Harvard 2010!

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Na_Swatch
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Na_Swatch » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:38 am

Kronk wrote:tbf, way to neglect the rankings of national universities. Particularly since we're comparing universities within the USA only. Not to mention if they rank MIT near the top, it clearly doesn't fit into idea we're discussing, which is "overall" university. Since when does MIT have a law school, social sciences, etc.? We're comparing universities as a whole.

I mean, in that case, you can just show the USNWR for undergrad, which has Berkeley 21st. But my argument is predicated on the idea that graduate school is more important (because it is the degree that gets you a job, tbf). Thus making every link you posted fairly irrelevant.


The idea of comparing universities "on a whole" or "overall" is not equivalent to evaluating a university by just its graduate programs. There are wide variety of metrics possible for ranking or judging universities. In fact, I would argue that the system used by world rankings are more accurate in that they take every single aspect of a university into account.

I don't take issue with Berkeley being a top school from a solely graduate program perspective (especially if you are weighing the smaller, but still relevant graduate programs such as engineering, english, etc.) but just shifting from one category to another can cause major changes. For example, if you are basing the results on research output from a University, Columbia actually takes the number one position in some respected poles. (http://mup.asu.edu/research2007.pdf)

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Kronk
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Kronk » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:09 am

Na_Swatch wrote:
Kronk wrote:tbf, way to neglect the rankings of national universities. Particularly since we're comparing universities within the USA only. Not to mention if they rank MIT near the top, it clearly doesn't fit into idea we're discussing, which is "overall" university. Since when does MIT have a law school, social sciences, etc.? We're comparing universities as a whole.

I mean, in that case, you can just show the USNWR for undergrad, which has Berkeley 21st. But my argument is predicated on the idea that graduate school is more important (because it is the degree that gets you a job, tbf). Thus making every link you posted fairly irrelevant.


The idea of comparing universities "on a whole" or "overall" is not equivalent to evaluating a university by just its graduate programs. There are wide variety of metrics possible for ranking or judging universities. In fact, I would argue that the system used by world rankings are more accurate in that they take every single aspect of a university into account.

I don't take issue with Berkeley being a top school from a solely graduate program perspective (especially if you are weighing the smaller, but still relevant graduate programs such as engineering, english, etc.) but just shifting from one category to another can cause major changes. For example, if you are basing the results on research output from a University, Columbia actually takes the number one position in some respected poles. (http://mup.asu.edu/research2007.pdf)


Honestly, my statistics speak for themselves. If you evaluate based on graduate programs only--not only does Berkeley compare to schools like Harvard, it actually exceeds all of them except for Stanford. If you want to include undergrad, it exceeds everything except for Harvard and Stanford, and Harvard might be questionable in my opinion if you count each social science as its own category and each science as its own category.

So, take it how you will. If we are looking at "full" universities (universities that offer reputable programs in all / almost all fields), there are no better schools than Harvard, Stanford, and Berkeley. If we are comparing graduate programs, there are no better overall schools than Harvard, Stanford, and Berkeley.

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scribelaw
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby scribelaw » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:30 pm

ding

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invisiblesun
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby invisiblesun » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:33 pm

.
Last edited by invisiblesun on Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Unitas
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Unitas » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:34 pm

scribelaw wrote:ding

Sorry to hear that, you have some great schools though. Were you held previously?

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scribelaw
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby scribelaw » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:42 pm

Unitas wrote:
scribelaw wrote:ding

Sorry to hear that, you have some great schools though. Were you held previously?


Nope. Never held.

Based on past years, I went into the cycle thinking I'd at least land a waitlist, given that I have a lot of work experience. Tough year for admissions, though. People with a lot better numbers than me are still waiting, so I was expecting a ding.

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adameus
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby adameus » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:50 pm

Kronk wrote:
Na_Swatch wrote:
Kronk wrote:tbf, way to neglect the rankings of national universities. Particularly since we're comparing universities within the USA only. Not to mention if they rank MIT near the top, it clearly doesn't fit into idea we're discussing, which is "overall" university. Since when does MIT have a law school, social sciences, etc.? We're comparing universities as a whole.

I mean, in that case, you can just show the USNWR for undergrad, which has Berkeley 21st. But my argument is predicated on the idea that graduate school is more important (because it is the degree that gets you a job, tbf). Thus making every link you posted fairly irrelevant.


The idea of comparing universities "on a whole" or "overall" is not equivalent to evaluating a university by just its graduate programs. There are wide variety of metrics possible for ranking or judging universities. In fact, I would argue that the system used by world rankings are more accurate in that they take every single aspect of a university into account.

