International Campuses have become more common over the past few years. Previously, QS did not consider these campuses in the evaluation of the parent campus. After extended consultation with stakeholders, including our Advisory Board, QS has revised its policy on this to provide two pathways: autonomous, and non-autonomous.
One of the key considerations is whether or not the international campus directly benefits towards, and benefits from, its parent campus. Typically, the brand reputation, not to mention the established set of skills and research of a parent university, is integral in establishing the satellite campus and attracting students. If this parent reputation and experience is clearly in place, then both campuses must share in this - the quality of education provision in one campus must contribute to the other. If it does, then there is a shared responsibility between these campuses to deliver a quality and largely equivalent education to students regardless of which campus they are studying at.
We use the following guidelines in arriving at a decision on whether a campus of an institution can be considered separately for rankings purposes.
- Does the international branch campus have its own university principal (president, chancellor or vice-chancellor depending on the local custom) that does NOT report into the leadership of the main campus? This is a strong indicator of distinct autonomous governance.
- Does the additional campus have a distinct name/brand/identity/domain? e.g. ucla.edu; berkeley.edu – these sites look and feel very distinct from one another giving each a distinct identity.
- Do researchers publishing at each location publish under discernibly different affiliation identifiers that can be isolated reliably in Scopus?
- Do the university print a distinct name on different campus degree certificates?
If the answer is “NO” to ANY of these questions, then we will not treat the campuses as an autonomous entity. When a campus has been determined to be autonomous, we will evaluate and analyze it as a separate university, completely in-line with the process for any other university in the ranking. It will have no effect on the parent institution.
Where a campus is determined to be non-autonomous, its data (reputation, staff/student, research, sustainability etc.) will be analyzed as part of the whole institution as per the following sets of parameters.
- All academic and employer nominations for the satellite campus that come from the country of that satellite campus will be counted as domestic.
- All academic and employer nominations for the satellite campus that come from outside the country of that satellite campus will be counted as international.
We will only accept nominations for one campus in this scenario. Where respondents have nominated both the domestic and international campus, the domestic nomination will be used. For example:
A university in the UK has a branch campus in Malaysia. A Malaysian academic or employer completes our survey. In the domestic list, they nominate the Malaysian campus. In the international list, they nominate the UK campus. We will use the domestic (Malaysia) nomination, with its relevant weight.
A university in the UK has a branch campus in Malaysia. An Australian academic or employer completes our survey. In the domestic list, they cannot nominate either of those campuses. In the international list, they nominate both the Malaysian and the UK campus. We will use the one of these international nominations, with its relevant weight.
International Students and International Faculty
- Students and staff whose passport matches the country of the international campus should be counted as domestic students.
- Students and staff whose passport does not match the country of the international campus should be counted as international.
Any Scopus affiliation ID associated with the branch campus will contribute to the the citations and papers of the overall institution.
QS will make these decisions based on the above criteria. Any unresolvable dispute will be taken through our appeals process, where the matter will be referred to our independent advisory board. Screening Procedure