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Forbes University Rankings 2012 | Online University Rankings

Forbes University Rankings 2012

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If you’re currently deciding between college programs, looking at rankings can help you learn more about the schools you’re considering. While this is just a first step in learning more about each college, you should take in the information from as many university rankings as possible. One of the newest lists is compiled by Forbes and their companion website,

About Forbes

While Forbes is an old and well-respected business magazine, they have only been compiling their college list, known as “America’s Best Colleges,” since 2008. They’re well-known for other major lists of importance, such as the Forbes 400, which is an annual list of the richest people in the United States. They haven’t officially called the America’s Best Colleges list an annual list, but they have updated it annual so far, so it seems as though this is the direction in which they’re heading.

The Forbes college list is unique in that it focuses on liberal arts colleges, rather than just rehashing other lists, which put a greater emphasis on the sciences. They have been praised for including schools that are not typically found on other lists, rather than focusing on Ivy League schools. Others have criticized their methodology, since it takes a number of non-conformable statistics into consideration.

Ranking Methodology

Many other magazines and organizations rely on surveys to compile their list, but Forbes’ approach is to gather information from fresh sources. Some of the factors considered when they compile their list include the following:

  • Student Graduation Rate
  • Alumni Inclusion in Who’s Who in America
  • Alumni Salary, as reported on
  • Professor Ratings and Evaluations, as reported on
  • Debt Accumulated by Students over the Course of Four Years
  • National Honors and Awards given to Students and Professors

In addition to providing the America’s Best College list, Forbes has also compiled a list that they call the “Top Colleges for Getting Rich.” This list relies on data mostly from, where alumni can report their earnings. However, this list has been criticized, since there is no way to confirm the reported salaries of alumni on and it is suspected that the reports on that website are skewed, since people have the option to give their salary or not. There have been a number of surprising schools included on this list, while other, more prominent schools have ranked lower.

Whether or not you want to believe that this list is technical and accurate doesn’t dismiss the fact that it is a unique view of the colleges you are considering. The Forbes list should just be one of the many college rankings lists you read, and on top of that, it is important to not rely too heavily on these lists. While they are useful tools for gathering information, other factors, like talking to professors and visiting campuses, are just as valuable.

Featured Online Universities in America

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The Internet has revolutionized education so that now you can earn a degree entirely online from the comfort of your home. This is perfect for working professionals or anyone who wants to get ahead in a career without having to go to a physical campus everyday.

University of Phoenix is world-renowned for being the largest online university. The University boasts dozens of degree programs at all levels that students can choose from. University of Phoenix has produced thousands of graduates in fields such as nursing, education, health care, and information technology. In addition to its online access, the University has campuses in over 100 locations.
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Kaplan is organized into ten different academic schools, including Arts & Sciences, Business, Criminal Justice, Education, Health Sciences, IS & Technology, Legal Studies, Nursing, Continuing Education, and Concord Law School. All told, Kaplan offers more than 125 degrees and programs both off- and online, with more than 70 campus-based locations nationwide.
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In addition to a host of options for students needing to transfer existing bachelor's and master's coursework into one of its more-than three dozen degree programs, Post University also welcomes military personnel to join its student body. Post offers detailed opportunities for veterans, those participating in active duty, as well as military dependent students.
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For students looking for flexible and affordable online education, Walden University offers both. As a leading accredited online university for more than 40 years, Walden has more than 42,500 students, from all 50 states and more than 100 countries. Nearly 85 percent of Walden students are satisfied with their university, and would be likely to recommend Walden to others.
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American InterContinental University, also known as AIU, is a private school accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. Founded in 1970 as the American College of Applied Arts, AIU today has seven campuses in the US and UK and runs its online program out of its Chicago offices. AIU offers degree programs in several subjects, including healthcare, business, education, criminal justice, and more.
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Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 as Grand Canyon College, an Arizona Southern Baptist school. (It reached university status in 1989.) Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, GCU is typically featured among the Top 10 online colleges as ranked by The Online Education Database (OEDb).
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An accredited online university, Capella University offers bachelor’s, master’s/MBA, doctoral, and certificate programs designed to take you to the forefront of your profession. Our competency-based curriculum delivers foundational knowledge and real-world skills, so what you’re learning is immediately applicable to your career. Right now, more than 36,000 students are expanding their opportunities with Capella programs. Speak with an enrollment counselor at 1.866.679.9687.
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