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Wednesday, August 07, 2019

US News & World Report ranks America's 'best' colleges. But, is there really a way to know? | USA TODAY

Chris Quintana, USA TODAY notes, College rankings purport to tell the public which schools are worthwhile, even though many academics view the rankings as worthless.

Photo: courtesy of Stuart Miles at
The latest salvo in the battle between the ranked and the rankers comes out of Reed College in Portland, Oregon. A statistics professor and a group of students say, based on an statistical analysis, Reed College appears to be under-ranked compared to other schools on the U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of "best colleges." The publication denies that claim and questions the accuracy of the group's work.

Though the two parties may not come to an agreement, the debate speaks to a broader conversation about the value of quantifying the college experience. Mainly, is there any?...

Reed College rankings: 38th or 90th?
As a statistician, professor Kelly McConville is well aware of the value of numbers, but she too had questions about U.S. News’ ranking system.