Brown Breaks Top 15 In Latest Forbes Top Colleges Rankings

Thursday, July 25, 2013


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It's cause to celebrate at Brown University, which just moved up in Forbes Magazine's annual Top Colleges rankings.

Brown University broke the Top 15 in Forbes Magazine’s annual America’s Top Colleges ranking, coming in at #12 for 2013.

The annual ranking of the 650 best undergraduate institutions focuses on “ the factors that directly concern today’s incoming students (and their families),” says Forbes. Partnered with the Center for College Affordability and Productivity (CCAP),the magazine looks into the “input” and “output” of higher education and what undergraduates get out of their education during their four years in college and after graduation.  

PC, URI, RWU + JWU  move up

For the 2013 rankings, #12 Brown climbed up 7 spots from last year’s #19 rank. The Ivy-League on College Hill is the highest ranked RI-based university and the only one to make in the top 100. Similar to Brown, the remaining Rhode Island colleges bumped up the ranking ladder from their 2012 standing. Providence College moved up 31 spots from #182 to #151, URI made a huge jump to #325 from #452, Roger Williams also climbed up 100 spots from #544 to #443, and Johnson & Wales rose to #645 from #649. Rhode Island College was the only one to drop down 23 spots from their previous rank of #552 to #575.

The Forbes formula

According to Forbes, this year’s list marked a new theme of “rapidly changing landscape in higher education” in that for the first time, two non-Ivies took over the top spots: Stanford University at #1 and Pomona College at #2. With two California schools ranked as the two best colleges, this shift indicates an opening for “a more diverse, accessible portfolio of best schools for students,” extending beyond the more prominently known East Coast colleges.

The magazine calculates each college through the CCAP methodology based on five categories. Here is the breakdown of each category:

  • Post Graduate Success (37.5%): evaluates pay and prominence of alumni
  • Student Satisfaction (22.5%): includes student evaluations on professors and student retention rates
  • Student Debt (17.5%): penalizes schools for high student debt loads and default rates
  • Graduation Rate (11.25%): evaluates the actual and predicated graduation rate in four years
  • Nationally Competitive Awards (11.25%):Rewards schools whose students win prestigious scholarships and fellowships like the Rhodes, the Marshall and the Fulbright or go one to earn a Ph.D.


For a full list of ranking, click here.


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