Study in USA | Universities

University Ranking and Department Ranking

I’ve had Happy Schools for about 45 days days and I’m happy to see how the blog grew in popularity, especially when I receive valuable comments. I received some emails asking me about university ranking and about department ranking, wise ranking list.

I already discussed it in one of my previous posts, U.S. News Ranking. It’s a Joke. I have strongly discouraged anyone from following these rankings and lists.

My ultimate aim is to convey this important message: ‘Ranking doesn’t have any significance’ to us. It’s a mere number to classify the universities in the list.

Having said that, the next question you guys will have is: “How are we supposed to select the universities from our scores when so many graduate schools are offering masters programs in our areas?” Continue reading, I will answer and explain with examples.

If you look at the ranking lists in general and see what criteria is used to rank the universities, there is no consideration given for things that really matter to us international students. Things like what aid is given to students, what GRE and TOEFL scores are accepted, how many students get part time jobs, etc.

And since we are planning to make a shortlist of universities, we ask only questions like:

  1. For my GRE and TOEFL scores, which graduate schools will give me admission so we can shortlist them under 3 categories: Ambitious, Normal, Safe.
  2. If I don’t get research/teaching assistantship or student scholarship, can I at least find out what part time jobs are available within the college campus? This can help me manage my living expenses and pay fees using credit cards.

Now, let me ask you this. How do you think a ranking list that doesn’t include any of the above 2 queries for classifying universities will be able help you?

The answer is simple. No. It doesn’t help you in any way. So, your answer should be:

We are looking for a list of universities and a list of college departments (Computer Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Environmental Engineering, etc.) and these lists must include the 2 above factors. They’re something like…

I have GRE of 1,200, TOEFL 90, academics 75% and I need a list arranged based on accepting students according to my credentials.

Let’s suppose if such a list exists, how will it then be used by students? I will give examples for that too. I will now construct a sample list (which doesn’t have any real value at this point):

1) Stanford University (GRE : 1,500 and above)
2) MIT
3) Harvard University
4) ….
25) Virginia Tech (GRE : 1,250 and Above)
26) Georgia Tech
28) …

50) UTA (GRE : 1,100 and Above)
51) UTD
52) KSU

98) TAMK
99) UNTD
100.)…List goes

If you have such a list, students with GRE of 1,200 will shortlist like this…


  • Virgina Tech
  • Georgia Tech.


  • UTA
  • UTD
  • UCF.


  • FIT
  • UNCC
  • NJIT
  • TAMUK.

More to it, we need to have a list that includes the availability of part time jobs and financial aid. It’s tough to ask someone to create such a list with all the necessary combinations.

Now, it all boils down to 1 question. How to shortlist when there are so many universities to choose from? I will show you how to do it. I’m cautious, though, because it involves considerable effort, but certainly you will be rewarded.

If you guys ever wonder how am I able to create something like this. It’s because I followed the steps I have talked about before and am going to talk in the next post about short listing your 5 to 8 “Dream Universities”.

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  1. Hello sir,
    I am Humendra Poudel from Nepal. I have scored 300 and 2 in analytical writing of GRE. My toefl score is 80 and academics is 70% in MSc. in physical chemistry. I have two years of experience in teaching college. I want to study PhD from american universities in chemistry. Plz suggest me which universities are suitable for me?

  2. dear..
    I have got pretty good score in gre 650(verbal) +800quantitative+ 3.5 writing..and my academics is around 74-78% ,however i donot have research or teaching experience ,,what type of college will best suite for me..i am a master level student in chemistry from Nepal…Can i switch to chemical engineering too..

    1. Hi Raj Nwupane, Yes your GRE scores are great!
      You can make a shift to Chemical Engineering stream. Kindly let us know if you are planning for a Masters/PhD admissions abroad.
      Research and Teaching experience is not mandatory for Masters admissions but some sort of experience definitely helps and is expected from PhD applicants.
      Feel free to write back for any specific queries.
      Also do go through the following relevant posts:
      Hope the above information helps!

  3. dued plz help me out i have a bad profile and im regretting for that , i took gre and got 292 awa 2 n i scores 6.5 in IELTS n till date i have 61 %….. what should i do plz suggest me and what are my VISA chances

  4. Hi,

    I have a solid academic record – an average of around 75% in my BE CMPS followed by 11 years of professional career in Database fields. I am yet to take a GRE but wanted to understand if without any projects/publications – above is good enough considering I am aiming for solid GRE scores – for me to get into just the top schools – at most within top-5?


  6. Hi,
    my gre score is 1100/1600 and my aggregate of my graduation (B.E. CS) is 60% till 5th sem (6th sem results yet to be out). I am looking forward to take toefl in 3 months and planning to go for MBA program in UNCC. Is UNCC a good selection for it or should I search for others? Is my score enough for it? Also, should I go immediately after my graduation or prefer some work-ex?
    Any suggestions about the universities are also welcome.

