UNK 11th in U.S. News and World Report Midwest public university rankings

US News and World ReportKEARNEY – University of Nebraska at Kearney improved slightly in the 2016 U.S. News and World Report annual Best Colleges rankings. UNK is positioned at 11th in Midwest Top Public Regional Universities in the annual rankings, released today.

Among all regional universities in the Midwest (public and private), UNK was ranked 46th. That compares to last year: UNK was ranked 54th overall among all regional universities and 13th among public regional universities.

The rankings, published since 1983, are not a comprehensive indicator of quality but do provide magazine readers a glimpse into comparable data. The data includes a subjective peer assessment, and objective measures such as retention rate, graduation rates, class size and student to faculty ratio, SAT or ACT scores and class rankings of incoming freshmen, acceptance rates and alumni giving rates.

Among numerous rankings, ratings and other commercial lists, the U.S. News and World Report is historically treated by colleges and universities as the most credible because of its methodology and tradition.

According to U.S. News and World Report, UNK scores well on a student-to-faculty ratio of 15 to 1, with a graduation rate of 56 percent, and a freshman retention rate of 78 percent. Forty-two percent of freshmen finished high school in the top fourth of their class. Among other measures: 46 percent of UNK classes are smaller than 20 students, and only 3 percent of its classes are larger than 50 students. UNK’s peer assessment score was 2.9 out of 5, up from 2.7 last year.

The rankings also include other listings on criteria such as diversity, price and student debt, focus on students and commitment to teaching. UNK made a list of “Best Colleges for Veterans” and “A+ Schools for B Students,” where “nonsuperstars have a decent shot at being accepted and thriving… where spirit and hard work could make all the difference.” The A+ Schools compilation is based on a proportion of applicants whose test scores and class standing put them in “non-A territory” yet with high overall  retention and graduation rates.

UNK’s overall ranking position is highest in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association.


Writer / Contact: Kelly Bartling, assistant vice chancellor, Communications and Community Relations, 308-865-8455, bartlingkh@unk.edu

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