SF State ranked high for ethnic and economic diversity

San Francisco State University ranks among the top masters-level universities in the Western U.S. for ethnic and economic diversity, according to the 2013 edition of U.S. News & World Report’s annual “Best Colleges” rankings.

SF State placed particularly well for ethnic diversity, tying for sixth place on the magazine's diversity index, which measures the proportion of minority students in the student body. Among rankings of international student populations, SF State also tied for sixth out of 87 Western schools, with 7 percent of students on campus coming from foreign countries.An image of students on the quad.

In a ranking of economic diversity among student populations, the University tied for 27th among 109 Western institutions, with 43 percent of the student population receiving Pell Grants.

SF State also placed well in an overall analysis of the quality of campuses in the Western United States, tying for 15th among 40 public regional universities and 50th among all regional universities -- defined as schools that offer a full range of master's degrees but limited doctoral programs. The overall rankings take into account such factors as peer assessments, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving. The regional university ranking puts SF State in the first tier of the 121 Western schools analyzed by the magazine.

U.S. News & World Report magazine releases their annual college rankings online and in print in their Best Colleges guidebook, which students and their families use as a resource in choosing a college. The 2013 edition of the Best Colleges guidebook will be released Sept. 18.

"The rankings are based on accepted measures of academic quality chosen after careful reporting and research on measuring quality in education," according to a news release from the magazine. "U.S. News takes pains to gather data in a uniform way and eliminate any gaps. The rankings condense a great deal of information about the quality of the education at each school, making it easier to compare institutions and select the best one for an individual."

SF State was considered among 625 regional universities across the country that offer a full range of master's degrees and some doctoral programs. The schools were ranked by geographic area because they tend to draw students heavily from surrounding areas, according to the magazine.

-- Philip Riley