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5 national championships, 5 in the rankings: Duke earns high spot in WSJ 2022 top colleges list

Friends studied on the quad, enjoying for their last two weeks together before they head home for the summer.
Friends studied on the quad, enjoying for their last two weeks together before they head home for the summer.

With five men’s basketball March Madness championships and now a fifth place national ranking, maybe five is Duke’s lucky number.

Just two weeks after being ranked twelfth in the 2021 Forbes’ America’s Top Colleges list, Duke has already bounced back, earning the fifth overall spot in the Wall Street Journal’s 2022 Best Colleges in the U.S. list.

The University has received high rankings across a number of news outlets for many years, and 2021-22 is no different. Duke’s ranking is the same as it received in the 2021 edition, but it has increased five spots from 2020, when WSJ ranked them No. 10 overall. 

In the newest version of the list, WSJ’s top five colleges are Harvard University, Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Yale University and Duke. The top ten rounds out with Brown University, California Institute of Technology, Princeton University, Johns Hopkins University and Northwestern University. 

In total, the WSJ’s rankings include nearly 800 universities across the nation. The list is generated based on four aspects: student outcomes and salaries (40%), academic resources and teacher salaries (30%), student engagement (20%) and the diversity of the learning environment overall (10%). 

The rankings’ detailed methodology describes how these divisions are broken down even further into more specific areas. For example, the 10% designated as ‘environment’ comes from the proportion of international students (2%), student diversity (3%), student inclusion (2%) and staff diversity (3%).

This is the second time this year Duke has hit the top 10 in a college ranking list, as U.S. News & World Report recently had Duke at ninth in the nation in a four-way tie with Northwestern, Johns Hopkins and California Institute of Technology.


Gautam Sirdeshmukh

Gautam Sirdeshmukh is a Trinity junior and the health & science news editor of The Chronicle's 117th volume.

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