How hard students work and how much they get back for their efforts, on a scale of 60–99. This rating is calculated from student survey results and statistical information reported by administrators. Factors weighed include how many hours students study outside of the classroom and the quality of students the school attracts. We also considered students' assessments of their professors, class size, student–teacher ratio, use of teaching assistants, amount of class discussion, registration, and resources. Please note that if a school has an Academic Rating of 60* (sixty with an asterisk), it means that the school did not report to us a sufficient number of the statistics that go into the rating by our deadline.
This rating measures how competitive admissions are at the school. This rating is determined by several institutionally reported factors, including: the class rank, standardized test scores, and high school GPA of entering freshmen; the percentage of students who hail from out-of-state; and the percentage of applicants accepted. This rating is given on a scale of 60–99. Please note that if a school has an Admissions Selectivity Rating of 60* (sixty with an asterisk), it means that the school did not report to us enough of the statistics that go into the rating in order for us to accurately measure its admissions selectivity.
This rating measures how much financial aid a school awards and how satisfied students are with that aid, on a scale of 60–99. This rating is based on school-reported data on the percentage of students who were determined to have need and received aid, the percentage of need met for those students, and the percentage of students whose need was fully met. Student survey data that measures students' satisfaction with the financial aid they receive is also considered. Please note that if a school has a Financial Aid Rating of 60* (sixty with an asterisk), it means that the school did not report to us all of the statistics that go into the rating by our deadline.
This rating measures how well prepared a school is to prevent or respond to campus fires, on a scale of 60–99.
We asked all the schools we annually collect data from to answer several questions about their efforts to ensure fire safety for campus residents. We developed the questions in consultation with the Center for Campus Fire Safety (www.campusfiresafety.org), a nonprofit organization devoted to reducing the loss of life from fire at our nation's campuses.
The questions cover:
1) The percentage of student housing sleeping rooms protected by an automatic fire sprinkler system with a fire sprinkler head located in the individual sleeping rooms.
2) The percentage of student housing sleeping rooms equipped with a smoke detector connected to a supervised fire alarm system.
3) The number of malicious fire alarms that occur in student housing per year.
4) The number of unwanted fire alarms that occur in student housing per year.
5) The banning of certain hazardous items and activities in residence halls, like candles, smoking, halogen lamps, etc.
6) The percentage of student housing building fire alarm systems that, if activated, result in a signal being transmitted to a monitored location on campus or the fire department.
Colleges that did not supply answers to a sufficient number of these safety questions for us to fairly compare them to other colleges receive a Fire Safety Rating of 60* (sixty with an asterisk). The schools have an opportunity to update their fire safety data every year and will have their fire safety ratings recalculated and published annually.
This rating is a measure of how happy students are with their lives outside the classroom, on a scale of 60–99. We weighed several factors, including students' assessments of their overall happiness; the beauty, safety, and location of the campus; the comfort of dorms; the quality of food; the ease of getting around campus and dealing with administrators; the friendliness of fellow students; the interaction of different student types; and the quality of the school's relationship with the local community. Please note that if a school has a Quality of Life Rating of 60* (sixty with an asterisk), it means that the school did not report to us all of the statistics that go into the rating by our deadline.
This rating, on a scale of 60–99, provides a comprehensive measure of a school's performance as an environmentally aware and prepared institution. Specifically, it includes 1) whether students have a campus quality of life that is both healthy and sustainable, 2) how well a school is preparing students for employment in the clean-energy economy of the 21st century as well as for citizenship in a world now defined by environmental concerns and opportunities and 3) how environmentally responsible a school's policies are.
Additionally, The Princeton Review, the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) and Sierra magazine have collaborated on an effort to streamline the reporting process for institutions that choose to participate in various higher education sustainability assessments. The intent of this initiative is to reduce and streamline the amount of time campus staff spend tracking sustainability data and completing related surveys.
To address this issue, these four groups have worked to establish the Campus Sustainability Data Collector (CSDC). The CSDC is based on the STARS Reporting Tool and is available for all schools (free of charge) that would like to submit data to these groups in one single survey. Please find more information here: http://www.princetonreview.com/green-data-partnership.
We asked all the schools we annually collect data from to answer questions about their efforts to provide (and continually develop) an environmentally beneficial student experience. The questions were created in consultation with ecoAmerica, a research- and partnership-based environmental nonprofit that convened an expert committee to design this comprehensive ranking system. Colleges that did not supply answers to a sufficient number of the questions for us to fairly compare them to other schools received a Green Rating of 60*. The schools have an opportunity to update their sustainability data every year and will have their ratings recalculated and published annually.
Questions it covers include:
- What is the percentage of food expenditures that goes toward local, organic or otherwise environmentally preferable food?
- Does the school offer programs including mass transit programs, bike sharing, facilities for bicyclists, bicycle and pedestrian plans, car sharing, a carpool discount, carpool/vanpool matching, cash-out of parking, prohibiting idling, local housing, telecommuting, and a condensed workweek?
- Does the school have a formal committee with participation from students that is devoted to advancing sustainability on campus?
- Are school buildings that were constructed or underwent major renovations in the past three years LEED certified?
- What is a school's overall waste-diversion rate?
- Does the school have an environmental studies major, minor or concentration?
- Do the school's students graduate from programs that include sustainability as a required learning outcome or include multiple sustainability learning outcomes?
- Does the school have a formal plan to mitigate its greenhouse gas emissions?
- What percentage of the school's energy consumption is derived from renewable resources?
- Does the school employ a dedicated full-time (or full-time equivalent) sustainability officer?
On a scale of 60-99, this rating is based on levels of surveyed students' agreement or disagreement with the statement: "Your instructors are good teachers."
On a scale of 60-99, this rating is based on levels of surveyed students' agreement or disagreement with the statement: "Your instructors are accessible outside the classroom."