Press Release: CUNY Doctoral Faculty Ranked Among Nation's Best New Survey Measures Scholarly Achievement

CUNY Graduate Center faculty, and by extension faculty throughout the City University system, have been ranked up among the nation’s best, according to a new method of assessing the relative strength of doctoral programs by scholarly productivity. The recently released Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index placed ten of the Graduate Center’s Ph.D. Programs among the top ten in the country, and six were ranked in the top five. In the “broad” category of humanities, the Graduate Center was fourth; the first three were Harvard, Yale, and Princeton.

The research was conducted by Academic Analytics, and an overview of the findings was reported in the January 12 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education. The Graduate Center’s programs ranked in the top ten in the country include: Art History, Classics, Criminal Justice, English, French, Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Literatures and Languages, Linguistics, Music, Philosophy, and Theatre.

“We are delighted with these results,” said Graduate Center President William P. Kelly. “They affirm the wisdom of CUNY’s consortial approach to doctoral education; they document the extraordinary productivity and the outstanding quality of our faculty; and they document, with striking clarity, the renaissance this great university has experienced across the last several years.”

The ranking method utilizes a complex, weighted formula to take into account scholarly publications, honors and awards, and grants. By quantifying such activity while accounting for variation in significance (published books versus articles, for example) and varying criteria in different fields (humanities publications versus scientific research, for example), the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index strives to come up with an objective measurement of scholarly faculty activity within individual Ph.D. programs. This measurement then offers a parity for evaluating and comparing the quality of the programs.

The approach was devised by Lawrence B. Martin, graduate dean at SUNY Stony Brook, which partially owns Academic Analytics. Martin was seeking more objective means of assessing academic quality than are offered by other rankings. The leading standard for across-the-board rankings of doctoral programs has long been the National Research Council's (NRC) survey, which is usually released every ten years. The updated NRC rankings have been delayed by the implementation of a new methodology, which was developed because many felt the survey's peer-based reputational criteria were too subjectively weighted. U.S. News and World Report C more known for its undergraduate and professional school rankings C only evaluates selected Ph.D. fields on a rotating basis. Their criteria are not fully disclosed, and some consider those rankings to also be subjective.

The Graduate Center is the doctorate-granting institution of the City University of New York (CUNY). An internationally recognized center for advanced studies and a national model for public doctoral education, the school offers more than thirty doctoral programs, as well as a number of master’s programs. Many of its faculty members are among the world’s leading scholars in their respective fields, and its alumni hold major positions in industry and government, as well as in academia. The Graduate Center is also home to twenty-eight interdisciplinary research centers and institutes focused on areas of compelling social, civic, cultural, and scientific concerns. Located in a landmark Fifth Avenue building, the Graduate Center has become a vital part of New York City’s intellectual and cultural life with its extensive array of public lectures, exhibitions, concerts, and theatrical events. Further information on the Graduate Center and its programs can be found at

Submitted on: JAN 1, 2007

Category: Press Room