The UK-based company Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), which specialises in analysis of the international higher education market, has unveiled its new slate of international academic subject rankings. In the rankings, all higher education institutions are assessed based on four main criteria: academic reputation, employer reputation, research citations per paper, and h-index. QS rankings, along with those published by Times Higher Education and ShanghaiRanking, are among the world’s most reputable.

This year, the QS World University Rankings by Subject include 51 subjects from five major subject areas: Natural Sciences, Engineering and Technology, Arts & Humanities, Social Sciences & Management, and Life Sciences & Medicine. To be included in any of the rankings, universities must offer Bachelor’s, Master’s, or doctoral programs in at least two of the five subject areas.

Just like last year, ITMO University has been included in seven subject rankings and has improved its position in four. Three years after its debut in QS subject rankings, ITMO has made it into the list of top 100 universities in Computer Science and Information Systems. Having been placed in the 101-150 range last year, ITMO is now ranked 74th in the world. Among the Russian universities in the ranking, ITMO is ranked second, preceded only by the Lomonosov Moscow State University.

“For ITMO, entering the world’s top 100 universities in computer science is not only a sign of its success as a participant of the 5-100 Russian Academic Excellence Project, but also a historical milestone of sorts. Until 2017, ITMO was not part of any of QS’s subject rankings despite its reputation and recognition, primarily in the IT field, of all places,” comments Ilya Kuftiryov, head of ITMO’s Rankings Research Center. “QS rankings emphasize a university’s reputation on the international level (in the form of expert assessments by specialists in academia and the industry). It is, naturally, a pleasure for us to see that ITMO’s reputation as a leading global IT university has been reflected in rankings over this short, three-year period.”

ITMO University
ITMO University

ITMO University also improved its position in the Chemistry ranking. Previously placed within the 451-500 range, it has now moved up into the 351-400 range. A similar success has been achieved with the Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing Engineering ranking, where it has moved from the 301-350 into the 251-300 range. An even bigger advance has been made in Mathematics: ITMO is now part of the global top 300, having been ranked in the 351-400 range last year.

The university has also retained its positions in three other subject rankings: ITMO remains in the 201-250 range of both the Electrical & Electronic Engineering and the Physics & Astronomy rankings; it has also preserved its 251-300 placement in the Materials Science ranking.

In the end, the St. Petersburg-based university has improved its standing in both general subject areas, having moved up from 295 to 256th in Natural Sciences and from 215th to 160th in Engineering and Technology.

“ITMO’s advance through the QS subject rankings shows that with each year, the university further shakes off its old appearance as a strictly engineering- and IT-focused university and expands its presence in once-unfamiliar, uncharacteristic subject areas of social sciences and humanities. To put it more correctly, it develops its educational and research competencies at the intersection of different sciences – in the interdisciplinary realm. In essence, we’re already seeing ourselves in 24 subject rankings. Naturally, ITMO will continue to improve its positions in subject rankings,” concludes Ilya Kuftiryov.