UBC consistently ranks in the top 35 universities globally. Is it important for UBC to focus on improving the rankings?
Week 2 Results
Week 2 Comments
I don’t think that we should be focused on rankings. It seems to me that that’s not a meaningful goal I would rather than we focus on good teaching and good research and have the rankings rise out of that value-based focus.
I think that the ranking of the university is important. If we rank highly then we are better able to attract strong/productive and well funded researchers and in turn will be able to attract excellent students. I think our ranking is tied to our bottom line – if we rank well then more funding (in the form or research dollars and donations) will be available.
No, I think UBC needs to continue to work on the global stage and incorporate strategies to keep us connected to the world, but I think by ensuring we do many things well – research, teach, outreach, lead – we will stay strong in our ranking globally.
We must be careful about these rankings as I think everyone realizes. However, in general, I find that these rankings have a positive effect on morale, i.e. people take pride in being part of one of the best universities in the world. If we can do it intelligently, it would be a sign that we are moving in a good direction if our ranking improved.
The problem with rankings is that they are seldom fine-tuned enough to respond to such things as disciplinary difference. If UBC cannot afford to be all things to all people, then it will need to be strategic about those areas to receive support. Rankings are unlikely to be helpful in determining which of the sectors in our very diverse university are truly world-class. And one might also point out that UBC should tend a bit more to its own knitting– we may be in the top 35 in the world, but our students are very dissatisfied, according to the recent Macleans survey– were near the bottom in many measures of student satisfaction. Bringing another Nobel prize winner on board won’t solve that problem. Lets chase ratings, by all means– but let’s chase ratings that speak to the quality of the student experience.
We should focus on improving what we know needs improving. Rankings, which mean little anyway, will take care of themselves.