Southern Oregon University is tied at the No. 25 spot on U.S. News & World Report’s 2018 Best Colleges rankings for the best public, regional schools in 15 Western states, which was published last week. SOU is also ranked No. 76 among all regional universities in the West.
On its overview page for SOU, U.S. News pointed out that the university’s student-faculty ratio is 21-to-1, and that 46.3 percent of its classes have fewer than 20 students. It also highlights student services such as nonremedial tutoring, the Women’s Resource Center and the Student Health and Wellness Center.
SOU ranks second among Oregon schools on the public, regional universities list. Western Oregon University tied with two other universities for 22nd on the ranking, while SOU tied with four other universities for the next spot on the list, No. 25.
U.S. News & World Report came out with its first college rankings in 1983, and has published an increasingly more popular — and varied — list since 1985. The 2014 rankings drew 18.9 million page views in a single day to usnews.com, according to Wikipedia. The 2018 version includes almost 50 types of numerical rankings, in categories ranging from “A-Plus Schools for B Students” to “High School Counselor Rankings.”
The publication says it ranks schools based on hundreds of data points, including as many as 15 measures of academic quality. The most weight is given to student outcomes such as graduation and freshman retention rates.