McGill makes big jump in prestigious Times Higher university rankings


Changes in methodology highlight strength in international character of students, faculty

McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, has jumped from 35th to 28th place in the widely respected Times Higher Education World University Rankings for 2011. Earlier this year, the University placed 17th in the QS world rankings, up from 19th the previous year.

“These strong results show that McGill continues to be regarded as one of the best universities in the world,” said Principal and Vice-Chancellor Heather Munroe-Blum. “We are gratified to be thought of so highly and we continue to strive for the excellence in our academic and research missions that will maintain these high standings.

“Rankings are one among many tools that prospective students, faculty and staff use when evaluating their place of work or study, and while different rankings measure different aspects of a university’s performance, a consistently high standing across a variety of rankings and over several years is a solid indicator of a university’s quality.

“McGill has demonstrated a consistently high level of achievement, of which we are all very proud,” Prof. Munroe-Blum added.

The University has placed among the top 25 universities in the world for the eighth consecutive year in the QS rankings. Two years ago, QS and Times Higher went their separate ways, and the new THE rankings were created. This is McGill’s second ranking since then.

The THE rankings use 13 indicators across five broad areas of activity: teaching, industry income, citations, research and international outlook.

One of the changes made to the THE methodology for this year places greater emphasis on a university’s international outlook as well as the proportion of international students and faculty at each institution. Here, McGill shines. About 20 per cent of our students are international, the highest of any research university in Canada. And in renewing our faculty since 2000, we have hired 1,002 new tenure-track professors, of whom 586, or nearly 60 per cent, were recruited from outside Canada.

“Our commitment to international collaboration and an international outlook is steadfast,” Prof. Munroe-Blum said. “We are better able to prepare our students to live and work in an increasingly globalized society, where research and interaction will increasingly take place across borders, where different cultures and backgrounds will come together to exchange ideas and experiences in shaping tomorrow’s world.”

About McGill University

Founded in Montreal, Que., in 1821, McGill is Canada’s leading post-secondary institution. It has two campuses, 11 faculties, 11 professional schools, 300 programs of study and more than 36,000 students, including 8,300 graduate students. McGill attracts students from over 150 countries around the world, with more than 7,200 international students making up 20 per cent of the student body. Almost half of McGill students claim a first language other than English, including more than 6,200 francophones.


Contact Information

Doug Sweet
Media Relations Office, McGill University
doug.sweet [at]
Office Phone: 
514 398-6752