I don't take issue with Berkeley being a top school from a solely graduate program perspective (especially if you are weighing the smaller, but still relevant graduate programs such as engineering, english, etc.) but just shifting from one category to another can cause major changes. For example, if you are basing the results on research output from a University, Columbia actually takes the number one position in some respected poles. (http://mup.asu.edu/research2007.pdf)


Honestly, my statistics speak for themselves. If you evaluate based on graduate programs only--not only does Berkeley compare to schools like Harvard, it actually exceeds all of them except for Stanford. If you want to include undergrad, it exceeds everything except for Harvard and Stanford, and Harvard might be questionable in my opinion if you count each social science as its own category and each science as its own category.

So, take it how you will. If we are looking at "full" universities (universities that offer reputable programs in all / almost all fields), there are no better schools than Harvard, Stanford, and Berkeley. If we are comparing graduate programs, there are no better overall schools than Harvard, Stanford, and Berkeley.


While I think your conclusion is most likely correct and I don't have any evidence to say otherwise, I don't think you've necessarily proven that these are unquestionably the best the 3 overall universities or overall graduate programs. The reason I say this is that your analysis is based completely on other rankings which undoubtedly have flaws. If we did the same type of analysis you did but based it on another set of rankings that used different metrics from the ones you chose, then we very likely could come up with a different group of 3 schools.

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$1.99
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby $1.99 » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:56 pm

anyone else noticing the pattern of rejections coming on fridays being broken today?

mcm814
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby mcm814 » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:00 pm

This is likely somewhere else in the thread but its a LOT of pages...how are you notified of rejections?? Is everything done by email at this point? (w/ phone calls for acceptances?)

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:04 pm

mcm814 wrote:This is likely somewhere else in the thread but its a LOT of pages...how are you notified of rejections?? Is everything done by email at this point? (w/ phone calls for acceptances?)


i refuse to answer this question until you read the whole thread

edit: JR definitely doesnt call you to reject you lol

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PoorOrpheus
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby PoorOrpheus » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:06 pm

mcm814 wrote:This is likely somewhere else in the thread but its a LOT of pages...how are you notified of rejections?? Is everything done by email at this point? (w/ phone calls for acceptances?)

E-mail:
Rejections
WLs
Holds
JR1 invitations

Phone:
Acceptances

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invisiblesun
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby invisiblesun » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:07 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
mcm814 wrote:This is likely somewhere else in the thread but its a LOT of pages...how are you notified of rejections?? Is everything done by email at this point? (w/ phone calls for acceptances?)


i refuse to answer this question until you read the whole thread

edit: JR definitely doesnt call you to reject you lol


At least they don't use SLS's obnoxious ding by snail mail policy. I thought the west coast was more about sustainability and environmentalism- why send paper dings when you could just e-mail them (which would probably be preferable to applicants)?

mcm814
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby mcm814 » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:09 pm

I figured that they didnt call to personally reject you--should have been more specific. I was wondering if they were obnixious like Yale and Stanford w/ the paper dings. Ew.

;)

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Kronk
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Kronk » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:16 pm

adameus wrote:While I think your conclusion is most likely correct and I don't have any evidence to say otherwise, I don't think you've necessarily proven that these are unquestionably the best the 3 overall universities or overall graduate programs. The reason I say this is that your analysis is based completely on other rankings which undoubtedly have flaws. If we did the same type of analysis you did but based it on another set of rankings that used different metrics from the ones you chose, then we very likely could come up with a different group of 3 schools.


Yeah--I mean that is the flaw. I am only using one ranking system. But really, it's the only ranking system that breaks it down into categories and makes it possible to see the "whole" university. But true, if there were different metrics we might see difference results.

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CoaltoNewCastle
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby CoaltoNewCastle » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:23 pm

Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!

Edit: This was actually Unitas's idea, sorry!
Last edited by CoaltoNewCastle on Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

r6_philly
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:40 pm

CoaltoNewCastle wrote:Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!


So do you think the inpending new rankings will have a noticable impact on the rest of the cycle? Like schools bidding up high LSAT/GPA candidates still remaining on waitlists to try to up their medians/75%? Or would they be mass rejecting in hope of lowering accetance rates?

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of Benito Cereno
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby of Benito Cereno » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:44 pm

Kronk wrote:
adameus wrote:While I think your conclusion is most likely correct and I don't have any evidence to say otherwise, I don't think you've necessarily proven that these are unquestionably the best the 3 overall universities or overall graduate programs. The reason I say this is that your analysis is based completely on other rankings which undoubtedly have flaws. If we did the same type of analysis you did but based it on another set of rankings that used different metrics from the ones you chose, then we very likely could come up with a different group of 3 schools.


