Photo of a biomolecular engineering student working in a lab at the Case School of Engineering. Photography by Matt Shiffler.
A biomolecular engineering student works in a lab at the Case School of Engineering. Photography by Matt Shiffler.

New data-driven ranking places CWRU among the nation’s best

Case Western Reserve placed 21st among the nation’s colleges and universities in a new, entirely data-driven ranking. 

Unlike U.S. News & World Report, eschewed peer assessments in its ratings, instead heavily emphasizing research-related data. Its methodology includes three other broad categories, as compared to the magazine’s 19.

These disparate approaches saw the California Institute of Technology move from 7th in U.S. News Best Colleges’ to the top of’s list. Princeton, the magazine’s top institution this year, is 8th according to’s calculations. 

Some of the largest variations between the two sets of rankings involved schools in the University Athletic Association. Emory and Carnegie Mellon—which tied for 24th this year in U.S. News—were respectively 10th and 11th in New York University, meanwhile, moved from 35th in the magazine to 14th on the website. Case Western Reserve had one of the largest gains on its 21st rating is 31 positions higher than its place on this year’s U.S. News list.

The website’s measures for the research category include: total number of research articles published, their two-year mean citation number, and the per-faculty grant amount.

The other categories—teaching, campus and faculty—involve data including average standardized test scores and retention rates, safety, student support services and student-faculty ratios. drew information from several federal sources, as well as the Peterson’s and Open Alex databases.

Originally focused on providing information of interest specifically to researchers, the website more recently expanded to include lists that rate institutions, degrees and scholars.