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UCI is top U.S. university under 50 years

The local institution is No. 1 in the U.S. on a list of 100 schools and 4th worldwide

by Caitlin AdamsPublished: June 05, 2012

Leading the charge as a public institution in research, humanities and social sciences, UC Irvine has been named the No. 1 university in the country under the age of 50 by the Times Higher Education, a London magazine, in the publication’s worldwide “100 Under 50” rankings. The university ranked 4th on the list of 100 schools in the world.

UCI traces its beginnings to 1965, prior to the founding of Irvine itself. Today, the school is home to more than 27,000 undergraduate and graduate students, and prides itself on being a modern campus. UC Irvine and UC Santa Cruz are the only American universities in the top 10, as well as the only California schools. A total of nine U.S. schools made the list.

"We are gratified that this ranking recognizes our leadership among modern universities," said Michael Gottfredson, UCI's executive vice chancellor and provost. "UCI was among the first universities to create a school of information and computer sciences and a department of Earth system science. We've also been a leader in creating multidisciplinary, collaborative programs that combine technology with the arts, humanities and social sciences. These are the kinds of initiatives that position us as innovators."

The Times Higher Education’s ranking methodology for the “100 Under 50” list differs from its older “World University Rankings,” in which age and academic tradition play a larger consideration. The Times noted that its editors decided to reduce the importance of “reputation” in the survey, giving a higher emphasis to concrete performance than to storied traditions.

“It was agreed that an analysis of younger institutions, designed to examine future potential as much as current excellence and to move away from heritage or legacy, should be based more on hard, objective performance indicators,” the Times said on its methodology page.

In breaking down the "100 Under 50" rankings, the Times quantifies each school based on its research, including the volume, income and reputation of studies at the institution (30 percent); citations, taking into account the frequency of research being performed at the university (30 percent); teaching, the learning environment at the school (30 percent); international outlook (7.5 percent); the community of people and research; and industry income (2.5 percent).

The No. 1 international school on the list, Pohang University of Science and Technology, known as Postech, is located in South Korea. The UK is the biggest representative on the list, with 20 universities.

For the complete rankings, click here.

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