UNSW Sydney has six subjects ranked in the top 20 globally

04 Mar 2021

The 2021 QS Subject Rankings ranked 21 UNSW subjects in the top 50 and four at number one in Australia.

The 2021 QS Subject Rankings released on 4 March placed one UNSW Sydney subject in the top 10 globally and 21 among the top 50 in the world.

Mineral & Mining Engineering was the top-ranked UNSW subject moving from fourth to fifth in the world. This is its fifth year in a row as UNSW’s best performing subject.

In the latest subject league table, UNSW had six subjects ranked inside the top 20 globally for 2021. Those included Civil & Structural Engineering (12), Law (13) Petroleum Engineering (18), Accounting & Finance (19), and Environmental Sciences (19).

In Australia, UNSW was ranked number one in four subjects including Civil & Structural Engineering; Electrical & Electronic Engineering; Mechanical, Aeronautical & Manufacturing Engineering; and Mathematics.  

UNSW President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Jacobs said the University’s success across a variety of disciplines reflects the breadth of quality in its research and teaching.

“It is the mission of UNSW to help solve major societal challenges. From engineering to law and to environmental sciences – encompassing many other disciplines – we are contributing to the social and economic future of Australia. Our community can be proud of these achievements and the positive impact of our endeavours,” Professor Jacobs said.

Published annually since 2011, the global subject rankings are based on academic reputation, employer reputation, and research citations. The 2021 table ranked 1443 institutions across 51 subjects in five broad subject areas.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Enterprise Professor Nick Fisk welcomed the impressive individual subject performance in the analysis, based on last year’s QS scores.

“UNSW slipping marginally across the five broad subject areas points to the increased competitiveness among the top 50 universities globally. These subject rankings are heavily dependent on citations, with up to 60 per cent in some disciplines, and it will be interesting to see future trends given the renewed focus now on impact over publications,” Professor Fisk said. 

The rankings aim to help prospective students identify the world’s leading schools in their chosen field, with the list of subjects extended each year in response to high demand for subject-level comparisons.

The full list of UNSW subjects ranked in the top 50 includes:

  • Engineering – Mineral & Mining (5)  
  • Engineering – Civil & Structural (12)
  • Law (13)
  • Petroleum Engineering (18)
  • Accounting & Finance (19)
  • Environmental Sciences (19)
  • Psychology (24)
  • Architecture / Built Environment (33)
  • Engineering – Electrical & Electronic (33)
  • Geophysics (37)
  • Sports-related subjects (37)
  • Mathematics (38)
  • Geology (38)
  • Materials Science (39)
  • Business & Management Studies (40)
  • Earth & Marine Sciences (40)
  • Economics & Econometrics (42)
  • Medicine (45)
  • English Language & Literature (48)
  • Engineering – Chemical (50)
  • Anatomy & Physiology (50)