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International organization again ranks school No. 1 in the world3 min read

May 28, 2021

International organization again ranks school No. 1 in the world3 min read

Ann Arbor, Mich., May 28, 2021 – For the fifth consecutive year, the University of Michigan School of Dentistry is rated as the top dental school in the world by Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, an international organization that annually rates universities and their programs.

The U-M dental school is ranked as No. 1 in Dentistry and Oral Sciences in Shanghai’s 2021 Global Ranking of Academic Subjects released Thursday.

The ranking measures research quality, amount of research published in top journals, extent of international collaboration, and the number of significant international academic awards faculty receive from professional organizations.

The survey ranks 54 subjects within five categories: Medical Sciences, which includes Dentistry and Oral Sciences; Natural Sciences; Engineering; Life Sciences; and Social Sciences. Data from more than 4,000 universities was examined, with the final report including 1,800 universities from 93 countries and regions.

Dean Laurie McCauley said these rankings reflect the dental school’s long-standing commitment to world-class research. “Research at the school informs and advances the dental education and patient care aspects of our mission,” she said. “This latest high ranking confirms the incredible range and talent of our faculty, researchers and students who explore a wide variety of science with the ultimate goal of improving oral health. Whether it is translating regenerative medicine into clinical innovations, or discovering the underlying mechanisms of head and neck cancer, we are grateful to see our researchers acknowledged for the quality and quantity of their research.”

The academic subject ranking released Thursday by Shanghai Ranking is part of the organization’s larger university rating system known as the Academic Ranking of World Universities, or ARWU. The overall university rating is not yet released for 2021; the University of Michigan was ranked 22nd in the world in the 2020 ranking. The ARWU was first published in June 2003 by the Center for World-Class Universities at the Graduate School of Education of Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China as a way to compare Chinese universities with others around the world. The breakdown by academic subject was added in 2009. The complete subject rankings and a more detailed description of methodology can be found on the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy website.

Other dental schools in the survey’s top five this year are the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, King’s College London, Harvard University and the University of California at San Francisco.

Shanghai Ranking is one of two major international surveys that continue to rate the U-M School of Dentistry highly. In March, for the seventh consecutive year, the QS World University Rankings rated the U-M dental school No. 1 in the United States; it also ranked the school No. 2 in the world, up from No. 3 the prior year. (See related QS ranking story from March 2021 here.)


The University of Michigan School of Dentistry is one of the nation’s leading dental schools engaged in oral health care education, research, patient care and community service.  General dental care clinics and specialty clinics providing advanced treatment enable the school to offer dental services and programs to patients throughout Michigan.  Classroom and clinic instruction prepare future dentists, dental specialists and dental hygienists for practice in private offices, hospitals, academia and public agencies.  Research seeks to discover and apply new knowledge that can help patients worldwide.  For more information about the School of Dentistry, visit us on the Web at:  Contact: Lynn Monson, associate director of communications, at, or (734) 615-1971.