The 2015 Best Colleges Guide put out by U.S. News and World Report for undergraduate programs was published Sept. 9. The Jacobs School of Engineering ranks #15 among engineering programs at public institutions, and compared to all engineering schools, it ranks #26, unchanged from last year. US News also ranked computer engineering undergraduate programs, the only specialty among CSE programs to be ranked this year. On that front, computer engineering (for both ECE and CSE majors) edged up to #15, from #16 last year.
Looking more closely at the computer engineering ranking, UC San Diego shared the #15 spot with two other institutions: Rice University, and the University of Southern California (USC). Both are private institutions, where undergraduate tuition and fees cost $40,566 and $48,280, respectively. By comparison, in-state tuition and fees are only $13,302 at UC San Diego. Even for out-of-state students coming to UCSD, tuition and fees are $12,000 less than at USC.
The undergraduate ranking methodology is different from what U.S. News uses for its more widely-watched graduate school rankings. To assess undergrad programs, U.S. News relies solely on the judgments of deans and senior faculty at peer institutions (in our case, for universities where the highest engineering degree offered is a doctorate).