April 2, 2004

VUSM among top in ‘U.S. News’ rankings

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Some anesthesiologists at VUMC now wear a portable computer that allows them to see a video of a patient’s operation and his or her heart rate, blood pressure or blood oxygen levels. Photo Illustration by Matt Gore

VUSM among top in ‘U.S. News’ rankings

Vanderbilt University School of Medicine garnered recognition once more as being among the leading medical institutions in the United States.

U.S. News and World Report ranked VUSM 15 out of 125 accredited medical schools in the United States this week in their annual scoring of graduate and professional schools.

“It is great to be recognized among the very best medical schools in the country. I am proud of our faculty and our students. Our base of research grants continues to grow faster than our peer institutions,” said Harry R. Jacobson, M.D., vice chancellor for health affairs. “Residency program directors are increasingly finding our graduates are among the most well prepared in the country and our acceptance rate demonstrates that we are a school in high demand by the brightest students in America.”

Despite falling one point from last year, Dean Steven G. Gabbe, M.D., said he’s confident the School of Medicine will reach the goal he set two years ago — to be in the top 10 by 2010.

“We are among an elite group of medical schools that are all striving for excellence,” Gabbe said. “I am confident that, as we meet the goals of our academic strategic plan, our achievements wll be reflected in the ratings we receive.”

U.S. News bases it’s rankings on a weighted average of different indicators such as research activity, peer assessment, student selectivity and faculty resources.

“Although some have questioned the criteria used to create rankings of this type, the rankings do appear to make a difference in students’ decision on which medical school to attend,” Gabbe said.

The U.S. News report also included Medical Specialties lists — lists of the top schools in different specialties based solely on ratings by medical school deans and senior faculty at peer schools. Vanderbilt was ranked 17 on the Internal Medicine list.

U.S. News and World Report includes schools of Nursing in their survey every other year. Last year, the Vanderbilt School of Nursing was in a tie for 29th place with a 3.7 out of 5.0 average assessment score.

VUSN was tied with Duke University, Georgetown University, the University of Kansas, and six other schools. U.S. News has ranked schools of nursing six times, with Vanderbilt making the list each time.

U.S. News and World Report ranking of the top 20 research medical school in the United States:

1. Harvard University

2. Washington University in St.


3. Johns Hopkins University

4. Duke University

University of Pennsylvania

6. University of California — San Francisco

7. University of Michigan — Ann Arbor

8. Columbia U. College of Physicians and Surgeons

Stanford University

10. University of Washington

Yale University

12. Cornell University

13. Baylor College of Medicine

14. University of California — Los Angeles

15. Vanderbilt University

University of Pittsburgh

17. University of California — San Diego

University of Texas

Southwestern Medical Center — Dallas

19. Emory University

20. Northwestern University

University of North Carolina — Chapel Hill