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Kiwi university subjects ranked among top in the world

By Catherine Knowles
Tue 22 Mar 2016
FYI, this story is more than a year old

New Zealand universities have been recognised on the global stage for a range of subjects, from education to engineering.

The sixth edition of the QS World University Rankings by Subject features 42 disciplines, making it the largest-ever world subject rankings. New Zealand’s universities take 21 top-50 places in these tables, slightly improving on last year’s figure of 20.

The expert opinion of 76,798 academics and 44,426 employers informed the results, alongside the analysis of 28.5 million research papers and over 113 million citations sourced from the Scopus/Elsevier bibliometric database.

Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) continue to dominate, leading in 24 subjects between them. Each takes twelve leading positions.

New Zealand’s highest finish is achieved by the University of Otago, which ranks 12th for Dentistry. It is followed by the University of Auckland, which ranks 20th in QS’s inaugural Archaeology rankings, and 23rd for Education. QS rank New Zealand’s universities in all of its 42 subject tables this year, making it one of only a few countries to achieve this feat.

QS World University Rankings by Subject: New Zealand’s universities represented
University No. of placements Best subject Rank 2016
University of Auckland 38 Archaeology 20th
University of Otago  27 Dentistry 12th
University of Canterbury 25 Engineering - Civil & Structural 49=
Victoria University of Wellington 22 Social Policy & Administration 50=
Massey University 15 Veterinary Science 25th
University of Waikato 12 Education 51-100
Auckland University of Technology 5 Art & Design 51-100
Lincoln University  1 Agriculture & Forestry 51-100

Ben Sowter, QS Intelligence Unit head, says, “Though the US and UK remain dominant, our most inclusive rankings yet show that excellence can be found in an ever-increasing number of places. Nations like Austria, South Africa, Finland, Brazil, China, and Sweden can be found in the top ten of our tables. Our new top 100 for Performing Arts acknowledges academic excellence in 27 different countries, while our top 100 for Mineral Engineering recognises it in 26.”

New Zealand’s universities feature in all six of QS’s new rankings. Five feature in the top fifty of the new rankings - the University of Auckland ranks 49th for Anthropology, while also ranking 20th for Archaeology. It ranks 32nd for Nursing, and 49th for Social Policy & Administration - a subject in which the Victoria University of Wellington ranks joint 50th. New Zealand’s sole entry into the new Engineering - Mineral & Mining ranking is the University of Auckland again, which places in the 51-100 category.

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