International Student and International Faculty Factors

Here's how a university’s international community is used in the World’s Best Colleges rankings.

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How is the degree to which a school has become a more international institution evaluated?

International reputation is an undeniable component of today's world-class universities. How better to evaluate that than to assess to what degree international students and international faculty are attracted to a given institution? The factors used to measure this quality for the U.S. News World's Best Colleges and Universities rankings (which are based on data from the-QS World University Rankings, produced in association with QS Quacquarelli Symonds) are the proportion of international students and proportion of international faculty who are at that institution.

These factors each represent 5 percent of a school's overall rating in the World's Best Colleges and Universities rankings. The international students score and international faculty score are calculated based on those proportions.

These scores are two performance indicators that can be used to compare institutions worldwide because they cross international borders. They are also factors that help determine the degree to which a school has become a world-class university. The international migration of students and faculty is a major trend in worldwide higher education. This trend is recognized in these rankings simply by the proportion of full-time registered students and faculty who are citizens of a nation different from the one the university is located in, as these statistics are relatively easy to collect. Various other measures, such as exchange student numbers, are being collected and compiled and may be included in the future.