Explaining Howard University’s Drop in the U.S. News Rankings

howard_university_logo965x965In 2010 Howard University was ranked in 96th position in the ratings for the Best National Universities by U.S. News and World Report. This year the university was in 142nd place. Typically universities move up or down within a very small range, so the large drop by Howard University is unusual. Some observers have speculated that Sidney Ribeau’s recent decision to step down as president of Howard was related to the significant drop in the university’s ranking.

The drop in Howard’s ranking prompted Robert Morse, director of data research for U.S. News to write a column explaining why Howard had dropped so far. He wrote that “its ranking scores in academic peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, student selectivity, faculty resources, alumni giving and graduation rate performance all fell relative to other schools in the National Universities rankings.”

Morse also revealed that Howard had not provided U.S. News with statistical data for the last two years. “Therefore, Howard’s decline in the most recent rankings,” according to Morse, “was mainly due to its administrative inability or refusal to report its most recent data about itself to U.S. News.

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