Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU) has been included in various international university rankings due to student and internationally-oriented learning environment. The leading motifs for the participation in the rankings are the opportunity to gain international recognition and highlight the university’s strengths and aspects that are yet to be perfected on the path towards excellence in studies and research.
RSU plans its participation in rankings in a thoughtful way and implements it in conformity with the university’s strategic goals. International university rankings are mainly used as a tool for self-assessment, as the evaluation systems and criteria used by various rankings are different, thus, allowing analysing the university’s performance from different perspectives.
The results of the world university rankings allow comparing the level of academic and scientific performance, while the selected assessment criteria help understand the tendencies at a global level that is essential as the university offers an internationally-recognised learning environment.
Prospective students may benefit from the rankings to gain a wider overview of the particular university in a global context. However, it should be noted that there are numerous university rankings and each ranking has its own distinctive approach, therefore, the university’s position in different rankings may vary.
RSU’s highest achievements in the university rankings in the academic year 2020/2021
- Times Higher Education Impact Rankings
Times Higher Education (THE) is among the most influential publishers of the university rankings in the world. THE is the UK’s publisher and reporter on issues related to higher education. THE published several rankings annually with THE World University Rankings being the most renowned university rankings in the world.
THE Impact Rankings is among the most recent THE rankings first published in 2019. Its criteria have been developed based on the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The ranking shows the social and economic impact of a university and is the only global ranking assessing institutional operations and efforts in achieving sustainable development goals.
For the first time, RSU was included in this ranking in 2020 and ranked 301–400 among 766 universities from 85 countries. With regard to individual categories of sustainable development goals, RSU received the highest ranking in the categories Good Health (Goal 3), Sustainable cities and communities (Goal 11), Peace, justice and strong institutions (Goal 16) and Partnerships for the goals (Goal 17).
RSU was ranked 56th in the category Good health and well-being of the Impact Rankings 2020 that evidences the university’s achievements in research in the fields of healthcare and welfare and contribution to healthcare-related professions.
The ranking shows how efficient a university's performance is at reaching sustainable development goals through research, outreach, management and teaching. Each of the 17 goals has several distinctive criteria used to assess the level of the university’s performance.
The overall table lists only those sustainable development goals with the highest scores.
- QS World University Rankings
QS World University Rankings is among the most renowned university rankings in the world published annually by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), a company specialising in the analysis of higher education institutions. The QS World University Rankings reveals the top 1,000 universities from around the world. The competition for inclusion in the QS World University Rankings increases annually with around 5,500 institutions competing. Still, the number of institutions included in the ranking remains unchanged.
RSU has been included in the QS World University Rankings since 2019 has steadily maintained its position in the 801–1000 group for the third year in a row. RSU's ability to attract international students is valued most highly. This is one of the six QS indicators that has been taken into account when creating annual QS World University Rankings.
The top 1,000 universities are evaluated and listed according to the following six different criteria: 1) academic reputation (40 %), 2) employer reputation (10 %), 3) faculty / student ratio (20 %), 4) citations per faculty (20 %), 5) international faculty ratio (5 %), 6) international student ratio (5 %).
- QS EECA University Rankings
QS World University Rankings: EECA Emerging Europe and Central Asia (EECA) is one of regional university rankings of the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), a leading global higher education and career development network. The QS EECA regional ranking features the top 350 top universities in emerging Europe and Central Asia, from Estonia to Siberia and from Turkey to Cyprus, representing a total of 24 countries.
RSU has been included in the regional QS EECA Rankings already since 2015 and listed among the 38 % of the top universities. The university received the highest scores on two indicators: international students (13th place) and citations per paper (64th place).
The results of the QS EECA Rankings are based on ten indicators that are different from those used of the QS World University Rankings: 1) academic reputation (30), 2) employer reputation (20 %), 3) faculty/student ratio (10 %), 4) international research network (10 %), 5) papers per faculty (10 %), 6) citations per paper (5 %), 7) staff with a PhD (5 %), 8) web impact (5 %), 9) international students (2.5 %) and 10) international faculty (2.5 %).
- SCImago Institutions Rankings
The institutional rating SCImago Institutions Rankings evaluates the scientific activities of not only universities but also of research institutions around the world.
It has been published annually since 2009, and it was developed by the Spanish research organisation SCImago Lab in close cooperation with international partners. SCImago Lab has also developed the widely known SCImago Journal & Country Rank, which allows comparisons between the scientific indicators of journals and countries obtained from the information contained in Scopus (Elsevier B. V.) database.
