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CSUF Now Among Top ‘National Universities’

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In a major indication of the University’s growth and evolution as an institution on the national stage, U.S. News & World Report, in its most recent rankings released today, heralds Cal State Fullerton as a top “national university.” The University previously had been included in the much narrower “regional universities” category.

This change was largely based on the University’s recent elevation to an “R-3” (research) status by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, in recognition of the University’s evolution from a master’s-level comprehensive institution to one that awards doctorates. 

Cal State Fullerton is listed in what U.S. News characterizes as the “first tier” of institutions in its inaugural appearance in the national category. At number 202 overall, CSUF is 110th among public universities. The top five ranked universities are Princeton, Harvard, University of Chicago, Yale and Columbia, respectively.

“When you consider that there are some 3,000 four-year institutions in the United States, Cal State Fullerton being recognized as a top national university is truly impressive,” said Anil Puri, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs. “I continue to be so proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish through the work of our faculty and staff on behalf of our students.”

U.S. News uses a number of measures to determine its rankings, including freshman retention and graduation of students, peer assessment, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving and graduation rate performance — the difference between the proportion of students expected to graduate and the proportion who do.

In keeping with other recent rankings of Cal State Fullerton, U.S. News includes CSUF on its list of national universities selected for “Best Ethnic Diversity,” citing, in part, Hispanic enrollment of 42 percent.

Last month, Diverse: Issues in Higher Education ranked CSUF No. 1 in California and No. 2 in the nation for the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded to Hispanics and No. 14 for bachelor’s degrees awarded to Asian Americans. In addition, the magazine lists CSUF as No. 6 in the nation for the number of bachelor’s degrees awarded overall to students of color, using data from the U.S. Department of Education.

In major-specific rankings by U.S. News, Mihaylo College of Business and Economics is ranked 150 out of 488 undergraduate business programs, and the College of Engineering and Computer Sciences is ranked 55 among 406 undergraduate engineering programs. These rankings are based solely on peer assessment surveys from spring 2015 and spring 2016.

Several of Cal State Fullerton’s academic programs are also included on the list of top programs in the nation to award bachelor’s degrees to Hispanic students, according to Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education. The August 2016 issue, “Top 100 Colleges for Hispanics,” CSUF ranks in the top 10 for the following bachelor’s degree programs:

  • First in communications/journalism
  • First in public administration and human services
  • Sixth in child and adolescent development
  • Eighth in health science/nursing
  • Ninth in criminal justice
  • Ninth in psychology