Baylor Among Elite Group of Private R1 Institutions

December 19, 2021
Elite Group of Private R1 Institutions
When Baylor officially announced its plans to pursue Research 1 (R1) designation in August 2019, the goal seemed achievable but also distant and challenging. Hopes were set to achieve the necessary benchmarks by 2024 as a key focal point of Illuminate – the University’s strategic plan – with a steep climb ahead for Baylor’s researchers, faculty and staff.

The December 2021 announcement from Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education that Baylor achieved this designation came three years ahead of expectations and marks a remarkable achievement in Baylor’s research endeavors.

“It’s just a tremendous accomplishment for Baylor for so many reasons, but credit to our faculty and staff for the effort they’ve put into this,” Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, PhD, said. “Frankly, this is a process – even though this really was a very specific goal three years ago – it is a process that we've been working on for many years. Even before I got here, previous strategic plans built the foundational infrastructure on which we then put specific focus to get to R1.”

Baylor joins the ranks of nine other institutions in Texas who have achieved this status as top-tier research institutions with very high research activity, a list that includes UT-Austin, UT-Dallas, UT-Arlington, UT-El Paso, UT-San Antonio, Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University, University of Houston, University of North Texas and private Rice University.

“As a Christian university, there are not a lot of those among the R1 universities that are not only doing the highest level of research in the country, but also maintaining the integrity of their Christian mission and really thinking about how our faith community, our faith perspective informs the research we're doing and informs how we solve problems,” President Livingstone said. “It's just really important to us on so many levels.”

See below for list of private R1 research institutions.

Perhaps even more impressive than the 145 other institutions across the country who Baylor joins as an R1 doctoral university is the company the University keeps as one of only 37 private institutions to achieve this elite status.

“It gives us a lot of credibility,” President Livingstone said. “It gives our faculty credibility from an academic perspective, it attracts students when they're thinking about where to go to school and it gives our students credibility when they're going out and looking for jobs. Coming from one of the top universities in the country is valuable to them.
“We've been able to attract a lot of faculty who knew that our aspiration was to be Research One and they wanted to come help us accomplish that. But now that we're there, there will be another set of faculty who say, I'm only going to go to an R1 university, but I would love to go to a Christian university.”

With R1 status achieved as a major goal of Illuminate, the drive for Baylor turns to leveraging the designation to continue investing in providing a transformational education to its students, with unprecedented investments in facilities and hiring more than 100 additional faculty members to continue growing the depth and breadth of the University’s research and global impact.

“I think we'll see more and more faculty wanting to be a part of Baylor because they can do their academic work at the highest level here and live out their faith as Christians,” President Livingstone said. “There are just very few places they can do that and we're seeing great interest among the highest quality Christian faculty wanting to be able to do that here at Baylor.”

Joining the ranks of Boston College, Duke, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Stanford, Miami and Vanderbilt, Baylor sets itself apart as one of only eight universities to achieve R1 status and compete in a Power Five athletic conference. Only Boston College, Notre Dame and Baylor maintain committed religious affiliations, R1 status and Power Five membership.

Among the elite group of private R1 universities are:

Baylor University (Waco, TX) †^
Boston College (Chestnut Hill, MA) †^
Boston University (Boston, MA) †
Brown University (Providence, RI)
California Institute of Technology (Pasadena, CA)
Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, PA)
Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH)
Columbia University (New York, NY)
Cornell University (Ithaca, NY)
Dartmouth College (Hanover, NH)
Drexel University (Philadelphia, PA)
Duke University (Durham, NC)^
Emory University (Atlanta, GA) †
George Washington University (Washington, DC)
Georgetown University (Washington, DC) †
Harvard University (Cambridge, MA)
Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA)
New York University (New York, NY)
Northeastern University (Boston, MA)
Northwestern University (Evanston, IL)^
Princeton University (Princeton, NJ)
Rice University (Houston, TX)
Stanford University (Stanford, CA)^
Syracuse University (Syracuse, NY) ^
Tufts University (Medford, MA)
Tulane University (New Orleans, LA)
University of Chicago (Chicago, IL)
University of Denver (Denver, CO)
University of Miami (Coral Gables, FL)^
University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, IN) †^
University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, PA)
University of Rochester (Rochester, NY)
University of Southern California (Los Angeles, CA) ^
Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN)^
Washington University in St. Louis (Saint Louis, MO)
Yale University (New Haven, CT)

† - active religious affiliation
^ - member of a Power Five athletic conference
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