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Making the List

Feb. 3, 2014

Baylor Named to "A" List for Core Curriculum

Baylor University is one of only 22 institutions nationwide to earn an "A" for its high-quality core curriculum, according to a report on the state of general education at the nation's colleges and universities from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA).

The ACTA looked at curriculum offerings at the major public and private colleges and universities in all 50 states - a total of 1,091 four-year institutions that together enroll more than 7.5 million undergraduate students.

Institutions are assigned a letter grade ranging from "A" to "F" based on how many of seven core subjects they require. Those subjects are: composition, literature, foreign language at an intermediate level, U.S. government or history, economics, mathematics, and natural or physical science.

Baylor - on the "A" list for the fourth consecutive year and one of only 2 percent of all institutions to receive an "A" - requires that students take six of the seven core courses, with the exception of economics. No other Big 12 university and only three other Texas institutions - University of Dallas, Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and the University of Texas at San Antonio - made the "A" list.

Baylor Named a 2014 Best Value Private College by Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Kiplinger's Personal Finance has included Baylor University at No. 54 on its list of the country's 100 best values in private colleges. Kiplinger's annual list ranks 100 private universities and 100 liberal arts colleges, which appears online at www.kiplinger.com/links/college.

"We are honored to be acknowledged again as a Best Value by Kiplinger's," said Baylor President Ken Starr. "The Baylor experience is distinct in its level of personal attention, spiritual enrichment, academic and athletic excellence, and high-caliber student life programming. We work especially hard to ensure excellence in all we do while also remaining attentive to the cost of a Baylor education. By continuing to increase the level of scholarship support we provide to students, we can preserve the value of a Baylor education for generations to come."

Baylor and the other schools included in the 2014 lists represent the colleges that provide high-quality academics at a reasonable cost during continued tough economic times. The colleges exemplify the attributes parents and students look for in higher education, including small class sizes, a good freshman retention rate and a high four-year graduation rate.

"With President Obama's recent emphasis on rating colleges and universities based on their value, our rankings serve as a valuable resource to help students and families make more informed choices," said Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine. "Combining a high-quality education with an affordable price tag is a challenge, but the colleges on this year's list offer the best of both worlds."

Kiplinger's rankings measure academic quality and affordability. Academic criteria include the student admission rate (the number of students accepted out of those who apply), the test scores of incoming freshmen, the ratio of students to faculty members, and the four- and five-year graduation rates. On the cost side, Kiplinger's measures the sticker price, the availability and average amount of need-based and merit-based financial aid, and the average student debt at graduation.

Executive MBA Program Is Ranked Internationally by Financial Times

Baylor University's executive MBA program is ranked No. 98 in the world, according to the Financial Times' 2013 rankings. It also was ranked No. 44 for international course curriculum.

"It is such an honor to receive this recognition from Financial Times," said JL Radford-Williard, co-director of the Baylor executive MBA programs in Dallas. "Baylor's Executive MBA program has been consistently ranked by Financial Times since the inception of its EMBA Rankings in 2001."

The 21-month Dallas and Austin programs are based on a learning environment that enriches the classroom because students learn extensively from their peers as well as Baylor's tenured faculty. Students develop a strong sense of ethical considerations and a global perspective, equipping them to tackle complex business environments.

"The Hankamer School of Business has remained true to Baylor's mission of developing worldwide leaders," Radford-Williard said. "(The school) knows well the importance of being able to compete in a global marketplace, and it delivers an experience that is critical to today's business leaders."

Baylor Law Named One of the 50 Best Law Schools in the U.S.

Baylor Law School is ranked as one of the 50 Best Law Schools in the U.S. by the business and technology news website, Business Insider.

Baylor Law ranks No. 32 on the list, which is topped by Harvard Law School. The only other Texas law school ranked on the Business Insider list is the University of Texas School of Law at No. 20.

"Baylor touts a highly customizable curriculum," according to Business Insider. "Students are permitted to start in the fall, spring, or summer, and may take any quarter off to pursue a clerkship, externship, or study abroad experience."

Business Insider based its rankings on a survey of more than 400 American legal professionals who were asked to select the 10 law schools that would best serve a legal career. Tuition costs were used as a tiebreaker, with lower tuition pushing a school to a higher spot.

"When Baylor Law students graduate, they are practice ready," said Baylor Law School Dean Brad Toben. "In their third year, Baylor Law students take Practice Court, where they try multiple cases from beginning to end in order to learn the spectrum of a lawyer's experience. It is a facet that students often find one of the most strenuous but compelling components of their Baylor education. Because of this program, they will not only know what to expect when they walk into court on their first job assignment, but they will also be able to present themselves as lawyers who indeed know their way around."

Other rankings for Baylor Law School includes its advocacy program ranked No. 3 by U.S. New & World Report, and the No. 2 ranking in The National Jurist's Best Value.

Social Media Top the Charts

For the second time in three years, Baylor has been named one of the nation's top 30 universities on social media. According to new rankings from StudentAdvisor.com, Baylor is listed No. 16 in the country - tops in the Big 12, and tops in the state of Texas.

The rankings, based on engagement across a wide variety of platforms, reflect not only the quality of content available on official university Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest accounts, but also the interest and value the Baylor family has found there, as seen in the number of comments, likes, retweets and repins given to posts, tweets, photos and pins.

In another common measure of social media standing, Baylor has a Klout score of 91 (out of 100), which ranks BU 37th nationally when compared to other colleges and universities employing social media to engage their constituencies, right between Penn State and Virginia.

As with Klout, Baylor's individual accounts on various social media platforms also compare very favorably to even larger state schools. Baylor's Instagram and Pinterest offerings each rank No. 4 in the country, while the official Facebook page ranks 42nd.

Baylor's social media efforts daily promote the accomplishments of not only alumni and students, but faculty and staff from across the campus.

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