Yeah--I mean that is the flaw. I am only using one ranking system. But really, it's the only ranking system that breaks it down into categories and makes it possible to see the "whole" university. But true, if there were different metrics we might see difference results.

the usnews grad school rankings are really really really awful. its is 100% based on surverys sent out to a pretty random selection of academics and they get ridiculously awful response rates. they are also really really deceptive because ranking, say, a political science department that focuses mostly on political theory against one that mostly works on statistical models is pretty meaningless. it's way, for example, philosophy departments aren't ranked. for example, there is really no meaningful way to rank such excellent but totally different philosophy departments as nyu, pitt, princeton, and chicago, its really only possible to rank philosophy departments by specialities. the same really goes for a lot of other fields. law schools or medical schools or undergradute colleges are much easier to compare than doctoral programs, which are very small and turn out pretty institution specific programs. furthermore, its pretty deceptive to treat all departments as equal in evaluating a university. i think there are a number of core and inter-related and inter-dependent departments that really define the intellectual life of a university: history, politics, philosophy, economics, sociology, law, business. and math, physics, biology, medicine. I'd say the quality of a schools political science, economics, or biology department tells you a lot more about the general importance of the university as a research center than its education department, music department, arts program, english and comp lit departments, etc.
anyways, the usnews rankings are pretty terrible but there isn't any other perfect replacement. there are models such as those used by some of the "world university rankings" that focus on research output in top journals (thats key as some other horrid rankings just look at gross publications and thus reward schools that push publication quantity over quality... a very common problem), or you could look at faculty awards (fields medals, nobels, mcarthur/mellon grants). anyways, there are like a dozen "statistics" based rankings (your us news grad school model is not the only ranking that uses "statistics") and these rankings never show a clear cut top three (though Harvard always comes out on top) and tends to show harvard, yale, princeton, stanford, berkley, columbia, and chicago as basically a common tier. these rankings do not consistently place berkley in the top three and do not ever seem to show a clear statistical drop off between top 2 or 3 and everyone else. berkley is clearly in the very top tier of research universities but let's not pretend that usnwr grad school rankings are the only model out there that can lay claim to "statistics." also, given how ridiculously difficult it is to rank the overall quality of, say, columbia versus yale as research universities sometimes all one can do is ask one's self which universities have functioned as major intellectual centers in the past several decades; that is to say, which universities seem to have been the most influential as centers of ideas in the human and social sciences or the hard sciences. using totally subjective metric, and with my own focus on history, philosophy, and political science I'd say the two greatest academic centers of thought have been berkley and chicago.

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CoaltoNewCastle
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby CoaltoNewCastle » Tue Mar 30, 2010 1:49 pm

r6_philly wrote:
CoaltoNewCastle wrote:Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!


So do you think the inpending new rankings will have a noticable impact on the rest of the cycle? Like schools bidding up high LSAT/GPA candidates still remaining on waitlists to try to up their medians/75%? Or would they be mass rejecting in hope of lowering accetance rates?


These things are possible (though only medians affect rankings, not quartiles), but what Invisible was specifically suggesting was that they don't want to admit a bunch of people who then find out that Stanford has overtaken Harvard and proceed to choose Stanford. I think the vast majority of applicants who are choosing between the two schools wouldn't change their choice because of a rankings change, but maybe a few would. Also there could be applicants who get into Stanford, see that Stanford has overtaken Harvard, and then withdraw their apps from Harvard partially because of that. I don't really think this is why JR is putting so many people on hold though and I think there are other more likely possible reasons. I just thought it was an interesting idea.

Edit: Again, Unitas's idea, not Invisible Sun's, my mistake.
Last edited by CoaltoNewCastle on Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unitas
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Unitas » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:00 pm

CoaltoNewCastle wrote:
r6_philly wrote:
CoaltoNewCastle wrote:Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!


So do you think the inpending new rankings will have a noticable impact on the rest of the cycle? Like schools bidding up high LSAT/GPA candidates still remaining on waitlists to try to up their medians/75%? Or would they be mass rejecting in hope of lowering accetance rates?


These things are possible (though only medians affect rankings, not quartiles), but what Invisible was specifically suggesting was that they don't want to admit a bunch of people who then find out that Stanford has overtaken Harvard and proceed to choose Stanford. I think the vast majority of applicants who are choosing between the two schools wouldn't change their choice because of a rankings change, but maybe a few would. Also there could be applicants who get into Stanford, see that Stanford has overtaken Harvard, and then withdraw their apps from Harvard partially because of that. I don't really think this is why JR is putting so many people on hold though and I think there are other more likely possible reasons. I just thought it was an interesting idea.


Pretty sure that was my idea, not invisibles.

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adameus
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby adameus » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:03 pm

r6_philly wrote:
CoaltoNewCastle wrote:Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!


So do you think the inpending new rankings will have a noticable impact on the rest of the cycle? Like schools bidding up high LSAT/GPA candidates still remaining on waitlists to try to up their medians/75%? Or would they be mass rejecting in hope of lowering accetance rates?


