Discover the world’s best universities for getting a job

London, 20 September 2018: QS Quacquarelli Symonds, higher education analysts and compilers of the QS World University Rankings (WUR), have recently released the 2019 edition of the QS Graduate Employability Rankings (GER). The rankings offer students, parents, and policymakers with comparative data on 500 universities, according to their ability to provide their students with a successful career. They indicate that top Asian universities perform better relative to global competitors where employability is concerned.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) IS the world-leader for the first time, deposing Stanford University (2nd) at the top. Universities in California and Australia perform particularly well when graduate employability is the metric by which they are being analysed: the top ten contains three Californian institutions and two Australians.


The UK’s top institutions, by contrast, underperform, with all of the nation’s five leading universities – including Oxbridge – dropping.

Chinese universities also outperform when employability is being examined: Tsinghua University ranks 9th,  and nine of China’s ten highest-ranking universities outperform their overall QS World University Rankings placing.

This trend is generally visible among Asia’s best institutions, with the continent’s top ten institutions ranking more highly in the GER than the WUR.

Ben Sowter, Research Director, QS, said: “Rises in tuition fees and an ever-more-competitive job market are making students ever-more-concerned about the likelihood that their prospective university will help them thrive afterwards. This ranking is designed to empower them to make more informed choices, and indicates that those universities that have excellent research profiles and global reputations aren’t invariably those that do most to nurture student employability.”

“Our Reimagine Education Awards, designed to incentivise and reward innovative teaching at tertiary education institutions, indicate that universities in Asia and Australia are often leading the way in offering students career-connected learning experiences. Their focus on offering students pedagogy that is designed to directly prepare them for the workplace is one key factor behind their successes in this ranking.”

2019 Rank            2018 Rank            WUR Rank           Institution           Location

1              5                1            Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)     United States

2              1                2            Stanford University                                                     United States

2              2                32         University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)        United States

4              3                3            Harvard University                                                      United States

5              4                42         The University of Sydney                                            Australia

6              7                39         The University of Melbourne                                    Australia

7              6                6            University of Cambridge                                             United Kingdom

8              9                27         University of California, Berkeley (UCB)                  United States

9              10             17         Tsinghua University                                                      China

10           8                5            University of Oxford                                                    United Kingdom


How were the rankings compiled?

QS use five indicators to compile the GER:

  1. Employer Reputation (30% of final score): Where are employers hiring the best graduates from? QS surveyed 42,000 employers to find out;
  2. Alumni Outcomes (25%): Which universities produce world-leaders in their field? QS used alma mater data for over 28,000 highly successful individuals to work out where you should go if you want to rule the world;
  3. Partnerships with Employers per Faculty (25%): This measures institutional employer engagement: how many research partnerships and internship/placement opportunities does a university have? It is adjusted by the number of faculty so as to not bias the ranking in favour of large universities;
  4. Employer-Student Connections (10%): How many individual employers have been physically present on a university’s campus over the last 12 months?
  5. Graduate Employment Rate: What proportion of this university’s graduates are employed 12 months after graduating? QS adjust to account for national economic conditions, so that universities aren’t penalised for operating in struggling economies, or unduly beneficiaries of thriving ones.

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