World University Rankings 2018 by subject: psychology, life sciences and clinical results out now

Universities in the US dominate new Times Higher Education psychology ranking

November 8, 2017
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THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: psychology
THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: life sciences

THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: clinical, pre-clinical and health


Stanford University has topped a new Times Higher Education ranking of the world’s best universities for psychology.

The Californian institution, which has already topped THE global tables for arts and humanities, business and economics, computer science, education, and engineering and technology subjects this year, also achieves the highest research environment score in the 100-strong psychology list.

The top three is completed by University College London in second place, which achieves the top teaching environment score, and Princeton University in third.

For the first time this year, psychology, education and law have been ranked separately from social sciences in the THE subject rankings.

The US dominates the psychology table, claiming almost half (47) of the top 100 places, and eight of the top 10 spots.

The UK is the second most-represented nation, but has just 13 featured institutions.

Stanford University
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THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: psychology top 10

2018 rank University Country WUR 2018 rank 
1 Stanford University United States =3
2 University College London United Kingdom 16
3 Princeton University United States 7
4 Harvard University United States 6
5 Duke University United States 17
6 Northwestern University United States 20
7 University of Michigan United States 21
8 University of California, Los Angeles United States 15
9 Carnegie Mellon University United States 24
10 University of British Columbia Canada =34

Browse the full list of universities in this year’s psychology rankings


Alan Thompson, dean of UCL’s Faculty of Brain Sciences, said that the results reflect the university’s “innovative and engaging programmes that integrate research into the heart of the curriculum”.

Meanwhile, THE’s global rankings for life sciences and clinical, pre-clinical and health subjects have also been updated for 2018 and expanded to include 500 institutions each, up from 100 each last year.


– Best universities for psychology degrees
– Best universities for life sciences degrees
– Best universities for medical degrees

– Browse Times Higher Education’s university rankings portfolio
– Search our database of global university jobs


The new life sciences table features the same top five as last year, led by Harvard University, but there have been prominent movements lower down the list.

Johns Hopkins University has risen five places to sixth, while the University of California, San Diego has climbed 12 places to 12th.

Both institutions have improved in terms of their teaching and research environments and have seen a big jump in their industry income score this year. Johns Hopkins also achieved a greater citation impact score, while UC San Diego now has a more international outlook.

Harvard University campus
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THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: life sciences top 10

2018 rank 2017 rank University Country WUR 2018 rank 
1 1 Harvard University United States 6
2 2 University of Cambridge United Kingdom 2
3 3 University of Oxford United Kingdom 1
4 4 Stanford University United States =3
5 5 Massachusetts Institute of Technology United States 5
6 11 Johns Hopkins University United States 13
7 8 Princeton University United States 7
8 6 California Institute of Technology United States =3
9 7 Yale University United States 12
10 9 Imperial College London United Kingdom 8

Browse the full list of universities in this year’s life sciences rankings


The University of Oxford once again tops the clinical, pre-clinical and health table, while the University of Cambridge and Harvard University jointly share second place.

The subject rankings for clinical, pre-clinical and health, life sciences and psychology are based on the same range of 13 performance indicators used in the overall THE World University Rankings 2018, but the methodologies have been recalibrated to suit the individual fields.

Students at Oxford University

THE World University Rankings 2018 by subject: clinical, pre-clinical and health top 10

2018 rank 2017 rank University Country WUR 2018 rank 
1 1 University of Oxford United Kingdom 1
=2 3 University of Cambridge United Kingdom 2
=2 2 Harvard University United States 6
=4 4 Imperial College London United Kingdom 8
=4 7 Stanford University United States =3
6 8 Johns Hopkins University United States 13
7 5 University of California, Berkeley United States 18
8 9 Columbia University United States 14
9 13 University of Melbourne Australia 32
10 15 University of Pennsylvania United States =10

Browse the full list of universities in this year’s clinical, pre-clinical and health rankings


ellie.bothwell@timeshighereducation.com 

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