The medians from this cycle will not be the medians that are in the rankings that will be released next month, they are the medians from last year, same with any of the other statistics.

r6_philly
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:04 pm

adameus wrote:
r6_philly wrote:
CoaltoNewCastle wrote:Invisible Sun's idea that maybe JR is waiting to see if Stanford overtakes Harvard in the rankings on April 15th is an interesting one. If that's the case, since I've been rejected by Stanford, there's no harm in admitting me now!


So do you think the inpending new rankings will have a noticable impact on the rest of the cycle? Like schools bidding up high LSAT/GPA candidates still remaining on waitlists to try to up their medians/75%? Or would they be mass rejecting in hope of lowering accetance rates?


The medians from this cycle will not be the medians that are in the rankings that will be released next month, they are the medians from last year, same with any of the other statistics.


I understand, but if one's median numbers slipped against peer schools, they will more likely under pressure to try to up this year's median, stopping the slide/keep up with the gain so to speak.

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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby r6_philly » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:05 pm

Unitas wrote:
Pretty sure that was my idea, not invisibles.


Man even potential Harvard students are super competitive! :P

mcm814
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby mcm814 » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:22 pm

is there any consensus on whether being held is better than radio silence?

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CoaltoNewCastle
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby CoaltoNewCastle » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:23 pm

r6_philly wrote:
Unitas wrote:
Pretty sure that was my idea, not invisibles.


Man even potential Harvard students are super competitive! :P


No, it was my mistake, it was Unitas's idea, sorry about that. Invisible was actually arguing with him about it so it's important that it be clear whose idea it was.

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Na_Swatch
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Re: Harvard 2010!

Postby Na_Swatch » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:32 pm

of Benito Cereno wrote:
Kronk wrote:
adameus wrote:While I think your conclusion is most likely correct and I don't have any evidence to say otherwise, I don't think you've necessarily proven that these are unquestionably the best the 3 overall universities or overall graduate programs. The reason I say this is that your analysis is based completely on other rankings which undoubtedly have flaws. If we did the same type of analysis you did but based it on another set of rankings that used different metrics from the ones you chose, then we very likely could come up with a different group of 3 schools.


Yeah--I mean that is the flaw. I am only using one ranking system. But really, it's the only ranking system that breaks it down into categories and makes it possible to see the "whole" university. But true, if there were different metrics we might see difference results.

the usnews grad school rankings are really really really awful. its is 100% based on surverys sent out to a pretty random selection of academics and they get ridiculously awful response rates. they are also really really deceptive because ranking, say, a political science department that focuses mostly on political theory against one that mostly works on statistical models is pretty meaningless. it's way, for example, philosophy departments aren't ranked. for example, there is really no meaningful way to rank such excellent but totally different philosophy departments as nyu, pitt, princeton, and chicago, its really only possible to rank philosophy departments by specialities. the same really goes for a lot of other fields. law schools or medical schools or undergradute colleges are much easier to compare than doctoral programs, which are very small and turn out pretty institution specific programs. furthermore, its pretty deceptive to treat all departments as equal in evaluating a university. i think there are a number of core and inter-related and inter-dependent departments that really define the intellectual life of a university: history, politics, philosophy, economics, sociology, law, business. and math, physics, biology, medicine. I'd say the quality of a schools political science, economics, or biology department tells you a lot more about the general importance of the university as a research center than its education department, music department, arts program, english and comp lit departments, etc.
anyways, the usnews rankings are pretty terrible but there isn't any other perfect replacement. there are models such as those used by some of the "world university rankings" that focus on research output in top journals (thats key as some other horrid rankings just look at gross publications and thus reward schools that push publication quantity over quality... a very common problem), or you could look at faculty awards (fields medals, nobels, mcarthur/mellon grants). anyways, there are like a dozen "statistics" based rankings (your us news grad school model is not the only ranking that uses "statistics") and these rankings never show a clear cut top three (though Harvard always comes out on top) and tends to show harvard, yale, princeton, stanford, berkley, columbia, and chicago as basically a common tier. these rankings do not consistently place berkley in the top three and do not ever seem to show a clear statistical drop off between top 2 or 3 and everyone else. berkley is clearly in the very top tier of research universities but let's not pretend that usnwr grad school rankings are the only model out there that can lay claim to "statistics." also, given how ridiculously difficult it is to rank the overall quality of, say, columbia versus yale as research universities sometimes all one can do is ask one's self which universities have functioned as major intellectual centers in the past several decades; that is to say, which universities seem to have been the most influential as centers of ideas in the human and social sciences or the hard sciences. using totally subjective metric, and with my own focus on history, philosophy, and political science I'd say the two greatest academic centers of thought have been berkley and chicago.



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