In a recent ranking of Middle East universities by Times Higher Education (THE), The King Abdulaziz University of Saudi Arabia has emerged at the coveted top spot as the best university in the Arab World.
According to a report from THE, this is the third straight year that the Jeddah-based University retained the top spot because of its highly international outlook.
The second spot was claimed by the UAE based Khalifa University, which formerly was Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research. The Qatar University followed in third position, and then Jordan University of Science and Technology placed forth followed by the UAE University rounding off the top five spots.
Among the 31 institutions ranked, Egypt was found to be the most represented nation, as it claimed nine places, up from eight last year. The nation however had only one representative from the ultimate top 10, which is the Beni-Suef University that placed tenth on the coveted rankings.
Saudi Arabia in the meantime had five spots, the United Arab Emirates had four spots, while Jordan and Morocco had three each, on the overall list.
According to the rankings, Saudi’s Alfaisal University climbed a couple of places from last year on the back of “big improvements in its research environment, citation impact and industry income”.
The report added that the King Saud University dropped five points for research environment and industry income, whereas the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals also fell seven places since the institution’s industry income score plummeted and it “achieved a poorer performance for teaching environment, research environment and international outlook.
Apart from its two universities in the top 10 list, UAE’s University of Sharjah rose two spots to the 12th position.
Institutions from eleven of the twenty-two Arab League nations made it to the list that is compiled using thirteen performance indicators.
Editorial director of global rankings at Times Higher Education, Phil Baty, said that the results demonstrate that leading universities are found across the Arab region.
He said that the ranking however also shows that there is a lack of data on higher education institutions in the region. He went on to say that just 31 universities are based in the Arab World, out of the 1,102 universities that make their World University Rankings. Baty is hopeful that more universities in the region will take part in future rankings.