UCSB Facts and Figures

The National Research Council Assessment of Research Doctoral Programs

The National Research Council (NRC) Assessment of Research Doctoral Programs, conducted during the 2006-2007 academic year, involved 31 of UC Santa Barbara's academic departments, 795 faculty, and students from four pilot departments.

Overview of UCSB NRC Results

Among the 31 doctoral programs at UCSB assessed by the NRC, 10 programs, or nearly a third, have a range of rankings reaching into the top five in the country; 14, or 45 percent, are in the range of the top 10; and 20, or nearly two-thirds, are in the range of the top 20. These new rankings reflect UC Santa Barbara’s rapid rise in our world-class stature over the decades, and serve as a resounding affirmation of the quality and diversity of our doctoral programs, which form the fundamental basis of a strong research university. In the 1995 NRC report, four campus departments and programs were ranked in the top 10 in the country, and one in the top five. Most departments and programs improved their standing over the 1995 report, some very dramatically.

Using information from key indexes presented in the study results, 10 departments and programs were given ranking ranges that extended into the top five. Leading these programs was the Materials Department, which was ranked number one over its entire range, and was the only department in the country to be ranked so highly in any field of engineering. Other campus graduate programs with ranking ranges in the top five included Chemical Engineering, Communication, Computer Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Geography, Marine Science, Mechanical Engineering, Physics, and Theater and Dance. Of these, Theater and Dance, Marine Science, and Communication were not evaluated previously by the NRC.

UCSB’s programs in Anthropology, Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, Hispanic Languages and Literature, and History received rankings reaching into the top 10. Art History, Chemistry & Biochemistry, Comparative Literature, English, Psychology, and Religious Studies had ranking ranges reaching into the top 20.

Chancellor's Message

"UC Santa Barbara is very proud that among our 31 doctoral programs assessed by the NRC, 10 programs, or nearly a third, have a range of rankings reaching into the top five in the country; 14, or 45 percent, are in the range of the top 10; and 20, or nearly two-thirds, are in the range of the top 20," said Chancellor Henry T. Yang. "These new rankings reflect UC Santa Barbara’s rapid rise in our world-class stature over the decades, and serve as a resounding affirmation of the quality and diversity of our doctoral programs, which form the fundamental basis of a strong research university. Our top-notch faculty, outstanding students, and dedicated staff are all to be credited and thanked for this highly interdisciplinary and collaborative achievement."