How Do We Evaluate a School?
How We Evaluate a CWe gather or calculate answers for the following 10 questions. Each question carries one point, otherwise as specially indicated.
- Rankings: Is the school in World’s top 500 or Top 250 National University or top 200 National Liberal Arts Colleges? (Based on info from Schools’ websites)
- College ROI: ROI (Return on Investment) for graduates with bachelor’s degrees. The data are obtained from U.S. Department of Education.
- Career opportunities: Are the graduates highly sought after by employers (0.35 point); Are the school’s nearby areas offering good job opportunities (o.35 point); Does the school have good connection with corporate, government units, or companies to provide its students with internship, practical training or job opportunities (o.3 point).
- City Livability: (1) Violent Crime and Property Crime per 1000 people lower than national average (o.2 points); (2) Housing Affordability: (0.2 points); (3) Service and Food Access Index: (0.2 points); (4) The Consumer Price Index for Food (0.2 points); (5) The school is not within HPSA or MUS/P area: that means the school is in or near a place with sufficient health care resources (o.2 points).
- Graduates unemployed rate: lower than %: source U.S. Department of Education
- Best Value: total cost lower than $35K per year for its average students?
- Student to Faculty Ratio: below 15/1?
- Student-related (on/off campus) crimes: Less than 5 for every 1,000 students?
- Funding: Are there FUNDING, GRANTS, and SCHOLARSHIPS available for the school’s average international students?
- Low or no frauds/ripoffs: Less than 10 lawsuit cases or complaints against the school (due to its poor services, lousy academic quality, frauds or scams) in the past 5 years? (0.25 points)
- Fun for living: Student social life (0.20 points); athletic/recreation facilities and sports teams (0.20 points); on-campus housing for international students (o.1 points).
- No agents involved: Does the school work with commission-based study-abroad agents or consultants? (0.25 points)
For Question #12, schools who cooperate with study abroad agents or consultant receive zero points in this category. When we could not find this answer on a school website, we either email or make a phone to the school’s (international) admission office.
For all questions, each “YES” answer gets one point or the points indicated and each “NO” gets zero.
- Student Number: U.S. Department of Education or a school’s website.
- Crime on/off Campus: U.S. Department of Education
- College’s ROI Data: U.S. Department of Education
- U.S. Census Bureau
- City Crime Data: FBI or Police Department of Each City
- Other sources: Schools’ Websites