Best Universities in Asia: NUS slips to 2nd place, NTU ranks 5th

SINGAPORE – The National University of Singapore (NUS) has come second in an annual ranking of institutions in the region, losing its spot as Asia’s top university for the past four years.

Peking University in China took first place in the latest Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) ranking of Asian universities released on Tuesday.

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has slipped to fifth place in the list by the Britain-based higher education consultancy which highlights the best universities in Asia. NTU ranked third last year, along with the University of Hong Kong.

This year’s QS Asia ranking is the largest, with 760 universities, up from 687 the previous year.

It rated institutions based on several factors, including academic and employer recognition, research, resources, and the proportion of international faculty and students.

China’s Tsinghua University came third, and the University of Hong Kong finished fourth.

China is the most represented location in the region, with 128 institutions making the list, followed by India with 118 and Japan with 106.

QS Senior Vice President Ben Sowter said, “Singaporean higher education has much to be proud of. For nearly a decade, it topped the top spot in QS’s Asian University Rankings, taking two of the top three spots and retaining the No. 1 position – occupied by NUS or NTU. Despite this year’s slight decline, its two main institutions are among the top five in Asia.

“With two of Asia’s leading research institutes locating in Singapore, its contribution to the body of work improving global understanding of science and technology, among other fields, cannot be underestimated.”

NUS is the second most popular Asian university among international scholars, based on the QS Academic Reputation Indicator, second only to the University of Tokyo, QS said in a statement.

NTU was ranked ninth regionally for its academic reputation.

According to QS’s measure of scientific impact in terms of citations per paper, as well as international collaboration, NUS and NTU are both among the top five in the region.

QS said Singapore’s main research area is engineering and technology, especially petroleum engineering and computer science.