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OBU Earns Top Rankings from U.S. News and World Report for 30th Consecutive Year

September 13, 2021

Oklahoma Baptist University once again ranked among the top 10 “Best Regional Colleges in the West” by U.S. News and World Report for the 30th consecutive year. OBU ranked sixth out of the entire Western region of the United States and was the highest-ranked college or university from the state of Oklahoma on the list for the 28th year.

“Best Regional College” rankings are calculated through a number of factors, including graduation and retention rates, social mobility, undergraduate academic reputation, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources for students, graduate indebtedness and multiple other measures of academic quality.

OBU President Dr. Heath A. Thomas is grateful for the recognition these rankings bring to the world-class, transformational and affordable education found on Bison Hill.

“These rankings from U.S. News and World Report demonstrate the incredible academic quality, value and personal focus students experience at OBU. We are grateful for our faculty, who not only teach their subjects with passion and expertise, but who also care for our students on a personal level, building relationships with them that will last far beyond graduation as they venture into the world. We are thankful for the Christian liberal arts tradition we embrace and how it develops students who think critically from a Christian worldview. We are blessed by the many ways our students grow and mature during their time here, as they are equipped to become the future shapers they are called to be, all of life, all for Jesus.”

In addition to continuing its three-decade streak of top ten rankings on “Best Regional Colleges in the West,” OBU ranked highly on four other lists as well. OBU ranked second on a list of “Best Undergraduate Teaching” for regional colleges in the west. These rankings are determined by cumulative nominations by college presidents, provosts and admissions deans who nominated up to 15 schools in the first half of 2021. These schools were colleges and universities which the nominators considered to be committed to teaching undergraduate students in a high-quality manner. At least seven nominations were needed for a school to be in consideration for ranking.

OBU ranked 10th on the list of “Best Value Schools” for regional colleges in the west. To select institutions for this list, U.S. News and World Report factors the academic quality and cost for each school after accounting for total expenses and financial aid. Four ranking indicators were used, including academic quality, the percentage of full-time undergraduates receiving need-based scholarships or grants, the average discount from the school’s total sticker price for full-time undergraduates, and the percentage of full-time undergraduates receiving need-based aid who also received a grant or scholarship. This ranking underscores the value of an OBU education, in tandem with the overall academic quality of the institution.

OBU also ranked highly on a list for “Top Performers on Social Mobility” for regional colleges of the west. The University took the 14th spot. This ranking measures the extent schools enroll and graduate students who have received federal Pell Grants. This is computed based on two factors, both the six-year graduation rate of bachelor’s degree-seeking new entrants awarded Pell Grants as well as how close the six-year graduation rate of Pell Grant receiving students is to students who do not receive Pell Grants.

The University claimed the fifth spot in the rankings for “Best Colleges for Veterans” for regional colleges of the west. This ranking reflects which schools are affordable for veterans and active-duty service members based on the benefits available to them.