Two Irish universities have been named among the world’s top 100 for graduate employability.
Global higher education analysis firm Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has today released its annual QS Graduate Employability Rankings for 2022.
The rankings are based on how international universities rate under a number of specific categories: partnerships with employers (including internships); the number of sectoral leaders among alumni; the frequency with which employers are present on campus; and a location-adjusted graduate employment rate.
Given the ever-increasing competitiveness of the global jobs market, and the rising financial cost of educational investment, QS said its rankings and data can help students make "evidence-based decisions about their educational futures."
Six Irish universities feature among the 550 ranked by QS, but just two - University College Dublin (UCD) and Trinity College Dublin (TCD) - appear in this year's top 100.
Though UCD fell from 78th position in the 2020 rankings to 87th in this year’s, it remains Ireland’s best-performing institution for employability.
Taking the 91st spot, TCD placed just four positions behind UCD, and one position higher than it placed in 2020.
Due to the pandemic, there were no rankings in 2021.
Four other Irish universities - Dublin City University (DCU), University of Limerick (UL), University College Cork (UCC), and NUI Galway - are also included in the QS rankings.
Both DCU and UL placed in the 191st to 200th category, UCC placed in the 201st to 250th category, while NUI Galway ranked in the 301st to 500th category.
Overall, QS said this year’s rankings display a strong showing for Irish universities, with four of the six mentioned improving their position from 2020.
"With most of Ireland’s ranked institutions either consolidating or improving their position, and with a majority also outperforming their overall QS World University Rankings position, this year’s results – the first since the pandemic began to affect graduate employment opportunities – suggest that Irish universities continue to equip their students well for a testing environment,” said Director of Research at QS, Ben Sowter.
“Seeking to increase the number of employers on campus will ensure that Ireland’s students have the best opportunities possible to prepare for the world of work while still studying."
According to QS, TCD earned Ireland’s highest Employer Reputation score, which is based on survey responses from 75,000 employers regarding those institutions from which they have hired the most successful graduates.
QS noted that UCD achieved the nation’s highest score in the Partnerships with Employers indicator.
DCU fared best as regards getting its students into jobs - its location-adjusted Graduate Employment Rate score is a nation-leading 98.7/100.
UL meanwhile was found to bring more employers onto campus than any other Irish institution, achieving the country’s highest score in the Employer-Student Connections metric.
Globally, the top six universities this year are the same as were listed in 2020, with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, the University of California LA, the University of Sydney, Harvard University, and Tsnighua University in Beijing each retaining their positions of first to sixth respectively.
The University of Oxford, the University of Melbourne, Cornell University in New York State, and the University of Hong Kong rounded out the top 10.