University Rankings : Mixed Results for Indonesian Universities

The numbers are in for the 2011 World University Rankings and the results for Indonesian universities were mixed with an overall slip in this year’s survey.

The University of Indonesia placed as the country’s top university improving an impressive 19 places from its 2010 ranking to land at number 217 on the annual Quacquarelli Symonds survey. Universitas Gadjah Mada, the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) and Airlangga University all made the top 600 cut but fell in ranking.

“The University of Indonesia’s strength is underpinned by its good performance in three out of the six indicators of the rankings, especially with its reputation among international employers, which has improved considerably, in the international faculty ratio indicator and in the international students’ ratio,” said Ben Sowter, head of research at QS, in a news release.

“The other Indonesian universities ranked have slipped but it is worth remembering that rankings are relative — for each institution that moves up another have to move down. Underlying metrics suggest that global standards against many of our measures are improving, so a university actually has to get better to stay in the same place.”

The QS rankings, in its eighth year of publication, are based on six indicators: academic reputation and employer reputation, both based on surveys, citations per faculty, the faculty to student ratio, the proportion of international students and the proportion of international faculty. This year’s rankings were based on surveys of 33,744 academics and 16,785  employers — the largest survey response pools to date.

The University of Cambridge topped the list for a second year in a row followed by American universities Harvard, MIT and Yale with British university Oxford rounding out the top five. At rank 17, McGill University in Canada was the top non-American or British school while the University of Hong Kong, at 22, took the top spot slot for an Asian university.

Universitas Gadjah Mada, ranked 321 in the 2010 survey, fell to the 342 slot this year. The Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) ranked in the 451-500 range for 2011, falling from the 401-450 range, while Airlangga University fell to the 551-600 range from the 451-500 range. There are an additional four Indonesian universities in the 601+ band ranking range.

“There are a number of Indonesian universities very committed to improve their standards and their global competitiveness but it is important to recognize that their primary focus remains to serve the domestic students and their emphasis is on teaching over research,” said Nunzio Quacquarelli, QS managing director.

“To develop the latter, while providing more access to university to a demographically young and densely populated country, more substantial funding – both from the government and the private sectors is required. Nevertheless, since it is estimated that there are approximately 20,000 universities globally, Indonesia can count four of its institutions among the top 3 percent elite of world-class universities in the world.”

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About Pak Liam

Living, teaching and traveling in Asia.
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