A New Standard for Measuring Doctoral Programs

Annual index ranks departments according to their scholarly output — but its methods rankle some college officials

For years when the dean of the graduate school at Washington University in St. Louis wanted to know how its programs stacked up to their peers, he was at a loss. He resorted to using U.S. News & World Report's annual rankings of graduate programs, even though many in academe pooh-pooh them as unscientific. The National Research Council's rankings of doctoral