Catholic University's Theology School and Department of Religious Studies Research

Goals

To understand where the Catholic university stands in reference to other Seminary schools and religious study programs, it is important to understand 1) why there are websites (like The Princeton Review) that do not suggest Catholic University's Theology School and Department of Religious Studies on their websites; 2) identify 5 of the largest competitors and explain 3 of the main reasons why students select those seminary programs, and 3) identify the what the biggest questions are that come up when discussing the future of Catholic institutions. ("CUA TRS").

Early Findings

Princeton Review

  • The Princeton Review does provide a profile of the Catholic University on its website.

Top Universities Ranking

  • On the website Top Universities (in partnership with Elsevier), in the domain of theology, divinity and religious studies in 2019 the Catholic University of America is ranked between 51-100 of the top universities.
  • The top 5 universities globally for this subject according to this website are Harvard University, the University of Nortre Dame, the University of Oxford (UK), the University of Cambridge (UK), and Durham University (UK).
  • The top 5 universities in the United States according to Top Universities are Harvard University, the University of Nortre Dame, Yale University (#6), Duke University (#9), and the University of Chicago (#10).
  • These colleges were ranked based on academic reputation, citations per paper, H-index citations, and employer reputation.
  • With regards to academic reputation, more than 83,000 academics worldwide are "asked to list up to 10 domestic and 30 international institutions which they consider to be excellent for research in the given area. They are not able to select their own institution." For this parameter, Harvard University received 97.2 points, while the Catholic University received 73.7 points.
  • For citations per paper, publications over a five-year period are collected and the number of citations are counted. There is a threshold for citations (so anomalies from small numbers of highly cited papers are avoided) and weighting is applied to the citations indicator. For this parameter, Harvard University received 98 points while the Catholic University received 73.6 points.
  • "The h-index is a way of measuring both the productivity and impact of the published work of a scientist or scholar. The index is based on the set of the academic’s most cited papers and the number of citations that they have received in other publications." For this parameter, Harvard University received 96.7 points while the Catholic University received 68.3 points.
  • For employer reputation, "employers are asked to identify up to 10 domestic and 30 international institutions they consider excellent for the recruitment of graduates. They are also asked to identify the disciplines from which they prefer to recruit." For this parameter, Harvard University scored 100 points while the Catholic University scored 48.1 points.

Theology Degrees

  • This website compares religious studies "based on price, third party rankings, number of concentrations and the flexibility of the program". The 5 US universities mentioned above are mentioned as well though not in the same ranking.

Summary of Findings

  • During the initial hour of research, we focused on identifying the top 5 competitors to the Catholic University and understanding where the Catholic University stood in comparison to its competitors.
  • As students review ranking websites to help inform their decision of which university to study at, ranking websites were sought out to understand how universities in the area of theology were ranked and why they were ranked accordingly. On the website of Top Universities, the top 5 US universities and the top 5 international universities were identified and the rankng criteria which basically come down to their reputation, the impact of their research and their ability to recruit students.
  • A profile of the Catholic University was found on the website of Princeton Review.
  • While it may not be possible to identify why review websites do not suggest the Catholic University on their website, it is possible to give a view of how the Catholic University is viewed in comparison to its competitors. This might give an indication of why it is not higher in the list of ranked universities in the area of religious studies.

Proposed next steps:

You need to be the project owner to select a next step.