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The United States National Research Council
The National Research Council of the USA is the working arm of the United States National Academies, carrying out most of the studies done in their names.The National Academies include:* National Academy of Sciences...
conducts a survey and compiles a report on United States Research-Doctorate Programs approximately every 10 years, although the time elapsed between each new ranking has exceeded 10 years. Data collection for the most recent report began in June of 2006; it was released on September 28, 2010. These rankings did not provide exact ranks for any university; rather, they used a scale system that provided statistical ranges for each rank. Two series of rankings were offered - R Rankings, based on regression analyses of various survey results in which academics reviewed the reputation of actual programs; and S Rankings, based on how various programs' characteristics measured against criteria which academics rated as key determinants of quality for such programs.
The 2010 rankings have been criticized for using incorrect and inconsistent data that "does not pass even a rudimentary sanity check" and for groupthink
Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within groups of people. It is the mode of thinking that happens when the desire for harmony in a decision-making group overrides a realistic appraisal of alternatives. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without...
in the committee process that led to bad decisions in compiling the report.