In 2017, ITMO University made it into the list of best universities in the world in the QS World University Rankings by subject. The University was placed 351−400 in the Computer Science & Information Systems subject rankings, and also Physics & Astronomy.

The best scores which helped ITMO make it into the rankings for both subjects were mainly related to citation index (61.8 in computer science and 61.9 for Physics & Astronomy) and employer reputation (70.2 for Physics & Astronomy).

This is now the 7th international subject rankings provided by QS which included altogether 74 countries and 46 subjects. The leaders in the rankings were Harvard which came first in 15 subjects, and then MIT which came first in 12 subjects.

The 2017 rankings included 28 Russian universities, 11 more universities than previously. Amongst the Russian universities was Lomonosov Moscow State University, which was in the top 50 leading universities in seven subject areas. Altogether Russian universities took 147 places amongst 46 different subject rankings.

QS World University Rankings, one of the best rankings in the world began in 2004. These rankings are based on Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) methodology and are counted as one of the most influential global university rankings.

Annually, more than 4,000 higher education institutions around the world are evaluated. According to the results of this research, a ranking of more than 900 of the best universities in the world are prepared, as well as rankings for each subject.

A university’s level of achievement is evaluated on the basis of the results of a host of different criteria: statistical analysis of the university’s activities, scientific publications (in particular, analysis of citations according to information from Scopus), as well as data from a global expert survey with representatives from the international academic community and employers who express their opinions about various universities.

Last year, ITMO University made it in the top 100 best universities in the world based on Times Higher Education rankings in the Computer Science subject ranking, achieving 56th place and one of only two Russian universities (together with Lomonosov Moscow State University) acknowledged in the THE rankings.

"ITMO University has featured in the QS subject rankings for the first time this year, and you could say that we are currently in the "take-off phase", commented Ilya Kuftiryov, Director of the Rankings Research Center, "As is evident from the methodology used by QS for the rankings, alongside research productivity of the university, the results of expert surveys play a significant role. For example, for Physics, the opinion of experts — i.e. external professionals — make up about 50% of the total ranking evaluation of the university, and in Сomputer Science, 70%! It should be taken into account also that the expert opinions are summed up over the last five years, which provides a cumulative effect. In the future we hope to raise awareness about ITMO University in the international expert community as a response to the results we have achieved already until now, such as launching a series of new international educational programs with some of the world’s leading universities, a high citation index of publications from our international research laboratories, and successful joint projects with leading IT companies of a world-class level."