Posted September 10, 2014

Up and coming: Temple’s 'U.S. News' rankings highlight recent growth trend

The release of the 2015 edition of U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges contained plenty of good news for Temple University, which received high marks for its graduation rates, its academic reputation among high school guidance counselors and its undergraduate business programs, as well as recognition as one of the nation’s best colleges for veterans.

U.S. News ranked Temple in a tie for No. 121 overall among 268 national universities. The university's rank—Temple’s highest since U.S. News began offering rankings—has increased by 11 spots in only four years. That’s an unprecedented surge for Temple, making it one of the nation's top 30 gainers among all national universities during that time period and top 20 gainers among public national universities.

"By any measure of excellence—from our graduation rates to our facilities, our appeal to prospective students and our research enterprise—we are an institution on the rise," said Temple President Neil D. Theobald. “Today’s Temple is defined by momentum, so it’s gratifying to see that reflected in national rankings in recent years."

Temple’s ascent in the rankings has been fueled in part by its high graduation rates. In the 2015 edition, U.S. News ranked Temple No. 22 among national universities for "graduation rate performance,” defined as the difference between the school's predicted graduation rate based on key indicators and the school's actual graduation rate.

Temple also earned a spot in the top 100 for “high school counselor rank,” a measure of high school guidance counselors’ perceptions of the university’s academic reputation. Temple’s high school counselor rank has jumped 33 places since the 2012 edition, joining “faculty resources” (up 59 places since 2012), “financial resources” (up 13 places) and “student selectivity” (up 10 places) as categories of dramatic improvement in recent years.

“Temple has launched several major initiatives to improve the academic experience, including the Fly in 4 initiative to encourage timely graduation and reduce student debt and the Temple Option, offering applicants an alternative admissions path at a time when academic measures are rapidly improving,” said Hai-Lung Dai, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

“When you combine these developments with our aggressive recruitment of top faculty, our investments in advising and our rapidly increasing numbers of highly qualified applicants,” he added, “we are confident that measures of our vitality as an institution will continue to improve—and with it, our reputation and our rank.”

Undergraduate business programs at Temple’s Fox School of Business kept their spot among U.S. News’ “best undergraduate business programs.” Fox’s program in risk management and insurance was ranked No. 4 in the nation, up one spot compared to last year.

For the second year in a row, Temple was named one of the nation’s “best colleges for veterans.”