General Question

GeorgeGee's avatar

What's the greatest university in the world today?

Asked by GeorgeGee (4920points) July 22nd, 2010

Oxford and Cambridge are kind of stuck in another century and have lost their cachet I think, don’t you?

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15 Answers

the100thmonkey's avatar

No, they’re not; no, they haven’t.

The answer to this question depends on what metric you use to categorise univeristies. The most popular ones still place Oxford and Cambridge near the top.


marinelife's avatar

Harvard ranks first according to US News and World Report. Followed by Cambridge, and Yale, and Oxford ties for fifth.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Gotta go with Yale, personally. They got enough of my family’s money!

the100thmonkey's avatar

Ulitmately, the real question is about what univeristy is good at what. Edinburgh ranks 15 th in the overall table for the UK (in the Guardian’s assessment), but ranks 31st in Modern Languages and Linguistics in the same system.

However, at, it ranks 3rd in linguistics (I can personally testify that the Linguistics department kick ass).

Metric, metric, metric, metric.

lapilofu's avatar

I have to agree with the100thmonkey. What’s your criteria for the “greatest” university? Percent of successful, rich alumni? Greatest contribution to medical research? Most socially active, environmentally friendly, or politically conscious? Great education in a particular field? There are many great schools—and of those schools, many are potentially the “greatest” by one particular measure, but perhaps not by all others.

mammal's avatar

Yale and Harvard hasn’t produced anybody of any note, Cambridge is like a production line of greatness, don’t be biased. just cos you’re American.

lapilofu's avatar

@mammal Hey, now. Let’s not forget Mark Zuckerberg, eh?

mammal's avatar

@lapilofu or Sir Timothy John “Tim” Berners-Lee queens college oxford who invented the internet so that Zuckerberg could make loads of cash coming up with innovative social network sites.

djlagaffe's avatar

Just to widen the perspectives: Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, Switzerland

mattbrowne's avatar

There are plenty of competing rankings.

GeorgeGee's avatar

@mammal, I’ll take issue with your “nobody of any not” from Harvard statement. Have a look here:
41 Nobel Laureates, 36 Pulitzer prizes, 25 heads of state, countless patent holders and authors, I’d say Harvard has perhaps the most distinguished alumni and faculty of any university.

iGotYou's avatar

University of Oxford in England.

dursus's avatar

As a high school senior considering many colleges and universities, I’d say Harvard since it offers the most extensive courses while still maintaining a stellar, top-notch education. It also stands out as the most idiosyncratic source of 21 century leaders and innovators.

msbcd's avatar

Victoria University, New Zealand!

whiteliondreams's avatar

Here’s a list with no updated dates with a list of Nobel laureates. In short:

Columbia University, USA (79) Official.
University of Cambridge, UK (88) Official.
University of Chicago, USA (87) Official.
MIT, USA (77) Official.
Standford University, USA (54) total.
Harvard University, USA (46)
Oxford University, UK (48) Official, (57) Unofficial.
Yale University, USA (49) Official.

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