This is Penn State

A photoband consisting of three images: a female professor and student examine a skull, a group of graduates in blue caps and gowns, a male student holds a blue globe.



For more than 150 years we've been leaders in higher education, as shown by rankings from those who monitor academe from the outside. Here are a few examples of recent rankings, primarily relating to our academic standing.


U.S. News & World Report, America's Best Graduate Schools 2016


Smeal College of Business overall tied for 36th

Supply Chain/Logistics 5th


College of Education overall tied for 36th

Vocational/Technical Education, 1st

Higher Education Administration, tied for 7th

Administration and Supervision, 7th

Educational Psychology, 10th


College of Engineering overall 25th

Nuclear Engineering, tied for 5th

Health Disciplines

Clinical Psychology (doctorate), tied for 18th

Health Care Management (master's/doctorate), tied for 27th

Rehabilitation Counseling (master's/doctorate), tied for 6th

Speech-Language Pathology (master's), tied for 21st


Penn State Dickinson School of Law overall tied for 71st


College of Nursing overall tied for 38th

Social Sciences and Humanities

Sociology of Population, 6th

Criminology, tied for 5th

Sociology, tied for 17th

Economics, 27th

Political Science, tied for 28th

English, tied for 26th

Psychology, tied for 30th

Developmental Psychology, tied for 5th


Geology, tied for 1st

Environmental Sciences, tied for 2nd

Geochemistry, 2nd

Earth Sciences, 6th

Paleontology, 8th

Cosmology/Relativity/Gravity, 10th

Statistics, tied for 20th

Chemistry, tied for 21st

Physics, tied for 23rd

Mathematics, tied for 28th

Computer Science, tied for 29th

Biological Sciences, tied for 42nd

U.S. News 2015 Best Online Program Rankings

Penn State is ranked No. 1 for the best online bachelor's programs in the country in U.S. News & World Report’s 2015 “Best Online Programs." Individual programs ranked include:

No. 1 for best online bachelor’s programs

No. 4 for best online graduate education programs

No. 4 for best online graduate computer information technology programs

No. 5 for best online graduate business programs excluding MBA

No. 5 for best online graduate engineering programs

Tied for No. 7 for best online MBA programs

National Science Foundation

Total S&E Research Expenditure Rankings (For FY2013, released February 2015)

In the most recent institutional rankings released by the National Science Foundation of total research expenditures for science and engineering, Penn State stands second in the nation in the number of fields in which it is ranked in the top ten.

Overall: 17

Industry: 27

Overall Engineering: 5

Aero/Astro-Engineering: 8

Chemical Engineering: 19

Civil Engineering: 9

Electrical Engineering: 4

Materials Engineering: 1

Mechanical Engineering: 3

Overall Physical Sciences: 21

Chemistry: 26

Physics: 17

Astronomy: 15

Overall Environmental Sciences: 14

Atmospheric: 9

Earth Sciences: 9

Mathematical Science: 11

Computer Science: 8

Agricultural: 8

Psychology: 2

Overall Social Science: 14

Political Science: 28

Sociology: 3

Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2014-15

Penn State is ranked among the top 100 universities in the world, at 58th, by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings for 2014-15. (10/2014)

U.S. News & World Report, Best Children's Hospitals 2014-15

Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital has been ranked among the top 50 U.S. hospitals in six specialties—cancer, cardiology and heart surgery, nephrology, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopedics and urology—in U.S. News & World Report's 2014-15 Best Children's Hospitals rankings.Penn State ranks 7th among "flagship" schools whose recent graduates earn the highest median starting salaries. (2013)

Kiplinger’s Personal Finance “Best Values in Public Colleges”

Kiplinger's Personal Finance for 2014-15 named Penn State as one of the 100 Best Values in Public Colleges, for in-state students, recognizing the University among four-year schools that combine outstanding education with economic value. Penn State's ranking is 56. Penn State also ranked in the top 100 for out-of-state students (68). (12/2014)

DesignIntelligence 2014

DesignIntelligence 2014 ranks Penn State's Landscape Architecture program No. 1 in the U.S., with its graduate program ranking 7th. In addition, Penn State's Architecture program made the top 5 for undergraduate architecture schools in the east and 13th nationwide in undergraduate architecture programs. 

Center for World University Rankings 2014, Top 100

Penn State is ranked at No. 46 for 2014 in the Center for World University Rankings, up from No. 50 in 2013. The list includes national and international schools. Criteria for the rankings are: quality of faculty, publications in top journals, highly influential research, citations, patents, academic training of students, and professional future of alumni.



Pollstar has announced that the Bryce Jordan Center on the University Park campus has been ranked fourth in the world in concert and event tickets sold among university venues for the first half of 2016, with 66,115 tickets sold. Pollstar is an official trade publication for the concert tour industry.

The 2016 Campus Pride Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Questioning-Friendly Campus Climate Index has ranked Penn State among the top 30 schools in the nation. The University once again received 4.5 out of five stars for overall campus climate by Campus Pride, a national nonprofit organization for student leaders and campus groups working to improve LGBTQ environments at colleges and universities.

Academic Ranking of World Universities (AWRU) has ranked Penn State at 58th in its 2014 ranking of the top 100 world-class universities

Institute of International Education "Open Doors": Penn State ranks 10th in the U.S., and No. 1 in Pennsylvania, with a record number of international students—6,693 at University Park—according to the Institute of International Education's "Open Doors" report for 2012-13, an annual statistical survey of international students in the nation. The report also ranks Penn State at 19th for the number of students studying abroad (1,926) for 2011-12. (2012-13)

Association of Research Libraries: Penn State University Libraries rank 9th among North American research libraries, based on ARL's Library Investment Index Rankings for 2012-13 (latest). 

The Education Trust: Penn State named among top 25 “gap-closers” for minority students: In reports released by The Education Trust, Penn State is among the top six U.S. institutions for closing the graduation gap for African American and Hispanic students. Penn State is the No. 21 graduation-rate gap-closer for Hispanic students among public institutions and No. 18 for African American students. (10/2012)

The Chronicle of Higher Education ranks Penn State as the top producer of Fulbright scholars among research institutions -- and all institutions, as well -- in the nation. (2011-12)

National Research Corporation: Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center has been named a 2011-12 Consumer Choice Award winner for Pennsylvania for the 13th consecutive year. (2011-12)

Aviation Week: Penn State ranks as the top engineering school for aerospace and defense recruitment, according to Aviation Week's annual Workforce and Young Professionals/Student Study. (2011)

Gartner, Inc.: Penn State Smeal College of Business has the No. 1 undergraduate and graduate programs in supply chain management in the country, according to technology research firm Gartner, Inc. (2014)

Diverse Issues In Higher Education rates Penn State among the Top 100 Undergraduate Degree Producers, all disciplines combined. The University ranks No. 49 for Total Minority Bachelor's Degrees; No. 48 for Asian American Bachelor's Degrees; No. 60 for African American Bachelor's Degrees; and No. 65 for Hispanic Bachelor's Degrees. (2015) 





Compiled by: Penn State Office of Strategic Communications