26 June 2020
In the latest university rankings published by education research consultancy firm Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), the National University of Singapore held on to its top spot in Asia and was placed 11th worldwide.
Mr Ben Sowter, director of research at QS, said: “Last year, according to the World Economic Forum, Singapore overtook the United States to become the world’s most competitive economy. The local (Singapore) universities have contributed to such extraordinary achievement by boosting the innovation capability of the city state and by educating a large proportion of its highly skilled workforce.”
In the latest QS ranking, all three ranked Singapore universities improved in the citation per faculty indicator, but all three of them also dropped significantly in the indicator that measures the number of international students attending them.
There have been calls to pause university rankings in light of the global human malware situation.
The editor-in-chief of the Science family of journals, Mr Holden Thorp, who previously held top leadership positions at American research universities, recently argued: “This is not a time for institutions to be using precious resources to chase these (ranking) numbers.” Rather, he said, universities need to support struggling students and academics.
Associate Professor Jason Tan of the National Institute of Education agreed that companies that produce such rankings need to relook the usefulness of the league tables and the criteria they use.