Harvard Medical School Withdraws From U.S. News Ranking

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Lawpy

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Great news, honestly!
 
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pretty much all t20's will follow the suit except for NYU lol
 
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^^ Yup, Harvard no longer a T-5; off my list.
 
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I did not apply to any elite med schools but I think this is actually really bad.
USNews is obviously a deeply flawed ranking system that relies heavily on school reputation. Still, it's good that there's a ranking that cares about objective criteria (GPA and MCAT scores) so that med schools don't overemphasize subjective stuff that is heavily gamed (volunteer hours, commitment to service, etc).

I love that NYU was on the verge of dethroning Harvard as top dog by offering free tuition. I wish more schools would follow suit. This announcement reminds me of Manchester United and Barcelona trying to form a super league to cement permanent status as the best teams.
 
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I did not apply to any elite med schools but I think this is actually really bad.
USNews is obviously a deeply flawed ranking system that relies heavily on school reputation. Still, it's good that there's a ranking that cares about objective criteria (GPA and MCAT scores) so that med schools don't overemphasize subjective stuff that is heavily gamed (volunteer hours, commitment to service, etc).

I love that NYU was on the verge of dethroning Harvard as top dog by offering free tuition. I wish more schools would follow suit. This announcement reminds me of Manchester United and Barcelona trying to form a super league to cement permanent status as the best teams.
NYU is PSG then lol
 
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U.S. News is in a bit of a conundrum with Harvard dropping out of their rankings. I always thought they were clever by squeezing in a couple extra schools into the top 10 by making two or three schools ranked tenth. I would be surprised if they didn't do something equally as clever for next year's rankings. Perhaps they could just start the rankings at #2. This still would allow them to still squeeze a couple more schools into the top 10 AND avoid the awkwardness of not having Harvard on the list. Your thoughts?
 
Still, it's good that there's a ranking that cares about objective criteria (GPA and MCAT scores) so that med schools don't overemphasize subjective stuff that is heavily gamed (volunteer hours, commitment to service, etc).
Yeah, before the USNWR rankings debuted you could hardly even get medical schools to care about the MCAT scores or impossible-to-game GPA's of applicants.
 
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U.S. News is in a bit of a conundrum with Harvard dropping out of their rankings. I always thought they were clever by squeezing in a couple extra schools into the top 10 by making two or three schools ranked tenth. I would be surprised if they didn't do something equally as clever for next year's rankings. Perhaps they could just start the rankings at #2. This still would allow them to still squeeze a couple more schools into the top 10 AND avoid the awkwardness of not having Harvard on the list. Your thoughts?
I think they'll use publicly available info to ranks schools. That's what they are doing with the law schools that have withdrawn from the law school rankings.

in November, Harvard and Yale Law Schools announced their withdrawal from the US News rankings. That was followed by about a dozen other schools, mostly top tier law schools. But the pace of withdrawal has slowed dramatically.

I find it interesting that HMS is not (so far) being followed by other programs. It appeared that HLS and YLS coordinated their announcements. With HMS, it appears it acted on its own.
 
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I think they'll use publicly available info to ranks schools. That's what they are doing with the law schools that have withdrawn from the law school rankings.

in November, Harvard and Yale Law Schools announced their withdrawal from the US News rankings. That was followed by about a dozen other schools, mostly top tier law schools. But the pace of withdrawal has slowed dramatically.

I find it interesting that HMS is not (so far) being followed by other programs. It appeared that HLS and YLS coordinated their announcements. With HMS, it appears it acted on its own.
This is quite bizarre. It’s consistently ranked No.1 since forever given how large the hospital system is and how they use loosely affiliated hospitals to secure their ranking. My suspicion is that somehow US News is changing its methodology that will not count MGH and BWH as part of the school, so the ranking of HMS would drop precipitously.
 
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Probably a self-serving reason on Harvard's part but I think this is great! I just hope more schools follow suit, might reach out to mine and see if they have any plans. While obviously rankings mean less for medicine than for things like undergrad or law school, its still important to point out the flaws in ranking heterogeneous programs like this.

I think the best tool that would help people make decisions when choosing schools would be a table that has data on all the schools for: the likelihood that applicants get into x residency, PD ratings of the quality of students coming out of each school, student satisfaction with the curriculum, and locations that people tend to go into. These are really the things that matter to students, am I going to end up in the specialty that I want in the region that I want and am I going to be well-trained and not unhappy for 4 years. Obviously not really practical without a ton of buy-in.
 
