Iran ranks first in terms of the number of universities in the region and among Islamic countries, according to Shanghai Ranking’s Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) 2020, ISNA reported.

Starting from 2003, ARWU has been presenting the world top universities annually based on a set of objective indicators and third-party data. ARWU has been recognized as the precursor of global university rankings and the most trustworthy league table.

ARWU adopts six objective indicators to rank world universities, including the number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes and Fields Medals, the number of articles published in journals of Nature and Science, the number of Highly Cited Researchers and articles indexed in Science Citation Index – Expanded and Social Sciences Citation Index based on data in the Web of Science, and per capita performance. More than 2000 universities are ranked by ARWU every year and the best 1000 universities are published.

Shanghai Ranking is a fully independent organization dedicating to research on higher education intelligence and consultation, which has been the official publisher of the Academic Ranking of World Universities since 2009.

The Shanghai rankings 2020 shows the top 1,000 universities in the world, with Harvard and Stanford universities in the United States and Cambridge University in the United Kingdom ranking first to third, respectively.

In the meantime, 12 universities from Iran have been listed; it should be noted that the presence of Iranian universities in this ranking system was the first time with a university (University of Tehran) in 2014, Mohammad Javad Dehghani, head of Islamic World Science Citation Center (ISC) said.

The University of Gilan has been ranked in this ranking for the first time and also the universities of Shiraz and Tabriz have improved their rankings compared to 2019, he added.

In the 2020 ranking, the University of Tehran, similar to the 2019 ranking, was ranked among the top 400 universities in the world by gaining the rank of 301-400 and became the first university in Iran.

He went on to say that Amirkabir University of Technology, Sharif University of Technology, Tarbiat Modares University of Medical Sciences, and Tehran University of Medical Sciences are in the range of 501-600 and have jointly ranked 2 to 5 among the universities of the country.

Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences and Shiraz University are in the range of 70-800 and have ranked 6-7 in Iran, respectively. In fact, Shiraz University has been promoted by 200 steps compared to the previous year, he stated.

Ferdowsi University of Mashhad and the University of Tabriz are in the range of 900-801 and have ranked 8-9, while Iran University of Science and Technology, Isfahan University of Technology, and Gilan University are in the range of 1000-901 and came 10-12, respectively, he highlighted.

The ranking shows that in 2020, Iranian universities have improved their quality.

In the 2020 Shanghai Rankings, Iran with 12 universities, Turkey with 11 universities, Malaysia, and Egypt with 5 universities, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan with four universities and Tunisia, Lebanon, Qatar with one university were among the top 1000 universities in the world, he explained.

According to the number of attendees, Iran ranks first among Islamic countries, he concluded.

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