Education Methodology

278 schools granting doctoral degrees in education were surveyed in fall 2007and early 2008.

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Graduate programs at 278 schools granting doctoral degrees in education were surveyed in fall 2007and early 2008. Of those schools, 245 responded; 242 provided the data needed to calculate rankings based on a weighted average of the 10 quality measures described here.

Quality assessment (weighted by .40)

Peer Assessment Score (.25) In the fall of 2007, education school deans and education school deans of graduate studies were asked to rate programs on a scale from "marginal" (1) to "outstanding" (5). Those individuals who did not know enough about a school to evaluate it fairly were asked to mark "don't know." A school's score is the average of all the respondents who rated it. Responses of "don't know" counted neither for nor against a school. About 47 percent of those surveyed responded.

Superintendent Assessment Score (.15) In the fall of 2007, school superintendents nationwide in a sampling of school districts were asked to rate programs on a scale from "marginal" (1) to "outstanding" (5). Those individuals who did not know enough about a school to evaluate it fairly were asked to mark "don't know." A school's score is the average of all the respondents who rated it. Responses of "don't know" counted neither for nor against a school. About 24 percent of those surveyed responded.

Student Selectivity (weighted by .18)

Mean GRE Verbal Scores (.06) The mean verbal score of the Graduate Record Examination for doctoral students entering in the 2007-2008 academic year. Where mean GRE verbal scores are not available for entering doctoral students, mean GRE verbal scores for all entering students are substituted, if available.

Mean GRE Quantitative Scores (.06) The mean quantitative score of the Graduate Record Examination for doctoral students entering in the 2007-2008 academic year. Where mean GRE quantitative scores are not available for entering doctoral students, mean GRE quantitative scores for all entering students are substituted, if available.

Acceptance Rate (.06) The proportion of applicants to the doctoral program who were offered admission for the 2007-2008 academic year.

Faculty Resources (weighted by .12)

Student-Faculty Ratio (.045) The 2007 ratio of all full-time equivalent doctoral students to full-time faculty.

Percent of Faculty With Awards (.025) The percent of the full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty that held awards or editorships among selected education journals in 2006 and 2007.

Doctoral Degrees Granted (.05) Ratio of the number of doctoral degrees awarded in 2006-2007 to the number of full-time faculty members in 2006-2007.

Research Activity (weighted by .30)

Total Research Expenditures (.15) The total education-school research expenditures averaged over fiscal years 2006 and 2007. Expenditures refer to separately funded research, public and private, conducted by the school.

Average Expenditures Per Faculty Member (.15) The average research expenditures per full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty member averaged over fiscal years 2006 and 2007. Expenditures refer to separately funded research, public and private, conducted by the school.

Overall Rank: Data were standardized about their means, and standardized scores were weighted, totaled, and rescaled so that the top school received 100; other schools received their percentage of the top score.

Specialty Rankings: Specialty ratings are based solely on nominations by education-school deans and education school deans of graduate studies from the list of schools surveyed. They selected up to 10 top programs in each area. Those with the most votes are listed.

For the America's Best Graduate Schools 2009 edition, U.S. News modified our education school rankings model after consulting with deans of leading graduate education schools. The methodology was improved by making it more oriented toward the research aspect of graduate education.

These are the ranking model changes that were used in the faculty resources part of the rankings:

1. Student faculty ratio was changed to a doctoral student-faculty ratio for full-time equivalent doctoral students to full-time faculty from a full-time degree seeking doctoral and master's degree student ratio to full-time faculty. In the ranking model a lower ratio being more favorable. The variable's weight in the ranking model was increased to 4.5 percent from 2.0 percent.



Corrected on : Corrected on 9/18/2008: A previous version of this article incorrectly explained the "doctoral degrees granted" measure.