It is becoming a trivial adagio that good education is vital for national socio-economic development. Referring to articles in euronews.com, it is appropriate to show the best-ranking universities in Europe and the world. The analysis is reaffirming a view that providing the best quality teaching and satisfying youth’s aspiration for a profitable career is important for a national progress, recovery and resilience.
During the last decade numerous universities in Europe and around the world have been trying to acquire the ranks of the best universities in providing quality teaching and facilities for new skills.
Our Institute has made recently a new attempt to analyse the trends in modern education around the world and in the European Union; it might be of interest to the inquisitive readers.
Reference to: Eteris E. and Sparitis O. Modern Educational Revolution: Challenges and Solutions. – LAP, 2022.-144 pp.
Reference to: https://morebooks.shop/shop-ui/shop/product/9786205517871.
Global Top-100 rankings
As to bad news, according to the Euronews’ publication, in 2023 – among the Global Top 100 universities – there are only 36 from the European countries! Though it is a significant increase from 28 universities since the Times Higher Education’s 2011 World University Rankings report was released. However, it is not the best performance in the last 13 years, as European countries have had 42 universities in the Global Top 100 list in 2016.
Apart from three British universities, such as Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, and the Imperial College London (ICL), only ETH Zurich of Switzerland has ranked in the Top 10 in the last 13 years.
The Times Higher Education World University Rankings is a popular listing published annually, which by 2023 includes about eighteen hundred universities from 104 countries; the ranking is based on a dozen of indicators that measure universities’ performance across four areas: teaching, research, knowledge transfer, and international outlook.
As to good news for Europe, the University of Oxford was named the world’s top university for the seventh consecutive year in the 2023 Times Higher Education rankings. The University of Cambridge was also in the Global Top 10 for that whole time period, whereas ICL managed to remain on the high-ranking list for 11 years. Switzerland’s ETH Zurich ranked ninth in 2016 and 2017, and tenth in 2018.
Being in the Global Top 10 is very prestigious for leading universities; unsurprisingly, universities in the United States and the United Kingdom dominate the Top 10 rankings. Only 13 global best universities have succeeded in gaining Global Top 10 rankings since 2011; four of them are in Europe whereas the other nine are in the US.
Global educational outlook
The global “educational market” is dominated by the American, European and Asian high school entities. And American universities clearly dominate the Top-100 rankings: there were 53 institutions in 2011 reduced to 34 in 2023.
Twenty countries and territories around the world have had universities in the Top 100 at least once in the last 13 years. In 2023, China and Australia had seven universities in the Top 100, whereas five in Hong Kong and four in Canada were included in the rankings.
Among the American schools named in the Global Top-10 recently there were Harvard and Stanford universities, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), California Institute of Technology, Princeton University, the University of California Berkeley, Yale University, the University of Chicago, and the University of Pennsylvania.
One of the most significant academic events in 2023is the rise of China universities: there are seven universities from mainland China in the Top-100, the highest number for this country since 2011. China did not have more than three universities in the Top 100 until 2020: the number of universities in mainland China in the rankings increased from three to seven between 2019 and 2023.
There are also five universities in Hong Kong that ranked in the Top-100 by 2023.
China did not have more than three universities in the Top 100 until 2020. The number of universities in mainland China in the rankings increased from three to seven between 2019 and 2023. There are also five universities in Hong Kong that ranked in the Top 100 this year. Tsinghua University (16) and Peking University (17) are the best-ranking institutions from China, receiving overall scores of 88.2 and 88.1 respectively. The score of ICL, which ranked tenth this year, is 90.4. That suggests that these two Chinese universities are potentially approaching a breakthrough into the Top 10 rankings. China has also recently overtaken the US in scientific research output. China published 23.4 per cent of the world’s scientific papers between 2018 and 2020 according to a report by Japan’s National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTEP).
In the perfect analysis by S. Yanatma in the euronews.next (29.xii. 2022) it was noted that the UK has always ranked best in Europe; no other European states managed to surpass it. The number of British universities in the Global Top 100 has ranged from 10 to 16 since 2011.
Germany and the Netherlands have also had a number of universities in the Global Top 100. Besides the UK, Germany, Holland and France, no other European country has succeeded in having five universities in the Top 100.
However, the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and France have had at least one university in the Top 100 every year since 2011. Only 12 European countries (e.g. the EU, the UK, Switzerland, Norway, and Turkey) have had one university in the Top 100 at least during the last decade; three of them: Ireland (2011), Italy (2015), and Turkey (2015) achieved that only once.
