IIT-Bombay No.1 in India but way below in global rankings



In India, the most sought-after higher-level institutions are the IITs without a doubt. It’s a common notion for Indian parents to feed the idea of getting their children into any one of the IITs in India.

While the IITs have definitely lived up to their hype in India, they are nowhere near the top when compared to the global institutions.

IIT Bombay was ranked the number one in India. But according to the latest edition of the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings (WUR) released on Wednesday, it was ranked 172nd out of 200.

Along with IIT-B, the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, and IIT Delhi were also included in the 200-bracket.

The compilers of the rankings said, the rankings for 2021 are based on six indicators: academic reputation, employer reputation, citations per faculty, faculty/student ratio, international faculty ratio, and international student ratio.

Overall, 21 Indian higher education institutions figure in the top 1000. India’s best research university is IISc, which received a perfect 100/100 on the ‘citations per faculty’ indicator.

Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director of IIT Bombay, said in a statement that he is “pleased to have retained the number one position in India”.

While the IIT-B continues to hold the top rank from last year in India, it dropped by 20 points on the global scale from 152nd.

According to the official release by IIT Bombay, QS runs a global survey for the Academic Reputation, or AR, score. IIT Bombay’s drop in global rankings is “linked to the Academic Reputation (AR) portion of the rankings which constitutes 40% of the weight,” according to the statement.

On the EWS quota, Prof. Chaudhuri’s statement says: “There seems to have been a drop in faculty to student ratio, which we speculate may have been caused by an enhanced student intake last year related to the EWS reservation. As the trend of increased student intake via EWS will continue next year also, we are interested to see the effect of this on the rankings in subsequent years.”

The compilers said that as a group, Indian higher education performs most strongly in measure of research quality, though its universities are failing to increase academic standing, teaching capacity, and levels of internationalization at the same rate as global competitors.

Ben Sowter of QS said: “Though India’s universities have dropped as a group this year, this is frequently because of other universities across the world making increasingly intense efforts to enhance their educational offerings. To regain lost ground, Indian higher education must find ways of increasing teaching capacity, and of attracting more talented students and faculty across the world to study in India.”

American institutions retain the top three QS rankings with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) the world’s best university, followed by Stanford University (2nd) and Harvard University (3rd).

There is definitely a lot of debate about this topic on why Indian institutions are not able to compete with global competitors. Nevertheless, by quality standards, Indian Institutions produce some of the best minds in the world. Still, there is a lot to be changed and a long way to go.