US News has been a dominating force in giving an estimate ranking of colleges for years. Studies have shown significant changes the amount of people who apply to colleges based on their ranking and whether it rises or falls. But, these trends may start to slow soon, especially because Yale Law school decided this year to stop participating in US News Rankings. Yale is one of the top law schools in the nation, so a decision like this was a big shock to prospective applicants and alumni. After Yale made this decision, many others including Harvard, Berkeley, Georgetown, Columbia, Stanford, and Michigan followed suit. This is a big deal because with so many powerful schools turning against US News, more and more schools could come forward and do the same.
Boycotting US News is not a new idea; for example, Reed College pulled of the rankings in 1995, and Columbia chose not to submit data for the 2022 ranking (where their position dropped from 2 to 18 as a result). Now, “reasons for boycotting US News are not just ranking methodology or unreliable statistics.” (Diver) Instead, deans are making claims that US News rewards wealth as a result of education and penalizes schools that provide access to education for people from less privileged backgrounds. Additionally, a lot of the statistics for determining their rankings rely on various “student selectivity” measures, such as test scores, that favor wealthier applicants.
There are many other reasons why US News can be considered skewed, especially because it is difficult to provide a truly real and unbiased ranking of colleges when there are many similarities and differences that can’t be numerically calculated in the form of a ranking. The fall of US News rankings would create less of an incentive for universities to focus on their statistics and focus more on educating graduates for a broad range of career paths. Below is a link to a New York Times Article that I have referenced and that provides a lot of information on this interesting topic!