Asia’s 2024 QS World University Rankings: Indian institutions are not ranked in the top 20, yet they have the most varied higher education sector, with 148 universities.

The 2024 QS World University Rankings: Asia have been announced by worldwide higher education researchers, QS Quacquarelli Symonds. There are 856 institutions from 25 countries in the most recent edition. This year’s list, which features 856 schools from 25 nations and territories—148 of which are ranked for the first time—is the largest to date. schools are evaluated based on international recognition, research prowess, teaching resources, and internationalization. Despite exhibiting resilience in the Rankings, Indian colleges do not appear in the top 20. A balanced trend in year-over-year performance is revealed by the data, with slightly over half of the Indian universities that are listed dropping, 21 rising, 15 staying the same, and 37 new entrants. Actually, just seven new entries are added to Mainland China, while the majority of new entries come from India.

At 40th place, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay) continues to be the nation’s top university, followed by IIT Delhi and Madras, at 46th and 53rd place, respectively. Notably, the top three national rankings don’t change from the prior iteration of the rankings. The Indian Institute of Science (IISc), which is typically among the highest ranked universities, is currently placed 58th after dropping by roughly 6 spots. IIT Kharagpur (IIT-KGP) has risen to the 59th rank among the other IITs, from the 61st, and IIT Kanpur (IITK) has climbed three spots, from the 66th to the 63rd. However, University of Delhi (DU) dropped nine spots, to 94, from its previous ranking of 85th in the previous year.

In-depth analysis reveals mixed performance across key indicators. 

India ranks second in the region for Papers per Faculty (36.0 vs. 14.8) among higher education systems with more than 10 universities ranked, but falling short of the regional average in Academic Reputation (11.8 vs. 19) and Employer Reputation (9.6 vs. 18).

The nation records its highest average score (42.3 vs. 22) for the Staff with PhD indication, indicating a highly competent faculty and robust research production. This result demonstrates how Indian universities can further improve their reputation internationally by utilizing their research and academic rigor.

With a score of 15.4, India’s performance in the International Research Network category is marginally below the 18.8 regional average. This reflects a larger trend that is visible in all internationalization metrics, suggesting that India is attempting to strike a compromise between meeting the educational demands of a sizable number of its own students and increasing its attractiveness to foreign students. It is quite difficult to become proficient in both areas at the same time, especially at a rate that keeps up with worldwide trends.

The most productive research universities in the region, Anna University and Maulana Abul Kalam Azad University of Technology, West Bengal, are among the seven Indian universities listed among the top ten in Asia for Papers per Faculty. Nine out of the top 10 universities in QS Staff with PhD indication are in India, with the IISc holding the top rank in Asia. Additionally, Northeastern Hill University (NEHU) has set itself apart by placing second in the region for Faculty/Student ratio, demonstrating a dedication to offering students easily accessible, excellent teaching and learning settings.

Additionally, Shoolini University ranks among Asia’s top 5 for Citations per Paper, making it a noteworthy challenger in terms of research impact.

“The increasing visibility of Indian universities in the QS rankings reflects the dynamic expansion of India’s higher education landscape,” notes Ben Sowter, senior vice president at QS. “While the significant growth in the number of Indian institutions and their research contributions marks a noteworthy development in the region’s educational profile, it also illuminates the path ahead for India to further elevate its standing in the global academic community,” Sowter adds. 

According to the rankings, Peking University has won the title of best university in the region for the past two years. The National University of Singapore (NUS) takes third place, followed by the University of Hong Kong. For the first time, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Nepal are included.

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