University of Otago subject ranking rises

The University of Otago has strengthened its international academic standing, in the 2018 QS World University Rankings by subject, in a "very pleasing" outcome.

Otago University academic deputy vice-chancellor  Vernon Squire made that comment after the international ranking body’s latest subject ranking figures were released this week.

In the latest figures the total number of Otago-taught subjects ranked in the top 100 in the world has risen.

Among the top five subject areas for Otago, physical education was ranked 12th in the world, and dentistry was ranked 27th. Otago had maintained five subjects in the top 50 worldwide, and three of those five had increased their ranking.

And the numbers of Otago subjects ranked between 51st and 100th in the world rose from from eight to 10.

Prof Squire said the "very pleasing" results provided "welcome recognition" of the quality of Otago teaching and research across the disciplines.Overall, these were "stronger results" than for last year, which in turn were "much stronger than 2016", Prof Squire said.

The university’s archaeology; anatomy and physiology; and development studies offerings had also achieved top-50 rankings: 28th, 29th and 39th, respectively.

For the first time, theology, nursing, pharmacy/pharmacology, earth (and marine) sciences, and education featured in the 51 to 100 band rankings, joining psychology, performing arts, geography, anthropology, and law in this band.

As well as having 15 subjects in the top 100 band, Otago also has another seven subjects in the top 101-150-band: English, history, biological sciences, medicine, environmental sciences, accounting and finance, and business and management studies.

Otago’s six subjects in the 151-200 band were: languages, philosophy, communications and media studies, economics and econometrics, politics and international relations, and sociology. In the broader "faculty" categories assessed for the rankings, Otago’s life sciences and medicine areas were ranked 64th in the world overall (66 last year).

Otago also secures top 100 faculty rankings for social sciences and management and for arts and humanities.

Prof Squire recognised the "hard work" of the staff involved in the ranked Otago departments.

QS ranking organisers said the rankings  analysed the performance of the globe’s top universities for the study of 48 different subjects.

Auckland University had three subjects ranked in the top 20, including existing top-20 subjects archaeology (10th) and education (17), but adding anatomy and physiology (18) in the top 20.

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