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 Rankings

 

FNR Shines in National Research Council (NRC) Rankings of Doctoral Programs
The quality of Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resource's graduate program has long been a source of pride.  New evidence indicates that our pride is justified.  A new report shows that Purdue's Department of Forestry and Natural Resource is among the nation’s elite programs in ecology and evolutionary biology, which includes the research in fisheries and wildlife, as well as forestry and forest science.

On September 28, 2010, the National Resource Council released results from a comprehensive study of Ph.D. programs.  The study was based on data collected for 20 variables across 221 Ph.D. granting institutions with 4,838 doctoral programs in 59 fields of the sciences, engineering, social sciences, arts and humanities.  Faculty and students in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources were allocated to one of the following fields: (1) Forestry and Forest Science – 33 programs ranked nationally; (2) Ecology and Evolutionary Biology – 94 programs ranked nationally. 

The following synopsis reports overall rankings from the survey-based results, displaying the middle 90 percent of the ranking distribution, as well as the midpoint computed by assuming symmetry of the underlying distribution.  Rankings also are reported for variables deemed most important to the quality of graduate programs by faculty surveyed nationwide.   To learn more about how the rankings were computed, see the section at the conclusion of the rankings synopsis.

In all rankings, 1 is the best possible score.  Institutions on horizontal axes are arranged based on rankings derived from S midpoint scores (i.e., the midpoint of the 5th and 95th quantiles).

In Forestry and Forest Science, FNR ranked (n = 33 programs):

  • 7th overall
  • 4th overall among land-grant universities
  • 2nd overall in terms of diversity of students and faculty (90 percent quantiles: 2-3)
    • 1st in percent of 1st-year students fully supported (tie)
    • 3rd in percent of interdisciplinary faculty
    • 8th in average GRE of students

The graph below illustrates how FNR fared in overall rankings for all 33 forestry programs nationally, based on the midpoint of the 5th and 95th quantiles: NRC 2010 Ranking Graph for FNR

In Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, FNR ranked (n = 94 programs):

  • 13th overall
  • 7th overall among public universities
    • 1st in percent of 1st year students fully supported (tie)
    • 5th in percent of 1st year students on external support
    • 4th in publication rate of faculty
    • 9th in percent of faculty with grants
    • 14th in percent of Ph.D. students completing within 6 years
    • 15th in percent of interdisciplinary faculty

In Fisheries and Wildlife (a subset of the ecology/evolutionary biology field), FNR ranked (n = 23 programs):

  • 1st in publication rate of faculty
  • 1st in percent of 1st year students fully supported (tie)
  • 3rd in percent of 1st year students on external support
  • 3rd in average GRE of students
  • 6th in percent of interdisciplinary faculty

The bottom-right graph illustrates how FNR fared in overall rankings for all 94 ecology and evolutionary biology programs nationally, based on the midpoint of the 5th and 95th quantiles:

NRC 2010 Ranking Graph for FNR

Some additional details on the methods used by NRC:  Data was provided from institutions/programs, existing NSF survey data, Thomson-Reuters publication/citation data, and faculty questionnaires collected for the period 2002-2006.  Faculty also were surveyed and asked how important they felt the 20 variables were to quality of a doctoral program.  S (survey) weights were computed from these responses.  Rather than report a single “average” rating, NRC acknowledged uncertainty by randomly resampling (500 times) half of the raters from the faculty sample and incorporating statistical and measurement uncertainty to derive a distribution of ratings for each program.  The 5th and 95th percent quantiles of the distribution of 500 rankings were reported.  For the survey-based approach, the 20 variables were broken into 3 “dimensional” categories for further ranking:  1) Research activity; 2) Student support and outcomes; and 3) Diversity of the academic environment.  These groupings formed the basis for a separate set of rankings based on these 3 dimensional attributes of doctoral programs.

For more information view NRC Rankings.

Our nationally ranked FNR Graduate and Undergraduate programs offers studies leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Science in Forestry, and Doctor of Philosophy. You will receive expertise in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, Natural Resource Social Science, Forest Measurement and Assessment/GIS, Forest Biology, Genetics, Wildlife Science, and Wood Products and Wood Products Manufacturing.

To print our FNR graudate flyers with this information provided, FNR Graduate Studies in Forestry (pdf) and FNR Graduate Studies in Wildlife/Fisheries (pdf).