UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

UC Santa Barbara (Photo: Matt Perko) title=
UC Santa Barbara (Photo: Matt Perko)
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By Andrea Estrada, UC Santa Barbara

In its 2021 listing of the “Top Public Schools,” U.S. News & World Report has ranked UC Santa Barbara No. 6.

Among “Best National Universities,” which includes both public and private institutions, UC Santa Barbara placed No. 30.

UC Santa Barbara’s College of Engineering is ranked No. 22 among public universities on the U.S. News & World Report list of “Best Programs at Engineering Schools Whose Highest Degree is a Doctorate.”

In addition, UC Santa Barbara is ranked No. 5 among public universities — and No. 21 overall — on the magazine’s list of “Best Colleges for Veterans.” Among public universities, UC Santa Barbara placed No. 10 on the “Best Ethnic Diversity” ranking, and on the list of Top Performers on Social Mobility, the campus ranked No. 8. Social mobility measures how well schools graduated students who received federal Pell Grants (those typically coming from households whose family incomes are less than $50,000 annually, though most Pell Grant money goes to students with a total family income below $20,000).

Within the University of California system, only UCLA and UC Berkeley ranked above UC Santa Barbara on U.S. News & World Report’s list of top public schools.

The magazine has released its annual college rankings online at usnews.com/colleges. The “Best Colleges 2021” guidebook goes on sale today.

To rank colleges and universities for the Best Colleges 2021 guidebook, U.S. News & World Report assigned institutions to categories developed by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. UC Santa Barbara’s category of national universities includes only institutions that emphasize faculty research and offer a full range of undergraduate majors, plus master’s degrees and doctoral programs.

UC Santa Barbara, which this year experienced a highly competitive admissions process, continues to attract the best of the best. Among prospective freshmen and undergraduate transfer students, academic qualifications and diversity remain exceptionally high. For the 2020-21 academic year, the average high school grade-point average of applicants admitted is 4.31. “Students admitted demonstrated intellectual vitality, community involvement and inspiring achievements,” said Admissions Director Lisa Przekop. We look forward to the positive impacts they will contribute to our student community.”

With 10 national centers and institutes, and more than 100 research units, UC Santa Barbara offers unparalleled learning opportunities for undergraduate students. The world-class faculty includes six Nobel laureates, two Academy and Emmy Award winners, and recipients of the Millennium Technology Prize, National Medal of Technology and Innovation and Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics.

UC Santa Barbara has performed exceptionally well in other national rankings. The campus placed No. 10 among public universities on Washington Monthly’s 2020 National University rankings, and landed among the top public universities on Money magazine’s 2020 list of The Best Public Colleges in America.

The rankings in the Best Colleges 2021 guidebook are based on data U.S. News & World Report collects directly from colleges and universities, as well as from other sources. Additional data was obtained from the American Association of University Professors, the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the Council for Aid to Education and the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics. The magazine evaluates and analyzes data on various indicators of academic quality and assigns a weight to each factor based on its relative importance. It then tabulates composite scores and ranks institutions against others in the same peer group.

Complete U.S. News & World Report rankings are available at www.usnews.com/colleges.


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notme Sep 15, 2020 01:25 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

I am a UCSB alum, and acknowledge that I did get a good education there 30+ years ago (and no, I was not a partier). However, I also got my teaching credential there, and as a teacher, I know that there is no such thing as a "best" school for every student. Not all students flourish in the same environment. Some do well in large schools, others in smaller schools. While I am proud that UCSB is being recognized for its excellence, I would not choose a college (or any other school, for that matter) based on a magazine's ratings. Students (and parents) need to find the school that best fits the needs and learning style of the individual student. My own child would have been overwhelmed by a school like UCSB, and chose, instead, to go to small schools for both undergraduate and graduate programs.

a-1600218537 Sep 15, 2020 06:08 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Tied with University of Florida. There's an academic powerhouse. And did the raters actually visit the campus: "Located 100 miles up the coast from Los Angeles, the University of California—Santa Barbara sits atop cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean." Pretty breathless prose. I suppose Florida sits on levees overlooking the swamp. Like that matters.

