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Frequently Asked Questions

For a university to be ranked by ARTU, it must have an individual rank in each THE, QS and ARWU for the year. Furthermore, the rank in QS has to be in top 500 for university to be considered. Universities ranked in QS beyond 500 cannot be included in ARTU ranking due to limited data on component scores released by the ranking agency. Only the top 200 universities by their aggregate of ranks are published. If you believe your university should be ranked amongst the top 200 by ARTU, then please contact UNSW Sydney’s Division of Research (
Using an arithmetic average is not suited to describe the overall performance of an institution across THE, ARWU, and QS, where the institution is compared to a different group of peers from one ranking to another. The average rank of an institution across these three rankings does not follow a normal (parametric) distribution and is generally worse than the corresponding aggregate rank adopted by ARTU. ARTU treats the data using a non-parametric approach through ordinal ranking, ordering universities by their aggregate score. Consequently, the aggregate rank of a university is less sensitive to anomalies in the performance of other universities, thus providing a more realistic position of a university in comparison to its peers.
For universities whose rank is published as a range by THE and ARWU, the overall score is recalculated from the component scores according to the corresponding component’s weighting. The overall score is then ranked in descending order. Universities with an existing definitive rank are not affected by this process. For ARWU, the adjusted component weighting applied to institutions specialising in humanities and social sciences such as London School of Economics has been accounted for in this process. Recalculation of a definitive ranks is not possible for QS due to limited data on component scores released by the ranking agency. Universities with QS rank beyond 500 are therefore not considered by ARTU.
Universities formed through a merger are considered as new entities and are ranked separate from the founding institutions. For example, Sorbonne University was established in 2018 by a merger of Paris-Sorbonne University, Pierre et Marie Curie University, along with other institutions. The three entities Sorbonne University, Paris-Sorbonne University, and Pierre et Marie Curie University are ranked separately by ARTU; that is, Sorbonne University is ranked by ARTU 2019, while Pierre et Marie Curie University and Paris-Sorbonne university are not ranked by ARTU 2019.
All university systems are individually reviewed by the ARTU data team. Where a university system/campus is featured as the same entity across THE, QS and ARWU, then the university system/campus is ranked by ARTU. However, if the university system is featured in one ranking, while its campuses appear in other rankings, then neither the university system nor their campuses are ranked by ARTU.
The arithmetic sum for all universities ranked in THE & ARWU, and the top 500 in QS is calculated prior to determining their ARTU rank. This means a university does not need to be ranked in the top 200 of any of the individual rankings to be ranked in the top 200 in ARTU. Examples of this in the 2019 ARTU release are: Macquarie University, University of Wollongong, Western University, University of Padua, and Curtin University.
Please contact UNSW Sydney’s Division of Research (