There are a range of Portuguese universities among the distinguished ones on the world rankings, and their real strength is the quality of the scientific research.
Between all the rankings of the higher education system, the Portuguese universities have been represented between the best known. The oldest ranking is made by Times Higher Education, now in collaboration with the communication company Thomson Reuters, and in its 2018 edition it chose the 1000 best universities in the world. Among them are nine Portuguese institutions: Aveiro, Coimbra, Lisboa, Nova de Lisboa and Porto occupy the ranks between 501 e 600; Algarve, Beira Interior, ISCTE and Minho occupy the following level (601-800).
The indexes used in the making of this raking are the university’s ability to attract students from other countries, the learning environment, the ability to help the industry with innovation or the number of featuring quotes of published articles by the institution’s elements. Two examples: the University of Minho is the one that has the best position on the ability of helping the industry and the University of Porto is the one that has the best position concerning the learning conditions.
The second oldest ranking started in 2003 by the Chinese university Jiao Tong. Best known has the Xagai ranking, now in charge of the consultancy company – ShanghaiRanking – and every year submits the list of the best universities in the world, having evaluation criteria such has the number of former students and professors that were awarded with the Nobel Prize or the Fields Medals, in Mathematics. Portugal has been present since the first edition, being the University of Lisboa the first on a national level.
Since 2012, it started to be made a ranking by the Centre for World University Rankings (CWUR), being measured the education’s quality, the graduate’s employability or the prestige of the research, among other criteria.
There are six Portuguese universities among the 1000 distinguished on this ranking (Lisboa, Porto, Coimbra, Nova de Lisboa, Minho and Aveiro), and their real strength is the quality of the scientific research.
As of 2016, the multinational Quacquarelli Symond started doing a ranking of universities (QS World University Rankings), where are measured the institution’s reputation on the academy and between the employers, and its internationalization.
There are seven Portuguese institutions in this ranking (University of Porto, Lisboa, Nova de Lisboa, Aveiro, Minho and Católica).
By Público and Portuguese Diaspora Council, August 2018