cringe every year at this time when U.S. News releases its latest college rankings. The rankings use a flawed methodology so you shouldn’t assume that the school ranked No. 15, for instance, is better than the college ranked 25th or 97th or 150th. What’s more, colleges behave in ways that can hurt families as these institutions try to inch up in the rankings.
One of the perverse aspects about the rankings is that turning out thoughtful, articulate young men and women, who can write cogently and think critically, won’t budge a school’s ranking up even one spot. Curiously enough, U.S. News doesn’t even attempt to measure the type of learning going on at schools.
Unfortunately, the methodology fueling the rankings are a collection of subjective measurements that students and families are supposed to rely upon to pinpoint the schools doing the best job of educating undergraduates. U.S. News relies on proxies for educational quality, but these proxies are dubious at best.
When the rankings were released this week, I wrote two pieces that attempted to explain why families should view the rankings with skepticism. Here are the posts:the original article from The College Solution, written by Lynn O'Shaughnessy