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Bibliometrics & Responsible Research Evaluation: University Rankings

Learn how to track citations to your research and the limitations of using bibliometric indicators

Times Higher Education World University Rankings

The THE World University Rankings provide overall world top 200 rankings, banded lists of a further 200 "best of the rest" universities, top 50 institutions by subject (engineering & technology, arts & humanities, clinical, pre-clinical & health, life sciences, physical sciences, social sciences), rankings by region.

Methodology uses 13 performance indicators, grouped into the following 5 areas:

  • 30% Teaching — the learning environment (reputational survey - teaching, PHD awards per academic, undergraduates admitted per academic, income per academic, PHD awards/bachelor awards)
  • 30% Research — volume, income and reputation (papers per academic  and research student, reputational survey - research, scaled research income)
  • 30% Citations — research influence (normalised average citations per paper)
  • 2.5% Industry Income — innovation (research income from industry per academic)
  • 7.5% International Outlook — ratio of international to domestic staff, ratio of international to domestic students, proportion of international co-authored research papers

CWTS Leiden Ranking

"902 universities from 54 different countries. The Leiden Ranking is based on Web of Science data. All universities worldwide with more than 1000 fractionally counted Web of Science indexed core publications in the period 2018–2021 are included in the ranking." Open access data are taken from OpenAlex.


Compares the performances of universities across 5 dimensions:

(1) teaching and learning

(2) research 

(3) knowledge transfer 

(4) international orientation

(5) regional engagement

Bibliometric analysis is based on the Web of Science dataset and is provided by the CWTS (Centre for Science and Technology  Studies) at Leiden University.

QS Ranking

The QS World University Rankings currently ranks over 1,000 universities. The QS World University Rankings by Subject identifies the world's strongest universities in 48 individual subject areas. The QS Top 50 Under 50 highlights the world's top 50 universities established within the last 50 years.

Methodology used:

  • 40% Academic reputation from global survey
  • 10% Employer reputation from global survey
  • 20% Citations per faculty from Scopus
  • 20% Faculty/Student ratio
  • 5% Proportion of international students
  • 5% Proportion of international faculty

Shanghai Jiao Tong University Academic Ranking of World Universities

Shanghai Jiao Tong University Academic Ranking of World Universities first published in June 2003 by the Center for World-Class Universities and the Institute of Higher Education of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, and then updated on an annual basis.

Methodology used:

  • 10% Alumni winning Nobel Prizes and Fields medals
  • 20% Staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals
  • 20% number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific and included in their database, Essential Science Indicators
  • 20% number of articles published in the journals, Nature and Science
  • 20% number of articles indexed in Science Citation Index - Expanded and Social Sciences Citation Index
  • 10% per capita academic performance with respect to the size of an institution

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