University Benchmarks

Ranking the Top 100 Academic Universities ranks the universities that attract and produce the best academic students.

There are many 'University Rankings' on the internet. Most rankings rely heavily on subjective metrics like 'reputation' and 'selectivity'. UniversityBenchmarks is purely an academic ranking model. The rankings are based on the reported academic and financial metrics of the colleges. There are no subjective factors like 'reputation' that are used. The calculations are performed using normal statistical models. All universities are considered equal and there is no weighting of the ranking categories.

The university 2014-2015 dataset is comprised of over 2400 US Universities & Colleges and comes from multiple sources using the most favorable reported metrics for a university.

The universities are ranked against each other in each filtered set. It is an iterative process whereby lower ranking universities are removed and the set is re-ranked until the final set of 100 is reached.

Selecting 'Rank Top 10 Only' will show the Top 10 for each filter category ranked against each other.

The academic rankings of the universities within the major conferences (ACC, Big12, Big10, Pac12, SEC) are available.

The 2017 rankings will be available in August.

  • It is possible for universities to be ranked higher/lower than one another depending on the filter set.
  • Conference averages are based on the top 8 schools in the conference.
  • Public Schools are highlighted
  • Clicking on the university's seal icon will take you to the university's website.

Ranking Fields

Rank - Overall rank based on the average of the ranking fields (Scores, Difficulty, Smartest, Brainpower, Faculty and Research).

Scores - SAT & ACT scores. The university's test scores are corrected for dropout rate when score level is Good, Excellent or Elite. This will slightly boost scores for highly competitive schools.

Difficulty - Academic rigor is estimated based on how difficult it is to get an "A" at the university. An estimated GPA at the university is calculated for the average US Student. University grade inflation, average GPA, and STEM density are factors.

Smartest - University that can field the highest scoring students based on the average US University size. Higher Smartest Rank = "Smartest for the Average University"

Brainpower - The average "smartest" rank using 5 reference populations (CalTech, MIT, Stanford, GaTech and Berkeley). Higher Brainpower Rank = "Higher Density of Smart Students". The university ranked higher can mathematically field 'X' number of smarter students than universities ranked below them.

Faculty - Ranking based on number of % of faculty with awards and academy membership.

Research - Ranking is achieved by iteratively ranking the average of 3 research metrics (r-pop, r-stem, r-other ). The lowest ranked college is then removed and the new set is re-ranked. The result is the schools with potentially the strongest research environments per student bubble up to the top regardless of size or research budget.

  • r-pop - Average research spending for student population
  • r-stem - STEM research spending
  • r-other - Other/Medical/Health research spending

Salary ROI - "Salary Return on Investment" is not used in the overall ranking but is provided for additional information. Using the undergraduate average starting and mid-career salaries, the rank is based on a 20yr salary accumulation (with raises) minus the cost of a 4 year education at the university. Salaries are normalized across the country using the average COLA for the university's geo-economic region (7 regions total). The COLA effect is diminished by the level of the university. Elite, Excellent and Good universities have a greater distribution of graduates across the country and a diminishing COLA effect. The resultant value would be the graduate's spending potential over the 20yr period.

Overall ROI - "Overall Return on Investment" is not used in the overall ranking but is provided for additional information. The average of Overall Rank and Salary ROI. This would be the "Best academic bang for the buck". Colleges that produce the best education, at the best price, with the best return will be ranked higher.

Color Key - ranks are colorized as follows 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 50 100

The 2016 University Academic Rankings

Wesleyan University

2016 University Academic Rankings

This article is about Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. For a list of other colleges and universities with names including "Wesleyan", see Wesleyan University (disambiguation).

Wesleyan University (/ˈwɛzliᵻn/ WEZ-lee-in or /ˈwɛsliᵻn/ WES-lee-in) is a private liberal arts college in Middletown, Connecticut, founded in 1831. Wesleyan is a Baccalaureate College that emphasizes undergraduate instruction in the arts and sciences, grants research master's degrees in many academic disciplines, and grants PhD degrees in Biology, Chemistry, Math and Computer Science, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, Music, and Physics.

Founded under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal Church and with the support of prominent residents of Middletown, the now secular university was the first institution of higher education to be named after John Wesley, the founder of Methodism. About 20 unrelated colleges and universities were subsequently named after Wesley. Wesleyan, along with Amherst College and Williams College, is a member of the Little Three colleges, an unofficial athletic conference of liberal arts colleges.


