2022 US News College Rankings

US News & World Report is considered the kingpin of the college rankings.

US News & World Report, the maker of the most important of the college rankings, has released its 2022 ranking of best national universities. If you aren’t already familiar with the significance of the annual US News ranking, we encourage you to check out our recent post highlighting Malcolm Gladwell’s overview of how the rankings came to be and how they — flawed as they are — helped catapult the publication to unprecedented heights. But without further ado, which school topped the 2022 US News best national university ranking? Wonder no more!

Princeton Claims the Top Spot for Tenth Consecutive Year

That would be Princeton University — for the tenth consecutive year. Yes, that’s ten years at the top for the New Jersey-based institution. Taking second in the ranking are three schools in a tie: Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Rounding out the top ten are: Yale University (#5), Stanford University (#6), the University of Chicago (#6), the University of Pennsylvania (#8), the California Institute of Technology (#9), Duke University (#9), Johns Hopkins (#9), and Northwestern University (#9). Next comes Dartmouth College (#13), Brown University (#14), Vanderbilt University (#14), Washington University in St. Louis (#14), Cornell University (#17), Rice University (#17), the University of Notre Dame (#19), the University of California, Los Angeles (#20), Emory University (#21), the University of California – Berkeley (#22), Georgetown University (#23), the University of Michigan (#23), Carnegie Mellon University (#25), and the University of Virginia (#25).

Duke Rises, USC Falls in Latest US News Ranking

So which schools moved up or down significantly as compared to last year? Columbia rose from #3 to #2. MIT rose from #4 to #2. Yale slipped from #4 to #5. Duke rose from #12 to #9, a significant jump. Wash U rose from #16 to #14. Cornell rose from #18 to #17. USC slipped from #24 to #27, a significant drop. And Carnegie Mellon and UVA both rose from #26 to #25. So among the top 25 universities, while Princeton admissions officers are surely celebrating their tenth straight year at the top, Duke admissions officers have something to celebrate too. It’s nice to climb from #12 to #9 all in a year’s time! On the other side of the coin, USC’s admissions officers are likely not jumping for joy today but, hey, at least they’re a couple of years removed from the Varsity Blues scandal? It’s all a matter of perspective.

And the next time an admissions officer at one of the aforementioned universities tells you that they don’t care about their US News & World Report ranking, know this: they care deeply about their ranking. The jobs of deans of admissions depend on their school’s placement in this annual ranking. So don’t let them fool you, not even for a second.


You are permitted to use www.ivycoach.com (including the content of the Blog) for your personal, non-commercial use only. You must not copy, download, print, or otherwise distribute the content on our site without the prior written consent of Ivy Coach, Inc.


Tags: , , , ,


  • Jeremy Older says:

    Cornell went up from #18 to #17. Not sure how it got that low unless an editorial staff member’s daughter was rejected. And Columbia #2? Not even close. I actually was admitted to Columbia and decided on Cornell. Columbia deserves top 10, but so does Cornell. They should both tie at $9, IMO. Most of the list seems to bear out, but some of those rankings are just whack. And Harvard getting beat out by Princeton for 10 years? Please. I wish someone would admit there are editorial biases at work here. No way that someone putting those lists together does not have a very unjust bias against Harvard and Yale for Princeton to keep outranking them. Just impossible.

    • Andrew says:

      Cornell is excellent, but it does not have Columbia’s history ( established in 1754) ,nor its endowment. The lbraries at Columbia with over 13 million volumes is one of our nation’s greatest. Cornell does not have the same opportunities as are avaiblae at Columbia. Columbia undergraduates have the world-renowned ‘Core’ courses which are a magnificent gem in Coumbia’s undergraduate program, aling with 80% of classesbeing less than 20 students in a class.

      How do you come upm with number 9 for each ? Riduculous and unsubstantiated. I would not turn down an opportunity to study at Columbia over being located and sometimes stuck in upstate New York.

      Does it seem that possibly you are not applying a logical checklist before making your statement on reasons for your choices ?

  • Edward Cleese says:

    Do people really choose Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Washington and Rice over ANY Ivy League school? Very rarely! But there they are! Year after year! Just ridiculous editorial staff at US News. One bright spot: UC Berkeley was moved from First Class to its regular seat in coach, Seat #22.

  • Olivia Bottomley says:

    Washington University in St. Louis, often confused with University of Washington and known throughout St. Louis but draws puzzled looks everywhere else is tied with one Ivy and beats out another. US News continually tries to convince us WASHU is one of the TOP 14- sometimes top 10(!)- colleges in the nation. So why does it inspire college-bound kids the same way cold unsalted oatmeal does a 6 year old? I wondered too. And why do only 38% accepted want to actually attend WashU compared to 60%+ from the Ivies, who, did I mention US News counts as equals- at least! Is it any surprise then that 2 of the top editors of US News graduate from WashU? No, it is not. US News continues to confound readers with very similar anomalies each year- Princeton #1 for ten years? Wash U #14? Yeah, well, I think we can read between the lines. Go WashU Bears! If people don’t believe us, we will keep shouting it until they do. WashU is top 14! WashU is top 14!

    • Ivy Grad says:

      I turned down WashU to go to Penn and I would take it back a MILLION times. At Penn, I was an irrelevant number. When I’d try to get guidance from my advisors or Career Services they’d all tell me I should look at “my connections” for help. I didn’t have any connections, hence my attempts to engage with them. Meanwhile, my roommate helped me write my resume, I suppose those are “connections,” right? Thanks Career Services. It was good to know my tuition was going to your lazy a—es.

      Meanwhile, the only two people I knew who went to WashU were supported all the way, without “connections!” The school helped and guided one friend get into her desired medical school and the other friend get the internships and job she wanted. This compared to the asswipes who told me the Penn name speaks for itself. Sure. I had a 3.6 gpa in Econ and just barely got a crap job.

      Long story short, rankings are not just about dumb kids who don’t know any better making a poor choice. They’re also about the end goal of the university supporting its students and getting them to the next stage. From what I’ve seen WashU does that. I understand exactly why they’re ranked high, but I had to learn it the hard way.

  • Happy Alumnus of Columbia College says:

    Columbia is ranked Number 1 in New York State, and probably has always been ranked number 1.
    There is a reason for this, as it is the oldest and wealthiest university in New York State, with the most research opportunities. Its resources are very difficult to match elsewhere, and it invests a great deal in its ‘Core’ program for undergraduates to provide a Renaissance education which will las a lifetime in use amnd in enjoyment for a student who receives an education at Columbia College.

    Others are wonderful in New York State, also, but Columbia has always been the Number 1 spot with good reason.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *