Art and design most highly ranked

[2017-03-10] Seven subjects at Umeå University are placed on the charts of the international QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017. Just like last year, the University’s art and design were ranked highest, in the top 100 even.

Second highest was geography placed on the top 200 list. A subject that fell of the chart since 2014 but is now back is psychology, where Umeå is now ranked among the top 300. Even in the biological sciences, medicine and environmental sciences, Umeå University is ranked in the top 300, and chemistry in Umeå takes a place among the 400 top subjects.

Compares to last year, Umeå University have dropped in all subjects apart from in psychology and environmental sciences. In arts and design, biological sciences and geography, the drop is only to the level the University had a few years ago.

”From an international perspective, Umeå has a good position, and several subjects are stable from year to year and between various rankings. Moreover, drawing extensive conclusions regarding variations from year to year should be done with caution. We work long-term with qualitative developments of the University as an attractive environment for research, education and outreach within all these areas of our operation. Our work is conducted in a much wider perspective than what the rankings can possibly pick up,” says Hans Adolfsson, Vice-Chancellor of Umeå University.

This is the seventh year the QS World University Rankings by Subject is carried out. A total of 46 subjects are included. The number of ranked higher education institutions vary from 50 in subjects like odontology or veterinary medicine, to 500 in subjects such as biology, chemistry and medicine. Only the top 50 institutions are given individual positions. After that, the institutions are rounded up in groups of 50.

This ranking by subject is a part of the QS World University Rankings, which in turn is one of the big players among international rankings. Subject rankings are based upon surveys among teachers, researchers and employers concerning the reputation of different higher education institutions, and its citations. Different parts are weighed differently depending on subject.

The table shows how Umeå University has been placed over the years that the ranking has been carried out. Please note that the number of ranked higher education institutions and the ranking method has changed over time, which is why variations in positions over the years should be compared with caution.

Umeå University in the QS World
University Rankings by Subject


2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011
Art & Design 51–100 41 51–100
Biological Sciences 201–250 151–200 201–250 151–200 151–200 151–200
Medicine 251–300 201–250 201–250 151–200
Psychology 251–300 (>200) (>200) 151–200
Chemistry 351–400 301–350 301–350
Geography 151–200 101–150 101–150 151–200 151–200
Environmental Sciences 251–300 251–300 251–300 151–200 151–200 151–200
Education (>300) (>300) (>200) 151–200
Sociology (>300) (>200) (>200) 151–200 151–200 151–200 151–200

Photo: Ulrika Bergfors.

Editor: Anna Lawrence