Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Top Research Universities Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index

For a small department, we are mighty! The stats just released by the Chronicle for Higher Education have ranked the productivity of the faculty in the Religious Studies Department at Rice University to be fifth in the nation. This is quite astounding given the comparative size of our department to the others in this top tier (Harvard, Duke, Emory, New York University).

I might mention that there are some things that are not controlled for in these stats, and probably should be. There is a big difference between theology departments and religious studies departments, and between departments and committees or programs. For instance, there is no differentiation between the divinity school department and university religion department at schools like Harvard, Duke, Emory, Princeton, and Yale. So these universities are not really being judged on their Religion programs, but have been judged on a combination of their theology and Religion programs. Additionally, places like NYU do not even have a Religion department, but a program that draws on a number of faculty housed in various departments, some of whom may only contribute one class to the program.

Our faculty number is wrong. We are nine with one open position (not 11). So the "per faculty member" calculations are lower than they should be by quite a bit.

The Rice Department is one of the only solely Religious Studies humanities program represented on the list! I think that if all the factors that I mention in this post were controlled for, our ranking as a Religious Studies faculty in a humanities division of a university is higher than these stats indicate.

I am quite happy to see our department get the recognition it deserves. It is a "happening" place with very innovative and dedicated faculty.

1 comment:

humfrey said...

a note on princeton – the ranking only applies to the uni., which is a completely separate from the seminary.Their dept. is just like Rice – a religion dept. in a lib. arts college.