education in the Philippines

4 Philippine universities make QS Asia rankings for the first time

Michelle Abad

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4 Philippine universities make QS Asia rankings for the first time
The University of San Carlos, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Far Eastern University Manila, and Mindanao State University enter the QS Asia rankings for the first time

MANILA, Philippines – Four Philippine universities have made their debut appearances in the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings in Asia for 2024.

The University of San Carlos (USC) in Cebu, Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), Far Eastern University (FEU) Manila, and Mindanao State University (MSU) entered the rankings for the first time, according to the results released by QS on Wednesday, November 8.

USC and PUP ranked 551-600, FEU-Manila ranked 701-750, and MSU ranked 801+ in the rankings.

The four join 12 other Philippine universities that have made the list before and have ranked again. Three climbed in the rankings, while nine dropped. The University of the Philippines (UP) topped the list.

This year's QS Asia rankings are the largest ever, with 856 institutions from 25 countries and territories.

Peking University is the best-ranked Asian university for the second consecutive year, followed by the University of Hong Kong, and the National University of Singapore.

Published annually since 2009, the QS Asia University Rankings highlight Asia's top universities every year.

According to its website, the QS' methodology for its Asia rankings involves a criteria with indicators including academic reputation (30%), employer reputation (20%), faculty to student ratio (10%), international research network (10%) citations per paper (10%) and papers per faculty (5%), staff with a PhD (5%), proportion of of international faculty and students (2.5% each), and the proportion of inbound and outbound exchange students (2.5% each).

General picture for PH universities

In the general picture for the Philippines, the think tank said that the country is "well-regarded" among international academics and employers, but "faces challenges" in metrics related to research, and "struggles" with faculty expertise and teaching resources.

Philippine universities are also "well-renowned" among international academics and employers, with UP held in the highest regard, placing 51st in this metric.

The country's universities also faced "slightly less success" in academic reputation, the indicator with the heaviest weight.

The University of Santo Tomas (UST) enjoyed special mentions from QS – it was deemed the university with the best student exchange program. It is the Philippines' only institution to place in the top 100 for inbound student exchange, ranking 51st. It did even better in outbound student exchange, ranking 11th. No other Philippine university placed in the top 200 for either of these indicators.

UST also placed 60th for international faculty, achieving the country's only other top 100 rank in an individual indicator. It additionally led the Philippines in international students, where it ranks 172nd.

Adamson University is also recognized as producing the Philippines' highest-impact research, placing 178th for citations per paper. Mapua University leads research for faculty in the country, ranking 252nd for papers per faculty. UP is the most internationally collaborative research institution, ranking 102nd for international research network. However, research was still a struggle point in the country for this ranking, as no university ranked in the top 100 for these indicators.

Inadequate teaching resources are shown in the rankings, as the highest a Philippine university ranked in the faculty per student indicator was UP at 207th. No university placed in the top 500 for the staff with PhD indicator.

“Philippine universities have carved out a strong reputation among international employers and display a strong international outlook. However, if they hope to enhance their academic reputation, focus needs to be placed on employing top tier faculty and investing in high quality, relevant research," said Ben Sowter, Senior Vice President at QS.

View the full results here. – Rappler.com

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Michelle Abad

Michelle Abad is a multimedia reporter at Rappler. She covers overseas Filipinos, the rights of women and children, and local governments.