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Magazine ranks MIT fourth among U.S. universities

MIT is the fourth-best national university in the 2004 newsstand book, America's Best Colleges, from U.S. News & World Report. The rankings appeared last week on and in the guidebook issued Aug. 26.

MIT's School of Engineering is the top-ranked program in engineering nationally, and the Sloan School of Management ranks second in undergraduate business programs. In engineering specialties, MIT ranked first in more disciplines than any other school.

According to the guidebook, Harvard and Princeton are tied for the number one slot and Yale University is number three. The California Institute of Technology, which often vies with MIT for the number four slot, this year ranked fifth among the top 50 schools.

Last year, MIT was tied for fourth place with Caltech, Duke, Stanford and the University of Pennsylvania.

Among the key criteria for judging schools is selectivity as gauged by the lowest acceptance rate (MIT's is 16 percent), and class size as gauged by the highest proportion of classes with fewer than 20 students (MIT's is 72 percent).

In undergraduate business specialties, MIT was ranked first in management information systems, productions/operations management, supply chain management/logistics and qualitative analysis. Sloan tied with the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California for third place in the entrepreneurship category.

To rank undergraduate business programs, U.S. News surveyed deans and senior faculty at undergraduate business programs accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

In undergraduate engineering specialties, MIT ranked first in aerospace/aeronautical/astronautical, chemical, computer, electrical, mechanical and nuclear engineering. In environmental/environmental health engineering, MIT tied for fourth place with the University of California at Berkeley, ranked fifth out of five in civil engineering, ranked fifth in biomedical engineering and tied for fifth with the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in materials engineering.

In campus diversity, where a rating of 1.0 is the highest, MIT's diversity index is 0.65. Its largest minority is Asian-Americans, which make up 30 percent of the student body. Eight percent of MIT undergraduates are international students, putting it among the top 21 schools with the largest proportion of international undergraduates in 2002-03.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on August 27, 2003.

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