The 10 most popular THE rankings stories of 2020

A look at the most-read Times Higher Education university rankings articles from the past 12 months

December 16, 2020

The continued rise of China in research, Australasian universities’ success in contributing towards the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and data revealing the countries with the highest average number of international students were among the rankings stories catching our readers’ attention this year.

The news of a new Japanese university at the top of our teaching-focused ranking for the nation and a Chilean university holding on to the number one spot in our Latin America ranking also features in our list of the most popular articles in 2020.

Below are the top 10 most-read rankings articles of the year, based on website traffic. In all cases, the tables were devised, compiled and published by THE.

For more information on our university rankings, visit the World University Rankings home page.

10. THE Latin America University Rankings 2020: results announced

Santiago, Chile

The Pontifical Catholic University of Chile topped our 2020 THE Latin America University Rankings, while a Jamaican institution featured in the top 20 for the first time.

9. Japan University Rankings 2020: results announced

Tohoku University claimed the number one spot in our Japan University Rankings for the first time back in March, but experts said the shift was unlikely to dramatically change student or employer choice.

8. THE World University Rankings 2021: international student flows

A map with international students around it

One of the biggest concerns about the Covid-19 pandemic and higher education has been how it will disrupt international student mobility. This analysis, illustrated with a chart and a map, revealed how significant the flow of overseas students had become before the crisis.

7. THE Young University Rankings 2020: Golden Age results out now


The University of California, San Diego led our table of the world’s best “Golden Age” universities - those founded in the aftermath of the Second World War - for the fourth consecutive year.

6. Emerging Economies University Rankings 2020: results announced

Khobar, Saudi Arabia

Mainland China increased its dominance in our 2020 Emerging Economies University Rankings, published back in February, but South Africa and Saudi Arabia outshone the country based on average performance.

5. WSJ/THE US College Rankings 2021: Duke and Carnegie Mellon rise


Duke and Carnegie Mellon universities were the biggest risers at the top of the Wall Street Journal/THE College Rankings 2021.

4. THE Young University Rankings 2020: results announced

Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

In June, Asia became home to the world’s leading two young universities for the first time: The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.

3. THE Asia University Rankings 2020: results announced

Meanwhile, China became home to the top two universities in Asia for the first time, after Peking University joined Tsinghua University at the summit due to improved scores in the areas of research environment and industry income.

2. THE Impact Rankings 2020: results announced

Auckland skyline

Universities in Australasia topped the second edition of our pioneering Impact Rankings, which assess the social and economic impact of universities, using metrics based on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

1. THE World University Rankings 2021: results announced


Chinese universities made several historic gains in our World University Rankings 2021, with the data revealing that the Asian giant was closing in on, and in some areas overtaking, the US in terms of research.

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Reader's comments (1)

So now you’re ranking articles about rankings? Good grief. When will it end?


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