I think the best tool that would help people make decisions when choosing schools would be a table that has data on all the schools for: the likelihood that applicants get into x residency, PD ratings of the quality of students coming out of each school, student satisfaction with the curriculum, and locations that people tend to go into.
Not the same but this came to mind:The Social Mission of Medical Education: Ranking the Schools
 
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I did not apply to any elite med schools but I think this is actually really bad.
USNews is obviously a deeply flawed ranking system that relies heavily on school reputation. Still, it's good that there's a ranking that cares about objective criteria (GPA and MCAT scores) so that med schools don't overemphasize subjective stuff that is heavily gamed (volunteer hours, commitment to service, etc).

I love that NYU was on the verge of dethroning Harvard as top dog by offering free tuition. I wish more schools would follow suit. This announcement reminds me of Manchester United and Barcelona trying to form a super league to cement permanent status as the best teams.

GPA is not objective in the least. Put EVERY single premed in the same university, with the same professor, with the same course load, and THEN you can argue that GPA is objective.

Also - the MCAT is totally skewed due to the heavy influence of privelage and those who have resources to study for it. And I’m actually a conservative guy and I usually dislike woke liberals. But even I admit that the MCAT is riddled with a privilege issue. Not to mention that, as a 3rd year medial student, I can say it has nothing to do with success in med school. For what it’s worth, I actually got a 516 on the MCAT so, trust me, I’m not saying it out of personal bitterness.
 
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, as a 3rd year medial student, I can say it (MCAT) has nothing to do with success in med school. For what it’s worth, I actually got a 516 on the MCAT so, trust me, I’m not saying it out of personal bitterness.

The data do not prove that out but the inflection point at which the MCAT stops being predictive of med school success (completion in 4 or 5 years, passing the step 1) is very low, lower than almost all medical students score so it should be used as more of a pass/fail at or above 505 or so than as something where 525 is better than 523 is better than 516.
 
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The data do not prove that out but the inflection point at which the MCAT stops being predictive of med school success (completion in 4 or 5 years, passing the step 1) is very low, lower than almost all medical students score so it should be used as more of a pass/fail at or above 505 or so than as something where 525 is better than 523 is better than 516.

I think that proves that the MCAT is only useful for screening out people who are at risk of failing board exams. Which makes sense - because not being able to score at least a 505 on the MCAT means that there is some considerable test taking or scientific thinking deficiency. However, I honestly believe that a high MCAT score is really just about "gaming" the exam, which many people can learn how to do if they have enough money to pay for enough courses. USMLE, on the other hand, is much more indicative of work ethic and the ability to critically think very fast (some questions are 3 paragraphs long and have 20 lab values). With that being said - I still do think that USMLE has its own issues where answers are not what you would do in real life. But I think that's besides the point.
 
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Current t20s
I think HMS completely miscalculated, thinking a lot of other top schools would follow the suit, like law schools. But no, no one has followed and I don't think anyone would at this point. So now, they literally gained nothing by doing this stunt and they certainly can't walk back on that. So come in March, you will find HMS info by scrolling down and down a lot till you hit unranked schools. TBH, this is a giant dumb move by HMS. They are sitting pretty as the most desired med school, why change that?
 
I think HMS completely miscalculated, thinking a lot of other top schools would follow the suit, like law schools. But no, no one has followed and I don't think anyone would at this point. So now, they literally gained nothing by doing this stunt and they certainly can't walk back on that. So come in March, you will find HMS info by scrolling down and down a lot till you hit unranked schools. TBH, this is a giant dumb move by HMS. They are sitting pretty as the most desired med school, why change that?
They always will be the most desired rankings or not
 
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I think HMS completely miscalculated, thinking a lot of other top schools would follow the suit, like law schools. But no, no one has followed and I don't think anyone would at this point. So now, they literally gained nothing by doing this stunt and they certainly can't walk back on that. So come in March, you will find HMS info by scrolling down and down a lot till you hit unranked schools. TBH, this is a giant dumb move by HMS. They are sitting pretty as the most desired med school, why change that?
I bet that they'll be sitting with 300 applications next cycle and no one will accept Harvard's offer of admission if they have any other choice. What a mistake to drop US Snooze. /sarcasm
 
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I bet that they'll be sitting with 300 applications next cycle and no one will accept Harvard's offer of admission if they have any other choice. What a mistake to drop US Snooze. /sarcasm
I think the ranking matters a lot more to ones who have to decide between HMS and other T5’s, again that’s like 50 applicants a year at most.
 
They always will be the most desired rankings or not
I kind of disagree. A lot of desirability comes from the ranking. Perennial No. 1 makes them quite solid in that department. However, in terms of trainings, many clinical sites offered at HMS are really not that great. Most students train at BIDMC instead of MGH and BWH. HMS is simply not having the stature of YLS to command irrefutable dominance over other med schools like YLS did in law schools.
 