  7. Greetings !
    Can u plz guide me on whether is NJIT a good college for comp science ? And its reputation with other good univs in usa ..!

  8. hiii all , i ve got i20 from NPU, CA for fall-2011 ….i would like enquire on how good is the univ. and if anyone else with i20 from NPU buzz me so tht we can have a talk

  9. hi…. i have my profile as follows B.E(MECHANICAL)=62%, GRE=1150,TOEFL=90 which of the universities best suits my profile ….

    i want to work as well as learn in a reputed graduate school….

  10. hello, i m btech final yr student,and my gre score is 1030 and toefel scr is 104,and my academics percent is 69.48.currently im a ece student but i want to take networkings in m.s,can u tell me univs tht i can get frnds suggested to me to go with univ of memphis and texas a&m univ,kingsville.giv a comment on this too.

  11. hi..i have a GRE score:1050…and acads 58% cmpleted my…. branch is electronics and instrumention …. aspiring to go for MS in instrumention field…please let me know the univ which can admit me ….looking upto all scenarios…like scolarships,good univ and TA or part time on campus jobs..

  12. Hi

    I have completed my btech 3rd yr ready to undertake GRE exam in this july my aggregate is 62% in first yr i have a backlog i have cleared it and now in third year i have 2 backlogs of 4th semester result is not yet known . So can you suggest the best colleges for me in the field of computers and what is the required GRE score for those respective colleges , i would like to prefer California . So kindly guide me

  13. Hello,
    My name is Sagar. I'm planning to take gre exam in the month of sept 2010. Is it advisable to hurry up because i want to join in spring season. Can i know which universities offers MS program foe electronics engineering. I'm planning to do MS in VLSI or Network security or Wirelesss communication. Is it mandatory to take GRE for European universitites.

  14. I would like to try for the spring session for phd in physics on2010, I would be grateful if i get the relevent information for that.

  15. Hi,
    I have got admission in sandiego State university and University of north carolina Charlotte.. Branch: Computer science.. I am confused which one to select.. please guide me regarding the same…

  16. Im doing my B.Tech in Biotechnology. My cgpa is 8 and will hopefully rise in next two semesters. I wanted to know what will be the best universities for me if i want to do ms in fields related to molecular biology?And is presenting papers very necessary for getting good university?Also, i would like to know that how i am i supposed to sum up all the qualities as in the region and the ranking,etc of the universities and pick the best ones.It will be really helpful if u wud suggest on that.

  17. Hey i have got a very bad BE(electronics and communication) aggregate of 58% due to my poor health reasons in 2 and 3rd year.I have had backlogs because of this which i have subsequently cleared.No current backlogs.I got selected for internships at honeywell ,Texas instruments,DRDO through their internship tests.I have completed my project at DRDO as well.What is the minimum GRE score i must get to get into universities like univ of texas dallas,arlington;IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY?


  18. Resp.sir,

    presently i am student of BSc Applied biotechnology of fifth semester i want to do MS in biotechnology from USA can i do these course.Please suggest me this course is beneficial to me and which university offer MS in biotechnology or other specialization in these field. IS MS plus MBE OR MBA is best or not.

    Thank you,

    1. You will need to have completed 16 years of education to apply to US Universities. Since BSc is 3 years course, try to complete one more year. Certification courses for 1 year will also help.

  19. hi..

    am doin my fianl year engg in ece

    my gre score first attempt 950 ( q-670,v-280)

    second attempt 930 (q-640,v-290)


    acad -74.4%(till 6th sem)

    i wanns do masters in EE in usa..

    so now am much worrried .. could u please say me whether i could get admit in univ .. and if i get admit will it be worthy to learn in an avg univ as i ll get only very average univs.. please giude me.. i lost hope and with this score can we get funding and other aid as well as GA?? and does my low score in 2nd attempt compared to my 1st attempt will affect during visa time??am hopeless.. plz do suggest me 🙁

  20. Hi,my gre score is 1223(v-540,q-680,A-3.0) Toefl-ibt -104 ,my C.G.P.A-8.34(till 4th sem hve got official marksheet,7.6 till 6th sem but not got the marksheet) ,no backlogs my engineering branch is electronics and telecommunication and have also completed a project on phone recorder of it., i want to apply for masters in biomedical engineering,have thought of applying in Drexel,which r the other collgs which can be applied seeing all the possibilities of aid,fee waiver and obviously good univ teaching and good atmosphere.

    Iam really confused please help ,with my current studies and all going mad with tension.