The Samuel Wadsworth Russell House, home to the Philosophy department. The building was designated a national Historic Landmark in 2001 and is considered one of the finest examples of domestic Greek Revival architecture.

Three histories of Wesleyan have been published, Wesleyan's First Century by Carl F. Price in 1932, another in 1999, Wesleyan University, 1831-1910: Collegiate Enterprise in New England and Wesleyan University, 1910-1970, Academic Ambition and Middle-Class America, released in May 2015, both authored by David B. Potts. Wesleyan was founded as an all-male Methodist college in 1831. The University, established as an independent institution under the auspices of the Methodist conference, was led by Willbur Fisk, its first President. Despite its name, Wesleyan was never a denominational seminary. It remained a leader in educational progress throughout its history and erected one of the earliest comprehensive science buildings devoted exclusively to undergraduate science instruction on any American college or university campus, Judd Hall (named after alumnus Orange Judd). It also has maintained a larger library collection than institutions comparable in size. The Wesleyan student body numbered about 300 in 1910 and had grown to 800 in 1960, the latter being a figure that Time described as "small". Although Wesleyan developed into a peer of Amherst and Williams, Wesleyan was always decidedly the smallest of the Little Three institutions until the 1970s, when it grew significantly to become larger than the other two.

In 1872, the University became one of the first U.S. colleges to attempt coeducation by allowing a small number of female students to attend, a venture then known as the "Wesleyan Experiment". "In 1909, the board of trustees voted to stop admitting women as undergraduates, fearing that the school was losing its masculine image and that women would not be able to contribute to the college financially after graduation the way men could." Given that concern, Wesleyan ceased to admit women, and from 1912 to 1970 Wesleyan operated again as an all-male college.

Beginning in the late 1950s, president Victor Lloyd Butterfield began an ambitious program to reorganize the University according to Butterfield's "College Plan" somewhat similar to Harvard's House system or Yale's colleges, where undergraduate study would be divided into seven smaller residential colleges with their own faculty and centralized graduate studies, including doctoral programs and a Center for Advanced Studies (later renamed The Center for the Humanities). The building program ... [more on wikipedia]

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Wesleyan University", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0

Wesleyan University Details

Wesleyan University Details
detail value
conferenceNew England Small College Ath Conf
overall ROI rank[137
scores validTrue
Common Questions...

What are the academic rankings for Wesleyan University?

1. number 73 for Academics.

2. number 137 for ROI (Return on Investment).

What universities are similar to Wesleyan University?

1. Middlebury College

2. Vassar College

3. Wellesley College

4. Williams College

5. Dartmouth College

6. Washington and Lee University

7. Oberlin College

National Academic Rankings

(summary of all ranking placements)

Wesleyan University National Academic Rankings

Wesleyan University National Academic Rankings
category rank scores difficulty smartest brainpower faculty research salary ROI overall ROI
All Nonivy632854597479798786
New England Region362238313760606247
State of Connecticut223233353
Top Ten Top2507336716787153159190137
Top Ten State of Connecticut223233343

Peer Universities / Similar Universities

(mathematically similar student body, size, academics, stem, salary... etc)

Wesleyan University Peer Universities, Similar Universities to Wesleyan University