I kind of disagree. A lot of desirability comes from the ranking. Perennial No. 1 makes them quite solid in that department. However, in terms of trainings, many clinical sites offered at HMS are really not that great. Most students train at BIDMC instead of MGH and BWH. HMS is simply not having the stature of YLS to command irrefutable dominance over other med schools like YLS did in law schools.
Its Harvard.
 
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I bet that they'll be sitting with 300 applications next cycle and no one will accept Harvard's offer of admission if they have any other choice. What a mistake to drop US Snooze. /sarcasm
A4AFD288-D896-40B9-B9D0-E7408EAF9857.jpeg
 
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I kind of disagree. A lot of desirability comes from the ranking. Perennial No. 1 makes them quite solid in that department. However, in terms of trainings, many clinical sites offered at HMS are really not that great. Most students train at BIDMC instead of MGH and BWH. HMS is simply not having the stature of YLS to command irrefutable dominance over other med schools like YLS did in law schools.

No one celebrates a a boxing trophy when you only won because your contender forfeited. No one will really consider [insert medical school] as the #1 medical school.
 
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Its Harvard.
As Malcolm Gladwell has pointed out, when the ranking methodologies were first devised by USNWR, they had to appear valid to the public. Meaning they had to put the schools generally considered to be the best at the top. So the methodologies were effectively reverse engineered to ensure Harvard was #1, and the "logic" of the rankings thus became circular.

I'm personally glad that Harvard is stepping off the treadmill. The only outfit that has unequivocally benefited from the USNWR rankings is the USNWR.
 
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I kind of disagree. A lot of desirability comes from the ranking. Perennial No. 1 makes them quite solid in that department. However, in terms of trainings, many clinical sites offered at HMS are really not that great. Most students train at BIDMC instead of MGH and BWH. HMS is simply not having the stature of YLS to command irrefutable dominance over other med schools like YLS did in law schools.
Lol, you are saying that BIDMC is not a desirable place to rotate as a med student? Also, it's not "most" students, it's ~1/3 rotate there anyway.
 
I'm personally glad that Harvard is stepping off the treadmill. The only outfit that has unequivocally benefited from the USNWR rankings is the USNWR.
I believe therapists and psychologists for neurotic premeds and their overbearing parents also benefitted from the additional business that the stress and anxiety worrying about rankings while applying to medical school provided. Considering that of the nearly 60,000 people who submit on average some 16 applications each, some 80% (60% who get rejected and 20% who get a single acceptance) rankings really mean squat. Students who are fortunate to get two acceptances or more, have many other factors to consider before rank becomes an actual consideration. And we would be hard pressed to find anyone who ever took another school over an acceptance to HMS.

I have been in the admissions “business” as a premed advisor, medical admissions, application processing/systems for over 40 years now and never looked at these or considered rankings at anytime. Belief and the psychological driver of rankings for starry-eyed premeds is only surpassed by the sheer stupidity they espouse on MD/DO foolishness.
 
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As Malcolm Gladwell has pointed out, when the ranking methodologies were first devised by USNWR, they had to appear valid to the public. Meaning they had to put the schools generally considered to be the best at the top. So the methodologies were effectively reverse engineered to ensure Harvard was #1, and the "logic" of the rankings thus became circular.

I'm personally glad that Harvard is stepping off the treadmill. The only outfit that has unequivocally benefited from the USNWR rankings is the USNWR.
If you saw my post above this one, then you would see that I dont disagree with you! I think the rankings are pointless.

But my response was to someone who stated that because Harvard will no longer rank as #1 or even be ranked, then they will dip drastically in their applicant pool. Which is ludicrous, because it is still - and forever will be Harvard. Regardless of rankings, it is the oldest and one of - if not the most - well renowned universities in the country.
 
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I believe therapists and psychologists for neurotic premeds and their overbearing parents also benefitted from the additional business that the stress and anxiety worrying about rankings while applying to medical school provided. Considering that of the nearly 60,000 people who submit on average some 16 applications each, some 80% (60% who get rejected and 20% who get a single acceptance) rankings really mean squat. Students who are fortunate to get two acceptances or more, have many other factors to consider before rank becomes an actual consideration. And we would be hard pressed to find anyone who ever took another school over an acceptance to HMS.

I have been in the admissions “business” as a premed advisor, medical admissions, application processing/systems for over 40 years now and never looked at these or considered rankings at anytime. Belief and the psychological driver of rankings for starry-eyed premeds is only surpassed by the sheer stupidity they espouse on MD/DO foolishness.
Don't forget medical school Deans!
 
This is just a political ploy to stay off future lawsuits (next is to get rid of sharing MCAT and GPA scores) when Supreme Court rules against AA. So Asians and whites cannot sue based on stats.
 
