Waterloo subjects ranked amongst world’s top 50

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Three subjects at the University of Waterloo rank in the top 50 in the world and eight other subjects rank among the top 100, according to results published today.

 Rated for Excellence – 5 starts plus; top 50 in Computer Science and Information Systems, Geography and Mathematics

The rankings, published by UK firm Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), put Waterloo 20th in the world for its work in Mathematics and 24th for Computer Science – second amongst Canadian universities in both subjects. Waterloo is also ranked 48th in the world for Geography.

Social science subjects of Psychology and Sociology at Waterloo join the list of subjects ranked in the top 100. Waterloo is again ranked in the top 100 for Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Environmental Sciences and Statistics and Operational Research. Architecture, a new subject ranked by QS, and Mechanical Engineering complete a list of 11 subjects in the top 100.

“Universities know that rankings like these are not a perfect science, but they are a helpful guide to the kind of company that we are keeping,” said Feridun Hamdullahpur, president and vice-chancellor of Waterloo. “These results show that in many disciplines the University of Waterloo is a force for innovation alongside some of the most recognizable world names in academia."

QS ranks close to 700 universities worldwide in 36 disciplines. Waterloo is listed amongst the top 200 universities globally for 20 of the 36 subjects evaluated – with improved rankings in six subject areas. Waterloo ranked in the top three in Canada for five subjects and in Canada’s top five in 12 subjects.

“Mathematics and Computer Science at Waterloo are a cornerstones for the world-leading innovations for which our University and our region are known,” said Ian Goulden, dean of mathematics. “We attract outstanding students and faculty members from around the world and I am delighted that their hard work is reflected in these results.”

Math facts

 Researching how to interact with cellphones using gesturesProfessor Edward Lank (left), Associate Director, David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science: Researching how to interact with cell phones using gestures

  • The University of Waterloo's Faculty of Mathematics has the largest concentration of mathematical and computer science talent in the world. Waterloo’s David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science is the largest academic computer science research centre in Canada.  
  • A team of undergraduate students from Waterloo’s Faculty of Math placed fourth behind Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the prestigious 2014 Putnam Competition.
  • The inaugural U.S. News & World Report Best Global Universities Ranking placed University of Waterloo's computer science at top in Canada and 18th in the world.

Geography at Waterloo rises into the top 50 in the world for the first time. The Department of Geography and Environmental Management is one of the leading Geography Departments in Canada with a strong commitment to the discovery, dissemination, and application of geographic knowledge focused on the complex interactions within and between the human and natural environments.

Geography facts

Commander Chris Hadfield made his University of Waterloo debut as Professor Hadfield to three packed classrooms of geography and aviation studentsProfessor Chris Hadfield lectures to a packed classrooms of geography and aviation students.

Waterloo Engineering is Canada's largest Engineering school. The Faculty works with more than 1,000 industry partners leading innovations in emerging areas including information and communications technology, advanced manufacturing, nanotechnology and smart energy.  The Waterloo Centre for Automotive Research housed in the Faculty has the largest concentration of automotive researchers in the country.

Waterloo also ranked in the top-200 for Philosophy, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Earth and Marine Sciences, Materials Science, Physics and Astronomy, Accounting and Finance, Business and Management Studies, and Politics and International Studies.

In 2014, Waterloo became one of only 11 universities in the world to earn a 5+ star rating in the QS Stars rating which evaluates universities against over 50 different factors. QS introduced the star rating system to help future students make decisions about which school to attend, looking at criteria such as the employability of graduates, teaching, sports facilities, and many others.

About the University of Waterloo

In just half a century, the University of Waterloo, located at the heart of Canada's technology hub, has become one of Canada's leading comprehensive universities with 35,000 full- and part-time students in undergraduate and graduate programs. Waterloo, as home to the world's largest post-secondary co-operative education program, embraces its connections to the world and encourages enterprising partnerships in learning, research and discovery. In the next decade, the university is committed to building a better future for Canada and the world by championing innovation and collaboration to create solutions relevant to the needs of today and tomorrow. For more information about Waterloo, please visit www.uwaterloo.ca.

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Nick Manning
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