The European scene
In the 2023 Times’ rankings, 15 European universities ranked among the world’s Top 50 institutions, and 36 were in the Top 100. Apart from Oxford, Cambridge, ICL, and ETH Zurich, these include University College London (22), the University of Edinburgh (29), Technical University of Munich (30), LMU Munich (33), King’s College London (35), the London School of Economics and Political Science (37), the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (41), KU Leuven (42), Heidelberg University (43), Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University (47), and the Karolinska Institute (49).
As S. Yanatma mentioned, apart from Oxford, Cambridge, ICL, and ETH Zurich, among the best European are: University College London (22nd in the world), the University of Edinburgh (29), Technical University of Munich (30), LMU Munich (33), King’s College London (35), the London School of Economics and Political Science (37), the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (41), KU Leuven (42), Heidelberg University (43), Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University (47), and the Karolinska Institute (49).
Choosing a “proper education”: the British view
The issue of the “most profitable education’s degree” in national education policy was underlined by Josephine Joly (15.viii. 2022 in euronews.com). With rising living costs, the significant university tuition fees in the UK of up to £9,250 per year or higher for international students, and the increasing competition for jobs as more and more students choose to go to university, young people were “returns on investment” when choosing what to study.
Certain skills and degrees could, on average, offer higher salaries than others; the euronews.com made a list of professions with the highest-earning degrees in the UK. It was noted, that the acquired skills were often chosen either by the peoples’ desire, the selected field and/or the earned salary.
= Law degree. It is still one of the highest-earning degrees in the UK, as there are multiple careers one can enter with a law degree, which makes it an attractive subject to study. For trainees and fresh-starters in various law firms, the country’s law profession promises a minimum wage of approximately £20,000, when starting a career in London (with a starting salary of about £22,000 per year in other part of the country). However, once qualified, starting salaries can range from £27,000 to £60,000 depending on the region in the UK: i.e. city lawyers and international lawyers tend to earn more; some top firms paying up to £130,000.
= Degree in politics is being also popular in the UK; it is in one of the highest-earning category when graduates can work as politicians’ assistants, public affairs’ consultants, etc. During studies students in politics are trained in socio-economic strategies, in drafting political courses and ideologies with the leadership skills in sustainable growth. The overall average starting salary for this career is £20,900, but it can go up quite fast to over £50,000 for most experienced.
= Architecture is a profession with stable and high-paying jobs; starting salaries are between £15,000-22,000, even practicing as an architectural assistant. Fully qualified architects can earn between £32,000 and £45,000 per year; however, one has to be registered with the statutory body, i.e. the Architects Registration Board before using the title “architect” in the UK.
= Economics is another high-earning profession with an average starting salary of £29,700 per year; initial job offers range from about £25,000 to £35,000 with a perspective of quick increase. Thus, after ten years of employment, the average salary is approximately £40,000; some professionals can even earn more than £100,000, which makes economists one of the highest paying degrees in the UK. Economists working in banking and financial services can earn even more.
= Getting an MBA or a postgraduate degree in Business and Administration, can provide a graduate with guarantee of a high-paid job. Entry-level positions start at £24,000 per year while most experienced can make up to £144,222 per year. However, there might be some competition as business degrees are oversubscribed due to their popularity, noted Josephine Joly.
= Graduates with engineering degrees can make good money too, though this high-paying degree is also flexible in terms of job opportunities, with roles varying from scientific research to working as a field engineer or having a senior management position.
The median starting salary for chemical engineers under 25 is about £30,000, rising to as much as £75,000 for more experienced engineers. The overall average salary for this career path is approximately £47,000, which however varies with each specification.
The average starting salary for Aeronautical & Manufacturing Engineering is £28,000, while Chemical Engineering graduates can earn £30,000. A degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering can provide a graduate with a starting salary of £29,000; while Civil Engineering starting salaries are £27,700 on average. It is vital to remember, notes J. Joly that with an ever-increasing need for innovative technologies the engineering profession will be always in great demand.
= Graduates in medicine are in the group of high-earners: thus, a junior doctor’s basic annual salary is of £23,000. However, choosing a special field in medicine, such as cardiology, the starting salary would increase over £30,000, as ones career progresses. According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the average UK-based medical professional earns £69,463, which is more than double the average salary, making medicine a top spot in the list of highest-paid degrees. The most common role in the medicine area is a General Practitioner (GP).
= Computer science graduates can experience employment in growing IT industries and a wide use of computers in business and society. Low-skilled graduates can make £18,000, while high-skilled specialists can earn about £27,000 per year; however, noted J. Joly, “given the demand for this job, the salary can be way higher”.
References on employment from: https://www.euronews.com/next/2022/08/13/which-university-degree-will-earn-you-the-most-money-these-are-the-highest-paying