Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China publishes the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), including for many Australian universities.

Shanghai ARWU university rankings

The Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) ranks the world's top research universities. These include some of the leading Australian universities for academic research.

Shanghai ARWU measures elite research performance using 6 indicators:

  1. number of alumni winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals (10%)
  2. number of staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals (20%)
  3. number of highly cited researchers selected by Thomson Scientific (20%)
  4. number of articles published in journals of Nature and Science (20%)
  5. number of articles indexed in Science Citation Indexes (20%)
  6. per capita performance considering the size of an institution (10%).

ARWU, often referred to simply as the ‘Shanghai Rankings’, was originally developed to compare Chinese universities with others worldwide, with particular reference to academic and research performance.

Shanghai ARWU 2021 Australian University Rankings

In 2021, Shanghai ARWU ranked 7 Australian universities in the world's top 100. A total of 24 Australian universities made the final cut into the world's top 500. In other words, more than half of Australia's universities are rated among the best in the world for research.

Aust rank University World rank
1 University of Melbourne 33
2 University of Queensland 51
3 University of New South Wales 65
4 University of Sydney 69
5 Australian National University 76
6 Monash University 80
7 University of Western Australia 96
8 University of Adelaide 101
9 Curtin University 201
9 Deakin University 201
9 Griffith University 201
9 James Cook University 201
9 Macquarie University 201
9 Queensland University of Technology 201
9 Swinburne University of Technology 201
9 University of Technology Sydney 201
9 University of Wollongong 201
18 La Trobe University 301
18 RMIT University 301
18 University of Newcastle 301
18 University of Tasmania 301
18 Western Sydney University 301
23 Flinders University 401
23 University of South Australia 401
25 Australian Catholic University 501
25 Edith Cowan University 501
25 Murdoch University 501
28 University of New England 601
28 University of Southern Queensland 601
28 University of the Sunshine Coast 601
31 University of Canberra 701
32 Southern Cross University 801
33 Bond University 901
33 Charles Darwin University 901

Ranking Method and Value

The Shanghai ARWU rankings objectively measure the calibre of research staff and the quality and volume of publications. Unlike web rankings, the data relate to official academic journals.

For students, the main value of the rankings is to identify prestigious universities. A degree from a prestigious institution can be more valuable in the job market. Other prestige rankings are produced by QS and Times Higher Education.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University's ranking is exclusively based on research-related indicators. The ranking does not include data from the humanities, as this would favour universities in English-speaking countries.

More Australian university rankings

Australian unis compared

QS - Reputation

Webometrics - Publishing