  21. hello sir,,

    my profile:

    GRE :1240[Q680,V-560]



    i have 2 projects and 4 papers…

    can u plz suggest me some univs based on my profile

  22. Dear Raghu…

    Great work….god bless you !!!!

    I am a final year computer Science ( B.E.) student….

    My current Profile is


    verbal -470


    AWA – 3.0

    TOEFL ibt



    62% { till 6th sem…by the end of the degree it may hopefully rise up to 70%}

    no backlog at all…

    My counselor suggested me the following Univeristies….

    1-Utah state University

    2-Texas Tech University

    3-Bowling Green State University

    4-Georgia state University

    5-Illinois State University

    6-San Diego State University

    7-University of North Texas

    8-George Mason University

    9-Florida state University

    10-University of Missouri at Kansas city

    Now to be frank…..I really feel as if, in half of these university I don't stand a chance. And for another half I guess I deserve something much batter……

    Do you think that my ACADs and GRE scores are compatible…..or what I am trying to ask is that….if I take GRE once again and score something like 1400+…will my low ACAD runi the effect of even a high GRE score ?

    I am planning for Fall 2009…

    Yours Thankful

    Really Confused

  23. @Daniel: Are you sure U.S. schools have programs named avionics? I searched, but couldnt find any results. Some masters degree offered here are

    Master of Aeronautical Science
    Master of Science in Aeronautics
    Aerospace Engineering (MAE and MSAE)

    so, checkout what you want to study and then search for universities.

  24. Hi dude..Read your blog.Really encouraging Thanks a lot for the details.I am worried about my chances of getting admit in Us university..I ve got a score of 910( verbal-300, Quants- 610) in final year Btech in ECE

    B.E – 60% with 10 backlogs

    12th -80%

    SSC – 80% nd

    i have one national level selected presentation certified by IEEE nd couple of projects wid out my main project.

    one workshop certificate at IITM

    nd i have 4 recommendations of prof. of my department

    i want know which univ. i can get into for avionics nd electronics

  25. Hey,i have a GRE score:1250… and acads 73% upto VI sem. n aspiring to go for MS in EE…please let me know the univ which can admit me ….looking upto all scenarios…like scolarships,good univ and TA or part time on campus jobs..


  26. @Roberta Perez: Applying for MBA is different from applying for Masters degree in engineering. You have to find the schools that match your profile. Schools are not ranked based on GMAT or GRE scores.

  27. Ok! I always read that we should not look to those rankings to decide which university to apply.

    However… i wanna apply for an MBA in the USA, but i have NO IDEA for which university to apply, so i began looking into those rankings to start my resarch… Am i wrong?



  28. Hi my name is vijay.

    I have got admits in to Texas Tech univ and Kansas State univ for MS Civil Engg for fall 2008.

    Which is better to go considering all aspects like Funding senerio of dept,Visa success rate,Part time jobs etc.

    Please give me ur suggestion.

    I am waiting for ur kind reply.

  29. hai,
    i got i20 from npu(north westren polytechnic university)and iam waiting for acceptence from udm(university of detroit mercy).what i have to do now?is the npu is best for msee?plz reply me to my mail or at this point.

    1. hi dude me too trying for npu in california.MS CSE.. i need assistance from u ..if u get any info abt that univ pls inform me .i got gre 980 BE 62 12th 88 .. wrote toefl waiting for result .will i get admission ..for getting i20 wat should i do …is the university is worth enough. planning to go in sept 2010.pls do reply me friend…

  30. Thanks everyone for your encouraging comments. I still haven’t answered all possible questions students will have in mind. I’m doing my best. Let your friends know about this blog.

  31. This work of yours is really a boon to many of us aspiring to pursue MS.Your articles have a pragmatic approach rather than a general one.Keep writing them and we are always Thankful to you for rendering this great help!

  32. Hi dude..Read your blog.Really encouraging Thanks a lot for the details.I am worried about my chances of getting admit in Us university..I ve got a score of 1040( verbal-300, Quants- 740).2nd attempt.
    B.E – 63% with 3 backlogs and cleared it in the next immediate attempt
    PUC(12th) -76%
    SSLC – 82%

  33. first of all i was amazed to see dis blog bcuz i had less hope of gettin into univ whn m gre score is jst 30 odd away frm 1000 n my acads r also on a verge of 1st class . i hav read dese posts i got the confidence now to apply for da univ this blog has helped me a lot

  34. After reading your blog. I am tempted to go to university after having 5 years of work experience. I think this time when I go, I will be having an end to end idea about the education program.

  35. gr8 work dude….i can n i think everyone can relate exactly to wat u talk…simply fabulous…..never seen such precise advice…..
    i m jus curious how hv u put together such a detailed blog wrt to presentation,style,formattin…after my univs selection n admit i wud like to learn a lot frm u…u r my mentor.

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