U.S. News tabs Ozarks "top tier" for 14th consecutive year

Release Date: 9/12/2012

For the 14th consecutive year, University of the Ozarks has been ranked as a "top tier" university in the South by U.S. News & World Report.

In its 2013 edition of "America's Best Colleges," which hit the newsstands this week, U.S. News & World Report listed Ozarks 9th overall among the more than 100 Regional Colleges in the South Region. The overall rankings examine such criteria as academic reputation, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and alumni giving. Ozarks has been ranked a "top tier" school by the publication every year since 2000.

In addition, Ozarks ranked second in the South Region in the "Great Schools at Great Prices" category in the annual late summer publication that analyzes institutions of higher education. The magazine listed 107 universities in the Regional Colleges category within the 12-state South Region.

It is the 13th time in the last 14 years that Ozarks has been ranked in the top five of the best value category. The value rankings evaluate the cost of attending a college or university relative to the quality of the institution.  According to the magazine, "the higher the quality of the program and the lower the cost, the better the deal."

"We continue to gain status locally, regionally and nationally as being a campus that provides our students with superb academic programs and exemplary personal attention," said U of O President Dr. Rick Niece.  "Especially gratifying is the continued recognition of Ozarks by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best values in the South. That ranking shows that Ozarks is among the best when you look at the quality of education for the cost of that education."

Ozarks trailed only John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Ark., in the best value rankings.

In the overall rankings of the universities, Ozarks moved up one spot to 9th this year after being No. 10 last year. Ozarks was tied with LaGrange College in Georgia for 9th place.   

"To be recognized as a top-tier campus in the South Region for 14 consecutive years is a well-deserved tribute to our faculty, staff and students," Niece said.

The South Region consists of colleges and universities in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia and Virginia.

U.S. News & World Report ranked more than 1,400 accredited schools nationally in its "America's Best Colleges" edition.