Harding University Takes Third In WSJ Rankings For Student Engagement

For the second year in a row, Harding was listed by The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education U.S. College Rankings 2019 as a top school for engagement, ranking third out of all listed schools, nationwide. The rankings recognize colleges with the highest scores for the degree to which students feel they are engaged with their professors, their peers and their education. Harding was ranked eighth in 2017.

The Wall Street Journal and the Times Higher Education College Rankings publish annual college rankings based on surveys of college students across the country regarding their learning and living environment.

According to The Wall Street Journal, 20 percent of a school’s total assigned rank is based on the engagement category, which pulls from more than 200,000 survey responses of current college and university students. Each ranked school in the engagement category was represented with a minimum of 50 survey responses. Harding University was ranked No. 3 with two other schools and was the only Arkansas school in the top 200.

The ranking includes the results of the U.S. Student Survey, which examines a range of key issues including students’ engagement with their studies, interaction with their teachers and satisfaction with their college experience.

“I am not surprised at Harding’s No. 3 ranking in engagement,” said Karli Williamson, a junior public relations major from Memphis, Tennessee. “At Harding, faculty members treat students like family, making sure that they are growing in their studies and their Christian walk. Some teachers even have their classes over to their houses for meals and fellowship.”

According to The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education summary materials, research shows that student engagement is the best way to truly understand teaching quality. They quote Malcolm Gladwell in a 2011 edition of The New Yorker to define student engagement as “the extent to which students immerse themselves in the intellectual and social life of their college,” and note that a major component of engagement is the quality of a student’s contact with faculty.

“Harding students are so encouraged to be involved in things like Student Association activities, sports, social clubs and more,” said Williamson. “I think that at Harding, college can begin to feel more and more like the home that students are away from.”

The full rankings are available online at timeshighereducation.com/rankings/united-states/2019.

Harding University is a private Christian, liberal arts university located in Searcy, Arkansas. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, it is the largest private university in the state. Harding’s student body represents all 50 states and 50 nations and territories. The University offers more than 100 undergraduate majors; graduate and professional degrees at the master’s, specialist and doctoral levels; as well as numerous study abroad opportunities including locations in Australasia, Chile, England, France, Greece, Italy and Zambia. Harding is ranked No. 3 nationally in student engagement by the Wall Street Journal for 2019. For more information, visit harding.edu.


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