NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – As of Sept. 12, Bethel College has taken its place on three national college ranking lists.
The longest running and most recently announced of these is the U.S. News & World Report 2013 edition of Best Colleges. For the second year, Bethel is in the Top 20 “Best Regional Colleges-Midwest” at No. 18.
Bethel is the highest-ranking Kansas college in the Midwest region. Sister institution Bluffton (Ohio) University appears at No. 21. Five other Kansas private schools (Tabor College, Hillsboro, McPherson College, Ottawa University, Sterling College and Bethany College, Lindsborg) also appear on that list.
Bethel also made the U.S. News list of “A-Plus Schools for B Students” – schools the magazine calls “those where non-superstars have a decent shot at being accepted and thriving, where spirit and hard work could make all the difference in admissions offices.”
U.S. News compared more than 1,600 accredited four-year schools nationwide using a set of up to 16 indicators, with key measures being: peer assessment; graduation and retention rates; faculty resources; student selectivity; financial resources; and alumni giving.
The U.S. News complete rankings are available online and will be on newsstands starting Sept. 18.
Bethel is also listed in the Washington Monthly annual college guide and on Forbes.com.
In its second year on the Washington Monthly list, Bethel vaulted to the top, sitting at No. 4 among “Best Baccalaureate Colleges 2012-13.”
Washington Monthly rankings are based on “contribution to the public good” in three broad categories: social mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students); research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs); and service (encouraging students to give something back to their community and country).
Bethel appeared in the publication’s rankings for the first time last year, though in the “Liberal Arts Colleges” category, at No. 110 out of 249. This year Bethel was fourth out of 352 baccalaureate colleges, behind Elizabeth City (N.C.) State University, Wheeling (W.Va.) Jesuit University and Tuskegee (Ala.) University.
See the complete “2012 Baccalaureate Colleges” list online.
For the fifth year in a row, Bethel College is the only private, liberal arts college in Kansas and one of only four institutions of higher learning in the state to be ranked in Forbes.com’s analysis of top U.S. colleges and universities.
The annual ranking, compiled by Forbes.com and the Center for College Affordability and Productivity (CCAP), rates 650 undergraduate programs out of 6,600 accredited U.S. colleges “based on the quality of the education they provide, the experience of the students and how much they achieve.”
Bethel ranked No. 426 overall, No. 306 among private U.S. colleges and No. 98 on the Midwest colleges list. Forbes.com includes only about 10 percent of the nation’s accredited postsecondary institutions in its annual ranking.
The rankings are based on five general categories: post-graduate success, which evaluates alumni pay and prominence; student satisfaction, which includes professor evaluations and freshman-to-sophomore year retention rates; debt, which penalizes schools for high student debt loads and default rates; four-year graduation rate; and competitive awards, which rewards schools whose students win prestigious scholarships and fellowships such as Rhodes, Fulbright or National Science Foundation, or go on to earn a Ph.D.
Complete rankings for Forbes.com are at www.forbes.com/top-colleges/.