notme Sep 16, 2020 09:37 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Who was the porn professor? I was a Communication Studies major, and did take a Comm class about pornography in the late 1980s (not because I was that interested in the topic, but more because it fit into my schedule). I remember one day, when the professors were talking about some of the studies, and being very, shall we say, "direct" about what was being measured. I suddenly realized how into the topic they were. That was a pretty creepy class.

a-1600276276 Sep 16, 2020 10:11 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Oops, I actually took this class that you're trying to bash and you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about. Reducing an intellectual and thoughtful course to a catchy clickbait headline is ridiculous. Unless you've taken the entire course and know what it's about, you have no reason to criticize.

oops Sep 16, 2020 01:36 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

I hope your parents didn't have to pay for it. If students take on debt to take this class than you get what you deserve. Hope it serves you well in your career or protest march

a-1600289562 Sep 16, 2020 01:52 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Wow Oops, again with the mischaracterization, assumptions, and judgement. My parents did not pay for school, I worked through college and took out loans that I paid off to help me in my career as a structural engineer. I personally view the purpose of education as being a well-rounded person in all aspects of life, the ability to think critically and empathetically and maintain an open mind. Perhaps this is something you should go back to school for.

oops Sep 16, 2020 03:51 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Mireille Miller-Young, an associate professor of feminist studies at UCSB, who also attacked a teenager and was sued. This gem of a professor, CA State employee was paid $142K in 2019

a-1600298932 Sep 16, 2020 04:28 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

No one was attacked, another mischaracterization by Oops. The woman was protesting abortions on UCSB's campus in an undesignated protest area, even though she's not a student and does not live anywhere near here. She was holding up a huge graphic photo of a bloody fetus. The professor grabbed the poster, didn't touch the woman, and she fell to the ground with such a flop that would make a Brazilian soccer player proud. The whole thing was politicized by the the far right by (again) people who don't even live here.

a-1600360346 Sep 17, 2020 09:32 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Nope, the police "report" is a filing with this woman's claim of her being assaulted. She wasn't. There were numerous witnesses and video evidence showing she was not. She just had her sign taken away and cried like a toddler and threw herself to the ground.

Ehdat Sep 17, 2020 02:46 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

I have a friend who happened to be right there when it happened and you are entirely correct. The soccer flop analogy is dead-on accurate. I think the professor was wrong for even getting involved, but this person was an attention seeker all the way.

vvorker Sep 16, 2020 07:49 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

U.S. News & World Report is a highly reputable source, kinda like Newsweek.
Wondering how much the bribe was for??
They use to say SBCC was #1, which I heard a staff saying.. "if we are number one I would hate to see who is in last place!!"

a-1600280005 Sep 16, 2020 11:13 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

I can't attest to U.S. News & World Report's authenticity but most of the lists of "Best Cities..." are simply a way for that organization to haul in money from the cities that want the advertising.

RHS Sep 16, 2020 11:39 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

SBCC was only rated best by a think tank out of Colorado with no credibility or history of respect in such a rating. Of course SBCC jumped on it and tried to use it to push the idea that we needed to expand the campus to be come "world class". That was Measure S which fortunately was rejected as to grandiose. I don't hear them saying "We're No 1" much anymore and this is good. Community colleges should be about providing accessible, competent and affordable education and training to the local community. This mission does not lend itself to "no 2" ratings.

pkww Sep 16, 2020 04:08 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

These crotchety commenters seem to be unaware of the prowess of UCSB STEM departments. UCSB also ranks highly for social mobility, meaning it's one of few places where students have been able to "pull themselves up by the bootstraps." ¡Olé!

a-1600298701 Sep 16, 2020 04:25 PM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

Henry Yang does get credit yanking UCSB away from its long-standing party school status into some very solid tech well-regarded grad programs. Hopefully that move also has a sobering trickle down effect on some of the party-hardy UCSB undergrads. But with 25,000 sun and fun seeking students, we may not notice this slight academic conversion.

a-1600454883 Sep 18, 2020 11:48 AM
UCSB Ranks in Top Ten Public Universities

The Wall Street Journal today listed their top 500 colleges and Universities. UCSB was ranked #74 which is highly respectable and probably more realistic. The area that holds them back is their 'Resource' score which was ranked #398/500. This generally represents the spending per student by the University.

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