The AppliedHE Rankometer is an aggregating ranking system that combines the world’s most influential university rankings into a single measure of university reputation and quality. Instead of choosing between different ranking systems, why not include all of them in your decision-making through the beautifully simple and authoritative AppliedHE Rankometer?

Ranking Selection

The Rankometer reflects global opinions on universities as it is captured in the world’s leading university rankings. For a ranking to be selected for inclusion, it must meet the following criteria

  1. Activity: an edition of the ranking has been published during the preceding year
  2. Scope: at least 1,000 universities are ranked
  3. Impact: among the 5 most influential rankings, as measured by Google News mentions (hits) in the international media

Based on these criteria the following rankings are selected for inclusion in the AppliedHE Rankometer:

Provider and country Ranking and website 1 Edition
(number of universities)
Google News Hits 2
QS Quacquarelli Symonds
World University Rankings
2021 (1,003) 17,800
Shanghai Ranking Consultancy
Academic Ranking of World Universities
2020 (1,000) 9,810
THE Times Higher Education
World University Rankings
2021 (1,526) 8,280
CWTS, Leiden University
Leiden Ranking 3
2020 (1,176) 1,840
Cybermetrics Lab, CSIC
Webometrics Ranking Web of Universities
July 2020 (11,993) 1,100

The following world university rankings were considered for inclusion because they meet criterion 1 (activity) and 2 (scope). However they do not meet criterion 3 and have significantly fewer references in the global news media as measured by Google News Hits.

It is anticipated that Google News mentions will vary from year to year and therefore a different set of rankings may be included in future Rankometer editions as new university rankings are launched, or the global influence of rankings changes.

University Inclusion

Different rankings maintain different criteria for including a university, one of the most important ones being the “breadth” of the subjects being offered. QS and THE exclude highly specialized institutions which are only active in one subject area.

An example of this is Rockefeller University (New York City, USA), which specializes in biomedical sciences. This university ranks very highly in the Shanghai and Leiden world rankings due to its excellent research output, but is excluded by QS and THE from their world rankings (subject rankings are a different matter). Another example is the Medical University of Vienna, which only offers degrees in medicine and dentistry. It is included among the top-1,000 of THE, Shanghai and Leiden world rankings but it is excluded by QS.

To prevent these different criteria from influencing the Rankometer scores, a university must be included in the QS World University Ranking to be included in the Rankometer.

Rankometer Computation

The Rankometer computations are similar to those of golf: universities with the lowest score win. The rankings of a university in the different component rankings are added up, ordered from lowest to highest, and then assigned their Rankometer rank.

Universities which do not appear in a ranking automatically receive 1001 points.

An example calculation is included below.

Institution: Tsinghua University
QS World University Ranking: 15th → 15 points
Shanghai ARWU: 29th → 29 points
THE World University Ranking: 20th → 20 points
Leiden Ranking: 101st → 101 points
Webometrics Ranking: 35th → 35 points
Final Rankometer score: 15 + 29 +20 + 101 + 35 = 200 points
In this case 200 points is the 26th highest score received, placing Tsinghua 26th in the Rankometer World University Rankings.

In the case of ranking ranges (such as 151-200), the lower figure (in this case 151) is used as the rank of the universities ranked in the range.

The Rankometer assigns the same rank to institutions with the same Rankometer score.

ERRATUM 1: The University of Newcastle (Australia) has been added to the AppliedHE Rankometer (position = 231, score = 1409) on 3 Feb 2021.
For details click here.

ERRATUM 2: Heidelberg University has been added to the AppliedHE Rankometer (position = 66, score = 463) on 24 Feb 2021.
For details click here.

Download full AppliedHE Rankometer results with constituent ranking positions here

  1. Data sources (accessed in October 2020):
  2. Measured in October 2020
  3. The PP (top 10%) measure is used. The Leiden Ranking no longer publishes a single “official” ranking criterion, but the PP (top 10%) metric is widely used and was presented as the “official” ranking criterion when the rankings were first launched in 2011/2012. PP (top 10%) is the percentage of a university’s publications that are among the 10% most highly cited worldwide. Please note that the Leiden rank used in the current edition of Rankometer (launched on 27 Jan 2021) can differ slightly from the rank published on the Leiden Ranking website. This is because the PP (top 10%) figure from the Leiden Ranking bulk data was used to rank institutions (rounded to one decimal).