CANADIAN UNIVERSITY RANKINGS

CANADIAN UNIVERSITY RANKINGS

University ranking is one way to help you select a school, but it isn't your only resource; nor is it the most reliable.

How do rankings work and what do they mean?
University rankings are designed to provide an overall measure of a university's quality and performance. The rankings are based on a number of factors such as average entering grade, acceptance rates, number of students continuing to postgraduate study, size of library, number of faculty with PhDs, and faculty research and publications. Not all criteria are given equal weight, and not all ranking publications use the same criteria. For instance, the two main sources of annual Canadian university rankings are Maclean's magazine and The Globe and Mail newspaper. However, the two publications differ greatly in their methodologies and, therefore, their results. The Globe and Mail, for instance, relies on undergraduate student surveys on topics like student faculty interaction, course availability and quality of teaching, while Maclean's uses university data, such as spending on student services, scholarships and bursaries, funding for libraries, faculty success in obtaining national research grants. Maclean's also does not rank schools with fewer than 1,000 full-time students.

Other Canadian university rankings are available from international publications. For example, you can consult US News and World Report's "World's Best Colleges: Top Canadian Universities." Canadian universities also regularly feature in more general world university rankings, by publications like The Princeton Review, BusinessWeek, The Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) from the UK and the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) based in Shanghai, China. These general rankings are designed to identify the "best" graduate and undergraduate institutions according to quality and value. In some cases, universities and colleges are also ranked according to their institution type.

It's important to realize that some universities themselves criticize the ranking process and refuse to participate (by not providing requested data). A school not appearing on a ranking list, therefore, doesn't mean it wasn't "good enough." For an alternate perspective, less "official" rankings can also be in student-based resources like StudentsReview.

Maclean's Annual Ranking 2008
Category: Primarily Undergrad Category: Comprehensive
University Rank University Rank

Mount Allison University

1

* Simon Fraser University

1

University of Northern British Columbia

2

*University of Victoria

1

Acadia University

3

University of Waterloo

3

Saint Francis Xavier University

4

University of Guelph

4

Wilfrid Laurier University

5

*Memorial University of Newfoundland

5

Trent University

6

*University of New Brunswick

5

*University of Lethbridge

7

Carleton University

7

*University of Prince Edward Island

7

University of Windsor

8

University of Winnipeg

9

*University of Regina

9

Saint Mary’s University

10

* York University

9

* indicates universities with tied rankings