SCImago Institutions Rankings differ from other university ratings in that they do not use statistical data produced by the institutions themselves in the rating. The rating is based on the data retrieved from databases that provide information on various scientific results (e. g. scientific publications and journals, patents), as well as from platforms collecting data on the impact of research on society. The database Scopus created by the publishing house Elsevier is used for the analysis of scientific publications and citations, whereas patent-related information is analysed on the basis of the information obtained in the patent statistics database PATSTAT.
In the latest edition of the rankings, RSU ranks 673rd in the world. In the context of Latvia, RSU takes a leading position, as the university has been ranked the highest among other Latvia’s universities included in the ranking. RSU places first among Latvia’s universities in SCImago Rankings for the second year running.
The latest edition of the rankings includes a total of 7,026 institutions from all over the world. In this rating, RSU ranks 673rd in the world. Three more universities from Latvia were included in the ranking: the University of Latvia (ranked 730th in the world), Riga Technical University (760th in the world) and Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies (845th in the world).
As regards the Baltic States, a total of 15 institutions are included in the SCImago Institutions Ranking: nine from Lithuania and six from Estonia. Tartu University Hospital is Estonia’s leading institution (520th in the world), while Vilnius University is the leader in Lithuania (618th in the world).
A combined indicator is used to rank academic and research institutions combining three sets of criteria: research achievements (50 %), innovation results (30 %) and societal impact (20 %).
U-Multirank Institutional Ranking
U-Multirank is an international university ranking system applying a user-driven, multidimensional approach.
U-Multirank takes a different approach compared to other widely recognised university rankings. Instead of producing a table of the world’s top universities, U-Multirank compares various performance indicators taking into account different aspects.
U-Multirank is an independent ranking system developed on the initiative of the European Commission to ensure objectiveness and clearer overview of the universities' performance in various fields of operation. The first edition of U-Multirank came out in 2014 covering 850 institutions from 74 countries. The number of participating universities keeps growing every year. The edition of 2020 is the seventh one with around 1800 universities from 92 countries.
RSU has been included in the ranking each year since 2014. In the past three years, the university has demonstrated the best results in the indicators associated with regional significance. In addition, in 2020, RSU managed to improve its results in the research category on Open Access publications and is ranked among the best 25 universities. Overall RSU has received the seven of highest grade A.
U-Multirank compares university performance according to more than 30 different criteria in five areas: 1) teaching and learning, 2) research, 3) knowledge transfer, 4) internationalisation and 5) regional involvement. University performance in each criterion is ranked using a scale from A to E with A indicating ‘very good’ and E ‘weak’ performance.
- Webometrics Ranking of World Universities
Webometrics Ranking of World Universities (Webometrics) is one of the largest academic rankings of the institutions of higher education in the world.
The ranking was created by the Cybermetrics Lab, a Spanish research group, in 2004 to provide an independent, objective and useful information about the performance of universities from all over the world.
The Webometrics Ranking mainly focuses on the volume of the web content, as well as open access to scientific results that fosters the public access of knowledge generated by universities. The ranking does not evaluate website design, usability or the number of visits. Currently, the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities has been published twice a year and ranks around 30,000 institutions of higher education from more than 200 countries. A total of 52 institutions of higher education from Latvia are included in the ranking. Among five Latvian universities ranked in the 1001–5000 group are the University of Latvia, Riga Technical University, Rīga Stradiņš University, Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies and Daugavpils University.
RSU is ranked third among Latvian universities in the Webometrics Ranking with the best results in the category on the web presence, while academic excellence is the second best indicator.
The ranking uses publicly available data and analysed them according to four criteria: 1) presence – 5 % (size of the web domain / number of pages), 2) visibility – 50 % (external networks linking to the institution's webpage), 3) transparency – 10 % (number of citations) and 4) excellence – 35 % (number of papers amongst the top 10 % most cited publication).
- QS Best Student Cities
Rīga is listed 110th amongst the world’s best student cities. The ranking featuring 120 of the world's best student cities is compiled by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), a renowned company operating in the field of higher education. The QS Best Student Cities is published annually to highlight the best study destinations. For the first time, Rīga was included in the list of the world’s best student cities in 2019. As regards the Baltic States, Lithuania’s capital Vilnius was listed 95th, while no Estonian city has made the list.
The indicators for the QS Best Student Cities are weighted equally within each of the six categories: 1) collective performance of universities in the QS World University Rankings, 2) student mix, 3) desirability, 4) employer activity, 5) affordability, and 6) student view.