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Tuskegee remains top-ranked HBCU regionally, nationally

September 14, 2018

Contact: Michael Tullier, APR, Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing

Updated on Sept. 17 to clarify better the status of the university’s 2019 rankings outcome.

Lincoln gates at entrance to Tuskegee University Tuskegee University remains one of the region and nation’s best historically black universities, according to national rankings released on September 10 by U.S. News and World Report. Because the university did not provide U.S. News with a complete data report for this year’s rankings, it did experience a drop in rankings compared to previous years.​

In spite of incomplete reporting, Tuskegee tied for 15th in the “Historically Black Colleges and Universities” category of U.S. News’ 2019 edition of its Best College. It again was the only Alabama institution to appear in the publication’s list of Top 20 HBCUs. This U.S. News ranking measures the quality of the undergraduate education and other relevant metrics at HBCUs in context with the 78 HBCUs evaluated by the publication.

“We at Tuskegee University continue to strive for excellence in our academic, recruitment, retention and research pursuits — all of which factor into the institutional rankings bestowed by U.S. News,” said President Lily D. McNair. “Rankings programs such as this are just one of the metrics available to our senior leadership as part of our continuous improvement efforts.”

U.S. News reported with the publication of its 2019 rankings that it had made significant changes to the ranking methodology. According to the publication’s website, this year’s rankings place the greatest value on student outcomes, which account for 35 percent of the rankings — up from 30 percent last year. The 2019 methodology incorporates new social mobility indicators that measure how well schools succeed at enrolling and graduating students from low-income families. It also dropped acceptance rate as a ranking indicator and reduced the weight of expert opinions, SAT/ACT scores and high school class standing.

Changes also occurred to the weights of some HBCU ranking factors, including the same adjustments to SAT/ACT scores and high school class standing as in the National Universities rankings.

Other factors, such as faculty resources, peer assessment surveys, and alumni giving rates, continue to factor into rankings formulas.

“Through ongoing analysis of how we manage academic and operational data within the university, we have begun to streamline our processes for cataloging, validating and reporting information used by U.S. News and other ranking programs,” said Dr. Kellei Samuels, associate vice president for institutional effectiveness, research, assessment and planning.

Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, Tuskegee University offers its current 3,000-plus students 42 bachelor’s, 16 master’s and six doctoral degree options. In addition to SACSCOC accreditation, several academic units and degree programs in specialized fields or disciplines also are accredited by their respective accrediting bodies.

For more information on the publication’s rankings and its varying methodologies, visit

© 2018, Tuskegee University