THE World University Rankings 2024: Exploring 1,904 Universities from 108 Countries

Looking for a trusted and influential source of information on global higher education? Times Higher Education (THE) recently announced the World University Rankings 2024. This year was the biggest edition yet, with a new and improved methodology for ranking universities.

The World University Rankings 2024 includes 1,904 universities across 108 countries and regions, based on 18 carefully calibrated performance indicators that measure an institution’s performance across five areas: teaching, research environment, research quality, industry, and international outlook. This year’s ranking analyzed over 134 million citations across 16.5 million research publications and included survey responses from 68,402 scholars globally.

The methodology used for this year’s rankings (WUR 3.0)

The ranking reveals how the global higher education landscape is shifting and the strengths and weaknesses of different regions and countries. Here are some of the key highlights and trends from the World University Rankings 2024:

  • China has 86 universities in the World University Rankings 2024, making it the fifth most-represented country in the ranking. The top two universities in China are Tsinghua University and Peking University, both based in Beijing, which rank 12th and 14th in the world, respectively. China also has four universities in the top 50 and six in the top 100, showing its increasing competitiveness and excellence in higher education. Learn more through our sister company, China Admissions.
  • The University of Oxford tops the ranking for the eighth year in a row, but others in the top five have seen shifts in their ranks. Stanford University moves up to second place, pushing Harvard University down to fourth. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) climbs up two places to third this year. The University of Cambridge slips to fifth place, after being in joint third place last year.
  • The highest new entry is Italy’s Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, ranked in the 301-350 bracket. However, the majority of the institutions joining the ranking for the first time this year are in Asia.
  • The US is the most-represented country overall, with 169 institutions, and also the most-represented in the top 200 (56). With 91 institutions, India is now the fourth most-represented nation, overtaking China (86).
  • Four countries enter the ranking for the first time – all of them in Europe. The addition of Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Armenia is in contrast to last year’s trend when all the new entrants were from Africa.
  • Stanford University leads the teaching pillar, while the universities of Oxford and Cambridge come top for research environment. The research quality pillar, which is the newly renamed citations pillar, sees MIT in first place. The University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates scores highest in international outlook, while 28 institutions receive a top score of 100 for the industry pillar.
This year’s highest entry was the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, based in Milan, Italy. It is renowned for its top-notch medical education. 

The World University Rankings 2024 can help you compare and contrast different universities based on various criteria and indicators, as well as explore the profiles and performance of each institution. You can also access a range of analytical and benchmarking tools to help you make informed decisions about your future education.

To view the full ranking and methodology, visit the official website. To read more analysis and insights from THE experts, download the digital report.

We hope this article has given you some useful information and guidance on choosing your ideal university. Remember that rankings are not everything, and you should also consider other factors such as your interests, goals, budget, location preferences, and personal fit when making your decision.

Learn more and apply to universities through the Global Admissions platform. Our team can help you with your application every step of the way.

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