Wesleyan University Peer Universities, Similar Universities to Wesleyan University
match image university state conference public level rank overall ROI
Middlebury CollegeVermontNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite90135
Vassar CollegeNew YorkUpstate Collegiate Athletic As...PrivateElite82177
Wellesley CollegeMassachusettsNew England Women's & Men's At...PrivateElite78158
Williams CollegeMassachusettsNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite58161
Dartmouth CollegeNew HampshireIvy LeaguePrivateElite1921
Washington and Lee UniversityVirginiaOld Dominion Athletic ConferencePrivateElite11746
Oberlin CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent8155
Colgate UniversityNew YorkPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent9283
Barnard CollegeNew YorkIvy LeaguePrivateExcellent104176
University of RichmondVirginiaColonial Athletic Association ...PrivateExcellent128150
Gettysburg CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent170148
Wheaton CollegeIllinoisCollege Conference of Illinois...PrivateExcellent149114
Dickinson CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent187201
Brandeis UniversityMassachusettsUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent46116
Lewis & Clark CollegeOregonNorthwest ConferencePrivateExcellent179221
Macalester CollegeMinnesotaMinnesota Intercollegiate Ath ConfPrivateExcellent133146
Colorado CollegeColoradoSouthern Collegiate Athletic C...PrivateExcellent149160
Occidental CollegeCaliforniaSouthern California Intercoll ...PrivateExcellent158162
Rhodes CollegeTennesseeSouthern Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent191147
Hamilton CollegeNew YorkNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite115153
Bowdoin CollegeMaineNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite64162
Amherst CollegeMassachusettsNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite86158
Pomona CollegeCaliforniaSouthern California Intercoll ...PrivateElite52125
Yale UniversityConnecticutIvy LeaguePrivateElite337
University of ChicagoIllinoisUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateElite1014
Brown UniversityRhode IslandIvy LeaguePrivateElite2534
Bryn Mawr CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateExcellent137205
University of Notre DameIndianaAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateElite3112
University of PennsylvaniaPennsylvaniaIvy LeaguePrivateElite127
University of Southern CaliforniaCaliforniaPacific 12 ConferencePrivateElite2281
Davidson CollegeNorth CarolinaPioneer Football League / Atla...PrivateExcellent155129
Wake Forest UniversityNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent6650
Kenyon CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent14791
Santa Clara UniversityCaliforniaWest Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent12398
Whitman CollegeWashingtonNorthwest ConferencePrivateExcellent153154
College of William and MaryVirginiaColonial Athletic AssociationPublicExcellent5460
Southern Methodist UniversityTexasAmerican Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent8073
Emory UniversityGeorgiaUniversity Athletic AssociationPrivateExcellent3629
Boston CollegeMassachusettsAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent4775
George Washington UniversityWashington DCAtlantic 10 ConferencePrivateExcellent51135
Boston UniversityMassachusettsPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent45116
University of North Carolina at Chapel HillNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicExcellent3764
Pacific Lutheran UniversityWashingtonNorthwest ConferencePrivateAverage439431

Academic Peer Universities / Similar Academics

(mathematically similar academics)

Wesleyan University Academic Peer Universities, Similar Academic Universities to Wesleyan University

Wesleyan University Academic Peer Universities, Similar Academic Universities to Wesleyan University
match image university state conference public level rank overall ROI
Carleton CollegeMinnesotaMidwest ConferencePrivateElite8443
Wellesley CollegeMassachusettsNew England Women's & Men's At...PrivateElite78158
Boston CollegeMassachusettsAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent4775
Oberlin CollegeOhioNorth Coast Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent8155
Amherst CollegeMassachusettsNew England Small College Ath ConfPrivateElite86158
Patriot League (Average)-Patriot League-Conf-Excellent-43
Swarthmore CollegePennsylvaniaCentennial ConferencePrivateElite6748
George Washington UniversityWashington DCAtlantic 10 ConferencePrivateExcellent51135
Atlantic Coast Conference (Low)-Atlantic Coast Conference-Conf-Excellent-42
Worcester Polytechnic InstituteMassachusettsUpstate Collegiate Athletic As...PrivateExcellent7340
Boston UniversityMassachusettsPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent45116
Wake Forest UniversityNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePrivateExcellent6650
Tulane University of LouisianaLouisianaAmerican Athletic ConferencePrivateExcellent61106
Lehigh UniversityPennsylvaniaPatriot LeaguePrivateExcellent6932
Colonial Athletic Association (Average)-Colonial Athletic Association-Conf-Excellent-112
Colorado School of MinesColoradoRocky Mountain Athletic ConferencePublicGood8424
Polytechnic Institute of New York UniversityNew YorkNo Reported AffiliationPrivateGood7672
The University of Texas at DallasTexasAmerican Southwest ConferencePublicGood7055
Brigham Young University-ProvoUtahOther / West Coast ConferencePrivateGood7227
University of GeorgiaGeorgiaSoutheastern ConferencePublicGood8265
Stony Brook UniversityNew YorkColonial Athletic Association ...PublicGood62109
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityVirginiaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicGood7540
University of South Carolina-ColumbiaSouth CarolinaSoutheastern ConferencePublicAboveAverage93130
Clemson UniversitySouth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicAboveAverage9851
Florida State UniversityFloridaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicAboveAverage76104
North Carolina State University at RaleighNorth CarolinaAtlantic Coast ConferencePublicAboveAverage5831
Texas A & M University-College StationTexasSoutheastern ConferencePublicAboveAverage7122