I think HMS completely miscalculated, thinking a lot of other top schools would follow the suit, like law schools. But no, no one has followed and I don't think anyone would at this point. So now, they literally gained nothing by doing this stunt and they certainly can't walk back on that. So come in March, you will find HMS info by scrolling down and down a lot till you hit unranked schools. TBH, this is a giant dumb move by HMS. They are sitting pretty as the most desired med school, why change that?
Columbia just backed out of USNews as well.
 
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More schools will likely follow suit. Med schools are large organizations, and while the Dean is seen as the person running the ship, they get advice and counsel from multiple individuals and boards on which decisions to make.
 
I kind of disagree. A lot of desirability comes from the ranking. Perennial No. 1 makes them quite solid in that department. However, in terms of trainings, many clinical sites offered at HMS are really not that great. Most students train at BIDMC instead of MGH and BWH. HMS is simply not having the stature of YLS to command irrefutable dominance over other med schools like YLS did in law schools.
Per evaluation averages, HMS students rate BIDMC the highest in terms of quality of medical student training, followed by MGH and then BWH. Columbia just announced today they're backing out of the med school rankings as well.
 
This is just a political ploy to stay off future lawsuits (next is to get rid of sharing MCAT and GPA scores) when Supreme Court rules against AA. So Asians and whites cannot sue based on stats.
They will make MCAT optional just like undergrad. Slowly GPA will become optional. After all, anyone can pass medical school curriculum and become a doctor. Other fields need those smart kids.
 
This is part of the problem with rankings in the first place. The rank a med school has is only moderately tied to its value of education. Picking Duke over Stanford because Duke is #6 and Stanford is #8 is completely asinine - but both schools are highly ranked because of good reason. Students should look at what a school has to offer, not what a school’s number on a list is.

DO schools are a good example. None of them are actually ranked, so applicants with multiple DO acceptances pick a school based on strength of matching in the area, quality of clinical rotations, research opportunities, etc. I think students with multiple MD acceptance should do that more often rather than just saying “I’m going to go to middle of nowhere New Hampshire because Darthmouth is the highest on my list of acceptances”.
 
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What will med school deans use now to measure their D___s?
Of the 11 years I've been following your sage advice, this is the single greatest post I think you've ever made.

I hereby pronounce your work here done. You may retire from SDN with highest honors.

XD
 
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I have a thought/question, with presumably many top schools soon to follow suite, how do you think this is going to affect Residency competitiveness?

With step 1 going P/F, people are saying that this "kicked the can" further down the road to where PDs have one less metric by which to judge folks, so that it was plausible for school ranking to have been more of an influence.

This seems like it could be a pre-empt to thwart that, but inevitably something else will kick the can down further to something else.

However, it's unlikely anyone will forget that Harvard et al are the "elite" schools so. Perhaps this withdraw won't have any real effect.
 
I have a thought/question, with presumably many top schools soon to follow suite, how do you think this is going to affect Residency competitiveness?

With step 1 going P/F, people are saying that this "kicked the can" further down the road to where PDs have one less metric by which to judge folks, so that it was plausible for school ranking to have been more of an influence.

This seems like it could be a pre-empt to thwart that, but inevitably something else will kick the can down further to something else.

However, it's unlikely anyone will forget that Harvard et al are the "elite" schools so. Perhaps this withdraw won't have any real effect.
I don’t think the PD’s use the exact ranking as a metric, ie No. 3 is better than No.10. Rather a group of schools historically enjoy the boost from their perceived prestige. I doubt this list will change when schools drop out of US News. What’s gonna happen is that the consensus of which schools are T5 and which schools are t10 will be more stable. I think it’s more of a tier system.

Tier 1a: HMS, UCSF, Hopkins, Stanford and Penn
Tier 1b: Columbia, WashU, Yale, Duke, Mayo and Michigan
Tier 2: NYU, Cornell, Pitt, UW, UCLA, UCSD, Vandy, Northwestern, Chicago and Mt Sinai.
Tier 3: BU, Emory, and the like

I don’t think within the same tier, the reputation differs at all among the schools. So in a way, US News ranking is artificially granular.
 
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If you saw my post above this one, then you would see that I dont disagree with you! I think the rankings are pointless.

But my response was to someone who stated that because Harvard will no longer rank as #1 or even be ranked, then they will dip drastically in their applicant pool. Which is ludicrous, because it is still - and forever will be Harvard. Regardless of rankings, it is the oldest and one of - if not the most - well renowned universities in the country.
My comment was intended to be additive rather than adversarial.

But if you want to get adversarial, it's 5 o'clock somewhere...
 
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