CU-Boulder ranked as one of America’s best public colleges

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A study released by Buffalo Business First on Tuesday ranked the University of Colorado the 52nd-best public college in the U.S.

CU is ranked as the second-best public school in the state, behind the Colorado School of Mines. The gap between the two is relatively small, as Mines is listed as the 50th-best college.

Out of Pac-12 schools, Colorado was the sixth-ranked college. Stanford and USC are both private colleges, so they were not given a ranking. Washington, UCLA, and Cal were all in the top 10 nationally.

The overall rankings consist of 477 public universities. Of those schools, the top 250 were given a numerical ranking while the bottom 227 schools were listed in alphabetical order. The colleges that fall into the latter category were considered lower-echelon schools.

Buffalo Business First, a Buffalo, New York-based outlet, compiled this list from many different factors. Data about the schools’ selectivity, advancement, prestige, resources, costs, diversity and community were put into the publication’s formula, and each school was given a score.

Public schools were the focus of this ranking because they offer the most affordable path to a bachelor’s degree. Private institutions, according to the report, have fees that are almost four times the average cost of a public college.

This is the second year that Business First has done these rankings. The formula to calculate this list changed slightly from last year. In addition, the data was updated for the 2014-15 school year. Colorado moved up three spots from 55.

G. Scott Thomas is Buffalo Business First’s projects editor. He was a big factor in making the rankings and believes that what Colorado accomplished was not a small feat. The top 100 schools, in Thomas’ opinion, should be called elite.

“There’s no statistical definition of elite, of course, but any school in the top 100 has more than 80 percent (well, actually 79 percent) of the 477 four-year colleges in the study,” Thomas said. “That’s the top quintile, which has an elite feel to me.”

At 52nd, Colorado ranks just outside the 90th percentile.

Jake Mauff

Jake Mauff is the Editor-in-Chief and staff writer for the CU Independent. He enjoys biking, hiking and running in what little free time that he has, and he has interviewed a variety of interesting people including a presidential candidate. You can follow him on Twitter at @jake_mauff.

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