Photo: MICHAEL MALONEY, SFC
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UC Berkeley is one of five schools that has now lost its ranking from the U.S. News & World Report’s 2019 Best Colleges list.
U.S. News announced last week the University of California at Berkeley will no longer be listed as the No. 2 public school in America; instead, it’s been booted down to “unranked” due to what the publication called “greatly overstated” alumni donation numbers.
“The University of California—Berkeley originally reported that its two-year average alumni giving rate for fiscal years 2017 and 2016 was 11.6%. Recently the school said that its correct average alumni giving rate for just fiscal year 2016 was 7.9%,” U.S. News wrote in a press release.
“The University of California—Berkeley also told U.S. News that it incorrectly included pledges in the alumni giving data provided to U.S. News since at least 2014. This doesn’t follow the U.S. News definition, which is based on federal government and industry standards that clearly state only tax-deductible gifts should be included, excluding pledges that don’t qualify for an IRS charitable deduction. This means that UC—Berkeley has greatly overstated its alumni giving data to U.S. News annually since 2014.”
The reporting errors were brought to the attention of U.S. News by the school itself, the press release notes.
In order to be reconsidered for the list over the next three years, U.S. News has told chancellor Carol Christ and UC system president Janet Napolitano they must sign a letter certifying the accuracy of the school’s data each year.
Scripps College, Mars Hill University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and Johnson & Wales University were also moved to the “unranked” list due to various data misrepresentation issues.
Because of their removal from the overall “Best Colleges” ranking, they are also no longer eligible for other 2019 franchises, including Best Value Schools, Top Public Schools and Best Colleges for Veterans rankings.
Katie Dowd is an SFGATE Senior Digital Editor. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter: @katiedowd
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/college-ranking-list-2019-berkeley-alumni-14191180.php.