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U.S. News Ranks University of Charleston First Among Regional Colleges in WV

Release Date:  Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Charleston, WV — The University of Charleston is the highest-ranked regional college in West Virginia in the 2011 edition of U.S. News & World Report's Best Colleges. UC rose to #11 in the first tier rankings of Regional Colleges in the South. Last year it was ranked #15. This marks the third year in a row that UC has topped the list of West Virginia institutions in its category.  (The designation "regional college" replaces "baccalaureate college or university" used in previous rankings).

The report, which includes rankings of more than 1,400 schools nationwide, is available today at, and will also be published in the September issue of U.S. News & World Report, on newsstands starting August 31.

The U.S. News college rankings group schools based on categories created by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and are frequently relied upon by students and parents considering higher education opportunities. They use  a set of up to 16 indicators of excellence, including peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, and alumni giving. More information about Best Colleges is available at

UC President Ed Welch is pleased with the recognition."I am proud of our faculty, our staff, and our students for striving for excellence in the delivery of higher education. When we reinvented the college curriculum to focus on student learning instead of faculty teaching several years ago, we set a process in motion that is beginning to be recognized both nationally and internationally. This rise in the U.S. News ranking is a reflection of those efforts."

The University of Charleston offers students a "Learning Your Way," performance-based curriculum that emphasizes outcomes and relies heavily on assessment of students' actual learning.  Enrollment has been on the rise for several years, and school officials predict that the fall term will have more full-time students than any year since 1972.

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