The National University of Singapore (NUS) was named No. 1 out of 300 universities, according to the latest Quacquarelli Symonds Rankings, which polled more than 50,00 people, many of them academics and employers from around Asia.
NUS moved up from second place last year to dislodge The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, which fell to fifth place.
Several other universities in Southeast Asia also improved their rankings, underscoring the growing development and heft of a region of more than 600 million people on its way to becoming a single economic community starting in 2015.
Nine of the top 10 universities in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations “either maintained or improved their positions in this year’s rankings, which shows that the region as a whole is on an upward trajectory,” Ben Sowter, head of research for the QS ranking, said in a statement accompanying its release.
Within Asean’s 10 member countries, there are 6,500 institutes of higher learning with 12 million students enrolled.
Singapore was the only one that saw its universities place among the top 10. In addition to NUS taking the top spot, Nanyang Technological University jumped to 7th place from 10th last year.
However, Mr. Sowter said other educational institutions in Southeast Asia could improve their standards as regional collaboration and exchange programs strengthen through the Asean Economic Community – the single market envisioned for the region.
Asean includes some of the world’s fastest growing economies outside China and Mr. Sowter said university education will play a critical role in supporting the growth of the region and sustaining economic integration.
The QS rankings were based on responses to a number of questions related to academic reputation, employer reputation, student/faculty ratio and student exchange, among others.
Credit: Wall Street Journal.