Prez Ram nath Kovind at University of Melbourne

The World rankings of universities and other educational institutions for 2021 have been released by the Times Higher Education. The University of Melbourne (UoM) has gone up one place and moved to the 31st spot in the world overall and has maintained its top spot in Australia. The second oldest University in Australia established in 1853 and younger only to the University of Sydney which was established in 1850, the prestigious University is the envy of many others and a sought after education destination for thousands of students both in Australia and overseas.

The closest rival in Australia is the University of Sydney ranked 51st in the world and second in Australia. The Australian National University of Canberra is 59th and the University of Queensland is 62nd in the world.

A close local University in Melbourne is the Monash University – known as Australia’s international University – but it is ranked 64th in the world. Monash has jumped 11 places in a year from its rank of 75th in the world last year. A close competition to Monash is the University of New South Wales Sydney, sitting at number 67 in the world rankings.

Other local universities for Victorians to compare are as below:

The rankings are decided based on the following five pillars:

  1. Teaching
  2. Research
  3. Citations
  4. Industry Income
  5. International Outlook

Based on the score in each pillar, an over figure score is arrived at which decides the University’s overall ranking in the world. For this piece, we have taken the figures for the top five universities of Australia – University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, Australian National University Canberra, University of Queensland and Monash University.

Name Australian / world Ranking Teaching Research Citation Industry Income International Outlook Overall
University of Melbourne 1/31 67.1 76.3 90.1 74.2 93.9


University of Sydney 2/51 51.3 64.4 92.3 69.3 90.0 70.9
ANU Canberra 3/59 48.5 68.3 88.4 43.0 96.2 69.8
University of Queensland 4/62 54.3 61.0 85.9 81.0 93.0 69.4
Monash University 5/64 52.9 61.7 86.2 73.9 90.3


Needless  to emphasize that the UoM is far ahead of any other University or educational institution when it comes to the quality of education and the value of its degree earned by the dedicated students. For those families in Victoria whose children are going to join some University next year, the obvious choices are the University of Melbourne and the Monash University – the only state housing two universities among the top five universities in Australia. Parents have to start looking for the courses available in a university of their children’s choice to be able to get the preferences right in doing the forms of their children.

Among the Victorians of Indian origin, the University of Melbourne has been their first choice closely followed by Monash University. Looking at its world and Australian ranking it is not surprising at all.

“Once you are in the top 50, you are competing with highest performing universities – even to move up one spot, it is a great step forward”, Professor Ashokkumar Muthupandian, Assistant Deputy Vice Chancellor (International) told Bharat Times.

The University of Melbourne had been sitting at overall ranking o f 32 in the world for the last three years 2018, 2019 & 2020 in a row. With improved Teaching, research and Citations scores (from 65.9, 74.1 and 89.8 in 2020) it has moved up one place to 31st in the world. And it is no small feat.

Bharat Times also spoke to Professor Michael Wesley, Deputy Vice Chancellor (International) to lead its focus on international strategies and partnerships.

Professor Wesley, an expert in international affairs who had worked in higher education, government and the private sector, was appointed only late last year in the job.

Despite the COVID-19 challenges which have put some efforts in troubled territory, the University has improved its world ranking and maintained its top spot in Australia.

One must wonder – how does it feel to be leading the effort?

“I feel very proud and very privileged to work for the university of Melbourne. We are now ranked 31st in the World. This represents the highest position ever held by an Australian university over the last decade. You could say that it has been a difficult and turbulent year for higher education and it shows that a quality institution like the university of Melbourne has been performing exceptionally well despite all of the challenges of COVID Crisis” Professor Wesley told Bharat Times.

Professor proudly lists which are Teaching, Research, Citations and International Outlook as the areas where the UoM has made improvements to move up a rank.

“ The ranking results show that the university has improved its performance in four of the five key pillars – which are teaching, research, international outlook and citations”, Professor added.

The doubly good news for Indian Australians is the UoM is not only focused on its focus on international strategies and partnerships, led by Professor Wesley and assisted by  Professor Muthupandian, they already have put in place programs including that of a Blended BSc – partnering with 6 Indian universities and are looking to expand further in the years to come.

India is a huge market with a huge number of young students looking to gain world class education. The UoM being Australia’s number one and topping the overall world rankings for Australia, India as a nation and Indian universities can play a key role in its international partnerships and expansion programs.

“As our vice-chancellor said recently the ranking results are a reminder about the importance of university partnerships with industry which will be critical as we navigate our way out of the COVID-19 pandemic”, Professor Wesley added.

Indian dispora all over the world and in Australia and Victoria in particular are known for their focus on education for their children. They have been choosing UoM as their first preference for courses for decades.

“When I came as a student – I came to the University of Melbourne”, reminisces T K Singh whose wife also came to study their. And “my daughter went there as well. When people do not get the course of their choice, they have to go to their second chice”, he adds.

Without a doubt, the University of Melbourne – No. 1 in Australia – situated in Melbourne Victoria – will be again their first choice come the time to list preferences for their children doing VCE this year.

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