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

State of Washington University Academic Rankings

Search :
examples: Yale "Wake Forest" "Big Ten" TX NC

2016 Washington University Academic Rankings

2016 Washington University Academic Rankings
rank value image public university state conference scores difficulty smartest brainpower faculty research r pop r stem r other salary ROI overall ROI scores value difficulty value smartest value brainpower value faculty value research value salary ROI value overall ROI value scores level stem drop gpa avg research undergrads grads salary price scores valid
PublicUniversity of Washington-Seattle CampusWashingtonPacific 12 Conference361111111111840|772.68|332069|862021|8418|941.00|991343116|671.00|991840/1226/28Good35183.21109330672141125350047817True
PrivateWhitman CollegeWashingtonNorthwest Conference119433333222003|832.17|461606|671695|71300|03.00|971273116|642.00|982003/1335/30Excellent25133.250149804240058228True
PrivateGonzaga UniversityWashingtonWest Coast Conference434533333631780|742.58|361790|751559|65300|03.00|971205153|604.50|961780/1187/27AboveAverage17162.950483725155030050501True
PrivateUniversity of Puget SoundWashingtonNorthwest Conference228633333841867|782.55|361664|691537|64300|03.00|971147319|576.00|941867/1245/28Good18263.10025532734490057908True
PrivateSeattle UniversityWashingtonWestern Athletic Conference5557333331061735|722.67|331724|721484|62300|03.00|971116615|567.50|931735/1157/26AboveAverage19292.950443728364930054705True
PublicWestern Washington UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference71223333331171650|692.82|291860|781724|72300|03.00|971101828|558.50|921650/1100/25AboveAverage17252.950141529084600034663True
PublicWashington State UniversityWashingtonPacific 12 Conference14133222222541525|642.84|291851|771762|7376|752.00|981208669|606.00|941525/1017/23Average25322.803432386748194870041288True
PrivateSeattle Pacific UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference68101033333971695|712.75|311584|661294|54300|03.00|971139039|578.50|921695/1130/25AboveAverage18242.95032649534480049604True
PrivatePacific Lutheran UniversityWashingtonNorthwest Conference8713123333312111630|682.69|331451|601178|49300|03.00|971091976|5510.50|901630/1087/24Average24322.80029263164360050258True
PublicThe Evergreen State CollegeWashingtonCascade Collegiate Conference91011113333316141605|672.79|301549|651270|53300|03.00|97582883|2913.00|871605/1070/24Average0442.80038783413190035856True
PublicCentral Washington UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference1615783333313121460|612.95|261676|701409|59300|03.00|971091703|5512.00|881460/973/22BelowAverage26412.800109648354650035679True
PrivateSaint Martin's UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference11416163333319161580|662.63|34760|32944|39300|03.00|97543595|2715.50|851580/1053/24Average80492.80014563453190045678True
PublicEastern Washington UniversityWashingtonBig Sky Conference1716693333314151435|602.98|261680|701408|59300|03.00|971018457|5113.50|871435/957/22BelowAverage28492.8001241110424550035050True
PublicUniversity of Washington-Bothell CampusWashingtonNo Conference Affiliation1514121333333491495|622.93|271479|621152|48300|03.00|971230820|629.00|911495/997/22Average802.80044055575090048630True
PrivateNorthwest UniversityWashingtonCascade Collegiate Conference101115153333317171585|662.81|30770|32954|40300|03.00|97575755|2916.00|841585/1057/24Average4492.80015183443190037638True
PrivateWalla Walla UniversityWashingtonAssociation of Independent Ins...1291717333333101570|652.77|31740|31932|39300|03.00|971272240|649.50|911570/1047/24Average31472.80016891984920036507True
PublicUniversity of Washington-Tacoma CampusWashingtonNo Conference Affiliation18171414333337121425|593.01|251349|561007|42300|03.00|971152643|5812.00|881425/950/21BelowAverage1302.80038096684680048981True
PrivateWhitworth UniversityWashingtonNorthwest Conference131919193333315181565|654.00|0-2400|0-2400|0300|03.00|97898751|4516.50|841565/1043/23Unknown14192.80023702844130050329False
PrivateTrinity Lutheran CollegeWashingtonNo Conference Affiliation191818183333318191335|563.12|22270|11270|11300|03.00|97568947|2818.50|821335/890/20BelowAverage0262.80021103190039340True

Common Questions...

What are the best colleges in Washington?

1. University of Washington-Seattle Campus

2. Whitman College

3. Gonzaga University

4. University of Puget Sound

5. Seattle University

6. Western Washington University

7. Washington State University

2016 Top 10 Washington University Academic Rankings

2016 Top 10 Washington University Academic Rankings
rank value public name state conference scores difficulty smartest brainpower faculty research salary ROI overall ROI scores level stem drop gpa avg research undergrads grads salary price
12.00PublicUniversity of Washington-Seattle CampusWashingtonPacific 12 Conference351111111840/1226/28Good35183.21109330672141125350047817
23.33PrivateWhitman CollegeWashingtonNorthwest Conference118433222003/1335/30Excellent25133.250149804240058228
33.67PrivateGonzaga UniversityWashingtonWest Coast Conference434533431780/1187/27AboveAverage17162.950483725155030050501
43.83PrivateUniversity of Puget SoundWashingtonNorthwest Conference227633541867/1245/28Good18263.10025532734490057908
54.33PublicWestern Washington UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference782333861650/1100/25AboveAverage17252.950141529084600034663
64.50PrivateSeattle UniversityWashingtonWestern Athletic Conference545733761735/1157/26AboveAverage19292.950443728364930054705
64.50PublicWashington State UniversityWashingtonPacific 12 Conference993222341525/1017/23Average25322.803432386748194870041288
86.17PrivateSeattle Pacific UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference679933681695/1130/25AboveAverage18242.95032649534480049604
96.67PrivatePacific Lutheran UniversityWashingtonNorthwest Conference86101033991630/1087/24Average24322.80029263164360050258
107.16PublicCentral Washington UniversityWashingtonGreat Northwest Athletic Conference1010683310101460/973/22BelowAverage26412.800109648354650035679