Hecuba keeps watch over USC Village. (Photo/Chris Shinn)


USC ranks No. 18 nationally in Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education survey

The university posted especially strong scores for engagement, a measure of student interaction with faculty and of the range of courses offered.

September 05, 2019 David Medzerian

USC is ranked No. 18 in the just-released Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education survey of 801 U.S. colleges and universities.

Within the West region, the university placed third out of 122 institutions, behind Caltech and Stanford University.

The annual ranking uses a set of comprehensive metrics to determine whether a college offers students sufficient resources to succeed, whether students feel challenged and engaged, whether the student body is diverse and international, and whether graduates succeed by paying off their loans and are able to find satisfying, high-paying jobs.

USC has placed in the top 20 since the inception of The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education survey, now in its fourth year. In each ranking segment this year, USC placed among the top 10% of all colleges and universities:

• Engagement: In the study’s engagement metric, which relies on results from a Times Higher Education survey of students over the last year, USC ranked No. 4 in the nation. The survey measures — among other factors — whether what students learned in class was readily applicable in the real world and whether students had regular access to and interaction with faculty, as well as the breadth of courses offered on campus. Among the top 20 national universities, none scored as high as USC in engagement.

• Resources: USC’s highest score in the entire study — 99.6 out of 100 — came in the resource category of finance per student.

• Outcomes: USC also showed strength in the area of graduate salaries. The study put Trojans in the 99th percentile nationally in this key metric.

• Environment: USC, too, showed strength in the metric examining whether colleges are providing an optimum learning environment for all students and measuring a university’s effort to attract a diverse student body and faculty. Among the top 20 institutions, USC ranked third.

USC has the largest undergraduate enrollment among the top 20 institutions.

Data from this survey was collected from a variety of public data sources, as well as from a comprehensive student survey carried out by Times Higher Education in London.