April 15, 2010 — Five graduate schools at the University of Virginia and nine of its graduate programs are among the nation's best, according to rankings released today as part of U.S. News & World Report's 2011 edition of America's Best Graduate Schools.
The School of Law, Curry School of Education, Darden School of Business, School of Medicine and School of Engineering and Applied Science remained in the top 50, with Curry and Darden improving their standings.
"The competition among graduate programs is tremendous," said Arthur T. Garson Jr., executive vice president and provost. "To have two of our schools move up in the rankings and the rest hold their own is terrific."
U.S. News bases its rankings on expert opinions about program quality and statistical indicators intended to measure the quality of a school's faculty, research and students. The data come from surveys of more than 1,200 programs and some 12,400 academics and professionals that were conducted in fall 2009.
The statistical indicators for business, education, engineering, law and medical schools fall into two categories, the authors wrote: "Inputs, or measures of the qualities that students and faculty bring to the educational experience, and outputs, measures
of graduates' achievements linked to their degrees."
Curry is ranked No. 21, up three spots from last year and up 10 from the 2009 rankings. The Curry School also had three programs highlighted: special education (No. 6), secondary education (No. 6) and elementary education (No. 10).
"We are very pleased to see the Curry School's place in the U.S. News rankings continue to rise," Dean Robert Pianta said. "This recognition reflects the sustained hard work of faculty, staff and students and their commitment to quality and excellence."
Darden is now ranked at No. 13, up from No. 15 last year. Dean Robert Bruner called the results a symbol of the school's momentum.
"Respective to the 12,000 business-degree granting institutions in the world and some 433 accredited business schools in the U.S., Darden holds a commanding position in the field of management education, and we are proud of that," he said.
The School of Law led the University's rankings at No. 10. Last year, it tied with Duke University; this year, the law school holds the spot alone. The Law School's international law program, which was ranked by faculty who teach in the field, ranked No. 9, and its tax law program ranked No. 10.
The School of Medicine is ranked No. 25 for research and No. 39 in primary care. The Engineering School came in at No. 39. Its computer science program moved up one spot to No. 28, tied with Johns Hopkins University, New York University, Ohio State University, Pennsylvania State University, Rutgers and University of California-Irvine.
The magazine ranked Ph.D. programs in several sciences that fall under the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences. These were the results of surveys of department chairs and deans from across the country.
Chemistry: No. 45, four-way tie with Boston College, Colorado State University and Duke University.
Biological sciences: No. 46, tied with Carnegie Mellon University, Michigan State University, Ohio State University, University of California-Santa Barbara, University of Florida, University of Georgia, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, University of Pittsburgh and the University of Southern California.
Physics: No. 40, tied with Boston University, Indiana University, New York University, Purdue University, Texas A&M University, University of California-Santa Cruz and Washington University in St. Louis.