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Cambridge University students in their gowns on graduation day at Corpus Christi College, England

The list of the world’s best universities for 2024, according to the QS World University Rankings, highlights the dominance of European and American institutions. Half of the top 10 spots are claimed by universities from the Old World, with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) securing the number one position for an impressive 12th consecutive year.

The QS World University Rankings is a highly respected ranking system that takes into account employability and sustainability, differentiating itself from other rankings. This year’s edition features 1,500 institutions across 104 locations, drawing on the analysis of 17.5 million academic papers and the expert opinions of over 240,000 academic faculty and employers worldwide.

Dominance of European and American Universities

MIT stands tall at the top of the rankings with a perfect overall score of 100. Following closely behind are the University of Cambridge in second place with 99.2 points, and the University of Oxford in third place with 98.9 points, climbing one position from last year’s list. Harvard University takes the fourth spot with a score of 98.3, followed by Stanford University at fifth with 98.1 points.

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English-speaking universities continue to dominate the higher positions, with impeccable scores in categories such as academic reputation, employer reputation, and faculty/student ratio. However, the latest rankings unveil a shift in the global higher-education landscape, as more institutions from around the world emerge among the top contenders.

Rising Stars and US Dominance

This year’s top ten showcases institutions like Imperial College London at sixth place, ETH Zurich at seventh place, the National University of Singapore (NUS) as a new entry at eighth place, and UCL London at ninth place. The next five spots are dominated by US institutions, with the University of California, Berkeley (UCB) making a significant entry at tenth place.

MIT, Massachusetts, at twilight

Berkeley stands out by earning a perfect score of 100 in the new ‘Sustainability’ indicator, closely followed by the University of Pennsylvania at twelfth place, the University of Toronto at twenty-first place, and the University of British Columbia at thirty-fourth place. These indicators reflect a growing emphasis on environmental consciousness and social responsibility within higher education institutions.

Global Representation

The QS World University Rankings 2024 welcomes 85 new entrants, with NUS and UCB making their mark among the top ten. Asia takes the lead as more than half of the newly-ranked institutions are from this region, including 11 from Bangladesh, 10 from Indonesia, 5 from India, 5 from Malaysia, and 4 from Kazakhstan. This diversification highlights the evolving educational landscape worldwide.

Here is the complete list of the top 10 universities according to the QS World University Rankings 2024:

  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  2. University of Cambridge
  3. University of Oxford
  4. Harvard University
  5. Stanford University
  6. Imperial College London
  7. ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology
  8. National University of Singapore (NUS)
  9. University College London (UCL)
  10. University of California, Berkeley (UCB)
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Check out the complete results of the QS World University Rankings 2024 here.

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