Top 15 research medical schools, per US News' updated methodology

More than half of U.S. News & World Report's top 15 research medical schools have boycotted its rankings in the past year. 

The publication released its top 15 medical schools for research on April 11, a preview of the full list to come April 18. Its methodology has been updated to prioritize outcomes for students — reflecting several schools' objections that the rankings are reductive and hinder diversity measures by prioritizing prestige. 

Of the 15 schools named, at least nine — including the top three contenders — have withdrawn from the rankings, refusing to submit data for 2023. For these institutions, U.S. News used data from submitted statistical surveys in 2023, or 2022 if there was none. It also analyzed publicly available metrics from the National Institutes of Health.

The publication also made an effort to focus the rankings on student experience by adding NIH Grant Awards as a measure of research quality; increasing the weight of faculty-to-student ratios; and reducing the weight of reputation surveys, MCAT and GPA scores.

U.S. News previewed its law school rankings, which have been met with similar media and collegiate backlash, in an identical fashion. 

"We develop our education rankings with the purpose of empowering students with helpful information to make one of the most important — and most expensive — decisions of their lives," Eric Gertler, U.S. News' executive chairman and CEO, said in a news release. "We are releasing these previews now to share the top 14 schools in the two categories that have gotten the most attention in the media, which represent approximately 10 percent of their respective student populations.

"We will release the complete graduate schools rankings on April 18, at which point we hope the attention will be focused on those schools that represent the remaining 90 percent of students seeking to make the best choice for their legal and/or medical education." 

Here are the top 15 medical schools for research, according to U.S. News

1. Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore) 

2. University of Pennsylvania-Perelman School (Philadelphia) 

3. Harvard University (Boston) 

4 (tie). University of California San Francisco 

4 (tie). Washington University (St. Louis)

6. Columbia University (New York City) 

7 (tie). Stanford (Calif.) University 

7 (tie). Yale University (New Haven, Conn.) 

9 (tie). Duke University (Durham, N.C.) 

9 (tie). University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) 

11. University of Pittsburgh

12. Northwestern University-Feinberg School (Chicago) 

13. New York University-Grossman School

14 (tie). Cornell University-Weill Medical College (New York City) 

14 (tie). Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine (Rochester, Minn.) 

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