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World rankings recognise Australian universities

The University of Melbourne is the highest placed Australian university in this year’s Academic Ranking of World Universities.

It ranks 60th worldwide, climbing two places from the previous year. It has jumped 32 places since the rankings began in 2003.

The rankings were published by Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s Center for World-Class Universities on 15 August.

The University of Queensland enters the top 100 for the first time, just behind the Australian National University. Queensland is ranked 86, moving up from a previous ranking in the 101-150 band.

Griffith University enters the top 500 for the first time, appearing in the 401-500 band.

Monash University also performed well, achieving joint 6th place nationally (and in the 151-200 band internationally) with the University of New South Wales.

Harvard University tops the 2011 list, closely followed by Stanford, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Berkeley, Cambridge, Caltech, Princeton, Columbia, Chicago and Oxford, who together make up the top 10 universities in the world.

The ranking uses a range of indicators, including the number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals, the number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific, the number of articles published in the journals Nature and Science, the number of articles indexed in the Science Citation Index – Expanded and Social Sciences Citation Index, and per capita performance with respect to the size of the institution.