U of T moves up one spot to 22nd globally in latest Shanghai university rankings

Aug 19, 2021

Achieving its highest position since the Academic Ranking of World Universities launched in 2003, the University of Toronto also ranked first in Canada and 11th among the world's public universities.

Metal beams (engraved with the words University of Toronto) rest across stone pillars to form U of T’s Alumni Gates.
Photo by Daria Perevenzentsev

The University of Toronto has climbed one spot to 22nd in the prestigious Academic Ranking of World Universities, achieving its highest position globally since the ranking began in 2003.

The annual ranking by Shanghai Ranking Consultancy also saw U of T retain its position as Canada’s top university while ranking sixth among public universities in North America and 11th among public universities globally.

The 2021 edition of the rankings looked at more than 2,000 universities around the world and assessed them based on research impact, quality of faculty and quality of education, among other measures.

“The University of Toronto is proud to once again be named one of the top 25 schools globally in the Academic Ranking of World Universities,” said Trevor Young, U of T’s acting vice-president and provost. “These rankings reflect our outstanding reputation as a leading public research university, and are a result of our continued excellence in research and scholarship across a wide variety of disciplines.

“I would like to congratulate the efforts of our exceptional faculty and alumni, whose commitment to advancing knowledge and tackling pressing global challenges is a source of inspiration for all of us.”

The annual rankings are based on six weighted measures related to the research and academic performance of universities. They include: the number of alumni and faculty winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals; the number of highly-cited researchers in 21 broad subject categories; the number of papers published in the prestigious journals Nature and Science; articles cited in major citation indices; and each institution’s per capita academic performance.

The top five universities in the 2021 ranking remained unchanged since 2017. Harvard University ranked first followed by Stanford University, the University of Cambridge, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of California, Berkeley.

Three other Canadian universities were ranked in the top 100: the University of British Columbia (42nd), McGill University (67th) and McMaster University (92nd).

Overall, U of T continues to be the highest-ranked Canadian university and one of the top-ranked public universities in the five most closely watched international rankings: Times Higher Education, QS World University Rankings, Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, U.S. News & World Report‘s Best Global Universities and National Taiwan University World University Rankings.

By Rahul Kalvapalle