Rankings compare different items or activities. They are frequently applied to restaurants, to hospitals, and to sports. More recently, rankings are being applied to all facets of economic performance and innovation and to scientific-scholarly endeavor. Increasingly, and controversially, rankings are used to compare the educational performance and quality of primary and secondary schools as well as colleges and universities in many parts of the world.
The emergence and popularity of educational rankings reflects increasing public and political demands for greater transparency, accountability, and concerns about learning outcomes and future opportunities and employability. For students and parents, rankings purport to inform student choice and provide a signal of what to expect upon graduation in terms of future educational and/or career opportunities. Rankings are also used by ...
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