Tier-one: UNT, other Texas universities added to prominent classification

Staff Reports

The University of North Texas is now ranked among the United States’ top 115 universities, which is important to UNT administrators, faculty and students alike because it signals UNT’s progress and gives the school a boost in higher education.

The Carnegie Classifications of Institutions of Higher Education, which added UNT, University of Texas at Arlington, University of Texas at Dallas and Texas Tech University Monday, is one of the most respected voices in higher education, meaning the university can now position itself as a top-ranked university, a goal school officials have long sought on the way to becoming a nationally recognized research university.

The official classification is “Doctoral University: Highest Research Activity (R1).” There are many other categories in which top universities are recognized by Carnegie, but this one is among the best, UNT president Neal Smatresk said Tuesday, officially announcing the news in an email.

Tier-one universities, Smatresk has said, attract top students and faculty, and push innovation and technology into high-level research and scholarship, he explained. The ranking also means regional and state businesses and research organizations might now look to UNT with greater respect.

This is considered the most significant step in the development of a research university, Smatresk said.

“We moved up in the Carnegie Classifications by staying true to our roots as an institution focused on creativity and educational activities,” Smatresk said.

UNT officials have noted the latest Carnegie rankings give strong consideration to UNT’s impact as a broad-based research institution that awards a large number of doctoral degrees each year. The university consistently leads the region and ranks among the state’s top universities for the number of doctoral degrees it awards annually.

Smatresk stresses that while reaching tier-one status is a big milestone, there is still work ahead to help UNT increase its national reputation.

This report was written by staff writer Evan McAlister and news editor Dalton LaFerney

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