World University Rankings: A reality based on a fraud

Tony Bates, Weblog, Sept 17, 2010
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Tony Bates has had a look at the world university rankings and he is not happy. "I am still seething with outrage at the methodology used by the THES World University Rankings," he writes. "These university rankings are the equivalent of a Ponzi scheme." How so? The rankings are based on a survey of 'leading scholars'. What makes them 'leading scholars'? "How many of these scholars were chosen from the institutions ultimately ranked in the top 10-30, or in last year's top 10-30?" asks Bates. It's a good question. See also How much does teaching count in university ratings?

This excellent chart from Aledander Russo's This Week in Education demonstrates what a shell game institutional rankings have become.
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